Monday, April 09, 2018

Republicans Ready To Give Up The House, Circle The Wagons To Save Their Slim Senate Majority


Albatross by Nancy Ohanian

This morning, Politico made it sound like the McCarthy vs Scalise battle to take over as Speaker is breaking news. It isn't. The two of them have been aware Ryan won't be running in November and they have been quietly courting supporters for the better part of a month as Ryan gets ready for the big announcement. Rachel Bade and John Bresnahan wrote "House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy and Whip Steve Scalise have started courting Republicans in case the speaker retires." and "Two top members of Paul Ryan’s leadership team, Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy and Majority Whip Steve Scalise, have begun angling for his job in the event the speaker calls it quits after the election." He's leaving-- and it's fairly common knowledge. And what about before the election? After all, after the election, it isn't likely to be voluntary, since the likelihood of Randy Bryce beating him-- despite Inside the Beltway deluded punditry-- is overwhelming.

They also wrote "Neither man is actively rounding up votes at this point, and both of them downplayed the possibility of a looming clash." That is false and several GOP congressional staffers have told me each one is rounding up votes. In fact, McCarthy, one of Congress' biggest bribe-takers (after Ryan), has been spending and steering big money to Republican members he thinks have a chance of serving the wave and could be around after the election to vote for leader. Saclised is touring the country trying to help GOP loons win their reelection battles. "Scalise said in an interview that he would not challenge McCarthy for speaker-- 'I’m not running against Kevin for anything,' he told Politico-- while McCarthy said he’s focused solely on keeping the House in November and pursuing President Donald Trump’s agenda." More bullshit. And the far right fringe of the party is trying to round up votes too-- for Freedom Caucus chairman Mark Meadows (R-NC).

On the other hand, more and more Republicans are starting to face up to the fact that whomever replaces Ryan will be Minority Leader of a greatly diminished caucus, not Speaker. This morning, the Washington Post reportedthat "Republicans are increasingly worried they will lose control of the House in the midterm elections, furiously directing money and resources to hold and potentially boost their narrow majority in the Senate. To many, the Senate is emerging as a critical barrier against Democrats demolishing President Trump’s agenda beginning in 2019. Worse yet, some in the GOP fear, Democrats could use complete control of Congress to co-opt the ideologically malleable president and advance their own priorities. Democratic enthusiasm is surging in suburban districts that House Republicans are struggling to fortify, causing GOP officials, donors and strategists to fret. They have greater confidence in the more rural red states Trump won convincingly that make up the bulk of the Senate battlefield." GOP donors are starting to ignore House battles and putting everything into holding on in the Senate.

Yesterday, Republican pollster told Fox News that the party's over-- possibly in both Houses. "I think the Republicans are in deep trouble in the House and the Senate as well. If the election were held today, frankly, I think Republicans would lose both."

The new poll from Reuters confirms that, particularly because older, educated white voters are joining the kids and the minority voters in their distaste for all things Trump. Older, white, educated voters helped Trump win in 2016 but are now "trending toward Democrats in such numbers that their ballots could tip the scales in tight congressional races from New Jersey to California."
Nationwide, whites over the age of 60 with college degrees now favor Democrats over Republicans for Congress by a 2-point margin, according to Reuters/Ipsos opinion polling during the first three months of the year. During the same period in 2016, that same group favored Republicans for Congress by 10 percentage points.

The 12-point swing is one of the largest shifts in support toward Democrats that the Reuters/Ipsos poll has measured over the past two years. If that trend continues, Republicans will struggle to keep control of the House of Representatives, and possibly the Senate, in the November elections, potentially dooming President Donald Trump’s legislative agenda.

“The real core for the Republicans is white, older white, and if they’re losing ground there, they’re going to have a tsunami,” said Larry Sabato, a University of Virginia political scientist who closely tracks political races. “If that continues to November, they’re toast.”

...Nationally, Democrats plan to campaign strongly for older voters, focusing on issues such as taxes, healthcare and the economy as campaigns heat up later this year, party strategists said. Republicans, meanwhile, are touting the benefits of their tax cuts and the improved economy.

In an ad that began rolling out last week in Indiana, Priorities USA Action, the largest Democratic Party fundraising group, highlights increases to the federal deficit caused by Republican tax cuts. “Now there’s a plan to cut Medicare to pay for it,” the ad says, a line designed to raise older Americans’ anxiety about the government healthcare program for over 65s.

Priorities spokesman Josh Schwerin said it plans to spend $50 million on such ads in several states, including Arizona, Pennsylvania and Ohio.

Voters between the ages of 60 and 65 are particularly worried about healthcare, said Brigid Harrison, a political scientist at Montclair State University in New Jersey, because they are paying ever higher private health insurance premiums and are not yet eligible for Medicare.

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At 1:59 PM, Anonymous Hone said...

Yeah, this all sounds well and good but we should be prepared for a Trump explosion in another direction. Unfortunately, I would not count on things moving in the obviously predictable direction of a blue tsunami.

Trump has made it quite clear who and what he is and he sure as hell will start a war or do something else drastic that will change the tune of this whole shebang. Bombing Syria already appears on the horizon. As ignorant and stupid as Trump is, he is a bully and liar extraordinaire and he will utilize all the power he has at his disposal to flatten the blue wave. The power of the office of the President seems virtually unlimited without a Congress to stop him.

November is still far away and with the warp speed everything moves with Trump, there is plenty of time for him to throw a wrench in the works. It is possible, even likely, that Trump will ruin us before November while Congress sits around doing zilch and the Dems wait for the blue wave.

I don't have any answers. Just saying.

At 2:36 PM, Blogger Chris Roberts said...

the republicans are screwed.the wave hitting him them in november will liking be reverse of 1994 this time gop not dems are destroyed.unfortully house may end up with pelosi as speaker again and i think she is worthless. and very decent chance dems take the senate as well as gianing governorships across the country.

i wish mccaskill,mancen,Donnelly,and hedikemp were to lose primarys but the anti-gop/trump wave may end up saving them if they are in generly.Nevada,Tennesse,arizona,and poentally texas could all end upoutsing 2006 and 2012 the map ended up great for house unfortully this would make schumer majority leader and he is useless and crooked as well.

trump will whine on twitter about dems but if house and senate passes things under dems trump may actully sign them.trump has no core beliefs except making money for himself and family.

At 3:12 PM, Anonymous Hone said...

To Chris Roberts:

I agree with most above; however, Trump will never sign what the Dems pass. For one, this would be due to pure vindictiveness. His memory of being scorned never dies and he would veto as much as he could to screw the Dems. Also, I doubt anything the Dems pass would serve Trump's self interest, which yes, is all he cares about. And don't forget his racism, either - he would balk like hell against anything the Dems put forth against discrimination. Trump would still be a complete stumbling block.

Of course, Mueller may yet come through for us and screw Trump!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! There is always hope.

At 5:23 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Watch for Trump to declare martial law and suspend any Congressional or Judicial action (see Hitler, A. Berlin 1933). This is when we find out if any patriots wear the uniforms of the United States Military.


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