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DSCC QUICK TAKES: DEMOCRATS HAVE AN EDGE, REPUBLICANS ‘DUCK AND COVER’ ON PRE-EXISTING CONDITIONS — ROVE GETS IT WRONG ON HEALTH CARE

WAPO HEADLINE: “IN SENATE BATTLE, DEMOCRATS’ FOCUS ON HEALTH CARE IS GIVING THEM AN EDGE.” Health care is the defining issue of this election and Democrats are tackling it head-on, which the Washington Post reports is creating new opportunities for our candidates. Across the map, Senate Democrats are holding their Republican opponents accountable for health care on the ground and over the airwaves:

  • The Democrats’ strategy to focus on health care in the midterm elections has helped crack open opportunities in states they wouldn’t have dreamed of winning two years ago, bolstering their chances of retaking the Senate majority.
  • In these traditionally red states where Republicans have held the seats for several decades, health care tops the list of issues that concern voters most. The voters who named health care as their most important issue overwhelmingly supported the Democratic candidate 75 percent to 14 percent in Arizona and 71 percent to 21 percent in Tennessee.
  • Democrats defending seats in red states, like West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin and Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill, are laser-focused on the threat of a pending lawsuit taking down the ACA and with it protections for preexisting conditions. Notably, those two senators are running against their state’s attorneys general who are part of the Texas-led lawsuit to bring down the ACA.
  • Even in Texas, a state suddenly within reach for Democrats, Senate candidate Beto O’Rourke (D) is running on affordable health care, which is slightly ironic given his opponent Sen. Ted Cruz (R) sailed to victory in 2012 on a promise to repeal the ACA.
  • The Democrats’ health-care push has put Republicans on their heels. The GOP has tried to convince voters they also want to save protections for people with preexisting conditions, but the pending lawsuit and past repeal efforts have made it difficult for Republicans to argue their position.
  • Our take: “Democratic campaigns in these states – and across the Senate map – are talking about health care because it’s the defining issue of this election,” David Bergstein, the spokesman for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, told me. “For voters it’s an issue deeply tied to their personal economy, it’s driving their electoral decision making, and they’re going to punish every GOP Senate candidate for their party’s agenda that spikes health care costs and cuts coverage for preexisting conditions.”

POLITICO: REPUBLICANS ‘DUCK AND COVER’ ON PRE-EXISTING CONDITIONS. The GOP has been trying for months to cover up their toxic health care agenda but as Politico reports below they’re “struggling – and so far failing.” As popularity around protections for pre-existing conditions coverage continues to soar, “The GOP’s most direct attempt to address the insurance protections — a recent Senate bill Republicans said would protect sick patients — backfired spectacularly after it quickly became clear the measure wouldn’t actually cover the pre-existing conditions it claimed to protect.” Turns out that you can’t spend years voting to repeal protections for pre-existing conditions coverage without voters noticing.

WHO WANTS TO TELL HIM? Despite months of headlines like the ones above, Karl “just math you do as a Republican to make yourself feel better” Rove writes in the Wall Street Journal that health care is the “sleeper” issue of 2018.

Bless his heart.

It’s a “sleeper” issue if you’ve been in a coma for a decade, and his “advice” to Republicans is as useless as a trapdoor in a canoe.

The claim that the AHCA would have protected pre-existing conditions?  Three Pinocchios.

That Republicans would lower costs?  They spent the past two years raising them.

We’ve seen the Republican plans.  We know about the age taxes, the higher premiums, and the gutted coverage for pre-existing conditions.  Every Republican Senator running for re-election and every Republican Senate candidate supported every single unpopular provision.  Stick to cable, Karl.

HAWLEY’S HEALTH CARE CLAIMS EARN A “MOSTLY FALSE.” Josh Hawley claimed that “millions of Americans have lost their health care plans” due to Senator McCaskill’s support of the Affordable Care act and Politifact determined that his claim was “Mostly False.” But what is true is that Hawley himself is leading a lawsuit that would strip 2.5 million Missourians of protections for their pre-existing conditions and rather than stand with them, Hawley sold them out to special interests and is now trying to cover up his sabotage with false claims.

MCCASKILL’S 30 FOR 30 CONTINUES. Watch Claire McCaskill’s newest “30 for 30” video featuring Marcella Wilson, one of 2.5 million Missourians living with a pre-existing condition who Josh Hawley’s lawsuit would strip care from.

SENATOR HELLER’S SPINELESSNESS ON DISPLAY. Senator Dean Heller has earned quite the reputation for spineless flip-flopping on issues that matter most to Nevadans when put under minimal pressure by special interests. The New York Times reports now that Heller is under enormous pressure from his party to fix his weak campaign, he has flipped from being in the “99 percent against Trump” to keeping his arms “wide open” to him. Trump even bragged about his influence over Heller – according to CNBC, “Trump said he “worried” about Heller’s vote and nudged him to support repeal. The president turned to Heller and quipped, “He wants to remain a senator, doesn’t he?” Days later, Heller supported a different Republican proposal to roll back large parts of the health care law, which failed on the Senate floor by only one vote.”

UNBELIEVABLE. The Nevada Independent grilled Heller for calling recent allegations that Judge Kavanaugh “ sexually assaulted a woman when they were both teenagers” a “hiccup.”

A blistering editorial from the Las Vegas Sun also called Heller out for the “hiccup” comment and asserted that rather than standing idly by “all smiles, as camera lights flash,” he “owes it to Nevadans to show them where he’s truly positioned on women’s issues.”

GOP SENATE CANDIDATES “IN A BIND” ON TARIFFS. The GOP’s trade war is taking a toll on their Senate candidates as the fallout from ongoing tariffs impact the people in states with targeted Senate races. The Associated Press outlined just how impactful the tariffs have been on these campaigns saying “6 in 10 Americans disapprove of how the president is handling trade negotiations with other countries” and this could “opposition to the tariffs could make a difference in some races.”

CONGRESSWOMAN MCSALLY SHIFTS AGAIN. Congresswoman Martha McSally earned the name “McShifty” after proving during the primary that she was willing to say and do anything to win votes and now the Associated Press has found that she’s back at it again. In an interview, She denied that “she had shifted on immigration” but “this year dropped her sponsorship of a bill that would have provided legal status to people brought to the country illegally as children after introducing the hardline bill she co-authored” when she felt pressured by her ultra-conservative primary opponents.

SINEMA LOOKS OUT FOR OLDER AMERICANS. A report from PolitiFact found that Kyrsten Sinema is “looking out for older Arizonans, and her voting record backs her up….. Sinema voted against the Republican effort to repeal Obamacare, which would have allowed companies to charge individuals 50 and over up to five times more than what they charged younger adults.” Congresswoman McSally; however, voted for it.

DEM AD WATCH

ND – “Ice Cream” outlines Heidi Heitkamp’s support for military families.

MT – Jon Tester’s new ad “Value the Truth,” highlights his record of fighting for transparency in Washington.

MO – In “Secure,” Claire McCaskill touts her endorsement from the National Border Patrol Council.

TN – Phil Bredesen supports the 2nd Amendment in his new ad “No Matter what.

IN THE STATES

AZ – ABC 15: Social Security implemented changes after ABC15 story, says AZ lawmaker

WV – Martinsville Journal: Roundtable tackles opioid crisis, foster care
ND – Associated Press: Tribal funding to combat violence doubled

Next Post

One Year After Nevada Governor Rejects His Bill, Heller Continues Toxic Health Care Agenda


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