Greg Sargent in Plum Line blog on Washington Post:
Over the weekend, GOP Rep. Paul Ryan confirmed that the House Republican budget would again contain key elements of his plan to transform Medicare — even though some polls have shown the idea to be deeply unpopular and Dems have vowed to run on it in 2012.The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee is set to go on the offensive on the issue in the increasingly close battle for the House — and it’s very possible the issue could have a real impact on the presidential race.
The DCCC went out Thursday, Groundhog Day,(that's a Green Bay groundhog pictured) with what it called a “Groundhog Day Alert” in the districts of some 70 vulnerable House Republicans, reminding voters of their last vote on Medicare and warning of the next one to come. [That presumably included at least three Wisconsin districts now held by Reid Ribble, Sean Duffy, and Ryan.] Here’s what the alert in the district of Rep. Dan Benishek of Michigan says:
“Michigan voters don’t need a groundhog to come out of the hole in order to tell them how this will end: Voters will reject Dan Benishek putting the ultra wealthy ahead of seniors once again. Even though voters already rejected House Republicans plan to end Medicare, this Groundhog Day Republicans like Benishek are resurrecting their plan to protect billionaires and Big Oil, while leaving seniors out in the cold. It’s the same thing again from Dan Benishek — double health care costs for Michigan seniors, more tax breaks for the ultra wealthy.”DCCC chair Steve Israel has reportedly instructed House Dem candidates to be relentless in stressing the GOP position on Medicare, to make it a “defining issue in the 2012 elections.” A recent poll by the Dem firm Democracy Corps found that the Dem message — that House Republicans voted to “end Medicare as we know it” — tests well, with 77 percent in 60 House GOP districts saying it raises serious doubts about incumbents.
Read the rest here/