House Democrats in 2015 suddenly worried about tax hike that they refused to stop in 2014.


Three senior House members [Sander Levin (Michigan), Jim McDermott (Washington), and Lloyd Doggett (Texas)] told The Associated Press that they plan to strongly urge the administration to grant a special sign-up opportunity for uninsured taxpayers who will be facing fines under the law for the first time this year.


In light of the heavy burden being imposed by the health law on people struggling in a weak economy, it’s worth remembering that less than a year ago, the House of Representatives voted on legislation to defer these penaltiesThe vote was 250-160 in favor of a delay, with the vast majority of House Democrats voting to impose these penalties rather than defer them. And the three House leaders who are now concerned that the process is unfair – Representatives Doggett, Levin, and McDermott – all voted against putting the penalties off for one year.

Continue reading House Democrats in 2015 suddenly worried about tax hike that they refused to stop in 2014.

Think that the Democrats will retake the House in ’16? Fine. Name the seats.

You’re going to see a lot of these types of stories in the next year or so: “House Democrats retake the House? It’s a long shot, but they’re getting ready to try.”  At least, if the 2012 and 2014 election cycles are any indication:

Continue reading Think that the Democrats will retake the House in ’16? Fine. Name the seats.

Dear Democratic operatives: You. Are. Dead. And. This. Is. HELL*.

And you will never, ever escape.

The last Democrat to challenge Nancy Pelosi for the party’s top House leadership spot—after a devastating loss of majority control in the tea-party wave of 2010—finds himself now completely out of Congress.

Former Rep. Heath Shuler of North Carolina can be seen on TV today as a side character in a Dish Network commercial featuring fellow former collegiate football greats. Gone from Congress, too, are many of Shuler’s former moderate “Blue Dog” colleagues in the House.

Now, four years later, Pelosi is not even waiting a few days to mull whether she should stay on as her party’s leader after yet another drubbing Tuesday at the polls. Rather, she sent out a “Dear colleague” letter on Wednesday to returning and newly elected House Democrats declaring that she is running again to be their caucus leader.

Continue reading Dear Democratic operatives: You. Are. Dead. And. This. Is. HELL*.

House Democratic campaign operatives feel abandoned by their party right now.

Apparently, the Democratic Establishment has made a DOOM call for the House:

House Democratic strategists are frustrated that key outside groups are putting their money into the fight for the Senate, leaving House campaigns starved for cash.

Spending on House races by organized labor as well as groups representing women and environmental organizations dropped by $18 million compared to the last cycle, the groups said.

Democrats are worried their lost seats in the House could be in the double digits, making it that much harder to take back the chamber in 2016, a presidential election year when the party hopes turnout will be better.

Continue reading House Democratic campaign operatives feel abandoned by their party right now.

Stu Rothenberg: House continuing to settle to the Right.

Interesting shift here from Stu Rothenberg: basically, he’s shifting six of his House ratings, and all in the Republicans’ favor.  Of the three Democrats involved: Julia Brownley of CA-26 and Pete Gallego of TX-23 are now kind of in trouble, maybe, while Bill Enyart in IL-12 is now definitely in trouble.  I’m not trying to be cute, here, but this kind of shift before Labor Day is fully compatible with an even greater shift after Labor Day.  September is when most normal people start caring about politics and pollsters start concentrating on screening for likely voters.

I still don’t think that we are going to see a wave in the House, if only because we’re in a strong place already.  But we could see more seats than expected moving our way, yeah.

Via @HungarianFalcon.

Moe Lane

House Democrats puzzled that Barack Obama does not engage their impotent services.

I’m impressed.  Glenn Reynolds managed to avoid the hysterical laughter at this:

House Democrats can’t figure out why Obama won’t talk to them

I mean, really: who the heck would talk to House Democrats, at this point? I’m not saying that they have even less influence on ultimate political outcomes than I do, but that’s because I don’t want to sound heedlessly hubristic. Hubris or not, under Nancy Pelosi House Democrats have gone from strength to abject weakness; and they will not return to relevance any time soon.

So… why don’t House Democrats hear from the President?  I don’t know: what’s in it for Barack Obama? Legitimate question.

Democrats putting on as brave a face as possible for 2014 House races.

It’s a bit early in the season for Turnout will save us!, but the Democrats are determined to give it a try.  Stu Rothenberg:

In the face of a challenging midterm environment, Democrats are relying on money and an expanding get-out-the-vote effort to avoid losing any more ground in the House. But what does that souped-up ground game look like?

So, what exactly is their strategy?

Democratic strategists believe a renewed focus on districts with high minority populations (including black and Hispanic voters, for example)…

Continue reading Democrats putting on as brave a face as possible for 2014 House races.

Cook Political Report House race update: 17 races +GOP, 4 +Dem.

This is not precisely a ‘Boom!’

…and I’d hold off calling DOOM on this, either. But it’s getting there. There are two interesting data points, here:

  1. Cook’s main ratings now show that there are five Republican seats that are seriously at risk of flipping, as opposed to fifteen Democratic ones.
  2. Looking at the race changes themselves: Cook took 6 Republicans and one Democrat effectively off of the board completely by rating their races as Solid.  Cook also put one race  (IA-02) into play by upgrading it from Solid Democratic to Likely Democratic.

That last point is important because it shows in stark relief the shrinking of the Democratic playing field. Right now Cook ranks the house as: 204 Solid Republican, 160 Solid Democratic. The Republicans currently control 15 seats that are ranked Likely Republican: even if you spot the Democratic party every other race (including the two Democratic-controlled seats that are ranked Likely Republican) the GOP would still have a majority in the House next year. Not that will happen: what is expected to happen is that the Democrats will probably lose a net six seats or so. Continue reading Cook Political Report House race update: 17 races +GOP, 4 +Dem.

Submitted With Comment: Nancy Pelosi and her 25 Seat Pickup.

Excerpting this stream-of-consciousness ramble of hers on how the Democrats could pick up 25 seats in a midterm would not do it justice.  Simply read it – and here’s the comment: I understand why I want Nancy Pelosi to run the Democratic House Caucus.  But why do Democrats?

Former CIA acting Director Michael Morell *wants* Benghazi panel.

I believe that he feels it will clear his name.

It took me a while to figure out what was so off about former acting CIA Director Michael Morell’s forthright statement that he supports the House investigating committee on Benghazi:

Speaking to a forum founded and run by his former boss at the CIA, Leon Panetta, Morell said he hopes that the House effort can lay to rest lingering questions Americans’ have about the attack which killed the U.S. Ambassador to Libya and three other Americans.

“A lot of people have looked at this, but the polls show that the American people still have questions. I want to make sure that all of those questions are cleared up. There are still some questions about the role of the agency. And there are still questions about my own personal role and I want to clear that up,” Morell said during a panel discussion at the Panetta Institute in Monterey, Calif. “It might be surprising for you to hear me say this, but I am a supporter of the creation of this committee because I want all the facts to come together in one place and be presented as one—by one entity as one thing, so the American people can see all of this.”

…and then it hit me: Michael Morell sounds like a guy who thinks that he can walk into House hearings on Benghazi and walk back out again with his scalp intact. I don’t know whether that’s because of a clean-enough conscience, self-confidence in his abilities to finesse a House committee, a certain warm awareness of knowing where all the bodies are buried, or a combination thereof: at any rate, it is an attitude that is in stark contrast to everybody else in this administration (current and former) that was involved in the Benghazi mess. And since Morell is acting how you would expect an innocent (or innocent-enough*) civil servant to act… why aren’t the rest of them? Because if the rest of the Obama administration responded as did Morell and the Pentagon, this issue would have been over a year ago…

Via @amandacarpenter.


Moe Lane (crosspost)

*Nobody is ever truly innocent in this business.  But the CIA’s involvement in this particular outrage is easily overshadowed by the actions of the State Department and the White House.