Senate Brief: Republicans On Kavanaugh Assault Allegation: Ignore, Dismiss, Distract

Week of Monday, September 17.

IN BRIEF: A sexual assault allegation against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh is putting Republican Senate candidates in a pickle.

After months of blind support for Kavanaugh’s nomination, GOP candidates will face increased scrutiny on a nominee they thought was airtight. And if their reactions so far are any indication, don’t hold your breath for Republicans to do the honorable thing.

Josh Hawley was dogged by questions from reporters after the first Missouri Senate debate last Friday. Asked about the allegation, Hawley said the Senate should move forward and vote on Kavanaugh’s nomination. Asked “Do you believe the woman?,” he refused to answer and made a quick exit.
Dean Heller doubled down on his support for Kavanaugh in a local radio interview conducted hours after the allegation was made public, saying “America will be better off” […]

Read more after the jump.

Virtually Every Republican Senate Candidate Is Lying About Pre-Existing Conditions

“Republican Senate candidates’ pathetic excuses for protecting pre-existing conditions coverage are a master class in political pandering,” said American Bridge spokesperson Amelia Penniman. “Republicans are hoping voters aren’t paying attention to their long record of deception on this issue. We’re here to make sure every voter between now and Election Day learns just how empty Republican promises are.”

Huffington Post: GOP Senate Candidates Are Scrambling To Rewrite Their Record On Pre-Existing Conditions
By Jonathan Cohn and Kevin Robillard | September 2, 2018

Josh Hawley “says he is all about making sure anybody can get health insurance, regardless of their medical status: ‘We need to cover pre-existing conditions,’ he said earlier this summer.”
But Hawley “is one of the 20 state officials who has signed onto a new lawsuit seeking to eliminate the Affordable Care Act’s guarantee of coverage, which they argue is unconstitutional. Hawley is also […]

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Hawley Allies Exaggerate His Role in Investigating Missouri’s Rape Kit Backlog to Aid His Campaign

“Missourians are learning that Josh Hawley will only do the right thing if he can take complete credit for it, then use it to boost his political career. That’s political opportunism and moral cynicism in a nutshell. And that’s Josh Hawley,” said American Bridge spokesperson Amelia Penniman.

St. Louis Post-Dispatch: Ad Check: TV spot claiming Hawley ‘uncovered’ untested rape kits doesn’t tell whole story
By Jack Suntrup | August 30, 2018

One Nation, “a dark-money group connected to longtime GOP consultant Karl Rove is telling Missouri voters that Attorney General Josh Hawley ‘uncovered thousands of untested rape kits’ in the state.”
“The ad, however, leaves out context. Advocates, law enforcement and survivors of sexual violence have for years sounded the alarm on kits languishing in crime labs, police departments and hospitals.”
“On Oct. 29, the Columbia Missourian published an investigation on untested rape kits in Missouri. On Nov. 9, Hawley launched a statewide […]

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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 […]

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Senate Brief: With 99 Days To Go, Every Electoral Trend Is Bad News for Republicans

Week of Monday, July 30, 2018

IN BRIEF: With 99 days until Election Day, every trend is heading the wrong way for Republican chances. A map that began overwhelmingly in their favor has shifted toward Democrats as political self-sabotage, poor candidate recruitment, and abysmal fundraising have chipped away at their odds.

Republicans’ repeated attacks on healthcare have decimated their support amongst independent and moderate voters, while healthcare remains the top issue on the ballot. Two GOP Senate candidates — Missouri’s Josh Hawley and West Virginia’s Patrick Morrisey — are co-counsels on a lawsuit against the Affordable Care Act.
Republicans aren’t campaigning on their unpopular tax law, and Democrats are. D.C. Republicans staked their political futures on a tax law that has proved deeply unpopular with voters across the country. On the campaign trail, GOP Senate candidates are running in the other direction, while Democrats are highlighting the tax law’s giveaways to corporations […]

Read more after the jump.

Senate Brief: Trump’s Trade War is Damaging Republicans’ Senate Chances

Week of Monday, July 23

IN BRIEF: In battleground states across the country, Trump’s reckless trade war is slamming key midterm voters — and throwing a wrench into Republican Senate candidates’ chances.

In North Dakota, Rep. Kevin Cramer is increasingly choosing his political allies over his thousands of suffering constituents. Trump’s reckless tariffs “threaten the livelihoods of local farmers and the state’s small manufacturing sector.” A 25% price drop in soybeans — North Dakota’s #1 export — has spurred a fully fledged crisis.
In Indiana, Rep. Mike Braun has hewn closely to Trump’s reckless line on trade. But dozens of brutal headlines about the consequences of the trade war won’t go unnoticed as voters look for candidates who will stand up for their interests.
And in Missouri, Attorney General Josh Hawley has  Read more after the jump.

In Emails, Josh Hawley Said “Part of My Decision To Move Back To Missouri Was Political”

“Josh Hawley was lying when he promised Missourians he wouldn’t be yet another ambitious politician who only cares about his own political career — just read his own words. All the way back to 2011, Hawley was thinking about running for U.S. Senate, and he even admitted he moved back to Missouri for ‘political‘ reasons,” said American Bridge spokesperson Joshua Karp. “Josh Hawley is everything Missourians hate about politics.”


Huffington Post: Josh Hawley Says He Never Planned On A Senate Run. Colleagues Thought Otherwise.
E-mails reviewed by HuffPost show the GOP’s top Senate recruit wrote about seeking office as far back as 2011.By Kevin Robillard, July 23, 2018

“When Missouri Republican Attorney General Josh Hawley announced his bid for the Senate, he made one thing clear: This wasn’t the plan. It was the pleas of donors, activists and politicians from around the state rather than his own ambition that convinced him.”
“‘Next year, I’m going to run for the United States Senate,’ he said in his launch video in October 2017. ‘This wasn’t something we were planning to do.’”
“He’s repeated the claim in many interviews since then. ‘No. No. […]

Read more after the jump.

QUICK CLIP: Out of Touch Hawley Fails to Address Tariff Pain Felt By Farmers & Manufacturers

“You know I think the President’s right” – Hawley


When asked about the reckless trade policies hurting Missouri farmers and manufacturers, rather than address the pain of his constituents or offer real solutions, Josh Hawley resorted to desperate partisan attacks.

Hawley to KOLR: “You know I think the President’s right to go out there and say we need a better deal for American farmers, Missouri farmers, for American workers, Missouri workers… I think the President is right to go out there and say we need to shake this up and we need to get a better deal. He’s right to go out there and fight for it. And I tell you who’s left Missouri farmers behind is Claire McCaskill. In twelve years what has she done for Missouri’s farmers? Zero.”

You read that right: Hawley said Trump’s harmful tariffs were “right” three times in a row.

Watch Josh Hawley’s total lack of empathy for struggling Missouri […]

Read more after the jump.

Patrick Morrisey and Josh Hawley Are Selling Out Americans With Pre-Existing Conditions

“Patrick Morrisey and Josh Hawley knew exactly what they were doing when they joined their lawsuit attacking the Affordable Care Act. Their actions put millions of West Virginians and Missourians with pre-existing conditions at risk. Vulnerable Americans deserve better than blatant politicking done at their expense,” said American Bridge spokesperson Amelia Penniman. 

Kaiser Health News: States Attacking ACA Would Suffer Most If Preexisting Conditions Shield Gets Axed
By Harriet Rowan | July 17, 2018

“If the Affordable Care Act’s protections for people with preexisting medical conditions are struck down in court, residents of the Republican-led states that are challenging the law have the most to lose.”
“Twenty Republican state attorneys general and governors challenged the constitutionality of the ACA in federal court in February…The states’ lawsuit argues that because Congress eliminated the Obamacare tax penalty for not having insurance coverage, effective next year, the entire law is unconstitutional. By extension, the […]

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Senate Brief: Rick Scott’s Toxic Algae Nightmare

Week of Monday, July 16, 2018

IN BRIEF: Rick Scott’s policies are poisoning Florida’s waterways with toxic algae, forcing businesses to close and families to evacuate — and even stopping one church from performing baptisms

The blue-green algae grows in Central Florida’s Lake Okeechobee because of years of Rick Scott’s negligent environmental policies that put special interest polluters first. The algae releases dangerous, foul-smelling vapors, is dangerous to touch and is toxic to ingest. Commerce along the affected waterways is brought to a standstill.
Rick Scott has a seven-year record of putting special interests ahead of Florida’s environment. He’s kicked the can down the road on toxic algae for seven years, kowtowing to his wealthy financial backers; he’s advocated for drilling off the Florida coast; he’s banned state government from even uttering the words “climate change”; and he’s weakened oversight of polluters.
That’s why Florida newspapers are blaming Rick Scott for the crisis. Sun-Sentinel says Scott is “to […]

Read more after the jump.