Pennsylvania Capital-Star: DNC, launches major Pennsylvania blitz ahead of Nov. 2 election

22 Oct

*ICYMI**

Key Point: “In a statement, DNC Chairperson Jaime Harrison said the national party is ‘invested in ensuring help for Democrats to win in these crucial races. Pennsylvania Democrats have fielded a diverse and visionary group of candidates, and we’re excited to help them make history on November 2.’ With that kind of mobilization and cash in play, this year might well be the year that these races finally shed the dread ‘off-year’ election tag.”

Pennsylvania Capital-Star: DNC, Planned Parenthood launch major Pa. blitz ahead of Nov. 2 election | Friday Morning Coffee
By John Micek
October 21, 2021


With just weeks to go before the Nov. 2 election, and even as thousands of Pennsylvanians start casting their mail-in ballots, two of the major forces in progressive politics are reminding those voters — especially Democratic ones — of what’s at stake this campaign season.

In addition to voting for local school boards, township commissioners and borough councils, among other local offices, Keystone State voters also will be casting their ballots in county Courts of Common Pleas races, and in consequential elections for Pennsylvania’s three appellate courts.

It’s safe to say the results in these races are the canary in the coal mine for 2022, when Pennsylvanians will choose a replacement for retiring U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey, R-Pa., and Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf, who will be finishing up the constitutional maximum of two, four-year terms.

With an eye on that long game, both the Democratic National Committee and the political wing of Planned Parenthood are respectively out this week with six-figure campaigns to focus voters’ attention as they fill out their ballots at home or get ready to walk into the voting booth, the Capital-Star can exclusively report.

[…]

The campaign by the DNC similarly has its eye on the long game — but wants to start by getting voters motivated for next month’s municipal and statewide contests.

In a statement provided to the Capital-Star, the DNC said it’s pouring its energy and cash into mobilization efforts for races across the state, notably the race for Pennsylvania Supreme Court, where one seat is up for grabs, and four county-level races across the commonwealth.

The funds, the DNC said, come on top of preexisting efforts to help the state Democratic Party’s own organizing efforts, and also will “begin to build out crucial infrastructure in every corner of the state in advance of next year’s midterm elections,” the DNC said in its statement. The money also will pay for digital advertising to boost statewide turnout in these notoriously low-turnout contests.

Next month’s elections also will mark the first time the national party will put its expanded “I Will Vote” initiative to work in the Keystone State. It includes statewide analytics and polling look-up tools for voters.

In a statement, DNC Chairperson Jaime Harrison said the national party is “invested in ensuring help for Democrats to win in these crucial races. Pennsylvania Democrats have fielded a diverse and visionary group of candidates, and we’re excited to help them make history on November 2.” With that kind of mobilization and cash in play, this year might well be the year that these races finally shed the dread “off-year” election tag.
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President Biden’s Build Back Better Agenda is a BFD

22 Oct

Last night, President Biden did what he does best — cutting through the noise and talking directly to Americans about the issues that matter most to them. He shared his plan to lower costs, lower taxes, and improve the lives of families, workers, children, seniors, and more. Not only will the president’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal and Build Back Better agenda provide historic, transformational change for working families, but it will finally make corporations and the ultra-wealthy pay their fair share.

Here are some key moments from President Biden’s CNN Town Hall: 

WATCH HERE:

President Biden: “The answer is yes, this is bigger … But part of what I have in here, is we also increased access to the Affordable Care Act, and we reduced the price an average of $60 a month for anyone who’s in the Affordable Care Act. Plus, on top of that, we have another $300 billion worth of health care in it. So I would say this is a bigger darn deal.

WATCH HERE

President Biden: “Compromise has become a dirty word, but bipartisanship and compromise still has to be possible. When I ran for the presidency, I said, I’m running for three reasons. 1) To restore the soul and decency of the country. 2) To build the middle class and the working class so they were rebuilt from the middle out. And 3) To actually unite the country.”

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IN THE STATES: Democrats Rally Ahead of Election Day, Hold Republicans Accountable for Obstructionism

22 Oct
With less than two weeks to go until Election Day 2021, Democrats are running through the tape and taking nothing for granted from Virginia to New Jersey to Pennsylvania. 

In Pennsylvania: Pennsylvania Capital-Star: DNC, Planned Parenthood launch major Pa. blitz ahead of Nov. 2 election

In Virginia: Inside NoVa: ‘Don’t Texas Virginia’: Kamala Harris rallies for McAuliffe in Dumfries

In New Jersey: NJ Advance: Jill Biden returns to her home state of N.J. to campaign for Murphy

Meanwhile, as Democrats in Congress remain laser focused on delivering for the American people and getting to the finish line on passing the Build Back Better agenda and the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal, Republicans continue to do everything in their power to block the president’s popular agenda — while simultaneously trying to take credit for it. This week, state parties continued putting Republicans on defense for their refusal to participate in the pandemic recovery. And now, Republicans are teaming up with corporate lobbyists and special interests to pour tens of millions of dollars into the fight to try and defeat President Biden’s agenda.

In Wisconsin: UpNorthNews: Against It Before They Were for It—Some Wisconsin Politicians Are Busy Promoting American Rescue Plan Funds

In North Carolina: The Daily Reflector: Democrats: Biden plan benefits North Carolina

In Arizona: Gila Herald: Editorial: AZ GOP: The pro-child poverty party? If you look at Paul Gosar’s voting record, it sure seems like it

President Biden also took his Build Back Better agenda to Scranton, Pennsylvania, where he talked about how growing up there shaped his values – and his firm belief that we need an economy that works for working people like those in Scranton instead of the wealthiest Americans on Park Avenue.
PAHomepage: Biden delivers remarks on ‘Build Back Better’ plan in Scranton during his first visit as president

The Times Leader: Biden comes home to pitch infrastructure, investment

The Citizens’ Voice: In downtown Scranton speech, Biden predicts prosperity if his agenda passes
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DNC Makes Largest-Ever Pennsylvania Off-Year Election Investment

22 Oct

Committee makes six-figure investment to turn out voters and reinforce ‘Get Out the Vote’ operations; DNC and PA Democrats’ investments now over $1 million

The Democratic National Committee today announced it was making a new six-figure investment in the Keystone State that will put state and national party investments to elect Democratic candidates up and down the ticket in next month’s statewide, county and local elections at over $1 million for the campaign. Today’s announcement marks the largest investment the DNC has ever made in Pennsylvania’s off-year elections.

The DNC’s investment centers on a six-figure expenditure in support of the Pennsylvania Democratic Party’s mobilization programs for races across the state, including the statewide Supreme Court and county races. These funds come on top of previous investments in the Pennsylvania Democratic Party and coordinated campaign, and will provide critical late-stage help for the state party’s organizing, digital, and mail operations to help Democratic candidates in close races up and down the ballot secure victories in November. These efforts will also begin to build out crucial infrastructure in every corner of the state in advance of next year’s midterm elections.

The DNC is also funding ‘Get Out the Vote’ digital advertising in support of statewide turnout efforts.

November’s elections also mark the first time the Democratic National Committee’s expanded “I Will Vote” initiative will be involved in elections in the commonwealth. “I Will Vote,” the DNC’s program to address and overcome Republican-led efforts across the country to make voting more difficult and burdensome, includes the largest voter protection team ever assembled at the DNC, and now includes statewide coverage and analytics capacity. Pennsylvania voters will also have access to a new “I Will Vote” polling lookup tool for next month’s elections.

“From fighting for Democratic judicial nominees to electing municipal officers, the future of the Keystone State, the country, and even our democracy, is in Pennsylvanians’ hands next month,” said DNC Chair Jaime Harrison. “The DNC is invested in ensuring help for Democrats to win in these crucial races. Pennsylvania Democrats have fielded a diverse and visionary group of candidates, and we’re excited to help them make history on November 2.”

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DNC Statement on Republicans Protecting Steve Bannon

21 Oct
Today, nearly every House Republican voted against holding Steve Bannon in contempt for his violation of a congressional subpoena. DNC spokesperson Adonna Biel released the following statement: 

“Republicans refusing to hold Steve Bannon in contempt is just the latest example of their willingness to do anything to protect the people most responsible for the violent assault on our Capitol. Between their relentless attacks on voting rights and their willingness to defend a criminal instead of standing up to Trump, today’s Republican Party has fully branded themselves as the anti-democracy party. These Republicans are cowards who have fully surrendered to the puppeteering of a president who cost them the House, Senate, and White House. Between the lies, conspiracies, and shamelessness, House Republicans should probably seek medical attention to locate their missing spines.”

Let’s take a look back at how deeply that Trump loyalty runs: 

Daniella Diaz, CNN: “I asked @GOPLeader if he still thinks Trump is responsible for the Capitol attack (something he said on the House floor a week after 1/6)

“McCarthy ignored my Q & instead blamed House Speaker Nancy Pelosi for ignoring a note passed to her about security issues during the attack.”

 Leigh Ann Caldwell, NBC News: “McCarthy and GOP are blaming Pelosi for security failures.

“When I and another reporter asked if McConnell, who was majority leader on Jan6, should also be questioned and blamed for security lapses, McCarthy refused to answer”

 CNN: “Fact check: Some Republicans have tried to rewrite the history of January 6. Here’s how”

 CNN: “A Republican House member just described January 6 as a ‘normal tourist visit’”

 CNN: “Why did 21 Republicans oppose honoring those who served on January 6?”

 The Hill: “GOP increasingly balks at calling Jan. 6 an insurrection”

 Associated Press: “House GOP leaders won’t support probe of Jan. 6 Capitol riot”
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DNC Statement on Latina Equal Pay Day

21 Oct

In observance of Latina Equal Pay Day, a day to raise awareness of the pay inequality that affects Latinas and their families across the United States, DNC Chair Jaime Harrison and DNC Hispanic Caucus Chair Iris Martinez released the following statement:

“Latinas are a crucial force in our nation’s culture and economy. Yet, on average, Latinas only earned 57 cents for every dollar white, non-Hispanic men earned in 2020, forcing them to work an additional ten months to close the pay gap.

“This inequity cannot continue. From the American Rescue Plan to the Build Back Better agenda, Democrats and President Joe Biden’s administration are committed to addressing the obstacles that keep Latinas from holding equitable space in the American economy. Thanks to the American Rescue Plan, the expanded Child Tax Credit is providing relief for many Latinas and their families, and we’re committed to building upon its progress to ensure that our economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic helps bridge this pay gap.

“On this Latina Equal Pay Day, we recommit ourselves to the work necessary to achieve pay equity and recognize the invaluable role Latinx women hold in our economy, communities, and country.”

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NEWSFLASH: Biden’s Holiday Season A Significant Improvement Over Trump’s

21 Oct
There’s a crispness in the air, the leaves are changing, and the holiday season is right around the corner. Thanks to President Biden and Democrats, this holiday season is primed to be much better than last year’s under Trump, with millions more Americans employed, nearly 200 million fully vaccinated, and COVID cases and deaths dropping.

It would do Kevin McCarthy well as he writes his letters to remember what the holiday season looked like in the final weeks of the Trump-McCarthy economy, with millions more people out of work, unemployment drastically high, businesses shut down, and families gathering over video conference because of a disastrously mismanaged pandemic. 

Last year, millions of families struggled through the holidays, thanks to Donald Trump and Republicans’ total mismanagement of the pandemic. 

New York Times: “Unemployment Claims Remain High as Millions Still Struggle to Find Work”

New York Times: “For Ms. Craig, and millions of other Americans who lost their jobs because of the coronavirus pandemic, this is a holiday season more to weather than to relish. With unemployment benefits running out and an unforgiving job market offering few berths, this Christmas will be remembered by many for painful sacrifices, not the joy of exchanging gifts and partaking of festive meals with family.”

Reuters: “Americans celebrate Christmas Eve under spiraling COVID pandemic”

Washington Post: “After weeks of surging infections and rising levels of virus hospitalizations, the United States recorded more than 3,000 covid-19 deaths in a single day, a pandemic record, according to a Washington Post analysis.”

Associated Press: “Now, in the pandemic of 2020, with illness, job loss and business closures, millions more Americans are worried about empty refrigerators and barren cupboards. Food banks are doling out meals at a rapid pace and an Associated Press data analysis found a sharp rise in the amount of food distributed compared with last year. Meanwhile, some folks are skipping meals so their children can eat and others are depending on cheap food that lacks nutrition.”

WBUR: “A Holiday Season Gutted By The Pandemic: We’re Trying To ‘Celebrate And Grieve At The Same Time’”

This holiday season, COVID is on the decline as more Americans get vaccinated and 5 million more Americans are employed than there were a year ago, thanks to the leadership of President Biden and Democrats.

Reuters: “U.S. weekly jobless claims hit 19-month low; labor market recovery gains traction”

Wall Street Journal: “Last week’s decline brings claims to the lowest level since the pandemic struck in March 2020. Claims, a proxy for layoffs, are holding well below a recent peak of 424,000 in mid-July but remain above 2019’s weekly average of 218,000. Claims could return to their pre-pandemic levels by the end of the year, said Robert Frick, corporate economist at Navy Federal Credit Union.”

And don’t forget, Kevin McCarthy is actively whipping AGAINST the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal, even though it will help rebuild and shore up critical supply chains and invest in our nation’s freight network. 

CNN: “How Biden’s infrastructure bill could help prevent the next supply chain crisis”

CNN: “The legislation calls for major federal investments in each step of the US freight network: Inland waterways and rail used for transporting goods and produce, highways and bridges traveled heavily by truck drivers as well as the nation’s seaside ports, the biggest of which is currently facing a record backlog of shipping containers sitting on scores of ships waiting off the coast.”

The Hill: “House Republican leaders said Wednesday that they are formally urging their rank-and-file to oppose the Senate-passed bipartisan infrastructure bill ahead of a scheduled vote early next week.”
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Biden’s Build Back Better Agenda Is For Scranton, Not Park Avenue — Just Look At Who’s Fighting Against It

20 Oct
MEMORANDUM
TO: Interested Parties
FROM: DNC War Room 
DATE: October 20, 2021
RE: Biden’s Build Back Better Agenda Is For Scranton, Not Park Avenue — Just Look At Who’s Fighting Against It

President Biden’s agenda is for Scranton, not Park Avenue. It will provide transformational change for working families and finally hold big corporations and the wealthiest Americans accountable. How can you tell? Just take one look at who is fighting against it.

While Democrats are hard at work to bring the Build Back Better agenda across the finish line, Republicans are teaming up with corporate lobbyists and special interests to pour tens of millions of dollars into the fight to try and defeat President Biden’s Agenda. The rich and powerful are fighting so hard against this agenda because they know that not only will President Biden’s agenda lower costs for families, but it will finally ensure big corporations and the ultra wealthy pay their fair share and finally fork up the taxes they owe.

As Republicans try to block the Build Back Better Agenda, they know they can count on the Koch network, Big Pharma, and corporate lobbyists to stand shoulder to shoulder with them — and spend hundred of millions — in their fight: 

The pharmaceutical and health care industries are opposing President Biden’s agenda to lower health care and drug costs, and have spent over $179 million on lobbying so far this year while employing nearly 1,500 registered lobbyists.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce itself is putting everything they have into trying to kill President Biden’s agenda and has already spent about $30 million this year on lobbyists.

The pharmaceutical industry’s leading lobbying group has already spent more than $15 million as the industry tries to defeat a measure to lower drug costs, and the executive chairman of Merck even admitted that they are fighting so hard to kill the proposal because they believe it would slash their revenue.

Private-equity firms are lobbying against measures to close tax loopholes and make the wealthiest pay their fair share as they stand to owe an additional $1 billion a year.

Of course, right-wing dark-money groups aligned with the Koch network and tied to the grim reaper himself Mitch McConnell, have skin in the game too. They have gone all out to try to sink President Biden’s agenda by spending millions on ads.

Reporting from Accountable.US also highlights the hypocrisy of some key corporate players advocating against President Biden’s agenda and makes clear why they are fighting so hard against it — it’ll hurt their bottom line:

“Johnson & Johnson, whose CFO pushed back on Biden’s proposed tax increases, avoided billions in taxes globally via the use of tax havens, holding tens of billions offshore accounts.”

 “JPMorgan Chase, which categorized Biden’s tax increases as negative and had its CEO call them ‘a little crazy,’ held thousands of offshore subsidiaries located in tax havens and moved billions through them. The company also paid millions in fines for tax evasion, faced criminal charges for tax evasion in France, and formed secret agreements with a notorious tax haven’s government.”

 “FedEx, whose CEO publicly opposed Biden’s proposed tax increases, formed secret agreements with a tax haven’s government which it used to pay a less-than-1% tax rate. FedEx paid a negative net tax rate in 2018 in part due to their use of tax avoidance strategies.”
  
 “DuPont de Nemours, whose CFO said Biden’s proposed tax increases would damage US competitivenesspaid far less than the corporate tax rate for years, stashed billions offshore, and was forced to pay an SEC fine for failing to disclose executive compensation.”

 “Walmart, which hired a lobbying firm to ‘[monitor] tax proposals related to infrastructure and the proposed American Jobs Plan,’ has stashed billions in offshore tax havens to avoid paying billions in federal taxes and engaged in a series of tax avoidance schemes to avoid paying millions in state and municipal taxes.

Are Republicans really going to continue to oppose tax cuts for hard-working Americans in favor of the interests of wealthy corporations?

report from the bipartisan, independent Joint Committee on Taxation confirmed that House Democrats’ tax plan would, on average, cut taxes for people earning under $200,000 a year through 2025. And President Biden has said that his agenda would not increase taxes on anyone making under $400,000 a year.

At the same time, the Build Back Better agenda will make sure the wealthiest Americans and big corporations, many of which paid no federal income taxes at all last year, pay their fair share in order to pay for tax cuts and lower costs for working families.

 Are Republicans really prepared to go to the mat against a tax cut for the American people after they passed hundreds of billions of dollars of tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans and big corporations? 
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Republicans In Disarray Over Trump’s Election Lies

19 Oct
After Donald Trump promised that his supporters will stay home in 2022 and 2024 unless Republican officials embrace his reckless lies about the 2020 election, some Republicans are publicly and privately sounding the alarm. This is little solace after top Republicans, including Mitch McConnell and Kevin McCarthy, indulged Donald Trump’s lies until he incited an attack on the Capitol and assault of police officers — and they continue to indulge his Big Lie to this day.

Meanwhile, President Biden and Democrats remain focused on rebuilding our economy, lowering costs for working families, and ensuring the ultra-wealthy and corporations pay their fair share.

Over the weekend, Republican leaders publicly sounded the alarm about the dangers Trump and his election lies pose for the party in 2022 and 2024. 

The Hill: “Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson (R) said on Sunday that former President Donald Trump’s repeated efforts to challenge the results of last year’s presidential election could be a disaster for Republican candidates in next years [sic] midterms.”

Axios: “Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-La.) told ‘Axios on HBO’ he’s not sure former President Donald Trump would win the Republican nomination if he ran in 2024 — a rare voice of criticism from within the party.”

Sen. Bill Cassidy: “President Trump is the first president in the Republican side at least to lose the House, the Senate and the presidency in four years. Elections are about winning.”

And behind the scenes, frustrated Republicans are panicking that Trump’s lies could cost them future elections.New York Times: “The former president’s fixation on disproved conspiracy theories is frustrating to many in his party who see it as needlessly divisive at a time when Republicans feel they are poised to take back the House of Representatives and perhaps the Senate in the 2022 midterm elections. They worry he could cost Republicans otherwise winnable seats in Congress and complicate the party’s more immediate goal of winning the governor’s race in Virginia next month.”

New York Times: “But party officials believe Mr. Trump’s threat about his supporters staying home en masse is real. And the potency of his false claims about 2020 caught even some of his staunchest allies in the party off guard.”

New York Times: “One of the most concerned is Senator Mitch McConnell, the minority leader. Mr. McConnell has told colleagues that he is concerned Mr. Trump’s campaign to relitigate the 2020 election could depress confidence among Republican voters and hurt the party’s chances at winning back the majority it lost this year after Democrats captured Georgia’s two Senate seats.”

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Congress is Back in Session and Republicans Have Some Questions to Answer

18 Oct

With the House and Senate back in session and Republicans back to working tirelessly to obstruct President Biden’s agenda to lower costs for families, build roads and bridges, and ensure the wealthy and corporations pay their fair share, Americans deserve a few answers from Republicans. 

  1. Why did you support tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans and big corporations that added billions to the national debt, but now refuse to support tax cuts for middle-class families?
  2. Why are House Republicans whipping against the bipartisan infrastructure deal to build new roads, help create millions of jobs, and deliver clean water to communities? 
  3. Do you believe Donald Trump’s lies about the 2020 election and his assertion that the election must be decertified? 
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