Senate GOP Leader: We’re Running on Health Care in 2010

By Jennifer Parker

Dec 11, 2009 1:53pm

 ABC News’ David Chalian Reports:  The man charged with taking back control of the United States Senate for Republicans issued a memo to his colleagues and candidates today suggesting that if the Democratic health care reform bill becomes law, it will be to the GOP’s political advantage. “The Democrats’ massive health care bill, coupled with their support for out-of-control government spending, are quickly developing into potent political issues for us, and we will work tirelessly to ensure that voters are fully informed of their Democrat Senators’ and would-be Senators’ support of a critical issue opposed by the majority of their constituents,” writes Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX), chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, in his memo to Republican senators and candidates. Sen. Cornyn cites a new partisan poll from the Republican firm Resurgent Republic to help make his case that voters 55 and older are opposed to most aspects of the health care reform legislation currently being debated on the Senate floor.  He goes on to write that Democrats have miscalculated the politics of health care reform in their often stated belief that if the legislation fails to pass Congress, the party will suffer at the polls for it. “This finding. . . undercuts their rationale that NOT passing health care will hurt them at the polls. In fact, today’s findings indicate the exact opposite,” writes Cornyn of the Democratic political calculus. This memo takes a somewhat different approach from RNC Chairman Michael Steele’s memo to Republican leaders earlier this week.  In his memo, Mr. Steele urged Republicans to continue to do everything possible to defeat the Democratic health care reform legislation from becoming law. “We do want to delay, stall, slow down, and ultimately stop them from experimenting on our nation’s health care,” wrote Steele. Sen. Cornyn is now making clear that he believes the Democratic health care reform legislation, should it become law, will help his party make gains in the 2010 midterm elections. “Republicans presided for eight years here and watched as health care costs skyrocket. Voters watched the Bush Administration and Republican-held Congress do absolutely nothing to fix it,” said Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee communications director Eric Schultz in response to the memo.  “Democrats were elected in large numbers in 2006 and 2008 to change that. Just like the economy, Republicans are not only betting against the President, but they’re betting against the country. They don’t want the economy to get better and they don’t want health care costs to come down,” he added.
 

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