Rapid Response

Rand Paul’s “African-American” Outreach Delivered for White Audience

In the latest failure of the GOP’s Rebranding campaign, the RNC dispatched Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) to Detroit last week for the opening of a new African-American Engagement Office. Yet even in a city that is approximately 83 percent African-American, American Bridge’s footage from an event at the Grace Bible Chapel shows Paul’s audience to be predominantly white.

As reported by the Huffington Post, “the launch event put into stark relief just how much work the GOP has to do.”

While the GOP’s outreach won’t be taken seriously without a significant recalibration of policy priorities, the choice of Paul as designated emissary to minority communities suggests a particular hollowness in their efforts. Earlier this year, Paul gave a condescending speech to the students of historically-black Howard University in which his revisionist history of the Republican Party and racial politics conveniently omitted the previous 50 years. During that speech, Paul also lied about his previous remarks opposing the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

So long as a significant element of the Republican Party continues trying to scapegoat minorities, suppress their vote and advocate for policies that are harmful to their community, it’s understandable that these Americans have no desire to hear what Republicans have to say.

GovernorsGovernorsPRESS RELEASE

NEWS: American Bridge Launches GOTV Ad Campaign in Support of McAuliffe

American Bridge 21st Century today announced a new digital campaign to help Virginia  voters locate their polling place and learn about the Republican ticket’s history of fighting to restrict voting rights.

Earlier this year, Republicans in Virginia passed a restrictive new law to change voting requirements in the Commonwealth. The law limits the list of permissible forms of identification and severely restricts voters’ ability to cast a provisional ballot in the event they can only provide non-photo identification as proof of identity. The law hasn’t yet gone into effect and can only be stopped by electing Democrats like Terry McAuliffe, who will fight to uphold voters’ rights.

“Like many Republicans across the country, Ken Cuccinelli and Republicans in Virginia are trying to change the law to make it harder for minorities to vote. These desperate and cynical plans to gain the upper hand on Election Day are nothing more than an attack on democracy and our values as a nation,” said American Bridge president Rodell Mollineau. “Virginia deserves leaders who seek to inspire more people to make their voices heard, not craven politicians who gleefully suppress the rights of others for political gain. That’s why it’s crucial for Virginians who supports the right to vote for all Americans to find their polling place and vote for Terry McAuliffe and the Democrats.”

Republicans nationwide are pursuing similar legislation endangering the right to vote. These proposals are an admission that the party has no hope of winning elections without disenfranchising millions of voters. Republicans have come to the conclusion that it is easier to prevent Americans from voting than to propose forward-looking ideas that would appeal to a broader base of voters.

While American Bridge has previously invested in targeted digital campaigns to educate voters about Republicans’ harmful agenda, today’s ads mark the first time it has used its research in conjunction with an online tool to help voters find where to vote.

American Bridge 21st Century is a progressive organization committed to holding Republicans accountable for their words and actions through the use of opposition research, candidate tracking, and earned media communications.

PresidentialPRESS RELEASERapid Response

BRIDGE BRIEFING: Romney’s Record on Issues Impacting the African American Community

Romney Administration

Romney Failed To Appoint Minorities To Top Positions In His Administration As Governor. According to the Associated Press, “A new report faults Governor Romney for failing to appoint minorities, particularly Latinos and Asian-Americans, to top positions in his administration. Of 163 top-level positions, fewer than eleven percent were held by minorities. That’s according to the report by the McCormack Graduate School’s Center for Women in Politics and Public Policy at U-Mass Boston. Latino appointments made up one-point-eight percent of the total number of posts, even though Latinos make up seven percent of the state’s population. Asian-Americans make up four percent of the state population, but hold fewer than one percent of total top-level positions. A Romney spokesman defended the governor’s record — saying approximately 52 percent of all employees in the administration are women, and 22 percent are minority.” [Associated Press, 12/6/06]

Mitt Gets Worse

Continuing our push to show that Romney would move America backwards in terms of LGBT equality, we made this new web video titled “Mitt Gets Worse.”

The tagline: “The more we learn about Mitt Romney’s attitude toward LGBT people, the worse it gets.”

PresidentialResearch

MOTHER’S DAY MEMO: Romney’s Record On Issues Important To Women And Families

As families across the country celebrate Mother’s Day and honor the women in their life, it is also a good opportunity to reflect on the policies that allow women to pursue equal pay for equal work, protect women and families from violence, and help to prevent serious illnesses. Unfortunately for women and their families, Mitt Romney has consistently advocated against these policies. With the Republican Party consistently advocating an anti-women agenda, they have found the perfect standard bearer in Mitt Romney.

See the research below.

Heather Wilson Attacks Anti-Bullying Bill

In this clip, GOP Senate candidate Heather Wilson blasts the Student Non-Discrimination Act (S.B. 555), an anti-LGBTQ bullying bill sponsored by Senator Al Franken (D-MN). Wilson mistakenly argues that Franken’s bill would “criminalize harassment or bullying.”

This footage was filmed by an American Bridge tracker at a Senate debate between Wilson and fellow Republican Greg Sowards at an Otero County GOP meeting on April 12, 2012.

Presidential

Huffington Post: Mitt Romney’s Women Surrogates Voted Against Pay Equity Enforcement, Blasted Feminism

On April 18, 2012, Huffington Post reported:

A March 29 Wisconsin Women for Romney call with reporters featured Wisconsin state Sen. Alberta Darling (R-River Hills) and conservative activist Bay Buchanan. Darling was a cosponsor of legislation repealing her state’s 2009 Equal Pay Enforcement Act, which was designed to deter employers from discriminating against certain groups by granting workers more avenues for pressing charges. Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) quietly signed the bill into law last week.

A.B. in the NewsPresidential

ThinkProgress: Romney Campaign Enlists GOP Women Who Opposed Equal Pay Bills To Attack Obama

On April 11, 2012, ThinkProgress reported:

Romney’s campaign followed these two releases with a statement from his former Massachusetts Lt. Governor, Kerry Healey (R). Though she too takes the curious tact of blaming her party’s “war on women” on President Obama, American Bridge 21st Century notes that while in office, Healey “publicly condemned Romney for vetoing spending for women’s health, including breast and cervical cancer screenings and treatment, calling the move: ‘penny-wise, pound-foolish.’”

A.B. in the NewsPresidential

Daily Beast: Mitt Romney Secretly Supported Anti-Gay-Marriage Group

On March 30, the Daily Beast reported:

Given recent revelations about NOM, liberal operatives see an opportunity to discomfit Romney and, once the general election is underway, paint him as a right-wing extremist. “As a leading contender for president of the United States, for him to be funding a group whose strategy memos lay out such a hateful way to divide African-Americans and the LGBT community, it’s shocking,” says Chris Harris, communications director of American Bridge 21st Century, the super PAC founded by Media Matters’ David Brock. “When he initially donated in 2008, he may not have known that this is their strategy, but as a political leader and as an opinion leader, he has a responsibility to speak out and condemn their intention of dividing Americans.”

A.B. in the NewsPresidential

Daily Kos: How Much Racial Division And Hostility Did Mitt Romney Buy With His $10,000?

On March 30, 2012, the Daily Kos reported:

When Mitt Romney cut his $10,000 check for Maggie Gallagher and Brian Brown’s National Organization for Marriage did he know that money would be used to “to drive a wedge between gays and blacks—two key Democratic constituencies?” Did he know his money would be used to purposely and cravenly fan hostility between his fellow Americans?

It’s a question American Bridge 21st Century is asking, and thus far almost 5,000 people have signed their Change.org petition asking Romney to denounce his ties to National Organization for Marriage.