Sen. McConnell, the path on healthcare is clear

American Bridge spokesperson Andrew Bates released the following statement after Sen. Mitch McConnell alleged that Affordable Care Act places were “collapsing” and that the path forward on healthcare was “murky.”

“The marketplaces have proved resilient despite repeated attempts by Donald Trump to sabotage the ​Affordable Care Act, but now it’s time for Republicans to come to terms with reality and commit to working across the aisle to improve existing law. We need an approach that puts the American people ahead of partisanship, something like that might even stop Sen. McConnell’s approval rating from ‘collapsing.’”

The Hill: McConnell: Path on healthcare ‘murky’
BY JORDAIN CARNEY – 08/21/17
02:03 PM EDT

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) acknowledged Monday that Congress’ next steps on healthcare are unclear after Republicans failed to repeal ObamaCare.

“Obviously we had a setback on the effort to make dramatic changes on ObamaCare. The way forward now is somewhat murky,” the Senate GOP leader said […]

Read more after the jump.

American Bridge Launches Digital Ads in 4 States On GOP Dysfunction

Ads Highlight Washington Republicans’ Total Inability to Govern & Call for Change in Congress

As the Republican Party reels from the failure of its top policy priority for the last seven years despite holding the White House and both chambers of Congress, American Bridge today is launching a digital ad campaign holding Republican politicians accountable for their party’s dysfunction and toxic agenda.

The ads, which will run on social media through the weekend, will tell swing voters, “The Republican Congress isn’t working. It’s time for new leadership in Washington.” The ads will run across four key states: Nevada, Florida, Arizona and Michigan.

“Republicans in Washington are mired in dysfunction, unable deliver on their campaign promises and beholden to a toxic legislative agenda. They are offering the country chaos when we need competence,” said American Bridge Vice President Shripal Shah.  “Kicking millions off of their insurance in order to cut taxes for the rich was a […]

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New Digital Ads on Senate Obstructionist Mitch McConnell As He Returns to Washington

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, April 4, 2016
CONTACT: Dawn Le, 202-549-6798

 

New Digital Ads on Senate Obstructionist Mitch McConnell As He Returns to Washington
Ads Show McConnell’s Hypocrisy and Capitulation to Donald Trump’s “Delay, Delay, Delay” Strategy

Returning from a two-week recess full of testy confrontations with constituents upset over his strict obstructionism on the Supreme Court vacancy, Senator Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is now the subject of Bridge Project digital ads highlighting his baffling hypocrisy on the issue.

American Bridge Vice President Eddie Vale released the following statement on Bridge Project’s ads featuring McConnell’s past advocacy of a fair nomination process:

“Senator McConnell has already stained his legacy by embracing petty partisan politics on the Supreme Court vacancy. We’d hoped his recess constituent interactions would trigger a moment of clarity and cause him to realize that voters just want him and his colleagues to do their job, but he sadly appears as committed as ever […]

Read more after the jump.

New Digital Ads on Senate Obstructionists As They Return to Washington

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, April 4, 2016
CONTACT: Dawn Le, 202-549-6798
 

New Digital Ads on Senate Obstructionists As They Return to Washington
Ads Show Republicans’ Hypocrisy and Capitulation to Donald Trump’s “Delay, Delay, Delay” Strategy

Returning from a two-week recess full of testy confrontations with constituents upset over their strict obstructionism on the Supreme Court vacancy, Senators Mitch McConnellChuck Grassley, and Orrin Hatch are now the subject of Bridge Project national and state-level digital ads highlighting the senators’ baffling hypocrisy on the issue.

American Bridge Vice President Eddie Vale released the following statement on Bridge Project’s ads which feature the senators’ past advocacy of a fair nomination process:

“Senators McConnell, Grassley, and Hatch have stained their respective legacies by embracing petty partisan politics on the Supreme Court vacancy. We’d hoped when they were face-to-face with their constituents back home, it would trigger a moment of clarity and cause them to realize that voters just want them […]

Read more after the jump.

NEW REPORT: Conservatives’ Road Map To Another Republican Government Shutdown

When Republicans took control of Congress nine months ago, they promised an end to the divisions and intra-party bickering that caused the 2013 government shutdown. New Majority Leader Mitch McConnell even declared on his watch, there would be “no government shutdowns and no default on the national debt.”

But, here we are, just over two weeks from another Republican government shutdown with the GOP remaining fractured over the simplest of issues. As a new poll  shows that 71% of Americans want Congress to avoid a government shutdown, the GOP majority has yet to present a plan, or to even unify around a promise to not force the government to shut down for the second time in two years. 

Bridge Project’s latest report, “Conservatives’ Road Map To Another Republican Government Shutdown,” examines how conservatives have written their own path to another irresponsible Republican-led government shutdown.

The report delves into:

How Republican leadership promised to […]

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NEW REPORT — By Fair Means Or Fowl: How The GOP’s Fight Against Lame Duck Confirmation Votes Bucks Tradition

Despite public calls for bipartisanship after their electoral gains, Congressional Republicans continue to use every means possible to block the Obama administration from governing. Beyond their legislative roadblocks, Republicans are obstructing routine approval of qualified and noncontroversial nominees and judges. A scan of recent history shows that confirming presidential nominees in a lame duck session has been as much a fall tradition as the pardoning of a turkey, until now.

President Obama has put forward quality candidates for consideration. There are dozens of critical vacancies in the executive branch, including the surgeon general, an assistant secretary for homeland defense, and a bevy of ambassadorships critical to our national security. Many of these nominees are long-overdue for a vote and their absence is impeding the government’s ability to function.

There are also currently dozens of judicial vacancies on the US Court of Appeals and US District Courts. The price we pay for these vacancies is steep. According to a recent Brennan Center for Justice study, judicial vacancies “slowed the court’s ability to resolve motions and try cases, which drove up litigation costs, caused evidence to go stale, made it harder to settle civil cases, and in some instances, pressured clients to plead guilty.”

Read more after the jump.

VIDEO: Spanish Language Media Coverage Already Unfriendly To GOP On Immigration Showdown

After two years of intransigence from the Republican-controlled House, President Obama has been left with no option but to take executive action to address immigration reform. Not surprisingly, GOP leaders are already painting the president as a lawless dictator for acting without Congress, despite the clear precedent from Republican presidents, including Ronald Reagan, on this very issue. Republicans are even threatening another shutdown, immediately confirming that they have no interest in proving they can effectively govern now that they control both houses of Congress.

If Republicans think they will win the immigration debate by refusing to act and threatening another shutdown, they should take a look at how their antics are playing in Spanish language media. Spoiler alert: no bueno.

And if Republicans are already taking heat for their extreme immigration stance, consider what the future holds. Soon, none of this will be hypothetical — the GOP will […]

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Taking (Executive) Action: GOP’s Leadership Failure Leave Immigration Up To Obama

In a press conference following the midterm elections, President Obama reaffirmed his intention to use executive action to begin tackling our nation’s immigration problem. New media reports shed light on private negotiations on immigration reform between President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner that began soon after the 2012 election. Speaker Boehner was likely feeling the pressure after a Republican National Committee-commissioned “autopsy report” of their electoral losses declared their party “must embrace and champion comprehensive immigration reform” in order to win future elections.

As the year-long negotiations progressed, Speaker Boehner needed political cover to maneuver within his party, prompting President Obama to continue to compromise in pursuit of House support for the already-passed bipartisan Senate immigration bill:

  1. No public criticism of Republicans members on immigration policy
  2. No trips in 2013 to battleground states with large Hispanic populations
  3. Back piecemeal reforms rather than one big bill overhauling immigration policy
  4. Defer executive action until after the summer

After what seemed to be a good faith effort by both sides, Speaker Boehner, yet again, just couldn’t deliver the votes, particularly from the extreme Tea Party members of his caucus. To further impede the process, the Republicans apparently reversed course on the necessity of immigration reforms after their recent electoral gains. When Speaker Boehner and future Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell released outlines of their upcoming legislative agendas, immigration reform wasn’t included. Similarly, even Reince Priebus, chairman of the Republican National Committee, backed away from the idea of compromise.

Read more after the jump.

Republicans Still Unwilling To Protect Voting Rights and LGBT Equality One Year After Supreme Court Rulings

One year after major Supreme Court decisions on the Voting Rights Act and the Defense of Marriage Act, conservative leaders are still denying equal rights for all Americans by failing to address the issues raised by these cases.

After the Supreme Court struck down a critical provision of the Voting Rights Act, or VRA, there has been little appetite among conservatives in Congress to fix the sections of the law that have been almost universally considered the most successful part of the landmark civil rights legislation. The VRA enjoyed bipartisan support when it was reauthorized in 2006; House Speaker John Boehner said at the time that the law had been “an effective tool in protecting a right that is fundamental to our democracy.” However, in the face of extreme opposition from the Tea Party, conservatives have either questioned the need for a legislative fix or ignored the issue entirely.

Sadly, the inaction on this issue – which has led to the passage of voter suppression laws in several states – is almost certainly politically motivated. As Paul Weyrich, founder of the Heritage Foundation and the American Legislative Exchange Council, bluntly stated in 1980, “our leverage in the elections quite candidly goes up as the voting populace goes down.” In fact, analysis has shown that election fraud, particularly the in-person voter impersonation that supposedly prompted tougher voter ID laws, is virtually non-existent. In addition, the voters who are disproportionately affected by voter ID laws – the poor, students, Africans Americans and Hispanics – all tend to vote for Democrats.

Read more after the jump.

Senate Finance Committee Republicans To Continue Cruz’s Crusade

On Wednesday, the Senate Finance Committee is holding a hearing on the October launch of the Affordable Care Act’s health insurance exchanges. While the committee’s Republicans are expected to keep up their extreme, Ted Cruz-led attacks calling for the wholesale repeal of Obamacare, it’s worth remembering that a number of them sang a different tune during the problematic implementation of Medicare Part D in 2006.

Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT), for example, now the Finance Committee’s ranking member, said of Medicare Part D in 2006 that “any program of that size and magnitude will have problems initially!” Hatch also commended a CMS administrator for doing a good job with “this very, very difficult to implement bill that we saddled you with.” And fellow Finance Committee member Mike Crapo (R-ID) argued in 2006 that glitches shouldn’t outweigh the benefits of positive public policy, saying of Medicare Part D that “we should not let these problems overshadow the fact that every day there are folks who are paying far less for their medications than they were before.”

But the similarities between the rollout problems facing the Affordable Care Act and Medicare Part D are unlikely to buy Obamacare any leeway from a Republican Party that has been bent on destroying health care reform from the outset. Like their counterparts in the House, who have voted nearly 50 times to repeal or defund the health care reform law, Senate Republicans have introduced dozens of bills designed to chip away at the law and repeatedly tried to use political tactics to undermine its viability. Yet the GOP’s blind devotion to sabotaging the health care law at any opportunity ignores the millions of Americans who would suffer if the legislation were repealed, including those with pre-existing conditions and seniors who fall into the prescription drug “donut hole.”

Wednesday’s hearing follows several similarly themed events held in recent weeks by other Senate and House committees, at which Republicans berated witnesses from CMS and HHS and used the opportunity to attack Obamacare as a whole. With the Finance Committee’s Ted Cruz-led Senate Republicans likely to pile on, it’s clear that the GOP’s real interest is partisan grandstanding, not fixing the glitches in the law.

Read more after the jump.