Health Reform Rhetoric Heating Up Congressional, State Campaigns
News outlets around the country are covering the impact of health care reform on upcoming elections.
The Associated Press: "With her re-election in doubt, California Sen. Barbara Boxer on Saturday urged Democrats to unite behind her candidacy with the excitement witnessed at tea party rallies around the nation. 'I need you by my side,' Boxer told more than 1,000 cheering party delegates attending the California Democratic Party's annual convention."
"'We passed health care reform and we should be proud of it, proud of it,' Boxer told the crowd. 'I need you to be excited, as excited as the tea party people are. Will you help me?' ... California Democrats are trying to build momentum at a time when surveys show Boxer and state Attorney General Jerry Brown, the party's expected nominee for governor, are running about even with potential Republican challengers" (Blood, 4/17).
CNN: "The Pennsylvania Democrat running for the House seat formerly held by the late John Murtha released an ad Saturday that refutes Republican charges that he supported health care reform. The National Republican Congressional Committee went on TV earlier this week with an ad painting Mark Critz as too liberal for Pennsylvania because of his support for federal health care legislation."
"'That ad is not true. I opposed the health care bill, and I'm pro-life and pro-gun. That's not liberal,' Critz says in [his own] ad. Critz is set to face Republican Tim Burns in a special election on May 18" (Riley, 4/17).
Politico: "While Washington talks about Obama's new mojo, polls show voters outside the Beltway are sulking - soured on the president, his party and his program. The Gallup Poll has Obama's approval rating at an ominous 49 percent, after hitting a record low of 47 percent last weekend. A new poll in Pennsylvania, a bellwether industrial state, shows his numbers sinking, as did recent polls in Ohio and Florida. So there are two Obamas: Rising in D.C., struggling in the U.S."
"Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell admits that Republicans won the health-care messaging war and says he has been traveling to dinners and fundraisers across the country to implore Democrats to fight back" (Allen and Hohmann, 4/16).
Allentown, Penn. Morning Call reports on Republican U.S. Senate candidate Pat Toomey's campaigning at Harrisburg's Crimson Frog Coffeehouse, "where the businessmen sip coffee and attack a mixed plate of scones, most are concerned about the country's new healthcare reform plan and what, if anything, congressional Republicans can do to get it repealed. Toomey tells them there's not much hope for direct repeal. The GOP would need to seize control of the U.S. House or grab a filibuster-proof majority in the U.S. Senate. Though most analysts expect majority Democrats to lose seats this year, none are predicting a Republican sweep of Capitol Hill" (Micek, 4/17).
Las Vegas Review Journal: "Las Vegas lawyer Jacob Hafter, a Republican candidate for attorney general, ... [recently] accused (Democratic Attorney General Catherine Cortez) Masto of violating the attorney-client privilege rule by releasing a news statement on why she would not agree to Gov. Jim Gibbons' request to file a federal lawsuit over the new national health care reform law. Hafter volunteered to file the lawsuit for Nevada for free, but Gibbons gave that task to Las Vegas lawyer Mark Hutchison" (Vogel, 4/17).
Detroit Free Press: "Wayne State University law professor Jocelyn Benson and Genesee County prosecutor David Leyton got an early lift this morning in their bids for Secretary of State and Attorney General respectively when they got the endorsement of the powerful AFL-CIO."
"Leyton said ... his first job as AG would be to end the lawsuit filed by current AG Mike Cox challenging the health care reform bill passed last month. 'That lawsuit will not stand when I'm Attorney General,' he said" (Gray, 4/17).