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Republicans Planning Bite-Sized Health Initiatives in Lame Duck

Bloomberg

By Shira Stein

A bill to suspend the Obamacare mandate that employers insure their workers and delay the law’s “Cadillac” tax on high-cost insurance plans (H.R. 3798) won House Ways and Means Committee approval before the fall recess and Chairman Kevin Brady (R-Texas) has said it could get a vote in November. Bringing the bill up for a vote in the lame duck session is “very likely and was always the plan,” Dean Rosen, a partner at Mehlman, Castagnetti, Rosen & Thomas, told Bloomberg Government. “Senate action is another matter.” Rosen said he thinks “the elections will really dictate the appetite to do anything big in the lame duck on Cadillac or anything else.”

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California lawmakers poised to wield power in a Democratic House

San Francisco Chronicle

By Tal Kopan

“It’s extraordinarily important to push back against a president who is very anti-California, and you think about the talented delegation we have,” said Steve Haro, a lobbyist and former senior staffer for California Democrats Sen. Dianne Feinstein and ex-Rep. Xavier Becerra. “The influence and power they’re going to wield and the respect they have of their current colleagues will put California in a great driving position to push back against the White House and potentially get some serious legislation done,” Haro said.

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Trump’s Drug-Pricing Policies Fail to Move the Needle

National Journal

By Erin Durkin

Lauren Aronson, executive director for the Campaign for Sustainable Rx Pricing, said the administration deserves credit for the work it has been doing in this area, and pointed to the Medicare Advantage policy as a move that will have an impact on beneficiary costs. “To move major markets takes quite a bit of time and so I think the administration is doing a lot here to try to move the needle,” she said.

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Kavanaugh slugfest could boost GOP in midterms, as polls show voter interest rising

Fox News

By Gregg Re

Political headwinds normally work against the party of incumbent presidents in their first midterm elections. According to an analysis by former George W. Bush administration official Bruce Mehlman, in the past 11 such midterm seasons, new presidents saw their party make net gains only once in the House, four times in the Senate and zero times in state gubernatorial contests.

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Kavanaugh fight foreshadows a wild lame-duck session and crazy 2019 in Congress

The Washington Post

By James Hohmann

Republican lobbyist Bruce Mehlman warned clients in a presentation this week (entitled “The Chaos Continues”) that the lame-duck session between the November elections and the swearing-in of the new Congress in January could be especially fraught. “We may all miss October come December,” Mehlman told me yesterday. He thinks Nov. 6 is “merely the five-mile marker in the marathon,” and that “a huge hill is approaching.” Here are four questions Mehlman outlined:

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GOP’s gender gap problem

Axios

By Mike Allen

This was a striking graphic that David Nather spotted in a recent slide deck by Bruce Mehlman of Mehlman Castagnetti Rosen & Thomas. It shows how rapidly women have drifted away from the Republican Party since the 2016 election — opening up a lopsided preference for Democrats to control Congress in just the last few months.

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There’s Life Beyond the Hill but When Do You Explore It?

Roll Call

By Alex Gangitano

When people tell David Thomas they want to leave the Hill, he asks them to be sure they’ve thought the decision through. “The first thing I always ask is, ‘Are you truly ready? Are you going to miss being in the center of the action?’” he said. Thomas, 47, a partner at Mehlman, Castagnetti, Rosen & Thomas, left the Hill over a decade ago. He started out as an intern for Al Gore, when he served as a Tennessee senator, and he was California Democratic Rep. Zoe Lofgren’s chief of staff for four years.

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Axios Sneak Peek

Axios

By Mike Allen

Bruce Mehlman of Mehlman Castagnetti Rosen & Thomas has found a new way to measure House Republicans’ peril: “vulnerability ratio” (net number of seats at risk vs. number needed to flip).

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