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DSCC FRIDAY TAKEAWAYS: GOP TO SCOTUS: END PRE-EX COVERAGE—GRIM NEW POLLS FOR REPUBLICANS SENATORS—MCSALLY HEALTH CARE AD RATED “FALSE”

GOP TELLS SCOTUS TO END PRE-EXISTING CONDITIONS PROTECTIONS. In it’s late night brief supporting the Republican-led lawsuit to strike down the entire Affordable Care Act, The Trump Administration is “explicitly arguing” that protections for people with pre-existing conditions must be overturned. Every Republican senator voted for the GOP tax bill that set this lawsuit in motion. Even now, amid a global public health crisis, not one Republican incumbent or candidate has taken meaningful steps to stop the GOP’s lawsuit against the ACA. Read what they’ve all said here

This was the latest development in the GOP’s crusade to attack pre-existing conditions coverage, Medicaid expansion, and other health care benefits, while giving the richest 0.1% a massive tax windfall. It comes in the middle of a pandemic that has left millions of Americans unemployed and newly uninsured.

MCSALLY PRE-EX AD RATED “FALSE”… PolitiFact rated unelected Senator McSally’s latest ad pledging she’ll protect pre-existing conditions as “False.” The truth is that Senator McSally has “spent years waging war against the Affordable Care Act,” voting at least five times to undermine or eliminate protections for people with pre-existing conditions and PolitiFact points out “her stance hasn’t changed.” BONUS: Arizona Republic (Opinion): Sen. Martha McSally caught, again, trying to revise her history on health care

DANGEROUS” TAXPAYER-FUND VACATION IDEA WIDELY PANNED AS“GIVEAWAY TO THE RICH.” To top this week off, reactions in state to McSally’s travel bill are less than positive. The “unbelievably dangerous” legislation that would send tax giveaways to wealthy families in order to reimburse them for thousands of dollars in pandemic vacation expenses was called “tone deaf” and “handy if you’re a senator looking to shore up campaign contributions” from the travel industry. READ MORE: Arizona Republic (Opinion): Sen. Martha McSally proposes the ultimate government giveaway: free vacations!

“GRIM” NEW POLLS FOR REPUBLICAN SENATE CANDIDATES. New polling out this week from the New York Times and Siena College found GOP Senate candidates losing in Arizona, North Carolina, and Michigan as voters “shun” Republicans in these key battlegrounds. Senators Martha McSally and Thom Tillis are both “polling below 40 percent despite having recently aired a barrage of television advertisements.” Of course, these vulnerable incumbent Republicans have been in danger all cycle long because of their records — but it’s clear that the toxic political climate is exacerbating those vulnerabilities, particularly on health care. 

REPUBLICAN STRATEGISTS DO NOT WANT SENATE CANDIDATES TO APPEAR WITH TRUMP BUT RISK HIS “WRATH.” New reports out this week reveal how GOP strategists are advising vulnerable Senate “to avoid being photographed” with the President, but still fear his “wrath” against any down-ballot candidate who tries to separate from the top of the ticket. Trump has threatened Republicans who try to distance themselves from the president, making it clear that candidates who do will “pay a heavy price” and has “vowed to retaliate against defectors.” The admission again reveals how Republicans view Trump as a liability but refuse to hold him accountable, including for “pleading” with China for re-election help, his calls to slow down coronavirus testing, the tear gassing of peaceful protesters, and the unpopular decision to keep special enrollment closed in the middle of a public health crisis.

REPUBLICANS ARE RUNNING ANTI-CHINA ADS, BUT STILL SHRUG OFF TRUMP PLEADING WITH CHINA FOR RE-ELECTION HELP. Vulnerable Republican Senators are being exposed as hypocrites, once again, this time through advertising. Republican Senators are relying heavily on an NRSC playbook to “attack China” by running phony anti-China campaign ads but refusing to hold President Trump accountable for asking Chinese President Xi Jinping to help him win re-election. Read more about Republicans’ latest hypocrisy here

MILLIONS UNEMPLOYED, CORONAVIRUS CASES SURGING, STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS STRUGGLING, BUT REPUBLICANS STILL REFUSE TO ACT. Despite “alarming surges” in coronavirus cases across the country, nearly 20 million Americans total out of work, and hundreds of local governments being forced to “slash spending” on upgrades to “critical infrastructure,” Senate Republicans see “no urgency” to act. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Republicans in the Senate are pushing to gut enhanced unemployment benefits, dragging their feet on further state and local government relief, have ‘no plan’ to help the newly uninsured get health coverage, and are standing by the GOP’s reckless lawsuit to “terminate” health care.

NC, GA DEMS LAUNCH NEW WEBSITES TO HOLD VULNERABLE SENATORS ACCOUNTABLE. The North Carolina Democratic Party launched TillisUnmasked.com to hold vulnerable incumbent Senator Thom Tillis accountable and highlight how his election year tough talk on China is nothing more than political bluster to cover up his weak-on-China positions. The website exposes key aspects of Tillis’ weak-on-China record. Check it out here.  

The Democratic Party of Georgia also launched a new website this week. SenateSellouts.com will break down the timeline of  “Establishment player” Senator David Perdue and unelected “political mega-donor” Senator Kelly Loeffler’s unseemly stock trades while tracking new developments in their stock trading scandals. Perdue and Loeffler both spent weeks trying to distract and spin their way out of their scandals and continue to leave questions unanswered while blaming anyone and everyone but themselves for their trading. Now Georgians can track their stock trading scandals and learn more about both senators’ focus on their portfolios, not working families. Check it out for yourself here

SENATOR COLLINS HASN’T LEARNED ANY LESSONS, DEFENDS IMPEACHMENT VOTE & TRUMP.  Senator Susan Collins doubled down on her defense of President Trump and her vote to acquit him of impeachment charges following new reporting that Trump asked Chinese President Xi Jinping last year to help him win re-election. Senator Collins justified her vote to acquit Trump, claiming she thought he learned “a pretty big lesson” and “will be much more cautious in the future.” She was forced to try to walk that excuse back after the president insisted he did not learn any lessons because he did nothing wrong. Since then, Trump has purged his administration of inspectors general and national security experts, bungled the response to the coronavirus pandemic, and incited violence against Americans protesting police brutality against the Black community. 

CONGRESSMAN MARSHALL USED POLITICAL TIES TO ERASE CONVICTION. A report from the Kansas City Star this week disclosed that  Kansas Senate candidate Congressman Roger Marshall used political and business relationships to erase a reckless driving conviction in an arrangement described as “bizarre” and “very unusual.” The report revealed for the first time that the county prosecutor handling Marshall’s case was the son of Marshall’s neighbor, business partner, and campaign donor. Marshall faced an onslaught of brutal scrutiny from the other candidates for this scandal, during this week’s Kansas GOP Senate debate which saw “sparks fly” as the underwhelming field of Republican candidates continued to attack each other in the “divisive and crowded” primary that has plagued Washington Republicans. 

REVEREND WARNOCK DISCUSSES MORAL MOMENT IN AMERICA. Reverend Raphael Warnock, Senior Pastor at Ebenezer Baptist Church, joined CNN’s Alisyn Camerota on New Day to discuss the need to address systemic racism and the potential to create a transformational moment in America.

  • “There is a massive coalition of conscience pouring out onto American streets, people of all races saying America is better than this, and we can, indeed, live up to the ideal of the American promise — equal protection under the law. And may we use this moment, this moral moment, to create a transformational moment that makes life safer and better for all of our children.” 

Watch Reverend Warnock’s full interview with Alisyn Camerota here.

IN THE STATES

AZ — Arizona Republic (opinion): Attack ads questioning Mark Kelly’s patriotism are ridiculous. We know. We served with him

CO — Colorado Times Recorder: Billboard Spotlights Gardner’s 7 Votes to Kill Obamacare

CO — Denver Post: Hickenlooper holds dominating lead over Romanoff in Colorado’s Senate primary, poll shows

GA — Bloomberg Government: Georgia Democrats See Another Opportunity in Race Against Perdue

GA — Atlanta Journal Constitution: Abrams backs Ossoff’s Senate bid, calling him ‘warrior against corruption’

IA — Des Moines Register: Iowa is now a 2020 battleground, Democrats and Republicans agree; presidential and U.S. Senate races are tight

ME — Sun Journal: Diane Grandmaison: Sara Gideon is the best choice

MI — Detroit News: Peters: Trump administration has not distributed 41% of COVID-19 hospital funding

MT — Missoula Current: Voices: Daines’ vote for LWCF “a blip on an abysmal public lands record”

NH — WMUR: NH Primary Source: Two major teachers’ unions to again support Shaheen for reelection

TX — San Antonio Express-News: Editorial: In Dem race for Senate, Hegar shines

TWEET OF THE WEEK

Lauren Passalacqua
@laurenvpass

Stewart Boss
@stew_boss

Helen Kalla
@helen_kalla

Shea Necheles
@sheanecheles

Regina Anderson
@reginasopinion

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