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news from the trail: pa-06

The Philadelphia Inquirer, 10/23/18

Two years ago, when Democrat Chrissy Houlahan began running for Congress, people told the military veteran and former high school teacher to stay away from one topic:

Gun control.

"There was a caution to me … that it wasn't a quote-unquote winning issue," she recalled.

But she ignored the advice. And since she announced her candidacy, a rash of mass shootings, including the one in February in Parkland, Fla., have rocked the country. Supporting major gun-control policies, she has been endorsed by gun-safety groups and is favored to win a newly redrawn seat that in its last configuration has been long held by Republicans.

In addition to spending, other signs point to gun control being the louder side this year: The NRA removed its long-noted archive of candidate grades from its website. Houlahan's opponent, Greg McCauley (who supports several of the gun-control measures Houlahan does while also supporting concealed carry reciprocity and opposing an assault weapons ban), took a pro-gun section off his web page early in the campaign. 

The Times of Chester County, 10/21/18

Endorsement: Chrissy Houlahan for Congress

In this year’s race for the new and open Sixth Congressional District seat — a seat that now encompasses all of Chester County as well as the southern portion of Berks County — we have Democrat Chrissy Houlahan facing Republican Greg McCauley, both first-time candidates for office.

Unlike the visceral, top of the ticket races for U.S. Senate and Governor, this race, thankfully, has been more about issues and policy, with some fairly substantive discussions on many of the issues that face the country today.

Houlahan is advocating support and repair of the ACA, to broaden access to affordable health care for the community at large. She has not embraced a single-payer or Medicare for all model, bravely defying the left in her party demanding a stronger and potentially costly government intervention into health care.

The two differ strongly on tax policy, too.

Houlahan strongly opposed the tax cuts — which despite claims by GOP leaders — appears to have strongly increased the federal budget deficit without offering broad economic benefit to those in the lower and middle income brackets. McCauley, a tax attorney and fast-food franchise owner, suggests that he has fought “overbearing taxes and regulations” for his business clients. He supported the GOP tax plan, although he decries the deficit and suggests it could be closed through cutting waste and fraud, a somewhat tired refrain from generations of politicians who never seem to find much in the way of said fraud and waste once elected.

The two differ on a multitude of other issues, from a women’s right to choose — Houlahan is pro-choice, McCauley is not. Houlahan supports “common sense” gun safety measures, such as universal background checks, closing the gun shot loophole, restricting high-capacity magazines and renewing the federal Assault Weapon ban. 

Lastly, with the excesses of the Trump Administration and what appears to be ongoing aiding and abetting of obstruction of justice by some members of the U.S. House of Representatives (and little more than allegedly angry Tweets from GOP members who disagree), never before has it been more important to elect house members who will serve as a check to the more outlandish actions of the president. We need a Congress that will fulfill its Constitutional duty to  hold the White House accountable. While we have no doubt that Houlahan would do so, we reasonably have doubts whether McCauley — or any Republican, based on the behaviors seen in the last two years — can be trusted to embrace this fundamental duty.

At the end of the day, this is not a difficult choice. Houlahan’s positions are a better match for the largely moderate people of Chester County. Her experience in a wide range of areas will bring much to the halls of Congress badly in need less insular members. And we can trust her to be an advocate for the people, not a small number of powerful special interest groups.

The Times endorses Chrissy Houlahan for Congress from the Sixth District of Pennsylvania.

The Philadelphia Inquirer, 10/14/18

Pennsylvania's Sixth Congressional District: Democrat Chrissy Houlahan, a military veteran, has prioritized gun-control in her campaign, holding in September a meeting with gun-violence survivors, activists, and Kelly and Giffords. Giffords, Everytown and the Brady Campaign endorsed her. She favors universal background checks, renewing the assault weapons ban, restricting high-capacity magazines, and allowing the CDC to study gun violence.

Republican Greg McCauley, an NRA member, says he supports both "common-sense gun safety" and the Second Amendment. He backs expanding background checks, raising the purchase age for semiautomatic firearms to 21, and expanding mental health care. He also supports concealed carry reciprocity, fortifying schools, and armed officers in schools, and opposes renewing an assault weapons ban.

Chrissy Houlahan Democrat fro Congress
Chrissy is a woman who gets things done. Our small company, AND 1, grew from $5 million in revenues to over $250 million largely because of her creativeness and commitment to her team. She is a great business leader.
— Seth Berger, CEO And 1 Basketball
As a fierce advocate for high quality jobs with dignity and responsible stewardship of the community and the environment, Chrissy is a compassionate entrepreneur who uses her business acumen as a force for good.
— Jay Coen Gilbert, Co-Founder B Lab
Chrissy is a tireless advocate for giving low-income students access to the educational opportunities all children deserve. By combining her experience in the boardroom and the classroom, Chrissy is uniquely positioned to make lasting impact.
— Alejandro Gac-Artigas, Founder/CEO Springboard Collaborative