The Weekender (8/7/20)
Welcome to the Democratic Governors Association’s Friday newsletter, The Weekender.
Let’s get started.
North Carolina: Gov. Roy Cooper’s campaign launched a new ad highlighting GOP nominee Dan Forest’s disregard for public safety measures, holding at least sixteen indoor crowd events with no masks and no social distancing observed. Just this past weekend, Forest held an in-person fundraiser with over 100 attendees – and did not require masks or social distancing. Forest proudly proclaimed that he will be holding more of these dangerous events in the future and in a blasé tone stated that “it will be a lot more of this” indicating the superspreader event behind him.
Missouri: Missouri held its primary election, and as expected, State Auditor Nicole Galloway won the Democratic gubernatorial nomination. Gov. Mike Parson won the Republican gubernatorial nomination, but not without controversy – on the eve of the primary, Parson was hit with campaign finance violations. And in a big win for accessible, affordable health care, Missourians voted to expand Medicaid, after years of Parson and Missouri Republicans trying to block it.
GOP Civil War: Former Republican Lt. Gov. Accuses Gov. Eric Holcomb Of Caving to Pressure From Trump to Block No-Excuse Absentee Voting
Hoosiers across the state are calling on Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb to enact no-excuse absentee voting during the COVID-19 pandemic, including a prominent member of his own party. Former Republican Lt. Governor John Mutz called on Holcomb to do the right thing and expand mail-in voting during the pandemic.
Mutz accused Holcomb and other state officials of caving to political pressure from President Trump, who has threatened other states with lawsuits for implementing universal vote-by-mail. But as the Lt. Gov pointed out – the majority of Americans approve of mail-in voting. Even President Trump’s own pollsters found broad support for no-excuse absentee voting.
In addition to pressure from his fellow Republicans, Holcomb is also battling legal challenges to Indiana’s election procedures. Common Cause Indiana and the Indiana NAACP sued the state for its “unjustifiably early” deadline to return absentee ballots. And there are two more pending lawsuits in federal court against Indiana’s election rules.
Holcomb’s opponent, Democratic gubernatorial candidate Dr. Woody Myers, fully supports expanding access to mail-in voting and safe in-person polling places during the pandemic.
Another Poll Shows Americans Trust Democratic Governors More Than Republicans To Put Public Health First
A new Navigator Research poll shows Americans give Democratic governors higher approval ratings than Republican governors by 12 points for their handling of COVID-19. Democratic governors have earned Americans’ trust by following facts and science in their COVID-19 responses, while Republican governors have ignored the advice of public health officials and made decisions based on politics.
As it turns out, good policy is also good politics. Governors who didn’t cave to political pressure and followed science instead are having better political outcomes.
The different responses between Democratic North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper and Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis is a case study on this. Gov. Cooper followed the advice of public health experts and refused to hold a Republican National Convention with zero COVID-19 precautions and no masks. DeSantis, on the other hand, welcomed the in-person, no precautions RNC to his state, which is now seeing record COVID-19 cases and running out of ICU beds. New polling shows voters agree with Gov. Cooper’s decision by a margin of 2:1.
Democratic governors will continue to make decisions in the interest of public health. Republican governors have a lot of catching up to do – so far, all states with Democratic governors now have a mask order, while 17 out of 26 Republican governors have refused to issue a mask requirement.
North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper on ABC’s Good Morning America, discussing how his state is battling Hurricane Isaias amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Gov. Cooper said North Carolina was well-prepared for the hurricane: “We have been ready for this.”
Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo on MSNBC Live with Stephanie Ruhle, announcing her “Back to Work RI” initiative, which guarantees participants a job at the end of the program.
Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak on CNN with Anderson Cooper, explaining his state’s vote-by-mail legislation, which expands access to fair, safe elections.
“When nearly 4 out of 10 American households are still uncounted, a surprise decision to cut the Census count short in the middle of a pandemic is unpatriotic, illogical and immoral.”
- Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker on the Trump administration’s decision to cut short counting efforts for the 2020 Census.
“We shake as many hands as we can.”
Who said it? Send your answer to email@example.com and we’ll reveal the answer in the next Weekender!
If you guessed failed Washington GOP gubernatorial candidate Tim Eyman last week, you were right! At a campaign event last week, Eyman told supporters that Washington was a “red state with a big blue doughnut hole over in Seattle.” On Tuesday, Democratic Gov. Jay Inslee beat out 35 candidates to win the Washington primary with over half of the vote.