ICYMI: Blue Dogs Announce Comprehensive, Bipartisan Response to Mueller Report
WASHINGTON— Today, the Blue Dog Coalition, which focuses on issues related to fiscal responsibility and national security, released a package of legislative proposals in response to the conclusions presented in Volume I of the Mueller Report regarding Russia’s attack against the U.S. political system and attempts to interfere in the 2016 election. The solutions are based primarily on a set of 11 bills endorsed by the Coalition and have earned bipartisan support in both the House and the Senate.
The call for increased sanctions and deterrence measures from the Blue Dogs is already affecting Russian markets.
This morning, they held a press conference to call on Congress to pass bipartisan legislation to address this urgent national security threat and deter foreign adversaries from attempting to meddle in our elections again. Speakers included Reps. Stephanie Murphy (FL-07), Lou Correa (CA-46), Tom O’Halleran (AZ-01), Anthony Brindisi (NY-22), Jeff Van Drew (NJ-02), Kendra Horn (OK-05), Brad Schneider (IL-10), Abigail Spanberger (VA-07), and Mikie Sherrill (NJ-11). You can watch the prepared remarks portion of the press conference here.
“What I do believe is that [McConnell] responds to a few things,” said Rep. Max Rose, a freshman Blue Dog from New York. “He responds to money, he responds to public pressure. I don’t think he’ll take a max-out from me.”
My colleagues,” Rose said of Republican lawmakers, “are ready and willing to do the right thing.”
Other Blue Dogs are arguing that McConnell’s stance shouldn’t make their push any less serious. Rep. Abigail Spanberger (VA-07) argued that lawmakers “shouldn’t have to second-guess McConnell on every corner because he refuses systematically to do his job and bring this legislation forward.”
“We, as members of Congress have an obligation to protect this country,” said Spanberger. “We’ve identified a vulnerability. We’re trying to protect this country.”
The package is largely derived from 11 bills endorsed by the group or that have won bipartisan backing in both the House and the Senate. The push is viewed by some as an escape hatch for moderate Democrats to move beyond the simmering talk of impeachment on Capitol Hill and not get backed into a corner by their party’s progressive wing.
However, Rep. Stephanie Murphy (FL-07) rejected that argument.
“This is not an instead,” she told reporters. “I think what this is, is a focus on a clear threat to our democracy. We need to secure our elections and it doesn’t in any way impede the investigations or the oversight responsibilities that Congress has.”
“MOSCOW, June 21 (Reuters) - The rouble fell on Friday after centrist U.S. House Democrats backed legislation that would impose more sanctions on Russia, including on its sovereign debt, over alleged interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election…”
“Leaders of the moderate Blue Dog Caucus are launching a push this week to drag the conversation back to Russian meddling in the 2016 election — and away from mounting calls from many of their own colleagues to try to remove President Donald Trump from office. The group on Tuesday night agreed to endorse nearly a dozen bipartisan bills related to election security, eager to reclaim the national debate over special counsel Robert Mueller's probe…The efforts stem from a real sense of urgency for Congress to tackle gaps in the nation’s election infrastructure, coming from a group that includes ex-national security officials.”