Archives for Capitol Hillbillies

Other factors, not voters, could determine control of Congress

The nation may be waiting well beyond Election Day this year to find out who won control of Congress. It’s a troubling ballot-box scenario that has hundreds of lawyers from both parties preparing for battles that could drag on days, weeks or even months past the Nov. 3 day-after. Some states don’t count substantial amounts of votes until after Election Day. Others require mail-in ballots to be postmarked — not received — by Nov. 2, leaving the tally until well afterward. And with polls showing many Republican and Democratic candidates in tight contests, there’s plenty of opportunity for confusion, challenges
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Senator wants anti-bullying law in wake of suicide

Colleges should adopt a code of conduct that prohibits bullying and harassment in the wake of the suicide of a Rutgers University student whose gay sexual encounter in his dorm room was streamed online, U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg said at a town meeting on campus. Lautenberg, D-N.J., told the crowd gathered Wednesday night in memory of 18-year-old freshman Tyler Clementi that he would introduce such legislation. Clementi jumped off the George Washington Bridge into the Hudson River on Sept. 22 after the intimate images of him with another man were broadcast. His body was identified days later. Clementi’s roommate, Dharun
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Gingrich: Democrats are ‘the party of food stamps’

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich is advising Republican candidates on November’s ballots to frame the choice for voters between Democrats as “the party of food stamps” while selling the GOP as “the party of paychecks.” With a month to go before the election, Gingrich brought his branding effort to Minnesota on Wednesday. He raised money for Republican gubernatorial nominee Tom Emmer and the state GOP during a private fundraiser. He told reporters later that Republicans can campaign as the party of opportunity. “Most Americans would like to get a paycheck,” Gingrich said. “Most Americans would not like to be forced
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Democrats closing gap in midterm election poll

Republicans maintain an edge among voters ahead of next month’s congressional elections, but Democrats are gaining ground, according to a Washington Post-ABC News poll released on Tuesday. Republicans are favored by 49 percent of likely voters compared to 43 percent for Democrats, said the poll, which was published by the Washington Post. A Washington Post-ABC News poll last month showed Republicans with 53 percent support versus 40 percent for Democrats, who are fighting to keep their majority in Congress. The findings were in line with recent polls showing Democrats making slight gains in terms of voter preferences for Congress and
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Both parties play the economic blame game

If you don’t like the economy, blame President Barack Obama and Democrats because they’re making times tougher, Republicans are telling voters entering the four-week homestretch to an election the GOP hopes will return the party to power in Congress. Look, Democrats say, it’s the Republicans who caused the financial meltdown and recession. Do you want them to do it again? As bad as high unemployment, record home foreclosures and bankruptcies are, they’d be worse if the GOP had succeeded in blocking financial and auto industry bailouts and Obama’s stimulus plan, Democrats claim. The dueling arguments will dominate the airwaves between
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Republicans, Democrats fine tune midterm strategies

Democrats have all but written off at least three Senate seats — in North Dakota, Indiana and Arkansas — and at least six House seats in Tennessee, Louisiana, New York and elsewhere as they embark on a final-weeks advertising push to minimize congressional election losses. Emboldened by their prospects, Republicans are throwing at least $3 million into West Virginia in hopes of winning a Senate seat that was long thought out of reach. With polls showing a close race, the GOP decided late last week to boost its initial investment in the state — the party’s latest move to expand
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Republicans go out-of-state to raise campaign cash

The private rooms at Carmine’s, a large Italian restaurant downtown, have been hopping with political donors at lunch this week. It’s a month to Election Day, and House and Senate candidates are searching far from home for last-minute campaign cash. This year, the pool of national donors is favoring Republicans, reversing the advantage Democratic candidates have held for two elections. The numbers are especially noticeable in open-seat races. In the Senate’s 14 contests where there’s no incumbent, Republican candidates hold a 2-1 advantage in money raised outside their own states, according to an analysis for The Associated Press by the
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Boehner: House is ‘broken’

The top Republican in the House of Representatives proposed on Thursday that lawmakers be forced to cut federal spending to offset the cost of any new program. Taking a swipe at fellow Republicans as well as Democrats, John Boehner said “this institution is broken” and earned its reputation for “fiscal recklessness.” Boehner, in line to become House speaker if Republicans win control of the chamber in the November 2 election, said “congressional rules are rigged” to make it easy to increase spending and nearly impossible to cut spending. “We should … consider developing a ‘cut-as-you-go rule,'” Boehner said in a
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And they’re off! Gridlocked Congress leaves town

Battle-weary members of Congress are coming soon to neighborhoods near you to press for re-election, more eager to campaign before angry constituents than compromise in Washington on tax cuts, child nutrition or a federal budget. Majority Democrats facing tough re-election fights rebelled in both chambers Wednesday against their leaders’ decisions to call off controversial votes, pass a temporary bill to keep the government running and head home. “The Senate should be more concerned about doing what’s right for the country and less concerned about campaign season,” said Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colo. The measure to adjourn passed both chambers despite the
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Pelosi, Democrats failed to deliver on ethics promises

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi promised four years ago that Democrats would lead “the most honest, most open, most ethical Congress in history.” But as her party defends its record with its majority in jeopardy, two prominent Democrats await ethics trials. Two other party members gave Congressional Black Caucus Foundation scholarships to relatives. Most importantly, lobbyists, corporations and special interests still have unimpeded ways to buy access to members of Congress. Take House Majority Whip James Clyburn’s annual charity golf tournament, which provides college scholarships for needy students in his South Carolina district and funds the endowment he established at South
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