Friday, July 15, 2011

NM GOP Senate Candidates: John Sanchez Backs Ending Medicare But Heather Wilson Still Won't Talk

JohnSanchez HeatherWilson

According to a statement released today by the Democratic Senate Campaign Committee (DSCC), it only took a day for extreme, right–wing Republican John Sanchez to get in line with mega-lobbyist Grover Norquist’s demands to support the GOP plan to end Medicare -- but Heather Wilson is refusing to comment. On Wednesday, Norquist issued new marching orders when he said that Republicans need to do their part to enact the reckless spending plan that privatizes Medicare in order to pay for big tax breaks for the rich and oil companies.

The following day, New Mexico Lieutenant Governor and fellow Senate hopeful John Sanchez did as he was told and finally came out and endorsed the plan, but there’s still nothing but crickets from the Wilson camp.

Norquist and Wilson are old Washington friends, and Wilson has previously signed on to Norquist’s pledge to preserve tax breaks for special interests and millionaires. But for months now, Wilson has refused to say specifically where she stands on the Republican plan.

“Heather Wilson’s Tea Party primary challenger got the message and got in line, but Wilson is ignoring new marching orders from her old Washington friend Grover Norquist,” said Matt Canter, Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee spokesman. “Wilson has a long history of kowtowing to Norquist’s demands, but now she is sitting silently on the sidelines, while her party recklessly attacks Medicare. Wilson’s refusal to say anything, let alone the right thing by standing up for seniors and Medicare, sends a disturbing message.”

Guess Heather is committed to having it both ways by staying mute on the GOP policy of destroying Medicare as we know it. She doesn't want to offend senior primary voters by openly supporting her party's extreme policy -- but she also doesn't want to anger Tea Party ideologues by saying plainly that she's against it. Instead, Wilson seems dead set on trying to be a cipher on one of the most important issues being discussed in the nation today. Cowardly and expedient, isn't it?

Background:

WISLON SIGNED NORQUIST'S PLEDGE:
April 2011: Wilson Signed Grover Norquist’s ‘Taxpayer Protection Pledge.’ In April 2011, Heather Wilson signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge from Grover Norquist’s Americans for Tax Reform. [ATR Release, 4/18/11]

NORQUIST ISSUED NEW MARCHING ORDERS:
Norquist is demanding that Republicans in Congress enact the extreme Republican plan to end Medicare or pay the consequences. “Anti-tax activist Grover Norquist, the keeper of the no-new-taxes pledge that virtually all Republican politicians have signed, has a new set of marching orders for the GOP troops; Enact Rep. Paul Ryan‘s budget plan.” [Wall Street Journal, 7/12/11]

JOHN SANCHEZ GOT ON BOARD:
Sanchez finally endorsed the Ryan plan in a statement yesterday. "A genuine conservative should have no trouble supporting Rep. Ryan’s budget proposal. It is not perfect by any means, but it is a bold step toward truly reforming how our federal government does business. It protects our seniors, pays down our national debt, puts us on a responsible path to prosperity and repeals ObamaCare. I would vote for Rep. Ryan’s plan. ... For Mrs. Wilson to punt on such an important issue is disappointing, and unfortunately consistent with her record.” [Santa Fe New Mexican, 7/14/11]

WILSON SILENT ON PLAN TO END MEDICARE:
Wilson Continued to Sidestep Ryan Budget Questions. In an interview with POLITICO, Wilson continued to sidestep questions about House Finance Committee Chairman Paul Ryan’s 2012 budget plan that would end Medicare in its current form. Wilson praised Ryan “for his efforts” but also pointed out that she disagreed with portions of his blueprint. “I'm not in the House of Representatives. This is not something that I have to vote on. I don't agree with some of the things in his budget plan. There are a lot of things in there that cause some concern,” Wilson said. [POLITICO, 7/8/11]

July 15, 2011 at 11:15 AM in 2012 NM Senate Race, Healthcare, Heather Wilson, John Sanchez, Republican Party, Senior Citizens, Taxes | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

DSCC Calls Out John Sanchez, Heather Wilson for Silence on Horrible GOP Medicare Plan

The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC) has released a statement pointing out that GOP Senate candidates John Sanchez and Heather Wilson continue to skirt the public and remain silent on the Republican plan to end Medicare. As the Senate continues budget negotiations, Republican leaders are still demanding that their extreme plan to end Medicare in order to pay for tax breaks for millionaires and big oil companies is included as part of any final deal. Unfortunately, John Sanchez and Heather Wilson are refusing to criticize their party’s attack on Medicare.

“John Sanchez and Heather Wilson are refusing to tell their fellow beltway Republicans to end their campaign to end Medicare,” said Matt Canter, DSCC spokesman. “The extreme Republican plan that ends Medicare to pay for tax breaks for the rich and Big Oil companies is a non-starter.  Instead of kowtowing to the Republican D.C. establishment and big oil executives, John Sanchez and Heather Wilson should finally stand up for New Mexico seniors and abandon their party’s plan to end Medicare.”

Using an online petition launched by the DSCC last week, nearly 40,000 online activists have called on John Sanchez and Heather Wilson to finally stand up for New Mexico seniors by telling GOP leaders to take their extreme plan to end Medicare off the table in the ongoing budget talks. According to the DSCC the petition effort is part of a larger online push to mobilize thousands of online activists against the Republican plan to end Medicare, a push that includes a series of online ads specifically designed to reach New Mexicans.

While poll after poll shows the vast majority of voters think the GOP Medicare plan is a non-starter, GOP leaders in Washington are pressuring Republican candidates to fall in line and publicly reaffirm their support for the extreme plan. Just last week, Republican House Majority Leader Eric Cantor called on all Republican Senate candidates, including John Sanchez and Heather Wilson, to officially endorse the GOP budget plan.

According to congressional reports, the typical New Mexico senior would pay $4,755 more in out-of-pocket health care costs under the Republican plan. It would take away $4.5 billion in health care funding for seniors and persons with disabilities in New Mexico. And the Republican plan would force more than 21,400 New Mexico seniors to pay an extra $12 million for prescriptions in 2012 alone.

Background:

•         The Republican plan to end Medicare will increase out-of-pocket health care costs for a typical 65 year-old New Mexico senior by $4,755 in 2022 –- more than double the cost under current law.  [DPCC Fact Sheet]

•         In New Mexico, more than 21,400 seniors would pay $12 million more for prescription drugs in 2012 alone under the Republican plan.  [DPCC Fact Sheet]

•         In New Mexico, the Republican plan could cut $4.5 billion in federal health care funding for seniors and the disabled through Medicaid, including life-saving nursing home care.  [DPCC Fact Sheet]

June 14, 2011 at 09:11 AM in 2012 NM Senate Race, Democratic Party, Healthcare, Heather Wilson, John Sanchez | Permalink | Comments (3)