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October 21, 2014

Posts in "Democrats"

June 10, 2013

Poll: Booker Starts Special Election Way Ahead #NJSEN

A Quinnipiac University poll released Monday morning found Newark Mayor Cory Booker with a substantial lead over his Democratic primary opponents in the New Jersey Senate special election.

As the most well-known of three Democrats expected to qualify for the primary, Booker took 53 percent, Rep. Rush D. Holt took 10 percent and Rep. Frank Pallone Jr. received 9 percent. Twenty-three percent were undecided.

Booker’s name recognition and positive image — 57 percent view him favorably, 14 percent unfavorably — pushed him to the front of the pack at the starting gun of the two-month sprint to the nomination. Petitions to qualify for the primary ballots are due at 4 p.m. Monday. The primary is scheduled for Aug. 13, and the special election will take place Oct. 16. Full story

June 6, 2013

Endorsement Squabble Continues in California Race (Updated) #CA31

Updated June 7, 11:04 a.m. | The debacle over former Rep. Joe Baca’s announced endorsements continued Thursday, when four local leaders declined to support the Democrat’s candidacy for California’s 31st District anymore.

Baca touted these four local leaders on a lengthy endorsement sheet a few weeks back. But now they’re backing one of Baca’s Democratic challengers, lawyer Eloise Gomez Reyes, according to an endorsement announcement provided exclusively to CQ Roll Call by her campaign.

The defectors include former Baca staffer and community college trustee Jess Vizcaino, Inland Empire Utilities Agency Director Angel Santiago, and local businessmen Gary Liaou and Leno Moreno.

“I saw them on his list and I called them because they have endorsed me,” Reyes said in a Thursday phone interview. “And there’s no question that they have been supporters of Joe’s in the past, but they are supporting me. Many of us have supported Joe in the past, but it is time for something different, a fresh perspective in Washington.”

In an interview with CQ Roll Call, Baca called Reyes’ endorsement release an attempt to mischaracterize him and attack his integrity.

Full story

June 5, 2013

Democrats Line Up for Senate Special Election #NJSEN

Democrats Line Up for Senate Special Election #NJSEN

Holt will run for Senate. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

At least two Democratic members of Congress from New Jersey are likely to run in the special election to fill the remaining term of the late Sen. Frank R. Lautenberg, D-N.J.

No one has officially entered the race yet; Lautenberg’s funeral was held Wednesday and he’ll be buried on Friday. But the Monday deadline to file petitions to make it onto the Aug. 13 primary ballot is forcing potential candidates to move quickly behind the scenes.

The GOP field remains murky, but the Democratic field is shaping up to include Newark Mayor Cory Booker and Reps. Frank Pallone Jr. and Rush D. Holt. Full story

June 3, 2013

Christie Holds Keys to Lautenberg Succession (Updated) #NJSEN

Christie Holds Keys to Lautenberg Succession (Updated) #NJSEN

Christie faces a big decision in deciding whom to appoint to Lautenberg's seat. (Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated 6:45 p.m. | The Monday morning death of Sen. Frank R. Lautenberg, D-N.J., who had already been planning to retire, shifted the race to replace him into overdrive — with an imminent appointment of an interim senator looming and the potential for a special election this November.

Yet significant confusion remained over the state’s election law statute to replace him: Either a special election would be held sometime this year, possibly in November, or in November 2014, when Lautenberg’s seat was up anyway.

Party strategists are anxiously awaiting a decision from GOP Gov. Chris Christie, whose office was considering its options within the law for whether to hold a special this year — and, if so, when — and whom to appoint as a placeholder. Immediate speculation about an appointment centered on former GOP Gov. Tom Kean, along with a handful of other potential picks. Full story

May 30, 2013

Aloha, Campaign Manager #HISEN | Shop Talk

Hawaii Sen. Brian Schatz has hired Clay Schroers to manage his campaign for next year’s highly competitive Democratic primary.

Schroers was born and raised in Hawaii. He has managed several congressional races, including New York Rep. Dan Maffei’s successful comeback bid last year. He also served as an aide to Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann.

Full story

May 29, 2013

Baca Releases Endorsement Signature Sheet (Updated) #CA31

Baca Releases Endorsement Signature Sheet (Updated) #CA31

Baca is running for Congress again. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated 8:05 a.m. | Under fire for touting questionable member endorsements, former Rep. Joe Baca, D-Calif., released on Wednesday the signatures of several House Democrats indicating their support for his campaign.

Baca sent CQ Roll Call a PDF of the signature sign-up sheet — including the autographs of two Democrats who have since disputed they ever agreed to support him in California’s heated 31st District primary.

Last week, Baca announced that 30 House Democrats had endorsed him, including House Assistant Minority Leader James E. Clyburn and Rep. Terri A. Sewell of Alabama. But on Tuesday, Clyburn said through a spokesman that he did not endorse Baca in the highly contested primary and insisted he was staying neutral in the race.

Sewell followed suit, also saying through a spokeswoman that she, too, did not endorse Baca.

Late Wednesday evening, Clyburn’s Communications Director Patrick Devlin sought to clear up  any confusion over the endorsement debacle in an email.

Full story

Why Some Democrats Aren’t Happy About Bachmann’s Exit

Why Some Democrats Arent Happy About Bachmanns Exit

Not every Democrat is happy about Bachmann's decision not to seek re-election. (Douglas Graham/Roll Call File Photo)

Not every Democrat is cheering Rep. Michele Bachmann’s upcoming exit from Congress — specifically the party’s bean counters.

The conservative firebrand’s decision not to run for re-election takes a lucrative fundraising tool off the table for Democrats.

“After Joe Walsh and Allen West were defeated, she was by far the most lucrative voice for Democrats in the GOP caucus,” said one top Democratic operative who has worked at a committee. “Direct mail writers are going to have to cultivate new villains.”

The Minnesota Republican’s controversial statements and her mantle as one of the tea party’s loudest advocates on Capitol Hill made her the perfect foil in fundraising solicitations from Democratic campaign committees and candidates. She was among a select crew of rank-and-file GOP House members with national profiles and names capable of prompting Democratic donors to give. Full story

May 28, 2013

Second Democrat Disputes Baca Endorsement Claim #CA31

A second House Democrat has disputed former Rep. Joe Baca’s claim that she endorsed him in a heated primary for California’s 31st District.

Rep. Terri A. Sewell, D-Ala., said through a spokeswoman that she did not endorse Baca’s candidacy and that she is instead supporting his primary challenger, Redlands Mayor Pete Aguilar. Aguilar has the backing of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.

“She is supporting the DCCC’s efforts to elect Pete Aguilar,” said Sewell’s chief of staff, Nichole Francis, in an email. Full story

Baca: Clyburn Gave Me Endorsement in Writing #CA31

Baca: Clyburn Gave Me Endorsement in Writing #CA31

Clyburn says he will stay neutral in this primary. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Former Rep. Joe Baca, D-Calif., insisted Assistant House Minority Leader James E. Clyburn endorsed his campaign in writing — despite a Tuesday report that the South Carolina Democrat would stay neutral in the heated 31st District primary.

“He signed the endorsement, and I have his signature on a sign-up sheet along with other members who signed on that same day,” Baca told CQ Roll Call on Tuesday. “Other members signed the same sheet.”

Earlier, Clyburn said through his spokesman, Patrick Devlin, that any reports he had endorsed Baca were “incorrect” and “he is staying out of the nomination primary.”

The squabble exacerbates tensions among Democrats for the 31st District — one of the party’s top pickup prospects in 2014. The campaign arm for House Democrats is supporting Redlands Mayor Pete Aguilar’s bid over Baca’s comeback campaign there. Last cycle, Baca lost re-election to Rep. Gloria Negrete McLeod, D-Calif., in the nearby 35th District.

Full story

May 24, 2013

Democrat Noncommittal on Pelosi #NY11 | The Candidate

Democrat Noncommittal on Pelosi #NY11 | The Candidate

Recchia, above, is challenging Grimm. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Editor’s Note: Every year, scores of congressional candidates visit the CQ Roll Call offices to meet with reporters and Contributing Editor Stuart Rothenberg. This new feature, “The Candidate,” will ask these congressional hopefuls five questions about their campaigns. Responses and questions have been edited and condensed.

Have a question for a candidate? We’ll announce their visits via Twitter, and you can tweet your inquiry to @RollCall or email politics@cqrollcall.com.

The candidate: New York City Council Member Domenic M. Recchia Jr.
The member: Two-term Rep. Michael G. Grimm, R-N.Y.
The district: Nearly three-quarters of this district is in Staten Island, but it also crosses New York Harbor into Brooklyn. President Barack Obama won the 11th District’s vote 52 percent to 47 percent, but Grimm won the seat by 7 points.
The candidate’s team: Jefrey Pollock of Global Strategy Group (polling); the rest of the team has yet to be announced.

1. You raised $412,000 last quarter. How much will you need to compete in the New York City media market?

Four million dollars.

2. You live in Brooklyn, but a majority of voters in this district live on Staten Island. How do you bridge that divide? 

It’s not a question of Brooklyn versus Staten Island. It’s a question of the whole district is going to be represented by someone who is out there that understands the issues, who’s going to stand up for the middle class … who has a record of delivering four [city] budgets on time without raising taxes, prevented firehouses from being closed on Staten Island, working with the people, and is able to bring the resources that are needed to Staten Island.

My family lives on Staten Island. My mother lives there. My three sisters live there. My nieces and nephews. I talk to people every day. My father built on Staten Island before the bridge was up. I have a lot of contacts with Staten Island.

[After the jump: Recchia on former Rep. Anthony Weiner's mayoral campaign and his favorite Coney Island ride.]

Full story

May 22, 2013

House Democrats Fete Top Recruits in D.C.

House Democrats Fete Top Recruits in D.C.

Israel is bringing his top recruits to town. (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated 2:43 p.m. | The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee will host a reception Wednesday night for its best recruits, according to an invitation obtained by CQ Roll Call.

Launched earlier this month, the Jumpstart program “provides early financial, communications, operational and strategic support to help top-tier candidates get a head start in these highly-targeted races,” according to a memo sent to donors and supporters upon the program’s launch.

The invitation does not list the Jumpstart candidates, but the DCCC previously announced the group. The group is: Full story

Ten House Democrats Endorse Pete Aguilar #CA31

Ten House Democrats Endorse Pete Aguilar #CA31

Baca is running for congress again. (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Ten Democrats in California’s congressional delegation announced their support Wednesday morning for Redlands Mayor Pete Aguilar for the 31st District.

Their endorsements are likely an effort to push other Democratic candidates out of this competitive race — including an ex-colleague, former Rep. Joe Baca.

The party had primary problems in this district last cycle, when a bevy of candidates splintered the Democratic vote, allowing two Republicans to head to the general election. California’s primary allows the top two candidates, regardless of party, to advance to the general.

This election cycle is looking like déjà vu for Democrats in the 31st District, which is a targeted race again. In 2012, Republican Rep. Gary G. Miller won re-election in this district that President Barack Obama carried. Full story

May 20, 2013

Michelle Nunn Senate Announcement Coming Soon

After appearing at a weekend fundraiser for Senate Democrats, party leaders expect Michelle Nunn to make a final decision on the Georgia Senate race within weeks.

“The national party is working with Michelle, and I think we will probably have an announcement relatively soon on whether she’s in or not,” Georgia Democratic Party Chairman Mike Berlon said Monday. “We just want to get somebody out there early enough before the election that we can actually get behind them and start putting a structure together.”

The philanthropist and daughter of former Sen. Sam Nunn, D-Ga., appeared at a Sunday fundraiser in Atlanta for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee. President Barack Obama was the featured guest at the event, with DSCC Chairman Michael Bennet and Executive Director Guy Cecil also in attendance.

A DSCC spokesman declined to comment on whether Nunn was preparing to announce a bid. Full story

Democratic Fundraiser Mulls Run for Melvin Watt Seat

Democratic Fundraiser Mulls Run for Melvin Watt Seat

Watt has been nominated for a post in the Obama administration. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Scott Dworkin, a Democratic fundraiser, is considering a run for North Carolina’s 12th District, he confirmed to CQ Roll Call  Monday morning.

Dworkin joins the long list of Democrats mulling whether to enter the race. President Barack Obama nominated the district’s current member, longtime Democratic Rep. Melvin Watt, to lead the Federal Housing Finance Agency earlier this month.

May 16, 2013

EMILY’s List Backs Six House Candidates

EMILY’s List, an organization that backs female Democratic candidates who support abortion rights, rolled out six candidates who made their “On the List” designation.

Most of the EMILY’s List candidates are in line with the plans of other Democratic groups, but at least one has the potential to upset other national Democratic groups.

“On the List” is a tier below the group’s full endorsements, which are typically doled out later in the cycle.

Those “On the List” are:

California’s 31st: Attorney Eloise Reyes
Incumbent: Republican Rep. Gary G. Miller
This race is one of  the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s biggest regrets from 2012. This EMILY’s List support could complicate Democratic plans. They lost this winnable seat in 2012 because no Democrat made it through California’s jungle primary system. This year, the DCCC has made it plain that it prefers Redlands Mayor Pete Aguilar. Former Democratic Rep. Joe Baca is also running for the seat after losing re-election in another district. Until making EMILY’s List, Reyes was hardly mentioned in campaign coverage, but the backing gives her credibility. No organized Republican has emerged as a threat to block out Democrats again, but a primary with three organized candidates has to make Democrats nervous.

Full story

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