Chad’s Morning Brief: House vs. Senate Republicans on Defunding Obamacare, Issues Wendy Davis May Run On, & Other Top Stories
Here is your Morning Brief for the morning of September 19, 2013. Give me your feedback below and tune in to The Chad Hasty Show for these and many more topics from 8:30 to 11am. Remember, you can listen online at KFYO.com or on your iPhone/Android with the radioPup App.
House Republicans Accuse Senate Republicans of Caving
According to FOX News, Senate and House Republicans aren’t getting along these days when it comes to Obamacare. Senator Ted Cruz seems to be taking on most of the criticism.
House Republicans, in an unusually caustic intra-party squabble, are ripping their conservative colleagues in the Senate for what they see as an abrupt cave-in on the push to de-fund ObamaCare.
“They’re waving the white flag already,”one House GOP lawmaker said Wednesday.
The squabble started after House Speaker John Boehner earlier in the day announced he would agree to the demands of Tea Party-aligned lawmakers to tie a vote on de-funding the health care law to a vote on a must-pass budget bill.
The move would effectively condition the approval of the spending bill on ObamaCare being de-funded, or else risk a government shutdown when funding runs out at the end of the month.
But Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, one of the most vocal supporters of the “de-fund ObamaCare” push, startled his House colleagues when he released a written statement Wednesday afternoon that appeared to acknowledge the bill will probably fail in the Senate.
“Today’s announcement that the House will vote to defund ObamaCare is terrific news,” Cruz said, in a press release from him, Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., and Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah.
“Harry Reid will no doubt try to strip the defund language from the continuing resolution, and right now he likely has the votes to do so. At that point, House Republicans must stand firm, hold their ground, and continue to listen to the American people.”
House Republicans are concerned that this kind of approach effectively pins the entire effort on the House.
“We expect them to stand and filibuster like Rand Paul,” fumed one senior House GOP aide.
“It’s time to put on the big boy pants,” said one House Republican who didn’t want to be identified. “Maybe this will wean us of the bed-wetters.”
A senior GOP leadership aide said they don’t expect this dissension to blow up the bill in the House on Friday. But they are concerned about where things are going now if the GOP senators don’t defend their turf.
Effectively, in announcing the new bill, Boehner and his deputies backed off a compromise approach they earlier tried to sell to rank-and-file conservatives. Under that plan, the House would have sent two bills to the Senate — one to de-fund ObamaCare, the other to fund the government. The Senate, then, would have been able to easily bypass the ObamaCare bill and send the spending measure straight to the White House, in turn averting a government shutdown.
But House conservatives revolted, and Boehner now is tying the two votes together.
But the plan is undoubtedly risky.
Both Obama and Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid have suggested Republicans will bear the brunt of the blame if the gambit results in a government shutdown.
Obama blasted Republicans during an interview Tuesday with Telemundo.
“We’re hearing that a certain faction of Republicans, in the House of Representatives in particular are arguing for government shutdown or even a default for the United States of America … if they don’t get 100 percent of what they want,” Obama said.
Current funding for the government is set to expire at the end of the month, and lawmakers must approve the stopgap bill in order to keep Washington open.
The GOP measure would fund the government through Dec. 15, at current funding levels. Republicans also plan to push a measure dealing with the debt ceiling, with a mid-October deadline looming for when the government can no longer honor its obligations.
Guns, Gay Rights, and Wendy Davis
Wayne Slater at the Dallas Morning News is trying to show that Senator Wendy Davis is about more than pink shoes and abortion. In his article, Slater points to guns and gay rights as two potential issues that Davis could run on.
Enter Wendy Davis. As a member of the Fort Worth City Council, she was responsible for adding sexual orientation to the city’s nondiscrimination ordinance. And she promoted a ban on the gun show loophole, which allows sale of firearms without a background check.
Democrats have seized on missteps by Republican front-runner Greg Abbott as evidence of a GOP “war on women.” Abbott thanked a supporter for a Twitter message that called her “retard Barbie,” and his top political adviser sent out a link asserting that Davis is “too stupid to be governor.”
That pretty much does it: guns, gays and girls.
Still, some things have changed. There are five women governors, four of them Republicans. As for gay rights, polls suggest growing support among Texans — especially young Texans. Guns, however, could be a problem.
In her email Wednesday, Davis asked supporters to tell friends she will be making an announcement in two weeks and to sign up for her coming campaign.
Davis catapulted to national attention in June when she took the floor of the Senate in pink running shoes and, with the aid of a disruptive crowd of abortion-rights supporters in the gallery, brought the chamber to a halt over a bill to impose new restrictions on abortion. Davis associates say she is almost certain to announce she will run for governor.
Veteran GOP political pollster Mike Baselice dismisses her prospects.
“How is she going to change the dynamic?” he asked. “I don’t think that’s going to happen in 14 months. Much of this is out of her control. Any Democrat is going to have to draw a very distinct and unique contrast that’s going to resonate in a Republican state. Good luck.”
Part of Davis’ task will be to match Richards’ reputation for toughness and resolve — no easy task in a state that values its political mythology.
As Fort Worth columnist Bud Kennedy has suggested, Davis might have graduated from Harvard Law School, but let’s see if she can lead a prayer and shoot a dove.
While Davis did vote to allow college students to keep their guns inside their cars (stupid bill really) that doesn’t mean she is pro-guns. Do you really trust Wendy Davis when it comes to the 2nd Amendment? I know I don’t.
Other Top Stories:
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