OVER RECESS, GOP SENATORS GET AN EARFUL ON HEALTH CARE: The GOP has nothing to run on except a toxic health care agenda – and GOP Senators are hearing about it over their recess. During a Fourth of July parade, Republican Senator Susan Collins (one of the few GOP Senators to appear in public over the long weekend) said she’s never “had people so focused on a single issue” and even former NRSC Chairman Senator Jerry Moran is an “unlikely holdout” on the bill. Make no mistake about it, the Republican plan is an anchor, and we’re only beginning to see the political damage it will cause alongside higher premiums, age taxes, and millions of people being stripped of their coverage.
GOP SENATE RECRUITMENT “SLOW-GOING.” A slew of stories this week details the GOP’s ongoing recruitment fiasco. Politico reports “there isn’t a state on the Senate map where national Republicans are facing their dream candidate scenario.” These headlines say it all:
June 27th – Life comes at you fast…
“Our recruitment efforts are going as planned.”
This is a big problem for the GOP, but don’t take our word for it. From the Washington Post: “A lack of a clear leader is leading to a bunch of lower-tier candidates jumping into the race, which means Republicans could spend the next year in potentially expensive (and, in some cases, divisive) primaries in some key states… Basically… there are Republican primaries in nearly every competitive Senate race right now.”
Two examples of this emerging and problematic dynamic for Republicans from the past week:
MISSOURI – In a “blow to the Republican party,” Congresswoman Ann Wagner has decided to forgo a Senate run, knowing that she has nothing to run on besides her party’s string of broken promises and healthcare disaster. Now “it’s not clear if Missouri Republicans can find another A-list candidate to challenge her” and they’re likely to “face the same volatile political climate that may have helped to dissuade Wagner.” Meanwhile, Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler’s phone has been “suddenly ringing off the hook.”
NORTH DAKOTA – The Republican state party is “underwhelmed” by Cramer as a potential Senate candidate and is “actively recruiting possible challengers,” paving the way for a divisive primary.
DSCC ENDORSES ROSEN FOR #NVSEN. In 2016, Jon Ralston called Rosen “the surprise of the cycle: tough, resolute, nimble” and a new poll already has Rosen in a virtual tie with Heller. Rosen has been touted as a “top-tier candidate” and has received additional endorsements from Senator Cortez Masto, Congressman Kihuen, and EMILY’s List. She’s a tireless, trusted problem-solver and a champion for middle-class families. We know she’ll put the interests of hardworking Nevadans first in the U.S. Senate, and we’re proud to endorse her campaign.
2018’S MOST ENDANGERED SENATOR. Senator Heller is terrified about his reelection chances and it’s no surprise why – voices on the right and left have deemed him the most vulnerable Senator of either party. Here’s why:
ICYMI: DSCC RUNS GEOTARGETED HEALTH CARE ADS OVER RECESS. As first reported by Roll Call, the DSCC launched geo-targeted and candidate-specific Google search and display ads on the GOP health care plan over the July Fourth recess, and this week CNHI detailed how “the mobile ad approach illustrates how contemporary campaigns are using technology to go beyond partisan rallies, mailings, phone calls and door knocking to reach voters.” Targeted voters in Nevada, Arizona, and Texas were directed to a candidate-specific version of “The Price,” while “scores of people at the regatta festival [in West Virginia] saw a six-second political video on their mobile phones criticizing Republican Congressman Evan Jenkins, the parade’s grand marshal, over the GOP health care plans to replace Obamacare.” Similar six-second ads also ran in Florida, North Dakota, Michigan, Indiana, Pennsylvania, and Missouri.
MANDEL GOES AGAINST 86 PERCENT OF OHIOANS, OPPOSES MEDICAID EXPANSION. Only 14 percent of Ohio voters favor ending Medicaid expansion, yet Mandel is a vocal opponent of the program, turning a blind eye to Ohioans who depend on it, including Anne Gerhardt – a young woman with Down Syndrome who was prominently featured in Mandel’s STABLE Account commercials – and who relies on Medicaid to live an independent life, opting instead to appease his big donors and conservative base.
DEMS POSTING STRONG 2ND QUARTER FUNDRAISING NUMBERS. Early fundraising reports for Democrats show that they’re gearing up for the midterms and that voters are standing with them as they work to protect health care and fight for hardworking Americans. Check out these numbers:
TIM KAINE raised $2.6 million in the second quarter and has $7.3 million in the bank.
BOB CASEY raised $2.6 million in the second quarter and has $5.5 million cash on hand.
** Two fun reads for this weekend if you’re heading out on a road trip – or hiding indoors to avoid the humidity, like I’ll be doing **
NBC: Amelia Earhart May Have Survived Crash-Landing, Newly Discovered Photo Suggests
The American Interest: Shakespeare’s Politics
IN THE STATES.
FL – WFTV: Nelson seeks to cut student loan interest rates, allow borrowers to refinance
MORE FL – WUSF: Sen. Nelson Hears Concerns From Medicaid Enrollees
IN – WSBT: Donnelly looking for more ways to combat opioid abuse and addiction
MO – Missouri Net: McCaskill gears up for mid-Missouri town halls
OH – Youngstown Vindicator: Brown seeks to protect American manufacturing jobs
MORE OH – WTOV: Sen. Brown helping with mine workers’ pensions
WI-The Cap Times: Editorial: Democrats should follow Tammy Baldwin’s lead on health care
TWEET OF THE WEEK.