Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
May 29, 2015

May 28, 2015

Carol Shea-Porter ‘Ready to Win’ N.H. Seat Back

Shea-Porter is contemplating a fourth rematch in New Hampshire. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Shea-Porter is signaling she wants a fourth rematch with Guinta next fall in New Hampshire. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Former Democratic Rep. Carol Shea-Porter of New Hampshire told supporters in an email Thursday she is “ready to win” back the seat she was ousted from in 2014.

Shea-Porter has been contemplating another rematch with Rep. Frank Guinta, the Republican she has sparred with since the 2010 cycle who is currently embattled in a campaign finance scandal. While it’s unclear whether Shea-Porter is running again in 2016, her declarative statement is a clear sign she is moving closer to another comeback bid in the Granite State’s 1st District.

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May 27, 2015

Why Titus Won’t Run for Reid’s Senate Seat

Titus will seek re-election in Nevada's 1st District. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Titus will seek re-election in Nevada’s 1st District instead of running for the Senate seat that Reid is vacating. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Some jobs are too good to risk. Even for a Senate bid.

That’s how Nevada Rep. Dina Titus feels about her job representing the state’s 1st District.

“I’d hate to start over as a freshman in the Senate from a small state,” she told CQ Roll Call Wednesday afternoon.

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Veteran Democratic Consultants Launch New Media Firm

Ken Morley and Philip de Vellis, two longtime Democratic political operatives, have joined forces to launch Beacon Media — a Democratic media consulting firm based in Washington, D.C.

“We formed Beacon Media to provide Democratic candidates and issue advocacy groups with advertising that combines groundbreaking creative with a solid strategic foundation that leverages the latest delivery technology to reach voters in today’s fractured media landscape,” de Vellis said in a news release, provided to CQ Roll Call.

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May 26, 2015

Democrats Search for Candidate Who Can Beat Coffman

Coffman is a top target for Democrats in 2016. ( Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Coffman is a top target for Democrats in 2016. ( Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

After two consecutive cycles of trying and failing to oust Republican Rep. Mike Coffman from his Colorado swing district, Democrats are searching for the right candidate to take him out once and for all.

Coffman has proved resilient over his four terms. He has been a top Democratic target since redistricting reshaped his solidly Republican district into a more competitive one. After a tight race in 2012, defeating his opponent by 2 points, he easily toppled former state Speaker Andrew Romanoff by 9 points last fall.

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Kirkpatrick to Challenge McCain in Arizona

Kirkpatrick is running for Senate in Arizona. (Jason Dick/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Kirkpatrick is running for Senate in Arizona. (Jason Dick/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated, 2:05 p.m. | Arizona Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick will challenge Republican Sen. John McCain, according to a source with knowledge of Kirkpatrick’s plans, giving Democrats a top recruit and a potential pickup opportunity.

Kirkpatrick made calls Monday to inform people of her plans, the source told CQ Roll Call. Her bid also opens up Arizona’s 1st District, a GOP-leaning seat spanning the northeast quadrant of the state.

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May 22, 2015

Knight: 2nd Quarter Will Quell Fundraising Doubts

UNITED STATES - NOVEMBER 19: Rep.-elect Steve Knight, R-Calif., celebrates after drawing the 1st pick in the room lottery draw and selection for the incoming members of the 114th Congress on Wednesday, Nov. 19, 2014. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Knight, celebrating after drawing the first pick in the Capitol office lottery last November, acknowledges he has to kick up his fund-raising a notch. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Freshman California Republican Steve Knight promises he’ll do much better raising campaign money in the second quarter than he did in the first.

Knight raised less than $29,000 in the first quarter, stirring doubts about his ability to defend his seat in a district that leans only slightly Republican and that President Barack Obama carried in 2008. Full story

May 20, 2015

What Happens If Coffman Says No

Republicans are courting Coffman to run for Senate in 2016. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Republicans want Coffman to run for Senate. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Republicans are trying to recruit Rep. Mike Coffman to challenge Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet in Colorado. If he stays put in the House, that gives the GOP a crop of candidates who could have a harder time in what will be one of Republicans’ few offensive opportunities in 2016.

Coffman will have breakfast Thursday with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who will surely make the case to convince the four-term lawmaker to try and join him across the rotunda. Asked about recruitment efforts, Coffman quipped, “Pressure, pressure, pressure.”

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Sanchez Stumbles Prompt SoCal Angst

Sanchez is running for Senate in California. (By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sanchez had a rough week announcing a Senate bid. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Long shut out of statewide office, Southern California Democrats saw a glimmer of hope last week, when Orange County Rep. Loretta Sanchez announced a bid for the Golden State’s open Senate seat.

But a series of stumbles out of the gate has left some of them hesitant about whether they will back her uphill battle against state Attorney General Kamala Harris — with some waiting on Rep. Xavier Becerra, who is still considering jumping into the primary.

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Stutzman Staffs Up for Senate Bid

Jesmer will help Stutzman’s Senate bid. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

GOP Rep. Marlin Stutzman, who is vacating his House seat to run in Indiana’s open Senate contest, has hired an experienced senior campaign team to help his bid, according to a release provided first to CQ Roll Call.

Democrats, who will attempt to pick up the seat in 2016, are hoping to paint Stutzman as the type of fringe, tea party candidate that has caused the GOP troubles in cycles past. But Stutzman’s senior leadership lineup includes former top aides at the National Republican Senatorial Committee and National Republican Congressional Committee, as well as GOP consultants well-respected on Capitol Hill — a move that signals is willing to shed that image.

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NRSC Raised $4.2 Million in April

nrsc fundraising

Wicker is chairman of the NRSC. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The National Republican Senatorial Committee will report raising more than $4.2 million in April and ending the month with $5 million in cash on hand, according to figures provided to CQ Roll Call.

Its monthly haul allowed the committee to pay down some of its debt from the 2014 cycle, when the party netted nine seats and won control of the Senate for the first time since losing it in 2006. Full story

Heck Close to Senate Bid

Heck has told people he plans to run for Senate. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Heck has told people he plans to run for Senate. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Updated 9:38 a.m. | Rep. Joe Heck has told some Nevada Republicans he is close to deciding to run for Senate, a source told CQ Roll Call Tuesday, and the conversations have prompted speculation among Nevada Republicans that an announcement could come sooner rather than later.

Heck would be a top recruit for Republicans looking to take the seat being vacated by Sen. Harry Reid. The congressman had initially said he would not run, but recently declared he was reconsidering.

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DCCC Outpaces NRCC in April Fundraising (Updated)

nrcc fundraising

Walden is chairman of the NRCC. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated 8 a.m. | The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee slightly outpaced its Republican counterpart in April fundraising, and is now debt-free as the party gears up for the 2016 cycle.

The DCCC raised $5.4 million last month, as opposed to the $5.1 million the National Republican Congressional Committee raised in the same time period.

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Why This Vulnerable Freshman Is Surprising People

Poliquin is making a name for himself in Washington . (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Poliquin might be vulnerable, but he’s making a name for himself in Washington anyway. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

He may be new to the halls of Congress, but when the Energizer Bunny pauses, it’s not for long.

Ray-Bans shading his eyes, Maine Rep. Bruce Poliquin stood on his tip-toes after votes one recent afternoon to whisper in the ear of a guard outside the House chamber. The freshman needed directions.

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May 18, 2015

Scott Walker to Meet and Greet Congress Tuesday (Updated)

Walker will meet with lawmakers Tuesday on Capitol Hill. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Walker will meet with lawmakers Tuesday on Capitol Hill. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated May 19, 9:55 a.m. | When you’re a Midwestern governor pondering a presidential campaign as a Washington outsider, there are plenty of people to meet on Capitol Hill.

And that’s just what Gov. Scott Walker plans to do Tuesday. In addition to meeting with a group of top social conservatives, the Wisconsin Republican has a full schedule of closed-door events with senior congressional aides and lawmakers, including a few senators, according to sources familiar with Walker’s plans.

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Republicans Fear Guinta Scandal Could Imperil 2016

Guinta is facing mounting pressure to resign. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Guinta is facing pressure to resign. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Rep. Frank C. Guinta’s campaign finance troubles could expand from a personal headache to a partywide migraine for New Hampshire Republicans worried about holding his House seat next fall.

Last week, the Federal Election Commission found Guinta violated campaign finance rules by accepting more than $350,000 in illegal campaign contributions, ordering him to pay back the funds along with a $15,000 fine. Guinta has refused to admit wrongdoing, but New Hampshire Sen. Kelly Ayotte Monday became the highest-profile Republican to suggest the congressman step down.

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