December 9, 2022

Republicans plan to torpedo key Biden policies as polls predict midterm victory | Republicans

A stance on the debt ceiling. Aid to Ukraine in the severance package. Impeachment proceedings against Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorgas — or perhaps President Joe Biden.

with Polls indicate that They have a good shot at winning a majority in the House of Representatives in the Nov. 8 midterm elections, as top Republican lawmakers have given a preview of what they might do with their resurgent power in recent weeks and made it clear they have set their sights on key issues. Policies of the Biden administration at home and abroad.

Kevin McCarthy, the top Republican in the chamber, was a signal this week Interview with Punchbowl News If Congress is going to approve an increase in the amount the federal government can borrow — which is expected to be needed sometime next year — Republicans will want a deal to cut spending in return.

“You can’t continue on a path of spending and adding debt,” said McCarthy, who will be elevated to speaker of the House in the Republican-led chamber. “If people want to create a debt ceiling [for a longer period of time]As with everything, there comes a point when, OK, we’ll give you more money, but you have to change your current behavior.

He was asked if he could claim Social Security and Medicare, the two largest federal pension and health benefits. Approaching bankruptcyMcCarthy responded that he would not “prejudge” anything that would be reformed as part of the debt ceiling negotiations.

But the California lawmaker warned that members of his caucus are beginning to question the money Washington is sending to Ukraine to fend off a Russian invasion. “Ukraine is important, but at the same time it can’t be the only thing they do, it can’t be an empty experiment,” he told Punchbowl.

So the question arises Republicans Democrats will choose to use the House’s impeachment powers — as they did against Bill Clinton in 1998 and for Donald Trump in 2019 and 2021.

The main target appears to be Mayorgas, who has been picked among Republicans A hike On the arrival of immigrants at the United States border with Mexico. Another target could be Biden — Jim Banks, chairman of the conservative Republican Study Group, which shapes policy for the party. Recommended on Thursday.

Political realities may be an obstacle to McCarthy and his allies’ ability to see through their plans. High inflation and Biden’s low approval ratings have given him momentum to retake the House, but he looks unlikely to win a majority in the Senate. As a toss-up. Even if they won that chamber, they’re unlikely to have the two-thirds majority needed to impeach Biden, Mayorkas or whoever else they want to impeach — or even the number of Democrats who would defeat any legislation they try to pass.

Matt Grossman, director of Michigan State University’s Institute for Public Policy and Social Research, questioned the GOP’s willingness to pass legislation. The plans of the party are outlined Commitment to America McCarthy released last month, compared to similar platforms released in 1994 and 2010, when Republicans once again took back the lower chamber of Congress from a Democratic majority, it appeared thin.

“There is a chronic asymmetry between the parties. Republicans legitimately want the government to do less,” he said.

“They do well in the polls without needing a policy agenda, and they’re bound to defend the Trump administration or attack the Biden administration. There’s not much need for a lot of policy.”

There are also signs of division within the party over how the GOP should use its new majority. In his interview with Punchbowl, McCarthy said he was against being “charged with political motives” and instead focused on crime, border security and economic issues, all familiar running themes for Republicans this year.

The divide was even greater when it came to Ukraine. On Wednesday, Trump’s former Vice President Mike Pence called in a speech The Heritage Foundation, an influential conservative group that continues to support the country’s Republicans, said Russian President Vladimir Putin had “no place in the conservative movement for apologists.”

The next day, the foundation’s chairman, Kevin Roberts issued a statement “Heritage will strongly oppose Washington’s big spenders who are trying to pass yet another Ukrainian aid package without debate, clear strategy, targeted funding and spending commitments.”

Democrats are certain to remain in control of Congress until the end of the year, and have noted an apparent erosion of willingness to support Kiev. NBC News reports They could push for another big military aid infusion in a year-end spending bill.

It seems clear that Republicans will unite behind a strategy to strengthen the Biden administration for some purpose, but Grossman predicted it would be similar to the 2013 government shutdown, when President Barack Obama and Democrats rejected the GOP’s demands. Take away his signature health care law.

“It looks like he’s going along with McCarthy,” he said. “He’s going to be a go-along speaker with a pretty divided caucus.”