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Posts in "Democrats"
October 25, 2012
The campaign of Sen. Claire McCaskill (D) is launching three new ads statewide today that feature comments by Missourians.
“We’ve been hearing a number of things that are pretty consistent no matter where we go and who we’re talking to across the state,” campaign manager Adrianne Marsh told reporters. ”And it’s related to things that are important to them, like veterans care and Medicare, Social Security, student loans, minimum wage — the very things themes that we’ve been talking about on this campaign since the beginning.”
Speaking on a conference call with reporters, Marsh said they encountered the individuals featured in the ads in a variety of venues across the state. Many of the individuals featured criticize the positions of GOP challenger Rep. Todd Akin. Several of the individuals featured are wearing St. Louis Cardinals apparel.
The political world has spent the last 40 hours or so issuing condemnations or statements of support for Indiana Treasurer Richard Mourdock (R), who made a controversial debate comment that pregnancies resulting from rape are “something that God intended to happen.”
Mourdock and national Republicans have his bid against Rep. Joe Donnelly (D) riding on how the story plays out. Democrats have resoundingly criticized Mourdock, and Republicans are split in their statements.
Democrats sent a flurry of press releases when Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) considered withdrawing his support for Mourdock in a pre-taped CNN appearance on Wednesday night. McCain said his support for Mourdock was contingent on whether he “owned up” to the comments and that Mourdock needed to ask for forgiveness.
But this morning, a McCain spokesman explained that Mourdock still has the lawmaker’s support. Full story
October 23, 2012
The Senate campaign of Rep. Todd Akin (R) has taken the unusual step of posting an email exchange with a reporter on its campaign website.
On Tuesday afternoon, the campaign posted an email exchange between Akin senior adviser Rick Tyler and Kevin McDermott, a political reporter for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, in which McDermott sought a response from the Akin campaign for a story he was writing.
“I guess when you’re down double-digits and your campaign is the laughingstock of the election cycle, maybe they figure they have nothing left to lose. But it doesn’t say a lot about their integrity and seriousness as a Senate campaign,” one GOP strategist said in response to the post.
October 22, 2012
GOP Rep. Todd Akin said today that many of the issues being debated in the Missouri Senate race are “distractions” from the topics voters most care about.
“If the race is going to be decided on distractions, then that’s not good for us,” Akin said in an interview with KMOV in St. Louis. “But if people take a look and say what kind of country do we want to live in for the next four years, they’re going to take a look at the record.”
Akin, who is challenging Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill, has been plagued by a series of controversial statements. In an indication of the difficulty that Akin is having keeping the focus on his message, the portion of today’s KMOV interview that aired on the local 6 p.m. news in St. Louis pertained exclusively to the controversies, including one that took place Monday.
“If Claire McCaskill were a dog, she’d be a ‘Bullshitsu’,” top Akin adviser Rick Tyler said on Twitter. For now, McCaskill’s re-election campaign is content to allow Akin and his political adviser’s comments to speak for themselves.
MARIETTA, Ohio — State Treasurer Josh Mandel’s internal polling shows a statistically tied race with Sen. Sherrod Brown (D), and the Republican says he has a path to victory even if Mitt Romney doesn’t win the crucial Buckeye State.
According to a Public Opinion Strategies poll taken Oct. 16-17, Mandel and Brown were virtually tied at 44 percent to 43 percent.
Most recent independent public polling shows Brown with a high single-digit lead, and Roll Call continues to rate this race as Leans Democratic. Republicans privately acknowledge Romney must win the Buckeye State for Mandel to succeed in toppling Brown.
But Mandel disputes that.
“While I believe he’s going to win and I’m doing everything I can to help him, we believe we have a path to victory, whether or not he wins,” Mandel said during an interview Friday on a downtown stoop in this river town bordering West Virginia. Full story
October 21, 2012
Rep. Todd Akin made another impolitic statement Saturday that is gaining traction with national media outlets.
This time, the Missouri Republican, who is challenging Sen. Claire McCaskill (D), made an analogy in which he compared his female opponent to a dog.
“She goes to Washington, D.C., it’s a little bit like one of those dogs, ‘fetch,’” Akin said at a campaign event Saturday in Springfield, according to PoliticMo, which obtained the audio clip. Full story
HOPKINTON, Mass. — Former Sen. Max Cleland (D-Ga.) told the story here on Saturday of how he came to politics. It began with an undergraduate, floundering at Stetson University, who came upon a picture of fellow students meeting then-Attorney General Robert Kennedy.
As Cleland, a triple-amputee Vietnam War veteran who served in the Senate from 1997 to 2003, spoke about the spark of inspiration that photo lit in his mind, Kennedy’s grandson, Congressional candidate Joe Kennedy III, stood behind him.
Cleland, 70, on a tour of events in support of Democratic Senate nominee Elizabeth Warren, took a few minutes to reflect on the meaning of Kennedy, 32, introducing him. And then he gave the candidate, running for the open seat in the 4th district, his endorsement.
“Hearing Joe talk about public service, I wouldn’t be here at all without some of his forebearers,” he told a rapt audience. Full story
October 20, 2012
Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., who is on his way back to the Mayo Clinic, is robocalling his constituents in Illinois’ 2nd district, asking for their patience and promising to continue to serve the district at some point in the future.
“For nearly 18 years I have served the people of the second district, I am anxious to return to work on your behalf, but at this time it is against medical advice, and while I will always give my all to my constituents, I ask for your continued patience as I work to get my health back,” the Democrat says in the call, according to the Chicago Sun-Times. Full story
MELROSE, Mass. — Top Senate surrogates descended on Massachusetts this weekend to stump for their party’s candidates and gin up excitement in the competitive Senate race and rough and tumble Congressional contest here.
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) this morning stood shoulder to shoulder with Sen. Scott Brown (R) on a stage surrounded by hundreds of sign-waving supporters.
After Brown gave a fiery version of his stump speech, McCain took the microphone. “I’ve been traveling the country for various candidates,” said McCain, who received a hero’s welcome of loud and sustained applause. “This man is the one I want most in the United States Senate working side by side.”
Later, McCain smiled and shook hands on stage with Congressional candidate Richard Tisei, who had spoken earlier. Full story
October 19, 2012
The National Republican Senatorial Committee raised $12.9 million last month, the committee announced today.
That strong monthly haul is about $2.7 million less than its Democratic counterpart, which announced bringing in $15.6 million in September. The NRSC raised a total of $25 million in the third quarter, and ended September with $23.1 million in cash on hand.
Republicans have an opportunity to win a majority in the Senate, which Democrats currently control 53-47.
Democratic-aligned House Majority PAC announced this morning that it will begin running a stinging television ad in Tennessee’s 4th district against freshman Republican Rep. Scott DesJarlais.
The ad highlights the barrage of negative headlines and TV news coverage after a Huffington Post report of a transcript from a more-than-decade-old phone call in which DesJarlais, then a doctor, urged a pregnant mistress to get an abortion. The woman was a patient of the conservative anti-abortion doctor-turned-lawmaker.
Rep. Joe Walsh asserted Thursday night that an abortion is “absolutely” never medically necessary to save a woman’s life because of “modern technology and science,” according to multiple local media accounts.
The Illinois Republican does not support abortion in any circumstance — including in cases of rape, incest or to save the life of the woman — and the issue was a focus of his debate with Democratic challenger Tammy Duckworth.
“With modern technology and science, you can’t find one instance” of a woman’s life being endangered by pregnancy, Walsh said after the debate in response to a reporter’s question. “There is no such exception as life of the mother, and as far as health of the mother, same thing.” Full story
October 18, 2012
Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill and GOP Rep. Todd Akin used the final Missouri Senate debate to talk about issues close to home, but the exchange of the night came on foreign policy.
Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) became a focus of the discussion, with McCaskill and Akin disagreeing on his proposal to restrict foreign aid to a variety of countries — even if neither candidate could quite remember which ones the Kentucky Republican meant to reference.
“I am, in fact, the one that’s supporting the fact that we should not be giving foreign money to a number of places, and that includes of course Libya and Pakistan and — let’s see, one other country as well …” Akin said.
McCaskill offered up “Syria,” in a moment reminiscent of when Mitt Romney pitched in to try to help Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) remember which Cabinet departments he planned to eliminate during a presidential primary debate earlier this year.
The third country on Paul’s list is Egypt.
In a rarely used debate format, Wisconsin Senate candidates Tommy Thompson (R), a former governor, and Rep. Tammy Baldwin (D) were permitted to directly spar with each other in unmoderated six-minute chunks on topics picked by voters.
The hourlong debate in Wausau played very much like an extended, spliced-together greatest hits video of Thompson and Baldwin campaign ads, an at times heated back-and-forth defined more by established talking points than off-the-cuff remarks. Given that predictability, and in a race that’s too close to call 19 days before Election Day, it’s unclear whether either candidate was able to sway the few remaining undecided voters in ways their media operations can’t.
The debaters addressed the 2010 health care law, with Baldwin in favor and Thompson opposed; the deficit crisis, with Baldwin calling for higher-earning Americans to pay more and Thompson accusing the Democrat of being a tax-and-spender; and even Wisconsin’s own vice presidential candidate, with Baldwin calling Rep. Paul Ryan’s budget extreme and Thompson trying to distance himself after telling reporters in August that “most people know that Paul and I are close friends and that we teamed up on many issues, especially on Medicare.”
An NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist poll released earlier this evening had Baldwin leading Thompson 49 percent to 45 percent. A Marquette University poll released Wednesday had Thompson leading Baldwin 46 percent to 45 percent. Sources on both sides of the aisle, in Wisconsin and in Washington, D.C., say that Wisconsin’s Senate contest is among the most competitive in the country and could be decisive in determining the chamber’s majority. Roll Call rates the race as a Tossup.
A prominent House Democrat today came to the aid of Sal Pace, who is challenging Rep. Scott Tipton (R) in Colorado’s 3rd district.
Rep. Chris Van Hollen (Md.), the top Democrat on the Budget Committee, joined Pace on a conference call with reporters to attack Tipton’s support for the policies of House Budget Chairman and GOP vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan (Wis.). Pace, who is in a competitive race with Tipton, has linked Tipton to Ryan’s budget because Tipton voted for it.
“It’s no secret that I’ve been talking about how disasterous the Tipton-Ryan budget would be,” Pace said during the conference call. He added that former presidential candidate and ex-Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.) referred to the budget as “right-wing social engineering.” Full story