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April 21, 2014

Posts in "Fla.-2"

April 18, 2014

Where Is Democratic Super PAC Spending Money? These 24 Districts Get Fall TV Reservations

Where Is Democratic Super PAC Spending Money? These 24 Districts Get Fall TV Reservations

Raul Ruiz, seen here during his 2012 campaign in California, is among the freshmen Democrats getting a boost from a super PAC. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

House Majority PAC, a super PAC with the aim of electing House Democrats, announced its first round of television reservations for the fall.

The reservations, totaling about $6.5 million, are for “the final weeks of the election in 24 districts,” a news release stated.

The super PAC during the 2012 cycle made its first round of reservations in early July in partnership with the Service Employees International Union.

“By placing these reservations early, we will make our dollars go further and ensure we have the air time to effectively fight back against the flood of Koch brothers’ dollars,” House Majority PAC Executive Director Alixandria Lapp said in a statement.

The super PAC is on offensive in six Republican-held districts and on defense in 18 Democratic districts. Often, releasing ad reservations to the press is a means to telegraph to allies, like the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, how outside groups intend to spend money.

Below is a breakdown of the buys, categorized by offensive and defensive targets:

Full story

April 11, 2014

Gwen Graham Turns in Strong Fundraising Quarter

Gwen Graham, an attorney and daughter of former Sen. Bob Graham, D-Fla., raised nearly half a million dollars in the first three months of the year for her congressional bid in Florida.

According to figures provided first to CQ Roll Call, the Democrat raised $485,000 in the first quarter and had $1.4 million in cash on hand at the end of March.

Graham is challenging GOP Rep. Steve Southerland II in Florida’s 2nd District, a top target for national Democrats.

Full story

March 3, 2014

Democrats Announce House Targets for 2014

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee rolled out the first 35 districts of its “Red to Blue” program Monday, highlighting the GOP-held seats the party believes it can flip and open seats it hopes to keep in the Democratic column in the 2014 midterms.

Needing to net 17 seats to win back the House majority, the announcement makes clear where the party believes its most important fights will take place.

“This is our initial roll out,” DCCC Chairman Steve Israel said Monday morning on MSNBC’s “Daily Rundown.” “There will be more, and we will have a very competitive battlefield as we go deeper into the cycle.” Full story

December 17, 2013

Democrats Avoid Primary for Southerland Seat in Florida

Florida Democrat Al Lawson will not run for Congress in 2014, clearing the way for attorney Gwen Graham to cruise to the party’s nomination in the competitive race against Republican Rep. Steve Southerland II, according to The Tallahassee Democrat.

Lawson told the paper in a Tuesday story that he still has “too much debt from two previous congressional campaigns to run again this year.”

Lawson, a former state senator, has strong name identification that would have helped him win the primary. But Florida Democrats were grim about his chances in the general election. He came up short as the Democratic nominee in 2012 against Southerland.

Full story

October 21, 2013

Democratic Super PAC Ad Hits Congressman for Shutdown Vote

A Democratic super PAC hit the airwaves Monday with an ad attacking Rep. Steve Southerland II, criticizing the vulnerable Florida Republican for voting against last week’s bill that ended the government shutdown.

House Majority PAC, which aims to support House candidates, put $70,000 behind the two-week ad television buy.

Full story

October 3, 2013

Democratic Super PAC Slams GOP in Shutdown Ads

Democratic Super PAC Slams GOP in Shutdown Ads

Coffmann is a top Democratic target in 2014. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

House Majority PAC, a super PAC that aims to elect House Democrats, announced Thursday it will unleash a major advertising campaign against nine House Republicans over the shutdown.

The total buy is for a “mid-six figure” sum, according to the political action committee’s spokesman. It will run web and TV ads against Republican Reps. Mike Coffman of Colorado’s 6th District, Steve Southerland II of Florida’s 2nd, Joe Heck of Nevada’s 3rd and David Joyce of Ohio’s 14th.

The buy will also include a “Google and Bing search advertising campaign,” according to a news release, that will target those four Republicans members plus five more:

  • Rep. Gary G. Miller of California’s 31st District
  • Rep. Rodney Davis of Illinois’ 13th District
  • Rep. Michael G. Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania’s 8th District
  • Rep. Michael G. Grimm of New York’s 11th District
  • Rep. John Kline of Minnesota’s 2nd District

The television ads targeting Coffman, Southerland, Heck and Joyce can be seen after the jump.

Full story

September 19, 2013

House Republicans Raise $3 Million for Vulnerable Members

House Republicans Raise $3 Million for Vulnerable Members

Coffman is one of House Republican's most vulnerable members. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The National Republican Congressional Committee will announce it has raised $3 million total for the 20 vulnerable incumbents through its Patriot program, according to figures provided first to Roll Call.

On Thursday, House Republican leaders hosted their second “Patriot Day” of the cycle — a fundraising event that contributed to that $3 million total. The Patriot program provides resources to the party’s most vulnerable House members for their re-election efforts, including fundraising and communications support.

Republican incumbents in the Patriot program include: Full story

August 6, 2013

EMILY’s List Backs Six House Candidates

EMILYs List Backs Six House Candidates

EMILY's List has fully backed Latham's challenger. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

EMILY’s List announced on Tuesday that it would fully endorse six challengers seeking House seats in 2014.

The organization, which backs female Democratic candidates who back abortion rights, will throw its full support behind the following half-dozen candidates:

Full story

August 1, 2013

Democratic Power Broker to Meet With Al Lawson #FL02

A contentious Democratic primary threatens in Florida’s 2nd District and August is shaping up to be a consequential point in the race.

Florida Rep. Corrine Brown plans on traveling to Tallahassee in the coming days to meet with former state Sen. Al Lawson, the party’s 2012 nominee. Lawson is publicly mulling another run, as national Democrats are overtly behind contender Gwen Graham, daughter of former Sen. Bob Graham. Florida Democrats point to Brown as a top power broker in this conflict.

“I would like to say that I’m going to talk with the parties involved and make a decision at that time,” Brown said in a phone interview when asked if she will endorse.

Full story

July 17, 2013

House Fundraising Winners and Losers

House Fundraising Winners and Losers

Love is a fundraising winner in the second quarter of this year. (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Now that all of the House fundraising reports are due, here is CQ Roll Call’s look at the winners and losers in the fundraising game.

Quarterly fundraising offers a quantitative window into the efficiency of a campaign — as well as a candidate’s drive to win. A number of challengers raised more money than incumbents this cycle, while other incumbents are racking up huge sums.

To see a full rundown of the House fundraising landscape, check out CQ Roll Call’s House fundraising chart. Even better: Bookmark it.

Winners:

Rep. Joe Garcia, D-Fla., in the 26th District
$442,000 raised, $801,000 in cash on hand

Garcia’s strong fundraising might be the best news he’s had in a few months. Two members of his official staff resigned during the second quarter amid an investigation into alleged corruption. But despite his legal troubles, he proved to be one of the top House fundraisers in the second quarter.

Former San Diego Councilman Carl DeMaio, a Republican in California’s 52nd District
$488,000 raised, $470,000 in cash on hand

DeMaio raised nearly a half-million dollars to challenge freshman Rep. Scott Peters, a Democrat who brought in $363,000 for this competitive district. Peters still holds the cash-on-hand edge with $526,000 in the bank. Full story

July 10, 2013

Wednesday Fundraising Roundup: Incumbents Announce Big Hauls

Republican and Democratic House campaigns continued to tout their second-quarter hauls Wednesday, but a handful of Republican incumbents posted striking sums around the half-million dollar mark.

From the following numbers released today, it’s clear $400,000 is the new high-bar for campaigns to raise in a quarter:
Strong Incumbent Hauls:
  • #PA08: Republican Rep. Michael G. Fitzpatrick raised $502,000 in his re-election bid, and he will report $681,000 in the bank, according to a national GOP source. He far outpaced his Democratic rival, veteran Kevin Strouse’s, quarter-million-dollar haul.
  • #MN02: Republican Rep. John Kline raised $482,ooo and has $1.1 million in cash on hand, according to the Minneapolis Star Tribune. His Democratic challenger, ex-state Rep. Mike Obermueller lagged behind him, raising $130,000 with $100,000 in the bank. Full story

July 9, 2013

Tuesday Fundraising Roundup: Mooney’s Money

Former Maryland GOP Chairman Alex Mooney raised $65,000 for his campaign across state lines in West Virginia’s 2nd District.

Mooney had more than $100,000 in cash on hand at the end of the second quarter, according to a campaign press release. Of that haul, $35,000 was left from when he explored a run for ex-Rep. Roscoe G. Bartlett’s seat in western Maryland last year.

The congressional hopeful’s tally was one of many fundraising numbers that trickled in on Tuesday. Congressional candidates and members must turn in their second-quarter fundraising reports by July 15.

Here is a roundup of the day’s campaign fundraising news:

Senate Full story

Graham Scion Could Face Primary in Florida #FL02

Graham Scion Could Face Primary in Florida #FL02

Lawson is thinking about running again. (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Attorney Gwen Graham, daughter of the state’s former governor and senator, is raising cash and consolidating Democratic establishment support behind her bid for Florida’s 2nd. But looming over her campaign is a potential primary challenge from the party’s 2012 nominee, former state Sen. Al Lawson.

“I’m interested,” Lawson said in an interview with CQ Roll Call. He indicated that his decision on whether to run will come in the next 30-60 days.

Florida’s 2nd District tops Democrats’ list of pickup opportunities this cycle. The seat is held by freshman Republican Rep. Steve Southerland II, who beat Lawson by 6 points in 2012.

State and national Democrats like Graham’s chances against Southerland. Their fear is that Lawson has high enough name identification to win the primary but his fundraising weaknesses could hurt him in the general election.

Lawson is well-known in the Tallahassee-based district from more than two decades in the state legislature. One Florida Democratic operative praised his political skills but acknowledged that his ability to raise money is a serious concern.

Democrats say raising money is one of Graham’s strengths. She hauled in more than $375,000 in the second quarter — her first in the race — and will report more than $300,000 in cash on hand.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee named her to its Jumpstart program, a designation for the committee’s top-tier recruits. Graham announced her candidacy in early April and recently made the rounds in Washington to meet with national reporters. (Read Roll Call’s interview with Graham.)

Bob Graham served as the Sunshine State’s governor from 1979 to 1987 and as senator from 1987 to 2005. He unsuccessfully ran for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2004.

“The national Democrats, from what I can observe, they pretty much have been leaning more toward Graham,” Lawson said. “They say they’re not going to get involved but her father knows a lot of people who can give money.”

Lawson says his own name identification would offset any Graham financial advantage, adding that lobbying groups approached him about running. He is trying to schedule a trip to Washington, D.C., to meet with those groups and members who have supported him in the past. He hopes several officials who backed his 2012 bid will help him again, including House Assistant Minority Leader James E. Clyburn, Rep. Corrine Brown and her fellow Floridian, former Rep. Peter Deutsch.

So far, no meeting with the DCCC is scheduled.

Lawson described Graham as “a nice lady” but criticized her for not being well-known enough in the area. “She has a lot of work to do,” he said. “Even if I don’t run, she will have a major uphill battle against Southerland.”

Lawson is no fan of Graham’s father, a result of a bad experience they had two years ago.

“I called him and asked him for help against the Republican [Southerland], and he said he didn’t want to get involved,” Lawson said of his 2012 campaign.

He said Graham went so far as to refuse to make a $25 donation. The former senator cited being “out of politics” as the reason for not donating, Lawson said.

“I was really surprised,” he said. “I helped him a lot and thought he’d be interested in helping a candidate for U.S. Congress. But I was a guy that really campaigned hard for him that was running.”

Gwen Graham’s camp declined to address Lawson’s charge. Her campaign manager, Julia Gill, wrote in an email, “Gwen is committed to bringing a new kind of leadership to Washington and to be an independent voice for the people of North Florida.”

Lawson’s central strategy, if he runs and wins the primary, is to run a general-election campaign that reaches out to the region’s rural voters who are registered Democrats but habitually cross over to vote Republican.

He added that he will conduct polling before he makes his decision.

“I’ve always wanted to go to Congress,” Lawson said.

The race is rated Lean Republican by Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call.

May 28, 2013

Gwen Graham Discusses Her Father, Obamacare #FL02 | The Candidate

Gwen Graham Discusses Her Father, Obamacare #FL02 | The Candidate

Graham is running for Congress. (Courtesy Gwen Graham for Congress)

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 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: Democratic attorney Gwen Graham
The member: Two-term Rep. Steve Southerland II, R-Fla.
The district: Both Southerland and Mitt Romney carried the Panhandle district by about 6 points.
The candidate’s team: Julia Gill (campaign manager), Joe Trippi of Trippi & Associates (media), John Anzalone of Anzalone Liszt Research (pollster), Dylan Sumner of Mack Sumner (direct mail), and Steve Schale (senior adviser).

1. As the niece of Watergate-era Washington Post publisher Katharine Graham, what is your opinion of the Justice Department’s investigations of reporters? As a member of Congress, what would you do to counter that?

I am very concerned about anything that has a chilling effect on the free press. … I would make sure that there was a full investigation into what went on and make sure that if there were any concerns, that they were addressed properly.

2. @CraigPlazure put in a question for you via Twitter: “How will she campaign in the potential primary with [2012 Democratic nominee] Al Lawson?”

We are going to continue to focus on defeating Congressman Southerland in 2014.

[After the jump: Graham talks about her father, former Sen. Bob Graham, the health care overhaul and her recruitment process.]

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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