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This probably isn't the week Mitch McConnell wanted

Polls, challengers, and rebellions. Oh my!

1. The DFA/PCCC polling
We've been loving our polling numbers in Kentucky lately. So has the rest of the internet. The Huffington Post says it best though:


Looks great, doesn't it? It just has this really smooth look to it. "MCCONNELL DOWN 1." You can see the full story on our poll here.

2. Attorney General Alison Lundergan Grimes' polling

The leading lady in Kentucky released her own polling numbers, which we also love. From the Courier Journal:
Grimes released the results of a telephone poll that showed her with a 2 point lead over McConnell among Kentucky registered voters. The poll of 750 voters has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.9 percentage points.

We know there's still a lot of time between now and the 2014 election, but this is a pretty great start. 

3. McConnell's staff shakedown

Obviously these numbers aren't great to see for the 30-year Senate veteran. He has to be panicked if he's sending his chief of staff to oversee the reelection efforts. 

Mitch has a history of completely carpet-bombing opponents. Apparently it isn't working. (...especially if early polling shows him behind. Did we mention he's down in the polls?). The general perception, now, is that his reelection may be the last chance the GOP has at securing the Senate for years to come

4. Challenge from the Tea Party

Alison Lundergan Grimes isn't the only challenge McConnell has in the race. He's facing a primary challenge from the fringes of the Tea Party that's already picked up national esteem. Matt Bevin, a New Hampshire native has become the Tea Party's darling in the state, and is looking to unseat McConnell. Bevin really doesn't have a chance, but he is taking firm advantage over McConnell's record-low approval ratings. 

5. Nobody seems to like him

Sure, Rand Paul endorsed Mitch, but they're from the same state. It's pretty much expected. 

Meanwhile, Ted Cruz, who's just plain terrible, wouldn't even endorse McConnell, neither would Senator Mike Lee of Utah, or Senator Ron Johnson of Wisconsin. Really

edit: it gets better and better... 

6. Olfactory-Gate

The smell heard 'round the world picked up steam (ew?) last week when McConnell's campaign manager Jesse Benton had this wonderful quote:

“Between you and me, I’m sort of holding my nose for two years because what we’re doing here is going to be a big benefit to Rand in ’16, so that’s my long vision,” (source)
According to the Washington Post, this quote is from months ago, and he's a longtime Ron Paul/Rand Paul loyalist. The best part? It's a call recorded by a Ron Paul aid. 
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There's Even More Troubling News for Mitch McConnell in the New Polls Released Today. MORE HERE:

You probably saw this shocker of a headline today: 

Well there's more troubling numbers for Mitch McConnell, and and we've got the full report here. As you see, he's not only wildly unpopular, but his stance on Social Security is wildly out of touch with his constituents. Give a read and let us know what your analysis is in the comments. 

Kentucky Senate Race Questions

If the general election for U.S. Senate were held today, and the choices were Republican Mitch McConnell and Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes, for whom would you vote?

Mitch McConnell ........................................................... 44%

Alison Lundergan Grimes ............................................. 45%

Undecided .................................................................... 11%

(Asked of 1,210 Kentucky voters MOE 2.8%)

Do you approve or disapprove of the way Republican Mitch McConnell is handling his job as U.S. Senator?

Approve ................................................................ 40%

Disapprove ........................................................... 51%

No opinion .............................................................. 9%

(Asked of 1,210 Kentucky voters MOE 2.8%)

After 30 years in the U.S. Senate, do you believe Republican Mitch McConnell deserves re-election, or not?

Believe he does  ................................................................  38%

Believe he does not ...........................................................  54%

Not sure ..............................................................................  8%

(Asked of 625 Kentucky voters MOE 3.9%)

If Republican Mitch McConnell supported any cuts to Social Security or Medicare benefits, including raising the retirement age or reducing cost-of-living adjustments, would you be more or less likely to support his candidacy for U.S. Senate, or would it not make a difference?

More likely....................................................... 15%

Less likely ....................................................... 52%

Wouldn't make a difference............................. 33%

(Asked of 585 Kentucky voters - MOE 4.1%)



Social Security Questions

A proposal in Congress would increase Social Security benefits, resulting in a worker at age 75 receiving $452 more in benefits per year and a worker at age 85 receiving $807 more per year. Do you support or oppose this proposal?

Support ...........................................................  51%

Oppose ...........................................................  24%

Not sure ..........................................................  24%

(Asked of 585 Kentucky voters - MOE 4.1%)

Right now, wealthy Americans only pay Social Security taxes on the first $113,000 of their income. In order to strengthen Social Security, do you support or oppose scrapping this cap so that wealthy Americans pay the same rate on their income as ordinary Americans?

Support  ................................. 62%

Oppose  ................................. 20%

Not Sure ................................. 18%

(Asked of 625 Kentucky voters - MOE 3.9%)

In order to reduce the national debt, would you support or oppose cutting spending on Social Security benefits, which is the government retirement program for the elderly?

Support ........................................................... 11%

Oppose ........................................................... 79%

Not sure.......................................................... 9%

(Asked of 1,210 Kentucky voters MOE 2.8%)

Do you support or oppose the recent White House proposal to cut the cost-of-living adjustment for Social Security benefits, resulting in a worker at age 75 receiving $658 less in benefits per year?

Support ........................................................... 13%

Oppose ........................................................... 74%

Not sure .......................................................... 13%

(Asked of 625 Kentucky voters MOE 3.9%)

Poll conducted by Public Policy Polling (PPP) on behalf of Democracy For America (DFA) and the Progressive Change Campaign Committee (PCCC) on July 19-21, 2013. PPP was#1 most accurate pollster of 2012.

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Categories: Social Security Elections


VIDEO: Senators Harkin and Begich have a lot to say on Social Security

Sen. Begich and Sen. Harkin sat down to discuss their path to preserve Social Security for generations to come. Check it out...

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

What's in the video:

0:35 - you’ll want to get married and raise your kids, but now your parents will have to move in with you

1:00 - McConnell thinks he knows better than Ds about young people

1:40 - Begich knows that people want to be paid back for the money they’ve paid in

1:52 - Harkin knows that Wall Street has been trying to grab the money

2:21 - Begich talks about the cost of living adjustment, and keeping the chained-CPI out of the picture on our elders

3:02 - Harkin’s take on laborers vs. office workers needing retirement. People work for 40 years in jobs that aren’t cushy

3:58 - Challenge to young people to find an alternative to social security. It’s going to be much, much pricier.

4:13 - From Begich, we can renew faith in government, and make a promise to future generations that isn’t hard to fix

What it means:

  • Benefits expand $800/year
  • The cap on taxing income is lifted, making the rich pay into the program just like millions of working Americans
  • Cost of living adjustments actually reflect the changing needs of seniors
  • Social Security remains safe for 75 years, and is no longer a bargaining chip for any party

Stand up for our seniors. Join the 113,000 others who have sent a message and sign the petition supporting progressive Social Security reform!

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Categories: Social Security


Democracy for America: Nominate a Fed Chair Who Will Stand Up for The Middle Class

Jim Dean, Chair of Democracy for America, released this statement following the announcement the White House would delay an appointment of a new Fed Chairman until this Fall:

"Democracy for America is happy to hear that the White House has decided to postpone the appointment for Chair of the Federal Reserve until this fall.  Given her considerable contributions both inside and outside the Fed and her recognition of the realities that all Americans face in today's economy, Janet Yellen is clearly the right person for this critical post and we urge President Obama to appoint her when the time comes.

Ultimately, the President's credibility and legacy as a true champion of the middle class is on the line in this choice and we intend to work to ensure he doesn't nominate someone, like Larry Summers, whose Wall Street ties makes him inappropriate choice for Fed Chairman." -- Jim Dean, Chair, Democracy for America

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Categories: Press Releases


Why Rep. Trent Franks is a terrible choice to oversee changes to the Voting Rights Act

Remember Trent Franks? He seems familiar. Why did he last show up on the radar?

During a House Judiciary hearing on his abortion bill Wednesday, Rep. Trent Franks (R-Ariz.) said that he opposes an exemption for rape victims because "the incidence of rape resulting in pregnancy are very low." (HuffPo)

Oh, that's right. He hates women. 

FranksBut that was back in January. Since then he's had some time to think of another way to show just how out of touch he and the rest of the GOP have become on just about... everything. 

He's the point man in the House for rebuilding section 4 of the Voting Rights Act. If anything, putting Trent in charge of the Voting Rights Act has answered the question that everyone's been asking since preclearance was struck down. The House, indeed, will not move in favor of the VRA.

Most of the talk coming from him and others have been that Justice Roberts said what everyone is thinking, that we don't really need section 4, that preclearance is a relic of the past, and that we need to stop thinking like it's 1965. Because there are no more racial motives in electoral politics. 

The GOP knows that Democrats will be hit hard if voter ID laws go through. Republicans scream and shout for these laws to fight fraud. The reality is that fraud takes place very rarely, and the same week preclearance was struck down, several states it once applied to introduced those exact ID laws. The timing isn't remotely fishy. At all.

The tragedy of giving Franks the charge of overseeing a change in the preclearance formula is that he doesn't care. He calls marriage equality a "treat to the nation's survival." We know his stance on reproductive rights. Now he gets to add the notch of suppressing democracy to his belt.

Why do we still need the Voting Rights Act? There's the 1,500 discriminatory laws it's blocked since it was passed, the 80 bills introduced in 2013 alone that are trying to suppress votes. 

Congressional action on the issue is in its infancy. There's still time to change the face of our democracy's future. 

Add your name to the campaign telling congress to build a new, responsible Voting Rights Act

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Categories: Voting Rights


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