'THEIR SEASON OF DISCONTENT'
NEW YORK'S 26TH CD LOSS THE FOURTH CONSECUTIVE GOP DEFEAT AS VOTERS REBEL AGAINST GOP ATTACKS ON MEDICARE, OTHER VITAL SERVICES
WASHINGTON, May 25, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Voters in Wisconsin, Maine, New Hampshire and now in New York's 26th congressional district are speaking – and loudly.
This month, Republicans have lost four special elections, three in strong Republican-performing districts as anger and outrage grow over attacks on Medicare, education and other vital services.
"In state after state, voters are telling us they want an end to tax cuts for the super-rich," said Alan Charney, USAction policy and strategic director. "They want an end to corporate loopholes. And most importantly, they want to preserve Medicare and the vital services that are key to maintaining a healthy, vibrant middle class. For voters, the massive cuts that are happening at the state level and in Congress mark their season of discontent."
"Yesterday, voters in Western New York sent a strong message that Medicare needs to be protected, that tax cuts for billionaires and big corporations won't be accepted, and that in order to make our communities stronger, we must come together to build an economy that works for everyone," said Karen Scharff, Executive Director of Citizen Action of New York. "Kathy Hochul's election to Congress doesn't just mean that New York will have another great representative in Washington. Her election also proves a public desire for a government that puts its people before corporate profits."
Ultimately, Charney said, the recent elections send a message: voters cherish the freedom that comes from opportunity and prosperity. "Freedom is about a fair wage, a decent life and hope for the future," he said. "Programs like Medicare and Social Security help secure our freedom by protecting our dignity if we get sick and as we grow older."
New York's 26th congressional district was one of the state's most solidly Republican districts. Besides New York, conservatives have lost three special elections in as many weeks. In Wisconsin, a Democrat captured a General Assembly seat that had been held by Republicans for more than a decade. In Maine, a Democrat beat her opponent for a state Senate seat by more than 30 percentage points. And in New Hampshire, a Democrat easily captured a state House district that was ranked as the 16th strongest Republican district in the state.
The election results come as USAction, its two dozen state affiliates and partners and coalition allies are preparing to launch a "June 7 Day of Action." June 7 marks the tenth anniversary of the day George W. Bush signed $1.35 trillion in tax cuts into law, which primarily went to the wealthiest Americans.
"We are moving forward with a positive agenda based on fair taxes and responsible budgeting," Charney said. "Ending the Bush tax cuts and closing corporate loopholes is only the first step toward building an economy that works for all of us. But it is an important first step."
USAction co-founded Health Care for America Now and has a history of working to protect Medicare and Medicaid, expanding children's health care and ensuring quality, affordable health care for all.
USAction is a federation of 24 state affiliates and partners that organize for a more just America. With our state partners, we build broad coalitions to win progressive campaigns that enrich people's lives.