GOP Reveals Plan To Reclaim Congress, Oust Nancy Pelosi As House Speaker

KEY POINTS

  • House Republicans revealed a 17-item agenda in an effort to retake control of the House in the Nov. 3 general election
  • The document details plans to restore, rebuild, and renew America on a variety of issues
  • The GOP needs to gain 34 seats in the House to unseat House Speaker Nancy Pelosi

The GOP on Tuesday released 17 legislative promises in an effort to reclaim control of Congress and remove Democrat Nancy Pelosi from her position as Speaker of the House. 

The “Commitment to America” contains multiple items and resembles the eight-point Contract with America that helped the Republicans retake the House in 1994 for the first time in four decades. 

In the document, the GOP committed to defeating the coronavirus pandemic by tripling the numbers of rapid COVID testing and developing a safe and effective vaccine by the end of the year. They also promised to expand access to affordable medical services such as telemedicine, mental health programs, and opioid treatments. 

House Republicans said they want to “restore our way of life” by opposing efforts to defund the police and increasing funding to improve police training and community policing.

The document comes amid protests across the country following the August police shooting of Jacob Blake in Kensoha, Wisc.; the May killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police; and the March death of Breonna Taylor, who was fatally shot by three plain-clothes officers serving a no-knock warrant in Louisville, Ky.

Another one of the Republicans’ pledges includes “rebuilding the greatest economy in history” by continuing the Paycheck Protection Program, extending the $2,000 child tax credit, and ending U.S. dependence on products manufactured in China.

“Republicans helped build the greatest economy in a generation, and the American way of life was thriving. We will do it again. That is our commitment to you,” House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy said during a press release.

According to the New York Post, McCarthy is likely to be House Speaker if Republicans can win the majority of the House’s seats in the Nov. 3 general election. Currently, the Democrats have an advantage of 34 seats. The GOP currently has a four-seat advantage in the Senate.

The Republicans also promised to honor U.S. war veterans by funding the VA Choice healthcare program and expanding GI education benefits. They also pledge to strengthen the country’s military forces and secure the borders by enforcing immigration laws.

Other agenda points include a pledge to improve education by giving students school choice and investing in science, technology, and engineering education.

People register to vote during a Republican event in Brownsville, Pennsylvania People register to vote during a Republican event in Brownsville, Pennsylvania Photo: AFP / ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS

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WATCH: House GOP unveils tax cuts, police funds in election agenda

WASHINGTON — House Minority leader Kevin McCarthy rolled out Republicans’ priorities of tax breaks and police funding Tuesday, the GOP’s calling card to voters as they try to wrest back seats from Democrats in a long-shot November election bid for majority control.

Republicans campaigning alongside President Donald Trump are promising to restore the country to the way it was before the COVID-19 crisis hit, tapping into the same themes of health care and infrastructure investment that have been mainstays of the Democratic platform. They’re also taking a page from Trump’s playbook by portraying Democrats as aligned with the racial injustice protests in American cities, vowing a tougher approach.

“Republicans helped build the greatest economy in a generation and the American way of life was thriving,” said McCarthy, flanked by lawmakers on the steps of the Capitol, to present the “Commitment to America.” He said, “We will do it again.”

Republicans are bracing for a tough campaign for control of Congress in the fall, needing to flip some 19 seats to take over control of the House from Democrats. The Senate has a slim GOP majority that’s at risk.

The GOP rollout comes as House Democrats are vowing to try again to pass a new round of coronavirus relief after a Senate bill collapsed last week. Democrats said late Monday at the Capitol that leadership would consider extending the legislative session into October if a new aid bill could be approved.

READ MORE: States plan for cuts as Congress deadlocks on more virus aid

House Republicans typically present their own priorities for the campaigns, dating back 30 years to then-leader Newt Gingrich’s “Contract with America.” But it’s especially important this year after the broader Republican Party under Trump declined to present a GOP platform at the Republican National Convention.

“We need to double down on a commitment to God and the Constitution,” said Rep. Mike Garcia, R-Calif.

The House Republicans’ economic priorities include new tax breaks for businesses, forgivable Paycheck Protection Program loans for companies struggling during the coronavirus shutdown, and making the 2017 GOP tax cuts for families permanent.

To fight the virus outbreak, Republicans call for tripling COVID-19 testing and investing in therapeutics for treatments. Taking a page from the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, they vow to preserve insurance coverage for those with pre-existing health conditions — even though Republicans are suing to end health care coverage under the 2010 law.

They promise more money for police departments and commitments to social issues, including abortion rights and access to firearms.

As lawmakers gathered Tuesday outside the Capitol, the No. 2 GOP leader, Rep. Steve Sclaise, R-La., the GOP Whip, said, the party will “renew and restore” the nation.

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House GOP Unveils Tax Cuts, Police Funds in Election Agenda | Political News

By LISA MASCARO, AP Congressional Correspondent

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Minority leader Kevin McCarthy rolled out Republicans’ priorities of tax breaks and police funding Tuesday, the GOP’s calling card to voters as they try to wrest back seats from Democrats in a long-shot November election bid for majority control.

Republicans campaigning alongside President Donald Trump are promising to restore the country to the way it was before the COVID-19 crisis hit, tapping into the same themes of health care and infrastructure investment that have been mainstays of the Democratic platform. They’re also taking a page from Trump’s playbook by portraying Democrats as aligned with the racial injustice protests in American cities, vowing a tougher approach.

“Republicans helped build the greatest economy in a generation and the American way of life was thriving,” said McCarthy, flanked by lawmakers on the steps of the Capitol, to present the “Commitment to America.” He said, “We will do it again.”

Republicans are bracing for a tough campaign for control of Congress in the fall, needing to flip some 19 seats to take over control of the House from Democrats. The Senate has a slim GOP majority that’s at risk.

The GOP rollout comes as House Democrats are vowing to try again to pass a new round of coronavirus relief after a Senate bill collapsed last week. Democrats said late Monday at the Capitol that leadership would consider extending the legislative session into October if a new aid bill could be approved.

House Republicans typically present their own priorities for the campaigns, dating back 30 years to then-leader Newt Gingrich’s “Contract with America.” But it’s especially important this year after the broader Republican Party under Trump declined to present a GOP platform at the Republican National Convention.

“We need to double down on a commitment to God and the Constitution,” said Rep. Mike Garcia, R-Calif.

The House Republicans’ economic priorities include new tax breaks for businesses, forgivable Paycheck Protection Program loans for companies struggling during the coronavirus shutdown, and making the 2017 GOP tax cuts for families permanent.

To fight the virus outbreak, Republicans call for tripling COVID-19 testing and investing in therapeutics for treatments. Taking a page from the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, they vow to preserve insurance coverage for those with pre-existing health conditions — even though Republicans are suing to end health care coverage under the 2010 law.

They promise more money for police departments and commitments to social issues, including abortion rights and access to firearms.

As lawmakers gathered Tuesday outside the Capitol, the No. 2 GOP leader, Rep. Steve Sclaise, R-La., the GOP Whip, said, the party will “renew and restore” the nation.

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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House GOP slated to unveil agenda ahead of election

House Republicans are expected to unveil their agenda on Tuesday, which GOP lawmakers hope will help offer a contrast to policy proposals by House Democrats ahead of Election Day. 

The one-page blueprint has three planks:  “Restore Our Way of Life,” “Rebuild the Greatest Economy in History,” and “Renew the American Dream,” according to a “Dear Colleague” letter sent by Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin Owen McCarthyHow Trump’s false attacks on mail-in voting could backfire on him Hillicon Valley: Election officials prepare for new Russian interference battle | ‘Markeyverse’ of online fans helps take down a Kennedy | GOP senators unveil bill to update tech liability protections Google, Apple, eBay to meet virtually with lawmakers for tech group’s annual fly-in MORE (R-Calif.) to members of the GOP conference on Friday. 

“From day one, our goal was to present a unified Commitment to America offered by Republicans across the country, while pointing out the very real contrasts we have with our colleagues on the left. Since late July, we received over 150 policy submissions from you and your teams,” the letter stated.

“Working with our committees, caucuses, and the Trump Administration, we have distilled those submissions into a one-page framework that encapsulates our mission and plan moving forward.”

The plan’s objectives include finding a path forward on COVID-19, restoring the economy and updating the nation’s infrastructure. 

Republicans need to pick up at least 17 seats to regain the House majority they lost in 2018. A key component to their strategy is showing a contrast from Democrats’ plans, GOP members have said.

“We’ve been working to really address the issues that our country is facing right now, renewing, restoring and rebuilding this great nation and confronting the problems that are in front of us,” House Minority Whip Steve ScaliseStephen (Steve) Joseph ScaliseHouse panel details ‘serious’ concerns around Florida, Georgia, Texas, Wisconsin elections Scalise hit with ethics complaint over doctored Barkan video Ady Barkan says edited Scalise video has ‘ominous lessons’ for election MORE (R-La.) told The Hill following a conference meeting where members were briefed on the plan. 

 “It’s what this Congress should be working on unfortunately it’s not, but it’s what we’re passionate about and what we’re going to be battling for the next few weeks and months.”

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McCarthy unveils GOP roadmap in effort to win back the House

Republicans need to pick up 17 seats to win the House, and the likelihood of that happening is low. But McCarthy says releasing a GOP agenda will boost their chances come Election Day.

“House Republicans have to have a plan. How can we work to help this country move forward?” McCarthy said in a telephone interview on Monday. “The fundamental thing you have to do is, how do you defeat this virus and make America healthy? So we lay out a plan within there. At the very start, we tackle Covid.”

The main themes of the Republican agenda are “Restore Our Way of Life,” “Rebuild the Greatest Economy in History,” and “Renew the American Dream.”

McCarthy is trying to rally his party around a unified plan without alienating Trump, whom the California Republican has closely allied himself with since 2016. Trump needs to perform well if the GOP has any shot at making meaningful gains in the House and holding on to the Senate; the results will also do much to shape McCarthy’s own political future.

And House Republicans have had some success with such plans before. In 1994, former Rep. Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.) and House Republicans issued the “Contract With America,” which helped bolster their historic takeover over the chamber. In 2010, McCarthy was part of the group that released the “Pledge to America,” which outlined GOP proposals to be implemented if they won the House. Republicans picked up 63 seats that year.

While the political environment is tough for them, the House GOP’s latest document — which was crafted with input from across the Republican conference, including more than 150 policy submissions, according to McCarthy — highlights a mix of broad thematic strokes and specific policy provisions.

“We’ve been working on this for quite some time, talking about policies that would put the country on a better track,” McCarthy said.

Yet at times, the House Republican agenda contradicts some of Trump’s own rhetoric and actions. The one-page memo, for example, calls for finding bipartisan solutions to tackle the nation’s debt and protect Social Security and Medicare. But the federal debt has soared by trillions of dollars under Trump, while the president’s executive action on the payroll tax deferral threatens the funding mechanism for both programs.

The House Republican’s agenda also shares many of the same themes that Trump and the GOP touted at the Republican National Convention last month. That includes prioritizing “school choice” for children; opposing efforts to “defund the police” in the wake of racial unrest and protests while calling for additional $1.5 billion federal funding for police training; and pouring $200 billion in forgivable loans for small business through the Paycheck Protection Program.

McCarthy appointed a China task force earlier this year, and the House GOP agenda vows to implement the recommendations that will come out of that group. Key to that are efforts to increase U.S. manufacturing, as well as reforming “our supply chain for critical needs like medicines, protective medical equipment, and technology.”

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GOP lawmaker Mike Garcia seeks to cement hold on California House seat

Republican Rep. Mike Garcia and Democratic State Assemblywoman Christy Smith face off again in November after Garcia won a special election in May to represent California’s 25th Congressional District.

The seat was prematurely vacated by former Rep. Katie Hill, a freshman Democrat, who resigned from office on Nov. 3 after nude photos of her were posted online with stories describing her relationship with a young female campaign staffer and an alleged relationship with a congressional staffer. Hill disputed the latter claim.

One month before the special election, the Cook Political Report changed the district’s rating from “Lean Democratic” to “Toss Up.”

Garcia, the son of a Mexican immigrant, graduated from the United States Naval Academy after being nominated by then-Rep. Buck McKeon, a Republican who previously represented the district. Garcia became the first Republican to pick up a House seat in California since 1998. He flew combat missions in Iraq and later served for 10 years as an executive on the board at Raytheon.

Smith is a former official at the California Department of Education. She climbed through the ranks of the department and raised $2 million in 2018 to win her state Assembly seat against a Republican incumbent, but her efforts against Garcia nearly two years later did not prevail when Garcia won by a 12-point margin.

Smith’s campaign took a hit during the special election when she slammed Garcia’s military service on a Zoom call with supporters. She later apologized for her comments.

Republicans previously held the 25th District, which spans northern Los Angeles County and part of neighboring Ventura County, for over two decades, mainly by McKeon and for two terms thereafter by his Republican successor, Steve Knight. However, in 2018 Knight lost by a 7-point margin to Hill, a first-time candidate who capitalized on the Democratic “blue wave” of the 2018 midterm elections.

House Republicans need to gain about 17 seats to reclaim the House majority they lost two years ago. Garcia winning reelection is a key part of that plan. The seat also has a certain emotional resonance because it borders on that of the Bakersfield-based district held by House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, one of the most conservative parts of otherwise liberal California.

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Retiring GOP stalwart Peter King’s House district now a toss-up

Democrats are hoping Army Reserve veteran Jackie Gordon can turn New York’s 2nd Congressional District blue.



Peter T. King wearing a suit and tie


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Gordon, a former public school educator, is running against Republican Andrew Garbarino, a lawyer and small-business owner. They’re vying to replace New York Rep. Peter King, a Republican, who has spent nearly three decades representing New York’s 2nd and 3rd districts on Long Island and announced last November that he’d be retiring after this term.

The race for the 2nd District, which includes the southwestern region of Suffolk County and a small part of Nassau County, is a “toss up,” according to the Cook Political Report.

Gordon, a former Babylon councilwoman, has significantly out-raised Garbarino during the election cycle thus far. She has received $1.7 million in donations, more than 3 times the $488,000 of her opponent, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. Additionally, she has more than $1 million more on hand than Garbarino.

Democrats are hopeful they can increase their majority in the House through this seat after King’s margin of victory fell dramatically between the 2016 and 2018 elections. President Trump won this district by 9 points in 2016, and King was reelected by 24 points. Two years later, King’s margin of victory fell to only 6 points.

House Republicans need to net about 17 seats to reclaim the House majority they lost in 2018. Having to play defense in seats such as the one King is leaving behind complicate those plans.

With the apparent opening to turn the district blue, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has pegged Gordon as a top candidate in its “Red to Blue” program and has provided resources to her campaign.

Democrats also believe they can flip the seat because of the party demographic changes that have taken place over the last quarter of a century.

In 1996, there were 360,000 registered Republicans in Nassau County, New York, which was more than 100,000 more than the Democrats had at the time, according to the New York Times. By 2019, the number of registered Democrats had ballooned to more than 400,000, while the number of Republicans had decreased from where it was 23 years prior by more than 30,000.

A similar demographic change occurred in Suffolk County. There, Republicans saw their registered voters increase by 18,000 people, while Democrats increased their party size by more than 160,000 people.

Tags: News, New York, 2020 Elections

Original Author: Mike Brest

Original Location: Retiring GOP stalwart Peter King’s House district now a toss-up

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The White House is repairing damages to its South Lawn after it was used to host the GOP convention



a group of people standing in front of a crowd: Guests gather to watch President Donald Trump deliver his acceptance speech for the Republican presidential nomination on the South Lawn of the White House on August 27, 2020. Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images


© Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
Guests gather to watch President Donald Trump deliver his acceptance speech for the Republican presidential nomination on the South Lawn of the White House on August 27, 2020. Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

  • The White House South Lawn is undergoing repairs after it was used for the Republican National Convention, The Washington Post reported.
  • A White House spokesman told Business Insder that the repairs would not be funded by taxpayer money, and officials told the Post that they will be paid for President Donald Trump’s reelection campaign.
  • Trump has been criticized for accepting his official GOP nomination for president at the White House, with experts experts saying he abused his office for personal gain.
  • CNN also reported that repairs are underway in the White House Rose Garden, less than three weeks after Melania Trump’s redesign was unveiled.
  • Business Insider has contacted the White House and the Trump campaign for comment.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

President Donald Trump’s reelection campaign is paying to repair damage to the White House South Lawn after it was used for the Republican National Convention last month, The Washington Post reported.

White House spokesman Judd Deere told Business Insider that “the sod is being replaced at no cost to taxpayers,” adding that “Additionally, there has been other planned infrastructure work taking place on the south grounds.”

A Trump campaign official also told The Post that the resodding costs will be taken out of campaign funds.

Katie Liming, a spokeswoman for the National Park Service Capital Region, also told The Post: “Turf restoration is underway on the South Lawn. The National Park Service is using cost recovery funds from the RNC to pay for the work. Cost recovery was a condition of the permit for the event and federal funds were not used.”

The cost of the South Lawn reparations are not known. The White House did not comment on the project’s cost.

Business Insider also contacted the White House and the Trump campaign for comment.

The RNC, which this year was held from August 24 to 27, involved many people in the audience as well as heavy equipment for televising the event.

Photos showed around 1,500 people close together and not wearing masks on the lawn for Trump’s speech during the event.



a group of people standing in front of a crowd posing for the camera: republican convention south lawn crowd photo selfie


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republican convention south lawn crowd photo selfie

The August RNC came under heavy criticism for ignoring social distancing guidelines — and for being at the White House in the first place.

Experts pointed to what they said were numerous ethics violations during the event, and noted that using the White House as a backdrop was an abuse of power for Trump’s personal gain.

They painted the ceremony as a clear violation of the Hatch Act, a federal law that the bars federal employees from engaging in any political activities, including campaigning, in their official capacities.

Repairs in the White House Rose Garden are also underway, CNN reported Tuesday. They come less than three

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White House lawn, Rose Garden being re-sod after damage from GOP convention

On Aug. 27, Trump delivered his address formally accepting the Republican nomination on the South Lawn before an estimated 1,500 supporters seated on chairs. The president spoke from an enormous stage built in front of the South Portico of the White House. It was flanked by massive television screens and illuminated by scores of hulking spotlights — all particularly heavy equipment to position on grass.

Two nights earlier, first lady Melania Trump delivered her convention address in the newly reconstructed Rose Garden, with dozens of supporters seated in chairs. Turf was laid atop the grass as a protective measure, according to one White House official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because aides were not authorized to discuss some details.

“The sod is being replaced at no cost to taxpayers,” said White House spokesman Judd Deere. “Additionally, there has been other planned infrastructure work taking place on the south grounds.”

A Trump campaign official confirmed that the sod replacement was being paid for with campaign funds.

The construction underway includes other repairs and improvements that were already in the planning stages or under consideration, said a White House official.

The work has been ongoing for several days and has interrupted the regular rhythms at the White House. The president has been transported to Joint Base Andrews for recent flights via motorcade rather than by helicopter because Marine One cannot land on the South Lawn during the construction and repairs.

In addition, White House staff have kept journalists covering events there from seeing the work underway in the Rose Garden and South Lawn by using alternate venues. The president typically holds outdoor news conferences in the Rose Garden, but he held Monday’s gathering with reporters instead on the North Portico of the White House. It was the first time in recent memory that the president staged a news conference on the front steps of the residence facing Pennsylvania Avenue.

The Trump campaign and Melania Trump’s office declined to comment on the record. The National Park Service did not respond to requests for comment.

Officials did not detail how much the repairs would cost.

A White House official said that it was not uncommon in this administration, as well as previous ones, to undertake repairs to the South Lawn following large events, such as the annual Easter Egg Roll or Fourth of July fireworks.

But the current construction highlights the blatant manner in which Trump used the trappings of the presidency for purely political purposes in staging the Republican convention at the White House — a move that outraged government ethics experts, as well as many Democrats.

In August, Melania Trump unveiled the redesigned Rose Garden, which was panned by some critics. The first lady took on the Rose Garden renovation as a personal project, along with revamping the White House tennis pavilion.

Lisa Rein contributed to this report.

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GOP members of House Judiciary Committee demand Nadler condemn Antifa

Four Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee sent a letter on Tuesday to Chairman Jerry Nadler, D-NY., criticizing him for launching “fruitless partisan investigations” into President Trump while ignoring the threat of Antifa.

The letter, which was penned by ranking member Rep.  Jim Jordan of Ohio and Reps. Ken Buck, R-Co., Jim Sensenbrenner, R-Wisc., and Mike Johnson, R-La., calls on Nadler to denounce “left-wing violent extremism” and convene a hearing to investigate the unrest engulfing a number of cities across the country.

“You have wasted the first 20 months of your chairmanship on fruitless partisan investigations in furtherance of your obsession with attacking President Trump,” the lawmakers said in their letter. “We urge you not to waste any more time. The jurisdiction of the Judiciary Committee provides you with a unique authority to condemn the violence and disorder in Democrat-run cities.”

BIDEN CONDEMNS RIOTING, BLASTS TRUMP’S RESPONSE IN FIERY POST-CONVENTION SPEECH

Trump and his Republican allies have roundly blamed Antifa, a shadowy left-wing, self-described anti-fascist movement, for much of the unrest and violence in cities like Portland, Ore. Democrats in Congress, however, have sought to draw a distinction between those protesting over racial inequality and police brutality and the looting and violence that has followed some the protests.

Nadler drew sharp criticism from conservatives back in July when he told writer-produce Austen Fletcher that Antifa is “myth that’s being spread only in Washington, D.C.”

“Prominent Democrat leaders look the other way on lawlessness and disorder,” Jordan and his fellow GOP lawmakers wrote. “Even you, the chairman of the powerful Judiciary Committee with a unique platform to denounce left-wing violence, have trivialized it as ‘imaginary’ and a ‘myth.’”

While Nadler and other Democrats have remained relatively quiet on Antifa, the party’s presidential nominee, Joe Biden, issued his most forceful condemnation of the movement on Monday.

Speaking to a local news station in Pennsylvania, Biden said he condemns violence “across the board,” including from Antifa.

“I’ve condemned it across the board,” Biden told Pennsylvania’s WGAL News 8 in an interview Monday, referring to violence during protests. “The president still hasn’t condemned the far-right folks coming out and protesting and using violence.”

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“Do you condemn Antifa?” reporter Barbara Barr asked Biden.

“Yes, I do, violence no matter who it is,” he replied.

The nationwide unrest was sparked by the late May death of George Floyd while in the custody of police in Minnesota.

Trump, who has denounced protesters as “thugs” while sharply defending the police, has throughout the summer cast American cities under liberal leadership as under siege by violent and lawless anarchy.

While many of the demonstrations have been peaceful, rioting and looting has broken out in multiple cities.

Fox News’ Evie Fordham contributed to this report.

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