DC Wrap

Welcome to our weekly DC Wrap, where we write about Wisconsin’s congressional delegation. Sign up here to receive the newsletter directly: https://forms.gle/YLYZtJWHPSt24HhZ7

Quotes of the week

“We’re here to expose information that should be incredibly troubling to the American public, and yet, the press just kind of shrugs and moves on.”
– U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Oshkosh, in a Fox News interview on his investigation into Hunter Biden. 

“I am very concerned about some of the decisions she’s made, she does have a record on immigration and of course we’re very concerned about the restrictions she would place on women.”
– U.S. Rep. Gwen Moore, D-Milwaukee, on U.S. Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett.

This week’s news

— President Trump will campaign in La Crosse and Green Bay on Saturday.

The stops at the La Crosse Regional Airport and Austin Straubel International Airport will be Trump’s sixth Wisconsin campaign swing of 2020.

Obtaining tickets for both events also includes a waiver releasing the campaign, the venue and others from any liability for possible exposure to COVID-19.

According to a database maintained by the New York Times, the La Crosse metro area is No. 2 in the country for the greatest number of average daily COVID-19 cases over the past two weeks relative to population. Green Bay is No. 6.

See more here


— To prevent one of President Trump’s Wisconsin campaign stops from becoming a “superspreader event,” Gov. Tony Evers suggested that Trump either not come or encourage his supporters to wear masks.

Trump is set to have two back-to-back campaign events in Wisconsin on Saturday in La Crosse and Green Bay.

See more here.


— U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson was one of 10 Republicans that voted against a stopgap spending measure that cleared the Senate overwhelmingly.

The bill was approved 84-10 just hours before the deadline to avoid a government shutdown.

Sen. Tammy Baldwin, D-Madison, supported the measure, which keeps the government funded through Dec. 11.

See the roll call here. 


— A group of GOP Congressmen, including U.S. Rep. Mike Gallagher, on Wednesday unveiled a report featuring legislative recommendations aimed at countering the Chinese Communist Party.

The report is based on input from over 100 policy experts, business leaders, other lawmakers and current and former administration officials. It makes over 180 legislative recommendations, more than half of which are bipartisan and a third of which have already cleared one chamber of Congress.

Several of the recommendations stem directly from Gallagher, including a bill that would freeze foreign 5G companies engaging in economic or industrial espionage out of the U.S. banking system. The recommendations also include a host of proposals from a bipartisan cyberspace panel the Green Bay Republican helped lead.

The report says the Chinese Communist Party is a bigger threat to Americans than ever, citing human rights violations, persecution of ethnic minorities, environmental threats, treaty violations and espionage as some of the major problems. 

Recommendations in the report centered around taking economic, intellectual and military power away from the CCP while bolstering U.S. assets. Lawmakers on the task force made more than 400 recommendations, including:

*doubling the funding of basic science and technology research over the next 10 years;
*assessing and countering the security risks posed by China in 5G networks;
*emphasizing the need for a minimum 3 percent growth in the defense budget per year in order to deter and defend against the Chinese military and other key adversaries;
*ensuring no U.S. taxpayer dollars support Chinese state-owned enterprises; 
*and evaluating whether the CCP’s crimes against Uyghhurs amount to genocide, among other things.

While previous diplomacy with China has been aimed at building bonds between Chinese and U.S. governments, the report says this policy has failed. It urges the U.S. to take drastic steps to change its relations with China. 

See the report


— A NBC News-Marist poll finds Joe Biden up 10 points in Wisconsin with a majority of voters believing the winner of November’s election should fill a vacancy on the U.S. Supreme Court.

The poll released Sept. 27 found 54 percent of likely voters backed Biden, while 44 percent supported President Trump. It didn’t explicitly ask about Libertarian Jo Jorgensen, who is on the Wisconsin ballot.

The president’s job approval rating was upside down with 42 percent of likely voters approving and 54 percent disapproving. Meanwhile, his favorable split was 40-58.

Fifty percent of likely voters had a favorable view of Biden, while 46 percent had an unfavorable one.

See more here.


— U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson is praising Donald Trump’s nomination of Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court, while U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin worries the president is seeking to overturn the Affordable Care Act and Roe V. Wade.

After Trump on Saturday formally announced his pick, Baldwin, argued the Senate should follow the standard Republicans put in place in 2016. In that presidential election year, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., blocked a vote on Merrick Garland, outgoing President Obama’s pick.

“I will not vote for a nominee to a lifetime appointment on the Supreme Court until after the American people have voted and our next President and new Senate have taken office,” Baldwin, D-Madison, said.

Johnson, R-Oshkosh, noted Barnett was confirmed on a bipartisan vote in 2017 to the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals. The vote was 55-43 with Baldwin among those who voted no.

“I was pleased to vote for her then, and I expect to support her confirmation as a justice on the Supreme Court,” Johnson said.

See Baldwin’s statement.

See Johnson’s statement.


— Johnson told the “UpFront” program he thinks Republicans will confirm a Supreme Court justice before the election.

Host Adrienne Pedersen asked Johnson to comment on how in April 2016 — seven months before the election when President Obama nominated Merrick Garland — he told “UpFront, “Let the American people have a voice in terms of the direction of the Supreme Court. They’re going to decide the direction of the country, why not the Supreme Court?”

Johnson, who is now in favor of confirming President Trump’s nomination before the election, said Sunday: “It’s a completely different circumstance. Back in 2016 we had a Democrat President and a Senate controlled by Republicans so we needed the American people to basically break the tie,” Johnson said.

See more here.


— Baldwin, who also joined “UpFront,” said she hasn’t given up hope that more Republicans will join Dems in trying to stop going forward on the nomination.

Baldwin, D-Madison, wants the next president to make the nomination and the next seated Senate to consider the nomination.

“Two of the Republicans in the U.S. Senate have stated they will not move forward with nomination before the election results are in, and they will let the next president make this nomination,” Baldwin said. “We still need two others to stand up and dignify their constituents and the oath of office they took and do the same.”

See more here.


— Vice President Mike Pence in his ninth Wisconsin visit this year touted the strength of the U.S. economy during Donald Trump’s first three years as president and pledged a “principled, conservative woman” will be picked for a U.S. Supreme Court vacancy.

The Indiana Republican praised the administration’s first-term efforts such as the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Trade Agreement, tariffs against China and an historic corporate tax cut as reasons why the country reached record-low unemployment levels through 2019.

“The forgotten men and women are forgotten no more,” Pence said before a crowd of around 100 mask-wearing supporters at a Midwest Manufacturing distribution center in Eau Claire. “We made America great again.”

See more here.


— Ahead of the Sept. 24 rally, Baldwin accused Pence and Trump of “trying to paint a rosy picture of what’s happening in the Badger State.”

The Madison Dem says the reality is the Trump administration has failed in its COVID-19 response.

She brought up how the Trump administration in the midst of the pandemic is currently suing to have the U.S. Supreme Court toss out the Affordable Care Act, a move that would “gut important protections” for those with preexisting conditions and potentially take away some 20 million Americans’ health insurance coverage.

See more here.


— President Trump tweeted his endorsement of Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald, R-Juneau, in the open 5th CD.

The tweet also included a link to donate to Fitzgerald’s campaign. He faces Dem Tom Palzewicz, who lost to retiring U.S. Sen. Jim Sensenbrenner, R-Menomonee Falls, in 2018.

“Scott Fitzgerald (@FitzgeraldForWI) will be a tremendous Congressman for the State of Wisconsin! He is Strong on Jobs and Life, wants to Lower Your Taxes, and he will always Defend your Second Amendment. Scott has my Complete and Total Endorsement! #WI05,” Trump tweeted.

See the tweet.


— U.S. Reps. Ron Kind, D-La Crosse, and Tom Tiffany, R-Minocqua, introduced bipartisan legislation to rename a New Richmond post office after two brothers from the city who died fighting in World War II.

See the release.


— U.S. Rep. Gwen Moore, D-Milwaukee and U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, introduced a measure that would establish a permanent program to deliver effective and timely cash relief to the most vulnerable during a natural disaster or economic crisis.

See the release.


Posts of the week


Republicans chide Tammy Baldwin over opposition to Amy Coney Barrett nomination 

Local political leaders react to President’s Trump Supreme Court nominee

House GOP super PAC begins $2M TV campaign against Ron Kind

Ron Johnson says Wisconsin Legislature should pass a law to allow ballot counting before Election Day

Presidential debate didn’t help Trump catch Biden, but horror show scared America

An Epic Moment of National Shame: The Debate Was an Embarrassment for the Ages

HUD Sec. Ben Carson, Gallagher discuss Green Bay housing challenges


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