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National Journal: Is Mitch McConnell Right About the GOP Brand?

by Lisa Mathias

Today’s National Journal features a piece focusing on Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s recent comments on the debt talks, comparing the situation to 1995, when Newt Gingrich was House Speaker. Public opinion of Republicans and Democrats will obviously shift depending on what happens, but reaching a standstill doesn’t bode well for either party, according to David Winston:

“Given how far out we are from the conclusion, it’s unclear how the public would assign blame, and if an agreement isn’t reached, it will be negative for the entirety of Washington,’’ he said. “Republicans fundamentally believe that raising taxes would cause the economy to contract when we want it to expand.’’

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National Journal: Shutdown rhetoric carries risk, reward

by Lisa Mathias

National Journal’s Jim O’Sullivan writes about strategists’ reactions to Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s unyielding stance on the possibility of a government shutdown. O’Sullivan turned to David Winston for his outlook on McConnell’s stance, as highlighted by his appearance on Meet the Press:

“All the discourse is: is government going to shut down? My sense of what McConnell is trying to drive home is we finally have the situation to actually get some things done,” Winston said, adding that the upcoming debates over the continuing resolution and debt ceiling present “this unique bipartisan moment” that could remake the nation’s fiscal outlook.
“What McConnell was trying to do was to get David Gregory to think differently about the opportunity,” Winston said.

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