Feb 23, 2021
NRSC chair Scott calls for party unity: The Republican Civil War is now cancelled
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Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.), chair of the campaign arm for Senate Republicans, called for the party to unite amid concerns that internal divisions could hurt them in the 2022 midterms.
In a memo released by the National Senatorial Campaign Committee (NRSC) addressed to “Republican voters, activists, leaders, donors,” Scott sounded the alarm over Democrats' policies, stating that unity is necessary to win back the House and Senate next year.
The Florida Republican noted some within the GOP may be ready for a fight between the establishment and far-right wings of the party, telling them to “save it for another day” and that “The Republican Civil War is now cancelled.”
“Perhaps in more genteel times, a bunch of infighting and arguing wouldn’t do much damage. Truthfully, I enjoy bantering back and forth, and I have no interest in trying to quell intraparty policy dialogue and debates,” Scott wrote. “But now is not the time for division and here’s why: For the first time in any of our lives, socialism has become the unabashed, governing policy of the Democrat Party.”
“To beat this threat — the threat of socialism, crushing debt, loss of freedom — we must focus on addition, not subtraction; on looking forward, not backward,” he added. “Hopefully, at some point in the future, we will have beaten this threat back and find ourselves strong enough to afford self-indulgent divisions. But that day is not today.”
Scott’s memo comes as party operatives voice concerns that internal divisions, mainly over support for former President TrumpDonald TrumpFauci: U.S. political divide over masks led to half a million COVID-19 deaths Georgia bishop says state GOP's elections bill is an 'attempt to suppress the Black vote' Trump closer to legal jeopardy after court ruling on tax returns MORE and his role in the party moving forward, could cost them in a midterm cycle. The GOP is just a handful of seats away from retaking the House and the Senate.
Those divisions broke open last month following the Jan. 6 riot on Capitol Hill, with some Republican lawmakers saying Trump’s repeated claims that the November election was “stolen” from him helped fuel the insurrection. Ten House Republicans ultimately impeached him over the mob, and seven GOP senators voted to convict the former president.
Trump has warned these Republicans that he could support primary challengers who align with his policies.
"Where necessary and appropriate, I will back primary rivals who espouse Making America Great Again and our policy of America First. We want brilliant, strong, thoughtful, and compassionate leadership," he said in a statement earlier this month.
Scott urged Republicans to rally around Trump’s message, pointing to Trump’s high popularity with the Republican base that remains after he left office. Scott also noted the former president won 74 million votes in November – the second highest total of any White House contender behind President BidenJoe BidenTikTok users spread conspiracy that Texas snow was manufactured by the government The problem with a one-size-fits-all federal minimum wage hike Throwing money at Central America will not curb illegal migration MORE.
“President Trump brought many working-class voters our way, and Hispanic voters are increasingly inclined to vote Republican. Meanwhile, the Democrats have become the party of the elites, the naïve, and the socialist left, giving us tremendous opportunity to recapture our historic strength in America’s suburbs,” he wrote.
“Some of you voted for President Trump enthusiastically, some with reservations, and some with great reluctance. It doesn’t matter. We got 74 million votes, and we can easily add to our numbers if we work together,” he added.
Republicans are hopeful they can retake both chambers of Congress next year given that the party in the White House often loses seats in the first midterm of a new administration. The GOP only needs to flip five seats to win back the House, and a net gain of one will win it control of the Senate.
While Republicans will be able to go on the offensive in states like Arizona and Georgia, they are defending open seats in North Carolina, Ohio and Pennsylvania and will also have to defend Sen. Ron JohnsonRonald (Ron) Harold JohnsonGraham, Trump huddle to talk GOP's 2022 strategy Officers set for grilling over mob attack Journalism has been 'Jerry Springerized' MORE’s seat in Wisconsin.Tags Rick Scott Ron Johnson Donald J. Trump Donald Trump Joe Biden National Republican Senatorial Committee capitol hill riot
News Source: thehill.com
2021 Fantasy Baseball: Favorite draft targets from the NL Central
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Our fantasy baseball analysts reveal their favorite draft target on each of the five National League Central teams. This could be a perceived draft value, an emerging star they're picking everywhere, or anything in between.
[Batter up: Join or sign up for a fantasy baseball league now]St. Louis Cardinals
Andy: This team is annoyingly good on paper, thanks in part to the generosity of the Rockies. Sigh. There are plenty of interesting Cardinals for fantasy purposes, so choosing one is kinda tricky. Jordan Hicks might be my favorite value at the moment. It sounds like he’s fully recovered from elbow surgery, he throws a zillion miles an hour, and he has closing credentials. Giovanny Gallegos is typically drafted ahead of Hicks, but he’s not actually the clear favorite for saves.
Dalton: Jordan Hicks was just clocked at 102 mph, and Giovanny Gallegos is another terrific option at the end of St. Louis’ bullpen, but part of the reason Alex Reyes’ ADP remains so low is his undefined role. Well, that and a long history of injury and underperformance. Still, Reyes is a former top prospect with elite stuff, and if he’s finally truly healthy, he’s capable of being dominant as a starter or in relief. You’ll want Reyes on your fantasy team the year he finally figures it out.
Scott: Carlos Martinez was a fantasy rock for four straight seasons and all was groovy. Then came an injury-ripped 2019, and last year’s COVID mess. This is an excused absence. I’ll scout him closely all spring, and be ready to pounce if I like what I see. He’s still just 29.© Provided by Yahoo! Sports Jordan Hicks and his cannon arm. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee) Milwaukee Brewers
Andy: I’m all-in on the changes Corbin Burnes made to his pitch mix in 2020. Good luck with his cutter, everyone. Milwaukee offers run-support and a lights-out bullpen, too. Burnes has a clear shot at a top-10 pitching finish.
Dalton: Freddy Peralta isn’t even a lock to open the year in the starting rotation, but he’s being stretched out as we speak. His K-BB% (28.0) would’ve ranked top-five had he qualified last year when he had a better expected ERA than Gerrit Cole and Clayton Kershaw. Peralta is introducing a slider to combat lefties, and the addition of Kolten Wong’s glove up the middle should be a big help as well. There isn’t a pitcher going later in drafts with more upside than Peralta.
Scott: I’ve been chasing a career breakout for Kolten Wong, and it hasn’t happened yet. But we’re just a season removed from a .285 average, 11 homers, 24 steals, and when you imagine those numbers in the 2021 context at second base (it’s messy) — sounds pretty good to me. Wong’s outstanding defense marks a spot in the lineup.Chicago Cubs
Andy: This team has behaved recently like a small-market club that lacks revenue streams, which, of course, is precisely what it’s not. But still, the Cubs have some interesting pieces. Over the past two years, Ian Happ has homered 23 times in just 115 games (387 PAs), so it’s easy to imagine him delivering 30-plus homers in the season ahead. He carries 2B-3B-OF eligibility, too.
Dalton: I’m mostly tossing Javier Baez’s ugly 2020 out the window, happily scooping him up in drafts at a discounted ADP. He’s still just 28 years old and was a truly elite fantasy option not long ago. Wrigley Field oddly played as MLB’s toughest place to hit by a wide margin during last year’s weird and shortened season, something unlikely to occur again. Baez should also benefit from the return of in-game video, so he’s someone to target.
[Draft Rankings: C | 1B | 2B | SS | 3B | OF | SP | RP]
Scott: I like my pitchers smart and I like them with good control; Kyle Hendricks checks those boxes. He’s also more useful than you might imagine for strikeouts because he can work deep into games — a rare thing in the shape of today’s game. I know we all want those fire-breathing dragons on the mound, but there will always be a place for the thinking-man’s ace who can put a pitch anywhere he wants to.Cincinnati Reds
Andy: Tyler Mahle scrapped his slider completely in 2019, then reintroduced it as a devastating finishing pitch in 2020. Just look at this thing. He produced a career-best K/9 (11.3) and swinging-strike rate (13.8%) and I see no reason the good times can’t continue.
Dalton: Eugenio Suarez is one season removed from hitting 49 homers and is currently in the “best shape of his life” after a down 2020 following shoulder surgery. Great American Ballpark has increased homers for righties an MLB-high 30% over the last three seasons, and I have Suarez ranked ahead of Nolan Arenado, whose Yahoo ADP is 60 spots higher.
Scott: I feel like the Jesse Winker breakout has mostly happened already, but some bad luck and poor timing have held him back from completely exploding. But look at the career slash: .280/.380/.479, an OPS+ 23 percent better than league average. On the right team, he’d be accepted as a star. I just hope the Reds leave him alone, not to mention the injury gods. It’s an age-27 season — giddy-up.Pittsburgh Pirates
Andy: Yeah, um … I’m stumped. Can’t say I see a must-draft player on the Pirates right at this moment. It should go without saying that Ke’Bryan Hayes won’t sustain last season’s torrid pace (.376/.442/.682 in 95 PAs), but I don’t think he’ll regress to anything dreadful. I like him to hit 15-20 homers with double-digit base-stealing potential.
Dalton: Gregory Polanco is a nice bounce-back candidate still in his prime with legit 25/25 potential. After erroneous reports of him suffering a broken wrist in Winter League, he reported to spring training fully healthy and could quickly find himself hitting in the middle of Pirates’ lineup during a contract year.
Scott: Richard Rodriguez was great last year in the Pittsburgh bullpen, but given this is the one lousy team in the NL Central, few noticed. Relievers can be highly volatile from season to season, but we have to assume R-Rod will be given the first chance at Pittsburgh's ninth inning. Save projections must be tempered, but he still has a shot at 20 or more handshakes.