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Happy Friday morning.
This is interesting: CPAC’s Matt Schlapp has sent a letter to House Republicans warning that his organization won’t endorse any candidate for a leadership race unless they vow to reject meetings with “woke” corporations.
Here’s a bit of the letter, which you can find in full here:
As Republicans prepare for a new dawn in Congress, CPAC has been courted for our endorsement in various leadership races and for chairmanships. The first step to earn our support is a new shared strategy to reprimand corporations that have gone woke.
Specifically, these companies have colluded with the Biden Administration to silence conservative voices; promoted lies about Voter ID and chose not to support conservatives who stand for fair elections; Are paying for the travel costs for employee abortions (including late-term) subsidized by their customers, a majority of which stand for life; Are promoting of radical gender theory and gender modification onto our children; And supported the antipolice BLM movement that wreaked havoc on streets and in neighborhoods across the county and has contributed to a spike in violent crime.
Pledge that you will not meet with these CEOs or their leadership teams, especially their Government Affairs staff, who have been hostile to policies that help all Americans, until they change their ways.
The CPAC letter doesn’t specify which corporations have “gone woke,” although there are links featuring stories on Walmart, Meta, Delta, and Disney, among others.
Still, it’s unrealistic for party leaders or senior members to say that, as a blanket promise, they won’t meet with any corporation or any of their lobbyists. These are some of the largest corporations in America. Furthermore, these corporations’ lobbyists often sign up for fundraisers. Should lawmakers reject checks from them as well?
And endorsements from CPAC don’t necessarily mean that much directly for leadership contests. These are under the dome races, by and large.
Schlapp told us that “We just sent the letter a few hours ago. I believe that many will take it,” meaning the proposed pledge on woke corporations.
Corporations and their representatives are major funders of House Republican lawmakers, their campaign committees and leadership PACs. Walmart’s PAC, for instance, has donated hundreds of thousands of dollars this cycle to GOP lawmakers, including the NRCC. Individual Republicans House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy and Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (Wash.), the top Republican on the powerful Energy and Commerce Committee, are just some of the dozens of GOP lawmakers who’ve received campaign donations from the company this cycle. And this doesn’t include their lobbyists or employees, who have donated directly to the lawmakers.
But House Republicans are a much different breed from even four years ago when they lost their majority, despite the fact that many of their top leaders are the same. They’ve been changed by the Trump era and the Covid pandemic. They have much less allegiance to Corporate America, especially Big Tech, which they see as working hand-in-hand with Democrats to suppress conservative speech and ideas online.
The GOP as a whole is much less deferential to C suite pronouncements. Look at Delta’s experience in Atlanta over the state’s voting rights law. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis went after Disney – once an unthinkable move for a Sunshine State pol – due to the company’s criticism of the state’s “Don’t say gay” bill. Texas has a new law that prohibits state and local agencies from doing business with any company that “boycotts” fossil fuels. ESG – environmental, social and governance – is the new CRT for some Republicans.
Schlapp is chair of the American Conservative Union, and his wife Mercedes was director of strategic communications in the Trump White House. The Washington Post reported last week that the Schlapps are going to fundraise for some Senate GOP candidates, including Blake Masters and Mehmet Oz.
There’s one other factor to look at here. Pair these efforts with the increasingly aggressive tone from the House Freedom Caucus toward McCarthy and the leadership that we reported on the other day. Conservatives see a win coming in November and they’re flexing their muscles now, trying to stake a claim to what happens next year. This isn’t much different, in a way, from what happened to the message the left sent to Joe Biden, Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi after Democrats won in 2018 and 2020. And look at how progressives won that agenda fight.
– Jake Sherman and John Bresnahan
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PUNCHBOWL NEWS X TEXAS TRIBUNE
We’re headed to Texas!
TOMORROW: Join us in the Punchbowl News tent on Open Congress in Austin, Texas for great discussions with important people in Texas and U.S. politics. Cool off with Raspa’s from Casey’s New Orleans Snowballs, snacks from Austin Gourmet Popcorn, and five different opportunities to win a Punchbowl News cooler to carry it in. No festival ticket required! Here’s the full line-up.
→ One-on-One with Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.): 9:30 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. (All Central Time)
The California lawmaker starts us off by discussing the Jan. 6 investigation, the war in Ukraine and combating misinformation.
→The Red Team: 11 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Conversation with Texas Republican congressional candidates Wesley Hunt, Monica De La Cruz, and Morgan Luttrell.
→ The Blue Team: 12:30 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.
Conversation with Texas Democratic congressional candidates Greg Casar and Jasmine Crockett.
→ Taking the Heat: 2 p.m. – 3 p.m.
New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell, Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner and San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg will talk climate.
→ The Book on Trump: Part Two: 4:15 p.m. – 5:15 p.m.
Peter Baker and Susan Glasser close us the day with a convo about their book “The Divider: Trump in the White House, 2017-2021.”
See you there. Let us know if you’ll be there here.
Ukraine aid waits while permitting fight drags out
New U.S. aid for embattled Ukraine will have to wait at least another week as an unrelated fight over federal permitting reform slowed down work on a short-term government funding bill.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer has scheduled a key procedural vote for Tuesday night. Schumer is planning to move ahead at that time with a legislative vehicle to fund federal agencies beyond the Sept. 30 end of the fiscal year.
The government funding package will include roughly $12 billion in new military and economic support for Ukraine, although final details are still being hammered out, according to House and Senate appropriators.
Schumer wants to attach a controversial permitting reform proposal from Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) to the government funding measure, despite the fact that Senate Republicans and a number of progressive Democrats are opposed.
But Schumer promised Manchin he’d do so in order to get Manchin’s backing for the Inflation Reduction Act, President Joe Biden’s signature legislative achievement. And Schumer is sticking to that deal with Manchin so far. Democratic aides insist that Schumer isn’t making any changes to the funding package – expected to keep federal agencies open through mid-December – until after Tuesday’s cloture vote.
The Senate is out on Monday for Rosh Hashanah, which will push the Senate procedural vote back another day.
House Appropriations Committee Chair Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.) said there is broad support for additional Ukrainian aid, although she noted that the details are still being worked out between the White House, State Department, Pentagon and Hill lawmakers.
“The whole package is still under discussion,” DeLauro told us on Thursday night. “No, it’s not final.”
“Honestly, it’s still being negotiated,” Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.) added. Tester chairs the Defense subcommittee for the Senate Appropriations Committee. “What level for military, what level for the State Department.”
Sen. Richard Shelby of Alabama, the top Republican on Senate Appropriations, acknowledged those discussions were ongoing. “We’re talking a little about the Ukraine numbers,” Shelby said.
The war in Ukraine has reached a critical moment, making this latest round of American support even more vital.
Following a successful Ukrainian counteroffensive, Russian President Vladimir Putin has mobilized 300,000 more troops, spurring protests inside Russia. Putin also warned the United States and the Western allies that he was prepared to defend Russia’s territorial integrity by any means necessary. “It is not a bluff,” Putin said.
The dispute over permitting reform remains the biggest obstacle to finishing up the government funding measure. Senate Republicans are overwhelmingly opposed to Manchin’s proposal, which has deeply frustrated the West Virginia Democrat.
Manchin also faces opposition from progressives, however. A block of eight Senate Democrats led by Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) wants to see the permitted proposal separated from the funding bill.
The group includes Merkley and Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.), Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Ed Markey (D-Mass.), Ben Cardin (D-Md.) and Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.).
Yet other than Sanders, these Democrats haven’t said what they’re going to do on Tuesday’s motion to proceed. So Schumer isn’t going to change course until he’s forced to do so. Which means for now, the majority leader is planning to move ahead with Tuesday’s procedural vote.
– John Bresnahan
Annie Kuster, Scott Peters to run for New Dem chair
Rep. Scott Peters (D-Calif.) and Rep. Annie Kuster (D-N.H.) are competing to lead the New Democrat Coalition next Congress. Both members currently serve as vice chairs of the caucus. Peters is vice chair for policy and Kuster is vice chair for communications.
Kuster, a Frontline Democrat facing a competitive reelection campaign in New Hampshire, was first elected to Congress in 2012.
“The New Dems are the Majority Makers and my top priority as Chair will be to ensure our Members’ voices are heard and amplified as we build a strong 21st Century economy with opportunity for everyone to succeed and thrive,” Kuster said in a statement.
Check out Kuster’s letter to colleagues here.
Peters, a five-term San Diego-area moderate also elected in 2012, was influential in negotiating the prescription drug provisions during the Build Back Better saga of 2021.
As we reported in our PM edition yesterday, Reps. Marilyn Strickland (D-Wash.), Salud Carbajal (D-Calif.), Brad Schneider (D-Ill.) and Derek Kilmer (D-Wash.) are seeking the four vice chair positions of the caucus.
— Max Cohen
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At Chevron, we’re exploring investments and partnerships in innovative solutions to help create a lower carbon future.
→ News: The Congressional Leadership Fund – the House GOP aligned super PAC – has $127 million in the bank, according to a filing made public Thursday. Miriam Adelson donated $5 million Sept. 8. Other big donors include Jude and Chris Reyes, the billionaire brothers who own Reyes Holdings, a food and alcohol distribution company. The brothers gave $1,236,600 each.
Helen Schwab, the wife of Charles Schwab, also kicked in $1 million. Koch Industries donated $250,000.
→ Frontline Democratic Rep. Matt Cartwright (Pa.) is contrasting his public service with GOP opponent Jim Bognet’s lobbying work in a new ad.
“I’ve been here, working to cap insulin prices, protect Social Security & Medicare, and open a new plant to convert shale gas to regular car gas,” Cartwright says. “[Bognet] works for big corporate interests funding phony ads.”
Cartwright’s battleground district voted for Donald Trump in 2020 and is a top Republican flip target.
→ “I’ve fought for mid-Michigan all my life,” Frontline Democratic Rep. Dan Kildee (Mich.) says in an ad airing in the Flint, Mich., media market.
Kildee says his work fighting to lower drug prices and make companies pay their fair share has angered special interests.
“I work for the people on this block, not big corporations,” Kildee says.
— Max Cohen and Jake Sherman
THE MONEY GAME
→ Are you a Lizzo fan? We know there are a lot of you out there. How would you like to spend $1,000 a ticket to see Lizzo with Rep. Greg Stanton (D-Ariz.). How about this deal: Two tickets for $2,500. Free on Tuesday? In? Ok. Here you go.
– Jake Sherman
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8 a.m.: President Joe Biden will get his daily briefing.
9:30 a.m.: House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy and House Republicans will unveil their “Commitment to America” in Monongahela, Pa. House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer will speak beforehand in Pittsburgh, criticizing the GOP agenda.
12:25 p.m.: Biden will attend a DNC event at the National Education Association headquarters. He’ll arrive back at the White House at 1:50 p.m.
12:50 p.m.: Vice President Kamala Harris will meet with young NAACP leaders.
2:30 p.m.: Karine Jean-Pierre will brief.
8 p.m.: Biden and First Lady Jill Biden will host an Elton John concert at the White House.
→ “As Trump’s Legal Woes Mount, So Do Financial Pressures on Him,” by Maggie Haberman, Ben Protess, Matthew Goldstein and Eric Lipton
→ “Trump Claims He Declassified Documents. Why Don’t His Lawyers Say So in Court?” by Glenn Thrush, Alan Feuer and Charlie Savage
→ “Herschel Walker’s Company Said It Donated Profits, but Evidence Is Scant,” by David A. Fahrenthold and Shane Goldmacher
→ “Ukraine War Comes Home to Russians as Putin Imposes Draft,” by Anton Troianovski, Valerie Hopkins, Ivan Nechepurenko and Alina Lobzina
→ “U.S. has sent private warnings to Russia against using a nuclear weapon,” by Paul Sonne and John Hudson
→ “Herschel Walker’s struggles show GOP’s deeper challenge in Georgia,” by Cleve R. Wootson Jr.
→ “Russia’s Chief Diplomat Gets Chilly U.N. Reception, from Diverted Planes to Shrugs and Yawns,” by William Mauldin at the United Nations
→ “McConnell seeks a Jan. 6 mop-up on his terms,” by Marianne LeVine
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At Chevron, we’re helping to fuel a better future for all. From methane management to expanding our lower carbon energy capabilities, like hydrogen, to ensuring we meet growing energy demands, Chevron is helping to reach a brighter tomorrow. Because it’s only human to know a lower carbon future starts with what we do today.
Editorial photos provided by Getty Images
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