MEMO: Susan Collins is the most vulnerable GOPer in 2020 by a mile

TO:               Interested Parties
FROM:         American Bridge 21st Century
SUBJ:          Susan Collins is the most vulnerable GOPer in 2020 by a mile
DATE:          January 16, 2019

Maine Senator Susan Collins has a steep hill to climb to reelection in 2020. In the past two years, she has undermined her centrist persona and voters in Maine have caught on. If she chooses to run again in 2020, she would enter the contest as the underdog.

American Bridge is ready to capitalize on this opportunity to defeat the Senate’s most vulnerable Republican with a two tier attack that will underscore how 20 years in Washington have changed Susan Collins.

Collins’s support for Kavanaugh will go down in history as the beginning of the end of her career. Collins was infamously the deciding vote on Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation and for reasons unknown to political observers, she took ownership […]

Read more after the jump.

Mainers to Collins: Stand Up To Your Party

“Susan Collins knows that the path to reopening the government runs squarely through Mitch McConnell’s Republican caucus. So do Mainers, who are begging Collins to put her money where her mouth is and pressure GOP leadership to put an end to this harmful shutdown,” said American Bridge spokesperson Amelia Penniman.

Portland Press Herald: Bill Nemitz: Sen. Collins should stand up to the leaders of her party

By Bill Nemitz | January 6, 2019

Senators Susan Collins and Cory Gardner, “as of Friday the only two Senate Republicans to at least speak to the absurdity of it all, both face tough re-election campaigns in 2020 and thus are motivated at least in part by self-preservation.”
“Be that as it may, it’s a sad testimony to the fecklessness of today’s Republican Party that such tepid calls for reopening the federal government would be viewed as acts of political bravery. At what point did we […]

Read more after the jump.

Collins Uses Government Staff in Potential Violation of Ethics Rules, Desperate Ploy to Protect Her Senate Seat

U.S. Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) has apparently deputized her official government staff to throw political punches on her behalf in potential violation of rules that prohibit expending government resources for political purposes. In an op-ed published today in the Bangor Daily News, Collins’s official office communications director, Annie Clark, made explicitly political charges against a potential 2020 challenger to Collins, raising serious questions about who authorized the op-ed, and whether it was composed using government resources on official time. As of the most recent FEC filing, Clark is not an employee of the Senator’s campaign.

“On its face it looks like Senator Collins and her staff have committed a serious violation of Senate rules. Defending your boss from a potential political opponent in the pages of the local newspaper doesn’t fall within the scope of government duties,” said American Bridge spokesperson Amelia Penniman. “It’s obvious that Collins is scared of 2020 […]

Read more after the jump.

Republicans Try to Have It Both Ways on Healthcare, Fail Miserably

“Republican Senate candidates are failing miserably in their transparent attempts to have it both ways on Obamacare,” said American Bridge spokesperson Amelia Penniman. “In spite of their persistent pathetic pandering, this year’s crop of GOP Senate candidates is no exception to the decade-long Republican crusade against affordable healthcare. American voters will voice their disdain for such political antics at the polls this November.”

Politico: GOP’s midterm peril: What if they win on killing Obamacare?
By Burgess Everett | August 17, 2018

“Republican candidates are trying to have it both ways on Obamacare.”
“On one hand, Republicans are still campaigning against the law, arguing a strong election result will allow them one more shot at repealing the Affordable Care Act with GOP majorities in both chambers. And many high-profile Senate GOP candidates support a lawsuit that would scuttle Obamacare if successful in the nation’s courts, a case that will be heard by a federal judge in September.”
“Yet at the same […]

Read more after the jump.

When D-Money Comes To Town

As Paul LePage–America’s “craziest governor“–prepares to greet Donald Trump in Maine, it’s worth remembering how these courageous crusaders have selflessly pointed out the “real racists” in our midst.

LePage hasn’t been shy about exposing the “real racists” in his own state. While running for governor in 2010 he lamented that “There is a lot of racism in Maine.” Perhaps LePage’s statement earlier this year that drug dealers named “D-Money, Smoothie, Shifty … come up here, they sell their heroin, and they go back home,” only after, of course, they,  “impregnate a young, white girl before they leave,” was simply meant to illustrate the racism of others.

Donald Trump is no stranger to exposing “real racists” either. This week, Trump exposed another racist–Elizabeth Warren. Though he’s been widely criticized for calling the Massachusetts senator “Pocahontas”, Trump mused that, “I think she’s a racist, actually, […]

Read more after the jump.

The New Tea Party Cavalry Riding Into Washington

The Republican Party rode a Koch-fuelled wave to victory in elections around the country this week, but don’t let them fool you: nothing about their extreme, Tea Party agenda has changed. The GOP has not moderated itself. It has not rid itself of “gaffe-prone” candidates. It has not adopted a milder, more palatable stance on key policy issues that impact the lives of women, immigrants, or working families. And the proof is in the pudding. A quick scan of some of the newest members of the House shows just how extreme this latest crop of Tea Party Republican members of Congress truly are.

From Georgia to Maine, Virginia to Wisconsin, Illinois to Iowa, extreme Tea Party Republicans have been elected to seats in the U.S. House of Representatives. Take Glenn Grothman in Wisconsin’s 6th District to start. We’ve already detailed the long list of Grothman’s greatest extreme hits, but as a quick refresher, the Congressman-elect has: proselytized about the “war on men,” fought for a seven-day workweek, and proposed a law to formally consider single parenthood a contributing factor to child abuse.

Read more after the jump.

But wait, there’s more… of the LePage-Cutler bromance (VIDEO)

Tonight’s Maine gubernatorial debate had several memorable moments. Governor LePage claimed that $100,000 is “not that rich” (never mind that that’s over twice the state’s median income). He admitted that “I cannot create jobs,” while in the same breath bragging about putting 3,500 Mainers out of work through his hiring and firing power.

But we’d be remiss if we didn’t especially highlight even more touching examples of the LePage-Cutler bromance that took place tonight at USM.

Read more after the jump.

VIDEO: The LePage-Cutler bromance blossoms

High-fives, hugs, applauding each other — the hallmarks of a certified bromance, and yet, also of the Maine gubernatorial debates, thanks to Governor LePage and Eliot Cutler’s mutual admiration society. Indeed, in response to a question last night about whether he’d sign a bill raising the governor’s pay, Cutler gushed “not mine, but I’d increase… Paul’s!” Swoon.

Read more after the jump.

Maine students react to LePage’s student loan plan (VIDEO)

Tonight, Governor Paul LePage will participate in his third gubernatorial debate, and if last week’s debates were any indication, LePage will once again trumpet his plan to address the student loan debt crisis: selling student loans to employers. LePage also raised this proposal on Monday during an appearance at the University of Maine, where students were on fall break at the time. Perhaps if he’d had the event when students were actually on campus, they would have told him what several USM students told American Bridge: it’s a singularly “bad idea” to sell student loans to employers in exchange for a tax credit.

Read more after the jump.

Corroding the Classroom: Republican Gubernatorial Candidates’ Devastating Cuts to Education

In key gubernatorial races across the country, education funding has become a major issue — and that’s bad news for Republicans.

In 2010, a slew of GOP candidates rode a tea party wave to governorships, promising massive budget overhauls that would hand tax cuts to the wealthy and cut other programs to pay for them. Well they delivered on those promises, and one after the next gutted education funding as they reshaped their states in the tea party mold. Now they’re reaping what they’ve sown.

From Rick Scott and Scott Walker to Sam Brownback, Tom Corbett and more, Republican governors are getting slammed for slashing funds for schools, dealing a blow to their respective reelection bids, while prospective governors like Doug Ducey have promised to do the same. Locked in tight races, these Tea Party governors are floundering to explain their draconian cuts to concerned constituents by twisting numbers and distorting their records.

But there is no explaining away the truth: these governors put tax cuts for the wealthy and big corporations ahead of children’s education, and families in their states are paying the price.

Read more after the jump.