AMAC Exclusive – By Claire Brighn
With Joe Biden’s approval ratings in the gutter, vulnerable Democrats are desperate to separate themselves from the President and his far-left agenda ahead of the midterm elections this fall. In particular, incumbent Senate Democrats are working hard to sell the idea through the media that Republicans may have a difficult time retaking the Senate because moderate and Independent voters will still side with Democrats. But given the wealth of extremist votes taken by Democrats this term – which GOP strategists are sure to use in attack ads in order to, as former House Speaker Newt Gingrich put it, “nationalize” each Senate race – that idea seems to be little more than wishful thinking. Here are just a few examples of the disastrous and extreme policies Senate Democrats have embraced.
Passing Tax Hikes and Massive Spending, Driving Inflation and Economic Ruin
To identify the cause of the historic inflation wreaking havoc on their savings and investments, Americans need look no further than what Democrats believe to be their “wins” this Congress: the $1.9 trillion stimulus bill, ironically called the “American Rescue Plan,” which Democrats passed along party lines in March of 2021, and the $1.2 trillion “infrastructure” bill, which contained little in the way of hard infrastructure like roads and bridges.
When Democrats moved to pass the stimulus bill, many economists, including Bill Clinton and Barack Obama appointee Larry Summers, warned that it would set off “inflationary pressures of a kind we have not seen in a generation.” More than a year later, with inflation spiraling out of control and recession fears gripping the country, former Obama advisor Steven Rattner wrote: “The $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan passed in the early days of the Biden administration will go down in history as an extraordinary policy mistake.”
Meanwhile, proponents of the infrastructure bill – mainly Democrats, but also some Republicans, most of whom notably will not have to face voters this fall – ignored warnings that it would only “heap more fuel on the inflation fire.”
Since these bills were passed, inflation has outpaced wage growth every single month. To make matters worse, Democrats have continued to push for drastic tax increases through policies like Biden’s Build Back Better Act. Last fall, Republicans proposed a bill that had a stated purpose of preventing “reconciliation legislation from including trillions of dollars in job-killing tax hikes.” Every Democrat voted no.
Every single Democrat Senator also voted in favor of the American Rescue Plan and the infrastructure bill– meaning that every single Democrat is responsible for the inflation those bills caused. Democrats will now have to answer to voters.
Pursuing “Rule or Ruin” Agenda to Destroy American Democracy
GOP TV consultants can never quite get this one because so many of them think the public needs to be manipulated with high-priced, hot-button spots instead of appealed to with informational ads that develop what the American people already sense is happening in Washington. But here is one thing that GOP Senate candidates can themselves state starkly to make the extremist brand stick: after winning the slimmest possible majority in 2020, Democrats embarked on a campaign to either rig or destroy the institutions of American democracy, including the sacredness of the secret ballot, the Electoral College, the Supreme Court, the U.S. Senate, and Citizenship itself.
All that is needed is some explanation. In January, as part of their effort to pass the so-called “For the People Act,” Senate Democrats voted for a scheme to federalize elections and outlaw popular election integrity measures like Voter ID and bans on ballot harvesting. If passed, the For the People Act would have allowed career bureaucrats at the Department of Justice to essentially run federal elections by unilaterally striking down state laws without any oversight from Congress or the courts, as well as expand government censorship of political speech, instituted public funding of political campaigns and just generally eliminate state’s rights to conduct their own elections.
Democratic House members are stuck with their votes on this extremist measure, but so too are Senate Democrats, who attempted to abolish the filibuster to pass the “rule or ruin” law. Only Democrat Sens. Joe Manchin (WV) and Kyrsten Sinema (AZ) voted against killing the filibuster.
Democrats have made clear that, if they can pick up even one seat in the Senate this fall, they will move again not only to abolish the centuries-old filibuster rule that protects minority rights in the Senate chamber, but also move quickly on other efforts to rig or destroy the integrity of American elections. Should Democrats succeed, Schumer and the progressive left have all but pledged to not only pass the “For the People” Act – effectuating a Washington takeover of elections – but also pack the Supreme Court, pack the Senate by adding new blue states, and eliminate the Electoral College, thus allowing a few heavily-populated blue cities and states to decide presidential elections.
Waging War on American Energy, Leading to Record High Gas Prices and Fuel and Food Shortages
Following President Joe Biden’s lead in cutting domestic oil and gas production, Senate Democrats have embraced an extreme “green” agenda at the expense of the American energy sector. Last August, for example, in the dead of night, every Senate Democrat voted against a measure to “cancel the Biden administration’s ban on oil and gas leasing on Federal land to help lower gasoline prices and reduce energy dependence on the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries.”
This all but sealed Senate Democrats’ complicity in Biden’s war on American energy that has resulted in gas prices more than doubling and Americans paying thousands more per year in energy costs. At the same time, rising gas prices have threatened critical supply chains, leaving store shelves empty and raising the possibility of widespread food shortages.
As Biden has tapped into the Strategic Petroleum Preserve to relieve price pressures, it’s also worth noting that when oil prices were low under Trump in 2020, many of these same Senate Democrats voted to block efforts to stock the Reserve.
Earlier this year, vulnerable Democrat Senators Maggie Hassan of New Hampshire, Mark Kelly of Arizona, and Catherine Cortez Masto of Nevada supported a proposal to suspend the federal gas tax through 2022 in an effort to lower prices – apparently hoping that voters would forget that these same Senators had voted against expanding domestic production just last fall. Larry Summers called the move for a gas tax holiday “shortsighted, ineffective, goofy, gimmicky” – an apt description for Senate Democrats’ record on energy policy this entire Congress.
Incentivizing Illegal Immigration and Violation of American Sovereignty
Senate Democrats have refused to address and in many cases exacerbated the border crisis by voting in favor of policies that encourage more illegal immigration. As monthly border apprehensions were already shattering records last year, for example, Senate Democrats overwhelmingly voted against codifying expedited removals under Title 42, a Trump-era COVID-19 public health measure that allowed Border Patrol to quickly expel illegal border crossers. When Biden announced his intention to end Title 42 later on, border officials warned this could mean half a million new illegal migrants per month (more than American births per month).
Clearly aware of the dire situation, Democrat Senators Maggie Hassan (NH) Mark Kelly (AZ), and Catherine Cortez Masto (NV) urged Biden not to repeal Title 42. But when push came to shove on April 5, 2022, they again voted against a Republican-sponsored effort to extend Title 42 protections. Now, border crossings continue to surpass all-time highs, and the border is being overrun.
Senate Democrats also voted against a bill last year that would have prevented billions in taxpayer money from going to illegal aliens as part of the American Rescue Plan. Tellingly, Squad member Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) boasted about how Democrats “fought tooth and nail for the inclusion of undocumented people in relief packages, stimulus checks, and FEMA assistance.” Just a few months later, Senate Democrats also shot down a bill to “prohibit illegal aliens with criminal records from receiving conditional or lawful permanent resident status in the United States.” These votes send a dangerous message to the world that illegal alien criminals will be rewarded, not punished, for breaking U.S. laws.
Denying Parents’ Rights and Pushing Anti-Americanism in Schools and Government
All Democrats – except one – opposed a measure to block federal funds from going toward the teaching of Critical Race Theory in K-12 classrooms. Just weeks later, Republican Glenn Youngkin was swept into power in Virginia – a state Biden had won by more than 10 points a year earlier – in no small part due to parental opposition to CRT.
It has also since been revealed that taxpayer funds have indeed gone toward instructing students on Critical Race Theory and “anti-racism” training, including $15 million from the American Rescue Plan. The implicit message from these actions was that parents had no right to determine what their children were learning in school because Democrats’ voting record in Congress was determined by national teachers’ unions that filled Democrat campaign coffers. For Senate Democrats, it will be difficult to distance themselves from this issue, which is fast becoming toxic for the left generally.
Heading into the midterm elections, Biden did no one any favors when he said “48 out of 50 Senators vote with me 95% of the time.” While Democrats may now try to escape culpability for the many problems Americans face, their voting record is something they can’t hide from. For Republicans, explaining these disastrous votes may well be one of the best ways to make the case to the public about why it’s time for a change in Washington.
Claire Brighn is the pen name of a conservative researcher and writer with previous domestic and foreign policy experience in the Executive Branch.
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