Republicans Are Waiting For Trump’s Help (Or Wrath) As Key State Races Get Going
Henry J. Gomez, BuzzFeed News
Republicans, Democrats, and the political media alike are watching a series of special elections over the next weeks that could end up putting into motion significant resources, recruitment efforts, and new narratives about President Donald Trump’s popularity. Some tricky political questions – how much Trump will remake the party ideologically, how closely will candidates tie themselves to him – are already factoring into special elections in Kansas and Georgia.
Trump Signs Law Giving States Option To Deny Funding For Planned Parenthood
Colin Dwyer, NPR News
President Trump quietly signed legislation Thursday that rolls back an Obama-era rule protecting certain federal funds for Planned Parenthood and other organizations that provide legal abortions. That regulation, implemented in the waning days of the Obama administration, required that states pass along family-planning grants – regardless of whether the groups they’re passing them along to offer abortion services as well.
Trump’s threat prompts Democrats to play hardball over Obamacare payments
Mike DeBonis, The Washington Post
Democrats signaled that they will seek to secure payments owed to health insurers under the Affordable Care Act as part of pending negotiations over a government spending bill Thursday – a new wrinkle in sensitive negotiations that emerged a day after President Trump threatened use the payments to force Democrats to negotiate a replacement for the ACA. The “cost-sharing reduction” payments are meant to subsidize out-of-pocket expenses for low-income Americans who receive insurance through ACA marketplaces, and they are seen as a key factor in maintaining the stability of the market for individual insurance in many states.
McCaskill says many Missourians feel ‘forgotten,’ voted for Trump out of pain
Bryan Lowry, The Kansas City Star
U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill of Missouri warned at a town hall event Thursday that Democrats should not dismiss the justifiable anger that many of President Donald Trump’s supporters feel. McCaskill, a Democrat running for re-election next year in a state that Trump won by double digits, said that she found the results of the November election humbling and urged fellow Democrats to seek to understand the anger that fueled Trump’s rise rather than deriding it. “I’ve told my colleagues in Washington who are from very blue places when I hear them talk with disrespect toward Trump voters, I tell them to stop. Stop! The people who voted for Donald Trump in my state, they feel pain,” she said. “They wanted a disruptor.”
DCCC Keeping Its Powder Dry in Special Elections, for Now
Eli Yokley, Morning Consult
After Tuesday night’s special election in the 4th District of Kansas, some progressives were irate that House Democrats’ campaign arm did not do more (and sooner) to push long-shot candidate James Thompson across the finish line. But in the view of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, their involvement in the race might have done more harm than good and proved the point of Republicans backing state Treasurer Ron Estes: that Thompson was the choice of Washington insiders, such as House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), a favorite Republican villain.