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This Week on the Campaign Trail

Overview

The contrast between Democrats and Republicans gets clearer every day. While the Republican debate last Saturday was another train wreck, our debate last night in Wisconsin was serious and substantive, and reinforced what Americans are seeing more and more across the country: we must elect a Democrat as our 45th president to keep America moving forward.

At every Democratic debate so far, both Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton have offered real ideas for leveling the playing field to give all Americans a fair shot. Even when they’ve disagreed, their disagreements have been about how to best serve the American people.

That’s the type of leadership that we need in the Oval Office.

What we don’t need, and can’t afford is this:

2016 Republican Presidential Candidates

Marco Rubio

There’s no doubt about it: Marco Rubio had a terrible week. It all started on Saturday, when he got called out by Governor Chris Christie for his lack of experience and reliance on scripted answers during the Republican debate in New Hampshire. How did Rubio respond? By repeatedly pivoting back to the same canned lines. Watch that now-infamous exchange here. Following his stumble, he fell far short of his own expectations in Tuesday’s New Hampshire Primary, placing a distant 5th. Rubio may have apologized to his supporters and promised to do better, but the damage is done, his campaign is in panic mode, and it’s crystal clear that he simply isn’t ready to be our next Commander-in-Chief.

Donald Trump and Ted Cruz

For years, the Republican Party failed to stand up to the most extreme voices within their party, and instead promoted divisive rhetoric and dog-whistle attacks designed to drive Americans apart. Now, with no establishment candidates to choose from, it’s time for the GOP to pick their poison and make a choice between frontrunners Donald Trump and Ted Cruz. Put best by the Huffington Post, Donald Trump is a “xenophobic demagogue who’s insulted pretty much everyone and even earned the endorsement of white supremacists,” and he easily won the New Hampshire primary, getting almost as many votes as the next three candidates combined. He has a commanding lead in the national polls, as well as in the early states of South Carolina and Nevada. His competition, Ted Cruz, has alienated virtually all of his colleagues with his extremism, called the Supreme Court’s marriage equality decision “some of the darkest 24 hours in our nation’s history,” and touts shutting the federal government down as his signature accomplishment.

John Kasich

New Hampshire’s second-place finisher, John Kasich is still trying to convince voters he’s a moderate, but his policy proposals tell a different story. This weekend he’s expected to sign a bill in Ohio that will strip government funding from Planned Parenthood clinics in the state – endangering programs that help prevent infant mortality, domestic violence, HIV testing, and breast and cervical cancer screenings.

Jeb Bush

Jeb Bush, scrambling to build some forward momentum in a campaign that stalled on day-one, just announced that his brother, President George W. Bush, will join him on the campaign trail. It’s an interesting strategy, especially when you consider where we were when the 43rd president left office.

Chris Christie and Carly Fiorina

And even though Governor Chris Christie and Carly Fiorina decided to suspend their presidential campaigns after a lackluster showing in New Hampshire, their overheated rhetoric and support for failed economic policies live on in the Republican primary…

Important Polls

  • According to a poll conducted by Morning Consult, Donald Trump attracts a whopping 44 percent of the vote nationally among self-identified Republicans and Republican-leaning independents, with Ted Cruz trailing in second place at just 17%.
  • According to a poll conducted by Opinion Savvy in the Southern Political Report, Donald Trump has 36% of the vote in South Carolina, while second place goes to Ted Cruz at 19%.

What people are writing in the states

  • On Monday, Texas Democratic Party Deputy Executive Director Manny Garcia issued the following statement on Ted Cruz’s possibly illegal campaign mailer: “First, Ted Cruz bullied and shamed Iowa voters for their voting record history; then, he lied to caucus goers, telling them Ben Carson had dropped out of the race; now, he is sending fundraising mailers all over Texas, tricking people into giving money to his campaign.” Read about the mailer here.
  • On Wednesday, New Hampshire Democratic Party Chair Ray Buckley released the following statement on the #FITN Republican Primary: “The selection of Donald Trump by Granite State Republicans spells disaster for Senator Kelly Ayotte, gubernatorial candidate Chris Sununu, and Congressman Frank Guinta, who will support their eventual nominee and his hateful comments and divisive ideas.” Read more of the statement here.
  • On Thursday, Democratic Party of Wisconsin Chair Martha Laning released statement on the Democratic debate: “Tonight was an incredible display of why I am proud to call myself a Democrat. I couldn’t be happier about the energy and enthusiasm voters displayed for our presidential candidates tonight. The only two candidates in the race for President with a plan to invest in the middle class and create an economy that works for all of us were on the debate stage in Milwaukee this evening.” Read more of the statement here.

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