House Democrats offered a preemptive rebuttal to their Republican peers’ launch of the policy on Thursday, calling it an “extreme” and “cynical” conflation of Donald Trump-inspired authoritarianism, infringements on key personal freedoms and the traditional trickle-down economy.
in a conference With reporters, Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (DN.Y.), who chairs the House Democrats’ campaign arm, cited Democratic special election victories in vacant House seats in Alaska and New York as evidence that the Republican political agenda is already unpopular.
“Voters are rejecting the cynical reality that the Republican MAGA movement is, that it is extreme and dangerous, that it has taken away our reproductive freedom, that it is threatening our political freedom by ignoring the attack on our Capitol and making it difficult to vote.” said Maloney, who spoke alongside Rep. Sara Jacobs (D-Calif.) and Democratic National Committee Chairman Jaime Harrison.
The Democrats’ frontal attack was timed to precede the House Republicans’ launch of “Pledge to America,” a policy framework for a possible Republican majority in government. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) and other top Republicans will unveil the plan in Monongahela, Pa., a factory town outside Pittsburgh, on Friday. House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) will respond to McCarthy with comments in Pittsburgh.
But the big political debut for House Republicans is already off to a rocky start. A web page was created with the central elements of the plan. filtered out ahead of schedule on Wednesday.
McCarthy’s team quickly closed the website, and the materials it contained, to the public before reopening it Thursday. The classification, however, was not enough to prevent short-term political damage, as Democrats pounced on elements of the plan they see as liabilities for the GOP.
House Democrats took advantage, in particular, of a section of the website where Republicans pledged to “protect the lives of unborn children and their mothers.” On the heels of South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham’s introduction of a national bill to require abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy, Democrats pointed to this section as a sign that House Republicans have a similar federal ban.
“Don’t let them fool you,” said Jacobs, a freshman cohort representative to the House Democratic leadership who recently completed a nationwide tour campaigning in support of swing-seat Democratic candidates. “Kevin McCarthy has promised that the Republican majority will pass a national abortion ban.”
“We have all seen how dangerous the GOP’s war on women has been,” she added.
Jacobs went on to describe extreme cases of young women who suffered because of state-level abortion restrictions that came into effect after the conservative majority of the United States Supreme Court struck down a constitutional right. Those examples include the ordeal of a 10-year-old girl in Ohio whose mother had to take her to another state for an abortion after she became pregnant from rape.
As of Thursday night, publicly available materials on the “Commitment to America” web page still contained a promise to protect “unborn children” in a section on “Defending the rights of Americans under the Constitution.”
He also criticized the provision in the Inflation Reduction Act that would empower Medicare to negotiate lower prescription drug prices.
“Democrats’ drug buyout scheme could lead to 135 fewer lifesaving treatments and cures,” the site says in a section discussing health policy.
House Democrats have also interpreted a republican promise to “save and strengthen Social Security and Medicare” as a veiled threat to cut benefits of beloved programs.
“They want to undo all the legislation that the Democrats have passed to lower drug costs, and they want to cut Social Security and Medicare, and their agenda will continue to undermine our democracy,” Harrison said. “They want to roll back our rights and make it difficult to vote. They are relentlessly committed to Donald Trump’s big lie [that the 2020 election was stolen].”
“We’ve all seen how dangerous the GOP’s war on women has been.”
– Rep. Sara Jacobs (D-Calif.)
Although House Republicans have proposed cutting Social Security and Medicare in previous Congresses, except for restrictions on eligibility for Social Security Disability Insurance, they did not seriously consider benefit cuts for either insurance program. during its last period with the unified control of the federal government, in 2017 and 2018.
Instead, Democrats hope to turn a proposal that Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.), chairman of the Senate Republican campaign arm, introduced in February into a liability for Scott’s colleagues in the House. Among other things, Scott’s plan, which has not been accepted by Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, would require all federal laws to be reauthorized every five years. That would turn Social Security and Medicare from mandatory budget items into perpetual targets of legislative wrangling.
On Thursday’s call, Democrats also glossed over elements of “Pledge to America” that are likely to have more popular traction than the policies they highlighted. Although the “Commitment to America” is vague on the details, it contains proposals for expand “school choice”, Ban transgender women from competing in women’s and women’s sports, strengthen border security other crack down about progressive prosecutors.
The efforts of House Democrats to force Republicans to answer for their traditional economic agenda, the actions of a conservative Supreme Court they helped appoint, and Trump’s election denial movement mirror what some Democratic pollsters they see as an effective double whammy against the Republican Party.
There is a particular body of research that supports the Democrats’ decision to associate conservative lawmakers with the term “MAGA,” an acronym for Trump’s catchphrase “Make America Great Again.” in a new poll Conducted by Hart Research for the Center for American Progress, a Democratic think tank, pollster Geoff Garin found that 58% of independent voters would be less likely to vote for a candidate identified as “MAGA Republican,” compared to the 12% who would be more likely to do so. A slim majority (51%) of all voters believe that “MAGA Republicans” are “extremists.”