IJR https://ijr.com Experience The News Fri, 24 May 2019 17:01:10 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.2.1 ACLU, Planned Parenthood Sue Over Alabama Abortion Ban https://ijr.com/aclu-planned-parenthood-sue-over-alabama-ban/ https://ijr.com/aclu-planned-parenthood-sue-over-alabama-ban/#respond Fri, 24 May 2019 17:01:10 +0000 https://ijr.com/?p=1191288 "This dangerous, immoral, and unconstitutional ban threatens people's lives and well-being and we are suing to protect our patients' rights," Leana Wen, president of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, said in a statement. More]]>

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and Planned Parenthood filed a lawsuit on Friday challenging a law enacted by Alabama last week that bans nearly all abortions and makes performing the procedure a felony punishable by up to 99 years in prison.

The lawsuit is one of several the groups have filed or are preparing to file against states that recently passed strict anti-abortion measures in an effort to prompt the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade, the 1973 landmark case that guarantees a woman’s constitutional right to abortion.

“This dangerous, immoral, and unconstitutional ban threatens people’s lives and well-being and we are suing to protect our patients’ rights,” Leana Wen, president of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, said in a statement.

The ACLU’s Alabama chapter and Planned Parenthood of America filed their complaint in federal court in Alabama on behalf of the Southern state’s three abortion clinics and Planned Parenthood Southeast.

Anti-abortion advocates expected legal challenges to Alabama’s new law, which will be the most restrictive in the nation when it takes effect in November, and say they welcome the chance to have a court test their conviction that a fetus’ right to life is paramount.

Also on Friday, Missouri Governor Mike Parson signed a bill into law that bans abortion beginning in the eighth week of pregnancy.

Earlier this year, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi and Ohio outlawed abortion after a doctor can detect an embryonic heartbeat, which can occur at six weeks, often before a woman knows she is pregnant.

The wave of anti-abortion legislation reflects a boost of confidence among anti-abortion advocates after Republican President Donald Trump nominated two conservative judges, Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh, to the U.S. Supreme Court, tilting the court’s political balance to the right.

Alabama state Senator Clyde Chambliss, a Republican, supports his state’s new law and said the whole point of the ban was “so that we can go directly to the Supreme Court to challenge Roe versus Wade.”

The ACLU and Planned Parenthood obtained an injunction from a judge in Kentucky in March, blocking that state’s abortion ban. The organizations have filed lawsuits in Ohio and are preparing to do so in Georgia, they said in a statement on Friday.

(Reporting by Gabriella Borter in New York; Editing by Daniel Wallis and Jonathan Oatis)

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Graham Tells ‘Crazy’ Dems They’ll Get Trump Reelected With Impeachment: Fighting Back Isn’t a ‘Cover-Up’ https://ijr.com/graham-cover-up-accusations/ https://ijr.com/graham-cover-up-accusations/#respond Fri, 24 May 2019 16:22:38 +0000 https://ijr.com/?p=1191259 "Now if he's fighting back against a bunch of crazy people trying to destroy his life, that is not covering anything up." More]]>

During an interview with “Fox & Friends” on Friday, Senator Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) slammed suggestions that President Donald Trump is trying to cover up criminal behavior.

As IJR Blue previously reported, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi accused the president of a “cover-up” ahead of a meeting on infrastructure. Graham slammed the suggestion, claiming that Pelosi is being pressured by her party to push the impeachment narrative.

“What’s unavoidable is that she’s gonna lose her job if she doesn’t embrace impeachment because the people she’s in charge of have lost their mind when it comes to Trump,” said Graham.

He also pointed out how extensive the Mueller report was and examples of Trump’s staff testifying for hours.

“A cover-up, remember Bob Mueller? Remember that guy?” said Graham. “The guy that everybody trusted, he’ll be fair to the country, he’ll be fair to the president. You’ve got 400 and something pages … Trump gave 1.4 million documents to the special counsel. His attorney White House counsel testified for 30 hours, his chief of staff went to testify in front of Mueller.”


He supported the president, claiming that Trump defending himself was not wrong and Democrats should stop using the Mueller report to support impeachment if they don’t want Trump to be reelected.

“What did Donald Trump cover up regarding Mueller? Nothing,” Graham said. “Now, if he’s fighting back against a bunch of crazy people trying to destroy his life, that is not covering anything up. The House Judiciary Committee is trying to retry the Mueller case. Mueller, to me, was the final word.”

As IJR Red reported, many Democrats are pushing for impeachment, while Pelosi is still attempting to stop them from moving forward. Graham claimed that this is the real cover-up, especially with it happening during the start of the 2020 election cycle.

“Here’s what I would see as being covered up — the division in the Democratic party,” said Graham.

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Harvey Weinstein and Accusers Reach Tentative Compensation Deal: WSJ https://ijr.com/weinstein-and-accusers-reach-tentative-compensation-deal/ https://ijr.com/weinstein-and-accusers-reach-tentative-compensation-deal/#respond Fri, 24 May 2019 15:35:52 +0000 https://ijr.com/?p=1191271 The deal, if finalized, would resolve a civil rights lawsuit filed by the New York attorney general's office last year that accuses Weinstein Co's executives and board of failing to protect employees from a hostile work environment and Weinstein's sexual misconduct, the Journal reported. More]]>

Harvey Weinstein, women who accused him of sexual misconduct, his former film studio’s board members and the New York attorney general’s office have reached a tentative $44 million deal to resolve lawsuits and compensate alleged victims of the Hollywood producer, the Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday, citing people it said were familiar with the matter.

The deal, if finalized, would resolve a civil rights lawsuit filed by the New York attorney general’s office last year that accuses Weinstein Co’s executives and board of failing to protect employees from a hostile work environment and Weinstein’s sexual misconduct, the Journal reported.

The Journal said the proposed agreement would not affect a criminal case pending against Weinstein in Manhattan, in which he has been charged with rape and other sex crimes. A trial in that case has been scheduled for September.

A representative for Harvey Weinstein and Weinstein Co did not immediately respond to request for comment. Weinstein has previously denied having non-consensual sex with anyone.

Weinstein, who won plaudits and awards through his company and another studio, Miramax, for movies including “Shakespeare in Love,” “Pulp Fiction” and “The King’s Speech, fell from grace after more than 70 women, mostly young actresses and others in the movie business, accused him of sexual misconduct dating back decades.

As the accusations against Weinstein mounted, his company Weinstein Co fired him and filed for bankruptcy, and he was expelled from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

His case helped launch the #MeToo movement, which has led to dozens of powerful men in entertainment, politics and other fields being accused of sexual misconduct.

(Reporting by Rama Venkat in Bengaluru; Editing by Bill Rigby)

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Former Acting ICE Director Blasts Dem Rep’s ‘Disgusting’ Claim That Migrant Child Deaths Were ‘Intentional’ https://ijr.com/former-acting-ice-director-dem-reps-border-deaths-intentional/ https://ijr.com/former-acting-ice-director-dem-reps-border-deaths-intentional/#respond Fri, 24 May 2019 15:32:57 +0000 https://ijr.com/?p=1191257 "To dishonor them in this way is insulting." More]]>

The former acting director of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) isn’t letting a Democratic lawmaker off easy after she accused the border officials of intentionally causing deaths of immigrant children at the southern border.

Rep. Lauren Underwood (D-Ill.) said at Wednesday’s hearing with acting Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan that the “evidence” makes it “really clear that this is intentional, it’s a policy choice being made on purpose by this administration and it’s cruel and inhumane.”

Her remarks come after a 16-year-old Guatemalan migrant died at the U.S.-Mexico border on Monday, becoming the fifth death of a Guatemalan migrant child at the border.

The acting DHS secretary said the current situation at the border is causing resources to be depleted — causing the congresswoman to question it as more than a matter of resources.

McAleenan defended border officials and called Underwood’s comment “appalling”:

“Our men and women fight hard to protect people in our custody every single day. We’ve asked for [these] resources three weeks ago … and we’ve asked for changes in authorities for the last three years that would have prevented this from happening.”

Ranking member of the House Homeland Security Committee Mike Rogers (R-Ala.) called for Underwood’s comment to be “taken down,” which was approved and she could face punishment, as USA Today reported.

Watch the video below:

Former acting ICE director Tom Homan told “Fox & Friends” on Friday that Underwood’s accusation is “disgusting.”

Homan noted that over 4,000 migrants found medically distressed were rescued by border officials last year, “so to dishonor them in this way is insulting.”

Border officials “leave the safety and security of their home to go out and defend this nation,” as Homan says. He continued:

“[…] Moral is at an all-time low right now because they didn’t join this agency to change diapers, make formula, … but these men and women are used to arresting people because they violated [the] law and making [them] see a judge. These men and women are now processing these family groups just to release them an hour later. This isn’t the job they signed up for. And for this congressman to attack these men and woman is just disgusting.”

See his reaction below:

While officials at the border are overwhelmed due to a massive increase of immigrants trying to cross the border, as IJR Red reported, McAleenan said during this week’s hearing that it’s only getting worse with “100 percent” of illegal immigrant families being released into communities throughout the U.S.

“Every day that Congress does not act puts more lives at risk and increases the burden on the system,” McAleenan said.

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AOC Gets Taught a Lesson on Weather vs Climate After Blaming ‘Casual Tornadoes’ on ‘Climate Crisis’ https://ijr.com/aoc-weather-vs-climate-blaming-casual-tornadoes-climate-crisis/ https://ijr.com/aoc-weather-vs-climate-blaming-casual-tornadoes-climate-crisis/#respond Fri, 24 May 2019 14:25:02 +0000 https://ijr.com/?p=1191235 The congresswoman "does not know the difference between weather and climate." More]]>

Self-described democratic socialist Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) is sharing a “crazy” experience about a tornado warning in the nation’s capital and how it relates to the “climate crisis” — before a metrologist shot down her claim.

As the rain began to pour on Thursday, bringing about a tornado warning, the freshman congresswoman took to Instagram to share her thunderstorm experience and explain how there are “people stuck outside. We need to get them out.”

“This is crazy,” she declared.

While then sharing an article about the possible connection between climate change and tornadoes, she said:

“Tornadoes are challenging to link to climate change links due to their nature (geographically, limited, acute patterns, how they form, etc.). But we DO know that tornadoes HAVE been changing. They are no longer being limited to the Great Plains, and are shifting to other regions of the country.

“The climate crisis is real y’all,” Ocasio-Cortez said, adding that “we’re at casual tornadoes in growing regions of the country.”

Watch the video below:

However, Ocasio-Cortez was slapped for her comparison of tornadoes and climate change, as meteorologist Ryan Maue questioned her meaning of “‘casual tornadoes’ and how this line of severe thunderstorms is proof of any ‘climate crisis.'”

He claimed the congresswoman “does not know the difference between weather and climate.”

The meteorologist then taught her a lesson on weather vs. climate change:

“Let’s try an easy analogy:

Weather is what outfit you wear heading out the door.

Climate is your closet wardrobe.”

Since taking on her role in Congress, Ocasio-Cortez has pushed her Green New Deal environment proposal to address climate change — which has a hefty price tag of up to $93 trillion over ten years, as IJR Red previously dove into.

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Trump Challenger Weld Hopes to Create ‘Unrest’ as Republican Voters Overwhelmingly Support POTUS https://ijr.com/trump-weld-create-unrest-voters/ https://ijr.com/trump-weld-create-unrest-voters/#respond Fri, 24 May 2019 14:10:21 +0000 https://ijr.com/?p=1191231 “A primary challenger can ... help to create that unrest." More]]>

President Donald Trump’s only Republican challenger has admitted he has an uphill battle in convincing Republican voters to support his presidential bid.

Former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld spoke about running against Trump during an interview with C-SPAN’s “Newsmakers,” saying that he understands many voters approve of Trump and there is little interest for a serious Republican challenger.

However, the Republican claimed that his goal is to cut into the support of Trump, pointing to a past candidate who had done something similar.

“A primary challenger can, as Pat Buchanan did, help to create that unrest,” Weld said.

As IJR Red previously reported, Trump recently hit his highest approval rating ever. According to a Gallup poll, he had 46% approval overall for the latter half of April, which is his highest to date. The president maintained a 91% approval with Republicans.

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Yet Weld continues to be optimistic, claiming that there is no way to tell how the ratings will look next year, saying, “A year is a long time. Eighteen months is forever in national politics, and a lot is going on.”

He also went after the president over refusing to work with Democratic lawmakers on infrastructure due to ongoing investigations.

“The president is just abdicating his responsibility as president. I think that is so outrageous that I think it’s going to sink in overtime in the consciousness of the American people that we can’t have this guy doing this job,” said Weld.

Despite Weld’s criticism, the Republican party does not seem ready to give up their support of the president. As IJR Red reported, the Republican National Committee (RNC) has already stated they would support Trump.

“The RNC and the Republican Party are firmly behind the president,” reads the organization’s statement. “Any effort to challenge the president’s nomination is bound to go absolutely nowhere.”

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Beto O’Rourke Continues Fizzling Out in 2020 Race as His CNN Town Hall Tanks Network’s Average Ratings https://ijr.com/beto-orourke-cnn-town-hall/ https://ijr.com/beto-orourke-cnn-town-hall/#comments Fri, 24 May 2019 12:27:28 +0000 https://ijr.com/?p=1191221 Beto O'Rourke's CNN town hall brought average viewership for the network down by 30%, making it one of the lowest-viewed town halls of the election cycle. More]]>

Democratic presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke’s Tuesday town hall on CNN had terrible viewership ratings, showing a potential lack of interest from voters.

According to a report by Nielsen, the viewership total was 714,000 viewers, while other networks, like NBC and Fox News, passed two million. The average viewership for the network was also down by 30%.

This data is even more shocking when compared with other candidates’ town halls, like John Hickenlooper, who brought in 745,000 viewers during his March event.

O’Rourke’s answers during the town hall were in line with his more progressive views, even calling for the impeachment of President Donald Trump.

“If we do nothing because we are afraid of the polls or the politics, or the repercussions in the next election, we will set a precedent that, in fact, some people, because of the position of power and public trust that they hold, are above the law.”

Watch O’Rourke’s answers to some town hall questions below:

He also repeated his view on abortion, claiming that he would expand abortion rights and make it a federal issue instead of being left up to the states.

“As president, I will make sure that every nominee to every federal bench, including the Supreme Court, understands and believes Roe v. Wade is the settled law of the land,” O’Rourke said.

As IJR Red reported, many Democratic candidates are not appearing on Fox News due to their disagreements with the commentators’ viewpoints. However, candidates Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Pete Buttigieg have gone on the network in a bid to sway some of the network’s audience.

While O’Rourke has not announced any plans to appear on the network, recent polling suggests that he is trailing behind many candidates in the crowded 2020 field. Due to Tuesday’s ratings, O’Rourke may reconsider having a town hall hosted by the network.

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Democrats Grapple With ‘Electability’ Question as White Men Lead Diverse Field https://ijr.com/democrats-grapple-with-electability-questions/ https://ijr.com/democrats-grapple-with-electability-questions/#comments Fri, 24 May 2019 12:12:10 +0000 https://ijr.com/?p=1191223 The early dominance of former Vice President Joe Biden, 76, and U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders, 77, is raising uncomfortable questions about whether Democratic voters think a woman or minority candidate has what it takes to defeat Trump, the likely Republican nominee. More]]>

Democrats seeking to unseat Republican U.S. President Donald Trump in 2020 will choose from the largest and most diverse set of candidates in history – yet, so far, two older white men are leading the pack.

The early dominance of former Vice President Joe Biden, 76, and U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders, 77, is raising uncomfortable questions about whether Democratic voters think a woman or minority candidate has what it takes to defeat Trump, the likely Republican nominee.

Women candidates played a key role in Democrats regaining control of the U.S. House of Representatives last year. But they still face greater hurdles than men in seeking executive offices, and there is division in the party about what kind of candidate is best suited to win in November 2020.

“How do you beat Big Daddy Trump? One of the ideas is that you beat him with Big Daddy Joe,” Christine Pelosi, daughter of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and chairwoman of the California Democratic Party’s women’s caucus, said in reference to Biden.

Pelosi, who has not endorsed a candidate, did not say if she agrees with that assessment. She thinks a woman ultimately will end up on the Democratic ticket.

Ten of the 24 Democrats seeking the nomination are minorities or women.

They are all polling behind Biden and Sanders, who are getting the most support among Democrats in all demographic groups, including minorities, Reuters/Ipsos opinion surveys show.

Democratic strategist Rose Kapolczynski, who ran campaigns for former U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer, said that is not just because they are white men. “It’s because they’re well known and liked among Democratic voters,” she said.

She also said public debates this summer will give other candidates a chance to better introduce themselves to a national audience.

Biden has raced out to a strong early lead, helped by his name recognition and a sense among many voters that he may have the best chance of beating Trump in battleground states.

Stefanie Brown James, a strategist and cofounder of the Collective PAC, which backs and trains progressive African American candidates, said Biden is respected by African-Americans for his role in the administration of Barack Obama, the nation’s first black president.

“For the black community especially, this is a man who was an elder statesman who made the decision to be the number two to the first black man running for the office,” she said. “Speaking of privilege and ego, not a lot of people would do that.”

In Memphis, a predominantly Democratic and majority black city, Senator Elizabeth Warren, who is white, and Senator Kamala Harris, who is of African-American and Indian descent, have devoted followings among Democrats of color, said Corey Strong, a former local party chairman. Senator Cory Booker, an African-American man, is also popular, he said.

But most people he has talked to still cite Sanders or Biden as their eventual pick, he said, in part out of concern that the other contenders will not be able to defeat Trump.

“A lot of people (are) saying, ‘I like this person’ but also saying ‘I want a guy that can win as well,'” Strong said.


Women and minority candidates fighting for attention in a crowded field also must overcome ingrained prejudices that affect voter choices.

Women are less likely than men to be chosen for executive offices such as president, according to research by the Barbara Lee Family Foundation, which studies elections.

While people will vote for a man they do not like, they generally will not vote for women they dislike, the research shows. And women must show they are strong enough to keep the country safe.

“If she’s going to be the decision-maker, voters have to be that much more convinced that she’s qualified,” said foundation spokeswoman Amanda Hunter. “There are even more barriers when they run for executive office if they happen to be women of color.”

The result is an unfair playing field, tilted against women and minority candidates as they vie for media coverage, donations and votes, said Toni Van Pelt, president of the National Organization for Women.

“We are concerned about the never-ending narrative about ‘electability’ that seems to indicate that a candidate must be white and male to win,” Van Pelt said. “This notion has been knocked down repeatedly with the election of Barack Obama and, despite Russian interference and pervasive sexism, Hillary Clinton winning the popular vote in 2016.”

Harris has taken on the electability question on the campaign trail. At a speech in Detroit, she said the debate is often too simplistic by suggesting “certain voters will only vote for certain candidates” and overlooks the voices of black and female voters in places such as the Midwest.

Many party activists and voters say the Democratic nominee should be anyone who has the charisma, fortitude and support to defeat Trump – regardless of gender or race.

Voter Aleia White, 32, agrees. She would prefer, however, that the eventual nominees for president and vice president reflect America’s diversity.

“It’s important that the ticket represent our country,” White said at a recent campaign event for Warren in Ohio. “We’re not all white men.”

(Reporting by Sharon Bernstein; Additional reporting by Amanda Becker in Cincinnati; Editing by Colleen Jenkins and Cynthia Osterman)

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Trump Campaign Views Healthcare as a 2020 Campaign Weapon https://ijr.com/trump-views-healthcare-as-2020-campaign-weapon/ https://ijr.com/trump-views-healthcare-as-2020-campaign-weapon/#comments Fri, 24 May 2019 10:47:55 +0000 https://ijr.com/?p=1191218 That would have appeared highly unlikely just months ago, when Democrats seized upon the issue of coverage for pre-existing medical conditions to capture control of the U.S. House of Representatives. More]]>

U.S. President Donald Trump’s campaign believes he can turn Republicans’ biggest liability from last year’s congressional elections – the debate about the future of healthcare in America – into a winning issue for his reelection.

That would have appeared highly unlikely just months ago, when Democrats seized upon the issue of coverage for pre-existing medical conditions to capture control of the U.S. House of Representatives.

Since then, the 2020 Democratic presidential field has been locked in a debate about how far to go to transform the U.S. healthcare system. Some candidates have suggested abolishing private insurance in favor of a single government-run plan, sometimes referred to as “Medicare for All,” while others favor more modest reforms.

Trump’s campaign is betting that whoever emerges with the Democratic nomination next year will have been forced to embrace a sweeping healthcare reform proposal that may spook moderate voters.

“The president has taken the issue back,” Tim Murtaugh, Trump’s campaign communications director, told Reuters in an interview. “(Democrats are) taking the Blue Cross (private insurance) card out of your wallet and making it worthless.”

About half of the dozen top-tier of Democratic hopefuls vying for the nomination have endorsed some form of Medicare for All, according to a Reuters analysis of campaign positions.

Democrats could end up ceding political ground if they nominate a candidate who advocates for universal healthcare, said Drew Altman, president of the Kaiser Family Foundation, a non-partisan healthcare advocacy group.

“The polls show very clearly that the Democrats have a very substantial advantage on health and all the health issues,” Altman said. “If the Democrat is a candidate who is a big advocate for Medicare for All, it will play a little differently.”

Some voters will be leery of losing their private insurance, but Democrats are still likely to win over those concerned about pre-existing conditions and abortion access, Altman said.


Trump has yet to set forth his long-promised healthcare reform plan.

But he is speaking about healthcare more frequently. At a rally in Pennsylvania on Monday, Trump repeated his promise to keep protections for people with pre-existing conditions.

He also is likely to tout what the White House and his campaign say are meaningful changes the administration has made to help small businesses and to try to reduce the price of prescription drugs for U.S. consumers. His administration recently mandated pharmaceutical companies include list prices of drugs in television ads in a bid to get them to lower prices.

His administration argued in a report released in February that it has made healthcare markets more efficient by de-regulating some aspects of the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare.

Those included doing away with the law’s mandate to purchase health insurance and expanding coverage options through association plans, which allow small businesses to band together to purchase insurance.

“The president can point to real results on healthcare,” Murtaugh said.

But Trump also has provided Democrats with fodder they are likely to use to challenge his healthcare claims, and they are sure to argue that Trump will cost millions of Americans their coverage.

The president already backed a proposal in Congress that would have reduced protections for pre-existing conditions – despite his continued insistence that he does not want to eliminate those rules. And he has proposed reductions to Medicaid and Medicare funding.

His campaign will be forced to navigate those decisions as well as dispel voters’ worry that Trump wants to gut the existing Obamacare framework with no effective replacement.

Trump said in a local media interview in Pennsylvania this week he would roll out a new healthcare plan soon. The White House did not respond to a request for comment on the timing.

Providing such a plan will be critical to winning over voters next year, said Michael Steel, a former top aide to former Republican House Speaker John Boehner.

Steel said that while he thinks Democrats are “overreaching” on the issue, “we’ll need our own conservative cost-containment plan to truly go on offense. And we don’t have that yet.”


Chris Kofinis, a Democratic strategist and former chief of staff to Senator Joe Manchin, a moderate from West Virginia, said Trump’s campaign underestimates the depth of voter anxiety over healthcare costs and coverage.

Branding Democratic proposals as “socialist” will not be persuasive, he said.

“They’re wrong if they think they can win this as an ideological debate,” Kofinis said, adding that his own work with voter groups has shown some appetite for a large-scale overhaul of the U.S. healthcare system.

Kofinis warned that Democrats risk losing their edge on the issue, however, if they fail to heed the lesson of the 2018 midterm elections and instead become preoccupied with investigations of Trump.

Last year, Democrats took 40 seats to regain the House, a victory largely fueled by voter concerns over losing coverage if Republicans dismantled Obamacare.

Murtaugh believes that Democrats did not act quickly enough to turn their electoral victories into action.

“The big conversation was about healthcare and what are they talking about? Impeachment,” Murtaugh said. “They won the election, but they haven’t done a damn thing with it.”

(Reporting by Ginger Gibson and James Oliphant; Editing by Colleen Jenkins and Bill Berkrot)

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Tearful Theresa May Resigns, Paving Way for Brexit Confrontation With EU https://ijr.com/tearful-theresa-may-resigns-paving-way-for-confrontation/ https://ijr.com/tearful-theresa-may-resigns-paving-way-for-confrontation/#comments Fri, 24 May 2019 10:40:08 +0000 https://ijr.com/?p=1191215 May's departure will deepen the Brexit crisis as a new leader is likely to want a more decisive split, raising the chances of a confrontation with the European Union and a potentially unpredictable snap parliamentary election. More]]>

Fighting back tears, British Prime Minister Theresa May said on Friday she would quit, triggering a contest that will bring a new leader to power who is likely to push for a more decisive Brexit divorce deal.

May’s departure will deepen the Brexit crisis as a new leader is likely to want a more decisive split, raising the chances of a confrontation with the European Union and a potentially unpredictable snap parliamentary election.

May set out a timetable for her departure – she will resign as Conservative Party leader on June 7 with a leadership contest beginning the following week.

Her voice cracking with emotion, May, who endured crises and humiliation in her failed effort to find a compromise Brexit deal that parliament could ratify, said she bore no ill will.

“I will shortly leave the job that has been the honor of my life to hold,” May said. “The second female prime minister, but certainly not the last.”

“I do so with no ill will but with enormous and enduring gratitude to have had the opportunity to serve the country I love,” May said, with her husband, Philip, looking on.

May, once a reluctant supporter of EU membership, who won the top job in the turmoil that followed the 2016 Brexit vote, steps down with her central pledges – to lead the United Kingdom out of the bloc and heal its divisions – unfulfilled.

“It is, and will always remain, a matter of deep regret to me that I have not been able to deliver Brexit,” May said, adding that her successor would have to find a consensus to honor the 2016 referendum result.


May bequeaths a deeply divided country and a political elite that is deadlocked over how, when or whether to leave the EU.

The leading contenders to succeed May all want a tougher divorce deal, although the EU has said it will not renegotiate the Withdrawal Treaty it sealed in November.

Sterling reversed initial gains it made on May’s resignation.

Boris Johnson, the face of the official Brexit campaign in 2016, is the favorite to succeed May. Betting markets put a 40% implied probability on Johnson winning the top job.

Others tipped by betting markets are Dominic Raab, a Brexit supporter and former Brexit secretary, with a 14% implied probability on his chances.

Environment Secretary Michael Gove, former House of Commons leader Andrea Leadsom and Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt each have a 7% probability, according to betting markets.

Defense Secretary Penny Mordaunt and International Development Secretary Rory Stewart each have a 4% chance of the top job while Home Secretary (interior minister) Sajid Javid has a 3% chance.

(Writing by Guy Faulconbridge; Additional reporting by Kate Holton; Editing by Janet Lawrence)

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