The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee launched an initiative Thursday to apply pressure to Republicans during the August recess for proposed cuts to entitlement programs such as Medicare.
“Accountability August” is the latest installment of the DCCC’s “Drive for 25” campaign to win control of the House next year. Over the next month, the campaign will target 44 Republicans with some combination of radio ads, billboards, gas station advertising, community meetings, door-to-door canvasses, phone banks, virtual phone banks and automated calls. It also features a website: MillionairesOverMedicare.com.
Among the 44 Republicans are a long list of freshmen, Budget Chairman Paul Ryan (Wis.) and a total of 12 incumbents from California and Florida, where redistricting offers the party potential pickup opportunities.
“Republicans will have to explain to their constituents why they voted to end Medicare three times and raise seniors’ health care costs in order to protect tax breaks for millionaires, billionaires and Big Oil. Republicans will have to defend the indefensible,” DCCC Chairman Steve Israel (N.Y.) said.
A DCCC release offered scripts for the radio ads and automated calls. “Hi, this is Clare from the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee calling about Congressman Sean Duffy’s vote to end Medicare in order to protect millionaires,” the robocaller says before asking for a call to be placed to the Wisconsin Republican’s office.
“Congressman Charlie Bass voted to end Medicare, forcing seniors to pay more to protect tax breaks for Big Oil and millionaires,” the radio ad announcer says about the New Hampshire Republican. “Tell Bass to stop choosing millionaires over seniors.”
National Republican Congressional Committee spokesman Paul Lindsay said the move is simply a diversion tactic.
“House Democrats can’t talk about their agenda that is destroying jobs, so they are relegated to repeating the same pathetic demagoguery to distract from their plan to bankrupt Medicare. It’s a worn-out page from their political playbook that ignores the economic crisis they helped create,” Lindsay said.
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., speaks with reporters following a vote in the Senate. Gillibrand’s proposal to remove military commanders from the process of reviewing sexual-assault cases was left out of the bicameral deal on the defense authorization bill, but the senator is pushing for a vote on her plan soon.
Each year since 1990, CQ Roll Call has reviewed the financial disclosures of all 541 senators, representatives and delegates to determine the 50 richest members of Congress. This year's report, derived from forms covering the calendar year 2012, shows it took a net worth of $6.67 million to crack the exclusive club.