Archives for Politics

Obama to Dems: ‘We’ve got the better side’ of argument

Regrouping with Democrats after a bitter budget fight, President Barack Obama on Friday cast the recent spending-and-debt standoff with Congress as “a symptom of a larger challenge” but one offering Democrats the chance to show voters the virtues of their vision for government ahead of the 2014 midterm elections. At the heart of the impasse that shuttered the government were deep disagreements about what role the government should play in helping Americans succeed, Obama told about 60 donors at a fundraiser for House Democrats. “The shutdown was about more than just health care,” Obama said. “It was about a contrast
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Iowa GOP moves to take party back from extremists

Fed up and ready to get off the sidelines, veteran Iowa Republicans are working to wrest control of the state GOP from the evangelicals, tea partyers and libertarians they blame for alienating longtime party loyalists. Led by Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad, these Republicans want to grow the state party — one that ideological crusaders have shaped over the past few years — by bringing back into the fold pragmatic-minded voters while attracting more women and younger voters. These Republicans say success would be Branstad winning re-election next fall and paving the way for a national GOP comeback in the 2016
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Two states, two different political agendas by Republicans

This fall’s races for governor in Virginia and New Jersey offer a revealing window into the fight for the future of the Republican Party. Virginia’s illustrates the challenges facing the tea party movement and the fallout from the government shutdown while testing how well the GOP’s conservative wing can compete in a presidential swing-voting state. New Jersey’s highlights how a pragmatic Republican advocating for an inclusive GOP can dominate in Democratic territory. In Virginia, Republican Ken Cuccinelli — he promotes his role as the first state attorney general to challenge the health care overhaul — is struggling in polls against
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Hillary Clinton campaigns for McAuliffe in Virginia gov. race

Hillary Clinton returned to the campaign trail on Saturday to endorse old friend Terry McAuliffe in the Virginia governor’s race, urging voters to reject the “scorched earth” politics that led to the recent government shutdown. At her first overtly political appearance since leaving her post as secretary of state in February, the former Democratic senator and first lady said the outcome of the bitter governor’s battle would show whether voters were ready to choose common sense over ideology. She received a hero’s welcome from the packed crowd in a theater in Falls Church, a Washington suburb, during an appearance certain
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Defiant Republicans still up in arms and at war with each other

The Republicans’ clear defeat in the budget-debt brawl has widened the rift between the Grand Old Party and the blossoming tea party movement that helped revive it. Implored by House Speaker John Boehner to unite and “fight another day” against President Barack Obama and Democrats, Republicans instead intensified attacks on one another, an ominous sign in advance of more difficult policy fights and the 2014 midterm elections. The tea party movement spawned by the passage of Obama’s health care overhaul three years ago put the GOP back in charge of the House and in hot pursuit of the law’s repeal.
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Will votes on shutdown come back to haunt some in 2014?

A group of House Republicans planning Senate campaigns next year took different bets on a bill in Congress ending a government shutdown and avoiding a default. For some, a general election loomed large while for others, the vote was a matter of competing for conservative primary voters. The high-profile vote Wednesday night to end the 16-day partial government shutdown and stave off a national default divided Republicans in the House and Senate and could turn into a noteworthy issue in next year’s midterm elections. In the Senate, Republicans need to pick up six seats to recapture the majority during President
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Right wing looking for new hot-button issues to attract followers

Seeking a new generation of leaders, social conservatives are looking for a lot more than opposition to gay marriage and abortion. An annual summit of faith leaders and conservative activists gave a platform to a new wave of Republican leaders, who derided President Barack Obama’s health care law, his steering of the economy and foreign policy along with a more traditional litany of social issues. In what amounted to an audition, Senate Republicans like Ted Cruz of Texas described a nation teetering on “the edge of a cliff” while Rand Paul of Kentucky said U.S. foreign policy needed to stop
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Tough times for Republican moderates in swing districts

Republican Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick had been expected to face a tough re-election fight. Then he sided with GOP leadership and a tea party insisting that a federal spending plan to keep the government open must delay or defund President Barack Obama’s health care law. Now, with the partial government shutdown stretching into its second week, Fitzpatrick’s bid for a second term may be growing even more challenging. Voters in his suburban Philadelphia district talk of a widening sense of disappointment with their two-term congressman, while Democrats across Pennsylvania and other states claim new momentum in their quest to take back
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Both sides look for political advantage in shutdown debable

Republicans and Democrats have wasted little time trying to use the first federal government shutdown in a generation for political advantage ahead of next year’s midterm elections, seizing on the plight of furloughed workers and shuttered government services to cast blame on each other. A year out from Election Day and just days into the stoppage, the debate already is playing out in TV and radio ads in key congressional districts, newspaper editorials and fundraising pitches from campaign committees eager to pad their bank accounts early for 2014. And both sides are aggressively testing the political arguments they likely will
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GOP Presidential wannabes look for good political angles in shutdown

With no end in sight to the federal government shutdown, Republican governors eyeing the 2016 presidential race are pitching themselves as can-do politicians and highlighting records of achievement. Although unstated, their goal is clear — draw a contrast with their prospective presidential challengers on Capitol Hill aligned with a vocal band of Republicans whose demands that Congress defund the health care law helped trigger the shutdown. “Republican governors are not going to take it anymore,” says Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, among those state leaders and potential presidential candidates using the shutdown to try to position themselves as outsiders at a
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