In a full-page ad in the Dallas Morning News, “Major Republican donors, including some who have contributed to Gov. Greg Abbott’s campaigns, joined other conservative Texans in signing an open letter supporting congressional action to increase gun restrictions in response to the mass shooting in Uvalde that left 19 children and two teachers dead last week.” The letter “endorses the creation of red-flag laws, expanding background checks and raising the age to purchase a gun to 21. More than 250 self-declared gun enthusiasts signed it.”
The Washington Post reports that “House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) plans to unveil a strategy Thursday outlining how Republicans would address climate change, energy and environmental issues if their party gains control of the House in the midterm elections.” The plan is anticipated to focus on “streamlining the permitting process for large infrastructure projects, increasing domestic fossil fuel production and boosting exports of U.S. liquefied natural gas.” It is not clear to me (or the Washington Post) how increasing domestic fossil fuel production will address climate change or the environment. Still, it has been awhile since the GOP has felt the need to offer a policy platform. A very recent PEW poll found significant support for climate change policy. In particular, it found internal policy divisions among Republicans:
- “66% of self-described moderate and liberal Republicans favor taking steps toward [carbon neutrality].”
- “67% of conservative Republicans say it should be expanding production of oil, coal and natural gas.”
In all PEW summarized the data on Republican views, “On balance, Republicans and Republican-leaning independents give greater priority to expanding the production of oil, coal and natural gas than to developing alternative energy sources, and they overwhelmingly believe that fossil fuels should remain a part of the energy picture in the U.S.”
This new Op Ed by Greg Sargent in the Washington Post, highlights, once more, deficits in policy responsiveness that arises out of hyper-polarization, among other things.
Sargent highlights a new study from the Third Way–a centrist Democratic-leaning group–that analyzes the benefits to U.S. families of the top four provisions in the Build Back Better bill in real dollars.
What’s innovative about this study is that it shows ways in which average red state families in particular would benefit from specific BBB policies. Notably, no Republican voted for the version of BBB that passed the House — the basis for this study — and it’s very likely none will vote for it in the Senate.
Manchin’s seat is not safe. And still, his version of moderation stands at odds with the views of his own constituents (not just his base). Why would voters believe their votes matter?
The Hill is reporting a new poll that shows “West Virginia voters overwhelmingly back paid leave proposal.”
“The poll, commissioned by Paid Leave for All, found that 80 percent of West Virginia voters support ensuring paid leave for workers suffering from a serious illness, 75 percent back paid leave for workers caring for a sick family member and 72 percent support paid leave for workers caring for a new child.
. . . The poll found that paid leave is more popular among West Virginia voters than other proposals included in the reconciliation package, such as universal pre-K, which is backed by 54 percent of those surveyed. The paid leave program and the measure to allow Medicare to negotiate drug prices were the only Democratic proposals to earn majority support from voters in the state from every political party.
Senator Manchin, to be sure, has his process-based excuse: The bill should be passed separately and with bipartisan support. And, to be sure, this poll is likely somewhat flawed. But still, why would any voter think her vote mattered in this era of hyper-partisanship?