Kevin McCarthy unveiled the GOP's "commitment" to America; Mehmet Oz released his health records to spotlight John Fetterman's stroke in Pennsylvania's Senate race; House Dems vote to fund the police; N.C.'s Ted Budd embraces Trump and abortion restrictions in key race; plus, Republicans' chances in Arizona Senate race fading.
A roundup of political news with 46 days until Election Day on Nov. 8.
McCarthy unveils House GOP's big ideas, but challenges ahead
MONONGAHELA, Pa. (AP) — Republican leader Kevin McCarthy is heading to Pennsylvania on Friday to directly confront President Joe Biden and the party in power, unveiling a midterm election agenda with sweeping Trump-like promises despite the House GOP’s sometimes spotty record of delivering and governing in Congress.
McCarthy, who is poised to seize the speaker’s gavel if Republicans win control of the House in the fall, hopes to replicate the strategy former Speaker Newt Gingrich used to spark voter enthusiasm and sweep House control in a 1994 landslide.
The House GOP’s “Commitment to America” gives a nod to that earlier era but updates it for Trump, with economic, border security and social policies to rouse the former president’s deep well of supporters in often-forgotten regions like this rusty landscape outside Pittsburgh. Full story:
Oz releases health records to spotlight Fetterman's stroke
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Dr. Mehmet Oz, the Republican nominee for U.S. Senate in Pennsylvania, released his health records as he maneuvers to keep questions about Democratic rival John Fetterman’s recovery from a stroke front and center in the hotly contested campaign.
Dr. Rebecca Kurth in New York City wrote in a four-page letter that she found the 62-year-old heart surgeon-turned-TV celebrity to be in “excellent health" in an annual checkup Thursday.
The letter noted that Oz has a total cholesterol level that is “borderline elevated” but can be addressed by diet, and referenced that in 2010 he had a polyp -- a growth that sometimes can become cancerous -- removed from his colon. An electrocardiogram — a test that records electrical signals in the heart to detect heart problems — he had Thursday came out normal. Full story:
House Democrats pass police funding bills despite divisions
WASHINGTON (AP) — House Democrats on Thursday pushed through a long-sought policing and public safety package after overcoming internal differences on legislation they plan to make central to their election-year pitch.
The package of four bills passed in succession — all with bipartisan support — and headed to the Senate, where their fate is uncertain.
The Democrats' success came after party leaders spent hours wrangling with progressives who threatened to block the package over their concerns about increasing money for local police departments. A few lawmakers said the plan lacked the accountability measures that Democrats had once sought after the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis sparked protests against racial injustice. Full story:
Budd embraces Trump, abortion opposition in NC Senate race
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — In competitive races across the U.S., Republican candidates are distancing themselves from their party's most controversial policies and people — namely, abortion and former President Donald Trump — as Election Day approaches.
Not Ted Budd.
The North Carolina GOP Senate nominee is leaning into support for abortion restrictions and amity with the former Republican president as Democrats fight for an elusive victory in the Southern swing state.
Democratic optimism remains tempered given the state's recent red tilt, but Democratic officials believe Budd, a low-profile congressman who emerged as the GOP's Senate nominee largely because of Trump's backing, gives them a real chance at flipping a seat — and holding the balance of power in Washington — this fall. Full story:
By GARY D. ROBERTSON and STEVE PEOPLES - Associated Press
Analysis: The Arizona Senate race is slipping from Republicans
Republicans' chances of beating Democratic Sen. Mark Kelly of Arizona are fading, a sign of the broader struggle the party is experiencing of late as it fights to retake the Senate majority, according to one prominent political handicapper.
On Thursday, the Cook Political Report with Amy Walter moved the Arizona race from its "toss up" category to "leans Democratic," signaling that Kelly now has the advantage over Republican nominee Blake Masters.
In explaining the ratings change, Cook Political Report Senate editor Jessica Taylor notes that Kelly has crushed Masters in fundraising --- and that has translated into a massive edge in terms of TV ad spending. "Democratic groups and Kelly have spent or reserved nearly $65 million during the general election period, compared to almost $16.2 million for GOP groups and Masters," she writes. (Taylor adds that Masters' campaign isn't running any ads at all this week.) Full analysis here:
The powerful storm, which will be one of the costliest hurricanes ever to hit the U.S., has terrorized people for much of the week. Plus, our weather podcast's experts explain why hurricane season is taking off.
More than 300 were taken to hospitals after fights broke out. In the U.S., hurricane experts question whether islanders should even try to rebuild as storms get stronger and deadlier each year. See the latest photos in our news roundup.
House Minority leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., speaks at DMI Companies in Monongahela, Pa., Friday, Sept. 23, 2022. McCarthy joined with other House Republicans to unveil their "Commitment to America" agenda.
FILE - Arizona Republican U.S. Senate candidate Blake Masters speaks to supporters at a campaign party, Aug 2, 2022, in Chandler, Ariz. Masters says he hopes Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell will back his close campaign in Arizona. Masters on Friday, Aug. 19, struck a magnanimous tone toward the GOP leader he fiercely criticized during the primary. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri, File)