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December 23, 2014

Posts in "Ga.-12"

December 16, 2014

Exit Interview: John Barrow Laments Hyper-Partisan Congress

Exit Interview: John Barrow Laments Hyper Partisan Congress

Barrow lost re-election in November. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Defeating Georgia Rep. John Barrow, the last white House Democrat in the Deep South, may have been one of the House GOP’s biggest feats in last month’s near sweep of the 2014 elections.

In an exclusive exit interview with CQ Roll Call Thursday — hours before Barrow’s final vote of his decade-long Capitol Hill career — he did not rule out a future bid. Full story

November 10, 2014

How Republicans Caught Their White Whale: John Barrow

How Republicans Caught Their White Whale: John Barrow

Barrow lost re-election last week. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

This is the first in a five-part series examining the campaigns behind the cycle’s most fascinating races.

Republican Rick Allen and his team gathered around a table at the Hilton Garden Inn in Augusta, Ga., Tuesday night, waiting for results to come in. They weren’t optimistic.

Allen faced the ultimate political survivor, Rep. John Barrow, the sole remaining white Democrat in the Deep South.

Just before Election Day, Democrats’ polling showed Barrow consistently ahead. Allen’s campaign didn’t have internals to counter; the last time they polled the race was more than a month ago.

Even more discouraging, Barrow was known for squeaking out wins, even as GOP presidential candidates carried the 12th District by double-digits. Republicans had tried to oust Barrow before, and many operatives were convinced he would escape their grasp again.

But as soon as the early returns trickled in, it was clear: Republicans had finally nabbed their white whale. Barrow not only lost — he was defeated by a stunning 10-point margin.

Full story

October 20, 2014

For House GOP, a Wave … Or a Trickle?

For House GOP, a Wave ... Or a Trickle?

Kirkpatrick is one of the most endangered Democrats this cycle. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

House Republicans are on track to make gains this cycle, but two weeks before Election Day, it’s still unclear whether the party will procure a wave of double-digit gains in their quest to extend the majority.

Members of Congress and operatives alike note this is a toxic time for Democrats on the ballot that should result in huge losses for the president’s party. But a race-by-race evaluation of the House map shows Republicans are more likely in a position to pick up a net of around six seats this cycle.

“After two successful cycles for House Republicans, the playing field confines the upper limits of pickups that can be had,” said Brock McCleary, a Republican pollster.

Public surveys show President Barack Obama’s unpopularity, as events in the Middle East and Ebola on the home front drag down Democrats coast to coast. House Democrats are defending more seats than Republicans this cycle.

But this midterm is shaping up to be one of the most perplexing in recent memory. Both parties are on offense, and both parties are on defense. In private polling, dozens of races are too close to call. Given the unpredictability, it’s also possible the next 14 days could exacerbate Democratic losses.

Here’s why most political operatives estimate Republican will have a net gain in the mid-single digits:

Full story

October 7, 2014

6 Gubernatorial Races With Potential Congressional Consequences

6 Gubernatorial Races With Potential Congressional Consequences

Barber is running as a Democrat in Arizona, where there is a competitive gubernatorial race. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The lines separating gubernatorial and congressional candidates on the ballot could blur in several states this cycle, as the top of the ticket proves to be a driving force downballot in a half-dozen states.

Typically, competitive gubernatorial races impact one key factor for victory: turnout. As a result, state parties ramp up their efforts to turn out their base, which could also boost candidates all over the ballot, including congressional races.

Gubernatorial races have less of an impact on Senate contests, where candidates are similarly well known by voters. But they often can make a difference in a close House race.

In alphabetical order, here are six states where the impact of a gubernatorial race could drip down the ballot:  Full story

October 2, 2014

Candidate: Obama Lawsuit Sold Me on Boehner (Video)

Candidate: Obama Lawsuit Sold Me on Boehner (Video)

Allen is a Georgia Republican. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Speaker John A. Boehner can likely count on another vote to keep his gavel — but only if Republican Rick Allen wins his competitive race in Georgia next month.

“Speaker Boehner’s stock went up with me with this constitutional lawsuit [against President Barack Obama], I thought it was time to make a stand,” Allen said in a Sept. 9 interview with CQ Roll Call. “He made a stand, I’m proud of him for it.

Full story

September 3, 2014

Chamber to Formally Back John Barrow on Friday

Chamber to Formally Back John Barrow on Friday

Barrow will be endorsed Friday by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Georgia Rep. John Barrow will be get the endorsement of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce at an event in his district Friday, a chamber official told CQ Roll Call and Barrow’s campaign confirmed.

Barrow is the fourth Democrat this cycle to receive the backing of the chamber, a pro-business group that spends millions in federal elections usually in support of Republicans. The others include Rep. Scott Peters, D-Calif., a top GOP target who was endorsed Wednesday, along with Reps. Henry Cuellar of Texas and Jim Costa of California.

Barrow is being challenged by construction company owner Rick Allen, who won a crowded and competitive GOP primary in May. Full story

August 12, 2014

This Fall’s House Ad Wars Have Officially Started (Video)

This Falls House Ad Wars Have Officially Started (Video)

Grimm is one of the NRCC's first targets with an independent expenditure. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The flood gates opened Tuesday when the House campaign committees began the barrage of fall television advertisements.

Exactly a year ago, CQ Roll Call predicted the House’s fall campaign ad wars would begin as early as mid-August, creeping back a few weeks from the traditional start around Labor Day. Now the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, the National Republican Congressional Committee and several top tier House candidates rolled out their first television spots of the cycle.

To be sure, some House candidates and outside groups have already been airing general election spots. But these new television ads mark the committee’s first major independent expenditures of the season — and the start of the campaign airwaves war that will only intensify through November.

Full story

July 10, 2014

John Barrow Raises $580,000 in Second Quarter

John Barrow Raises $580,000 in Second Quarter

Campaign Fundraising: John Barrow announced his haul for the second quarter. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Rep. John Barrow, a Georgia Democrat and perpetual GOP target, raised $580,000 in the second quarter, according to figures provided first to CQ Roll Call.

Barrow’s three-month haul brings his total cash on hand to $1.9 million as of June 30.

One of the most moderate Democrats in the House, Barrow is running for re-election in a district Mitt Romney carried by 12 points in 2012. He faces construction company owner Rick Allen, who earned the GOP nomination in a crowded May 20 primary. Full story

June 17, 2014

NRCC Reserves $30 Million for TV Ads in 2014

NRCC Reserves $30 Million for TV Ads in 2014

The NRCC Chairman is Rep. Greg Walden of Oregon. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The National Republican Congressional Committee has reserved $30 million in television airtime this fall, signaling it is preparing to go on offense in 17 districts and defend nine more.

The NRCC has put its marker down in many of the same House districts as its counterpart, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. It’s a good indicator of which races both parties think will be most competitive in November.

But there are a few competitive districts not included in the NRCC’s initial reservations, such as Iowa’s 3rd District — an open seat currently held by a Republican that is one of this cycle’s few Tossup races.

Also, the NRCC’s television reservations total $13.5 million less than what the DCCC has already reserved for this fall. The committees will likely shift and add more airtime as individual races develop during the rest of the cycle.  

But the DCCC has raised more money than the NRCC this cycle. As of the end of April, the DCCC had $43.3 million in the bank, while the NRCC had $32.3 million.

Here are the districts where the NRCC has already reserved airtime for this fall:

Full story

June 10, 2014

NRCC Promotes 11 More to ‘Young Guns’

NRCC Promotes 11 More to Young Guns

NRCC Chairman Walden announced a new set of 'Young Gun" candidates. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The National Republican Congressional Committee has elevated 11 more candidates to “Young Gun” status, moving these prospects to the top tier of of their benchmark program for campaigns in 2014.

“Candidates that reach ‘Young Gun’ status have met a series of rigorous goals that will put them in position to win on Election Day,” NRCC Chairman Greg Walden said in a Tuesday statement. “Our job as a committee is to help elect Republicans to office that will serve as a check and balance on the Obama administration.”

All of the following, newly-minted Young Gun candidates have recently won their primaries. The NRCC does not publicly pick sides in primaries.

The 11 new Young Gun candidates are:

Full story

May 29, 2014

DCCC Reserves $43.5 Million in TV Airtime for Midterms

DCCC Reserves $43.5 Million in TV Airtime for Midterms

Israel is the current chairman of the DCCC. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has reserved $43.5 million in television airtime in dozens of targeted House districts this fall — a signal the party is attempting to play defense and offense in a challenging midterm cycle.

The money is split across 36 districts, including 17 pickup opportunities, according to a DCCC aide. More districts and more money could be added to the reservations as the cycle progresses, the aide said.

The DCCC had $43.3 million in the bank at the end of April and has raised more than its Republican counterpart by large margins this cycle. The committee ended April with an $11 million cash-on-hand advantage over the National Republican Congressional Committee.

These ad reservations give insight into which members Democrats see as vulnerable, and which seats the DCCC sees as the best possibility to take in November. They also signal to outside groups where the the party might need help on the airwaves this fall.

However, parties can cancel or change these reservations until shortly before the advertisements air in most cases.

Here are the districts where the DCCC has reserved airtime:

Full story

May 20, 2014

Georgia Primary Results: Rick Allen Wins Primary to Face Barrow (Updated)

Georgia Primary Results: Rick Allen Wins Primary to Face Barrow (Updated)

Rick Allen won the primary and will face Rep. John Barrow, D-Ga. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated 12:19 a.m. | Construction company owner Rick Allen avoided a GOP primary runoff in Georgia’s 12th District and now moves on to face Democratic Rep. John Barrow in November.

Allen defeated his next closest primary opponent, businessman Eugene Yu, 54 percent to 16 percent, with 93 percent of precincts reporting, according to The Associated Press.

The five-candidate GOP primary in this district was expected to head to a runoff — triggered when no candidate garners at least 50 percent. That scenario would have benefited Barrow, a top target of national Republicans, as Republicans would have faced nine more weeks of not focusing time and money on defeating the incumbent.

Full story

May 15, 2014

Georgia Democrat Awaits Crowded Republican Primary

Georgia Democrat Awaits Crowded Republican Primary

Barrow shakes hands last month at a law enforcement appreciation cookout in Glennville. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

GLENNVILLE, Ga. — At a law enforcement appreciation cookout last month, just within Georgia’s 12th District line, Democratic Rep. John Barrow back-slapped with the best of them as he made his way through a Republican-heavy crowd.

Barrow better be comfortable among GOP faithful, because his district is filled with them. After opting against a Senate bid last year, Barrow, a regular top target of national Republicans, is awaiting the conclusion of a GOP primary filled with candidates sure they should be able to pick off a district that President Barack Obama lost by 12 points in 2012.

And the incumbent is unlikely to find out his Republican opponent on Tuesday — two from the five-candidate primary field are expected to be forced into a July runoff, with no candidate likely to surpass the 50 percent threshold needed to win the nomination outright. This is the only district in the state that has the chance to flip party control.

In a mid-April interview outside a pond house with more than 1,000 potential voters filling the sprawling lawn and munching on barbecue, CQ Roll Call asked Barrow if a Democrat could win a Senate race in Georgia. His answer delved into his own race and explained how he’s held on for five terms in such a challenging district.

“If you reflect the kind of values that our parents did and are prepared to stand up for those kinds of issues, and vote for what’s in the best interests of the state and the district you represent,” Barrow said, “there’s no reason why someone can’t win no matter what brand that they run under.” Full story

May 8, 2014

Vulnerable Democrats Vote for Benghazi Committee

Vulnerable Democrats Vote for Benghazi Committee

Barber is one of several vulnerable Democrats who voted with Republicans. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Six House Democrats facing competitive challenges in November voted Thursday evening in favor of creating a special committee to re-investigate the 2012 terrorist attack in Benghazi, Libya.

Five of the seven Democrats who voted with the GOP are part of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s Frontline program, which supports the party’s most vulnerable incumbents. Full story

November 21, 2013

House Republicans Put 36 Recruits ‘On the Radar’

The National Republican Congressional Committee announced on Thursday 36 candidates who have achieved the committee’s “On the Radar” status.

This ranking is the first of three levels of the committee’s fundraising and infrastructure program. Earning this status means the NRCC “will help to provide candidates and their campaigns the tools they need to run successful, winning campaigns against their Democratic opponents,” according to an NRCC release.

The final level is “Young Gun” status.

“These 36 candidates all provide a stark contrast to their liberal opponents, whose support of ObamaCare and this Administration’s big-government, job-destroying agenda has taken a toll on the American people,” NRCC Chairman Greg Walden said in a statement.

Four of those rated are former members who lost re-election bids in 2012: former Reps. Robert Dold and Bobby Schilling of Illinois, Frank Guinta of New Hampshire and Nan Hayworth of New York.

Some of the other challengers are running in the same districts.
Full story

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