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To regain control of the House of Representatives, Republicans only need five seats in the 2022 midterm election. It’s the job of Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney to make sure that doesn’t happen. not.
The New York Democrat and chairman of the Congressional Democratic campaign committee told NPR the party hopes an ambitious multibillion-dollar economic program announced by the Biden administration will resonate with voters when it comes time to settle. go to the polls next fall.
Betting on major domestic policy programs
“We bet on substance,” Maloney says, before adding a colorful adage: “What’s the old saying – any fool can knock over a barn, it takes a carpenter to build one. more difficult to build it than to kick it. And so we are the party that will build the future. “
This future includes proposals to fight against climate change; revise immigration laws; investing heavily in traditional infrastructure such as roads, bridges and expanded broadband access, as well as investments in affordable child care, early childhood education; and provide an expanded child tax credit with payments capping at $ 3,600 per year per child.
Tens of millions of American families are already starting to receive these direct cash payments.
“It’s a huge thing for a family trying to afford the kids’ basketball shoes or keep food in the fridge until Saturday when there is none left on Thursday,” said Maloney.
The monthly credit is expected to last for a year, but some Democrats have already considered making it permanent.
The influx of public aid is expected to cut poverty by almost half in 2021, according to a new analysis by the Urban Institute published for the first time in The New York Times.
“No Democratic majority, no Democratic president has made so much progress in a long time,” said Maloney.
But there are obstacles to the full implementation of the Democrats’ agenda. Their low majorities in both houses of Congress mean that nearly all Democrats must join in on every agenda item in order to push through top legislative priorities. And without adjusting or removing legislative obstruction in the Senate, Democrats need 10 Republicans to join them on various pieces of legislation – an almost impossible task.
Repetition possible mid-term 2010 or 2014?
Big bets on politics don’t necessarily pay off at the ballot box, either, a lesson Democrats learned a decade ago when they passed the Affordable Care Act. President Barack Obama’s domestic political achievements also helped decimate the Democratic majorities in Congress in the 2010 and 2014 midterm elections.
That’s just one of the reasons Republicans are happy with their chances in 2022, as well as structural benefits like the redistribution process, where home districts are redesigned every decade to reflect population changes. Republicans control the process in more states and are in a better position to win seats.
“This deck is already stacked, because they gerrymandered these quarters,” says Maloney. “And now they’re trying to do even more and add to that with these Jim Crow voter suppression laws across the country.”
He is upholding efforts by Republican-led state legislatures to pass more voting restrictions, showing the party has a losing policy for the midterm elections.
“If they’re trying to rely on the rigging of this game, because they don’t have a plan for the future and they can’t talk to voters about their ideas and their vision, well , I think that makes me proud to be a Democrat. “
Maloney also postulates that GOP participation will be depressed in an election that does not feature former President Donald Trump himself.
“There is no evidence that this toxic message from Trump will motivate voters without Trump on the ballot,” he said. “If the other party makes a big mistake, I think it might be, which doubles that toxic message of division, anger and racism from Trump and yet there is no evidence that they can withdraw voters with the message without the messenger. “
He cites Texas Republican Jake Ellzey as a recent example. Ellzey was sworn in in the House on Friday, days after winning a special election that saw him defeat a candidate backed by Trump.
Maloney points out: “It seems Trump’s endorsement isn’t what it used to be.”
Here are some more highlights from her conversation with NPR’s Susan Davis:
On polarization in Congress:
“I think when you watch your colleagues spread an inflammatory lie that leads to a violent attack on the Capitol, it leaves a lot of injuries – hundreds of cops in a violent, vicious, hand-to-hand hand-to-hand fight with these lunatics. who were coming to the Capitol … I don’t think that’s the kind of thing where you say, “Well, reasonable people can disagree and let’s go have a beer, all due respect.” think it’s a time when you find a moral voice, and you say, it’s wrong. And if you can’t see it’s wrong, then you need to go around the block and think about your values. And it’s not my job to meet you in the middle, because this one is black and white. “
On the Republican Party:
“It’s very difficult to be a responsible Republican right now in Washington. If you don’t believe me, ask Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger. Liz Cheney lost her leadership position because she told the truth about which happened on January 6. So unfortunately the Republican Party was captured by reckless and extreme elements who believe in dangerous conspiracy theories, which spread an inflammatory lie about the elections that resulted in the attack on the Capitol and the death of a group of police officers, and who are now hampering our efforts to end the pandemic because they will not participate in the program with the masking and the vaccine. And I don’t think that will be a good policy in districts that are competitive to them. “
On his own re-election in 2022:
“I go to my constituents every two years and I ask them to renew my contract and I take nothing for granted. I have a file that I am proud of… I have not stopped working for the valley of the Hudson for a year. Minute. But let me tell you, if the Republicans are going to waste a lot of money trying to beat me, that’ll make it easy for me to beat a bunch of their guys who are in districts I’m going to win. “So bring it on, that’s what I’m saying. If they want to waste their money trying to beat Sean Maloney, that’s great because they’re going to wake up in the minority.”