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Posts in "House 2012"
November 17, 2012
Florida Republican Rep. Allen B. West, trailing his Democratic opponent by about 1,900 votes, won a victory Friday evening when the St. Lucie County Canvassing Board agreed to retabulate all the early votes.
Earlier Friday a judge had declined to force the canvassing board to do just that. Retabulation is a legal term that means the board will, essentially, recount all the early votes, running them through the electronic vote reader again.
The board began the effort this morning at 9 a.m. and is expected to finish today. The county has to issue a final certification of its winners to the state tomorrow.
Earlier in this post-Election Day saga, the county recounted only some of the early votes after it said it would recount all of them. The St. Lucie County supervisor of elections is a Democrat and the West campaign alleged impropriety.
St. Lucie county is one of three in the newly configured 18th District, where West faced off with businessman Patrick Murphy, a democrat. It was one of the nastiest, most bitter, and hard fought congressional races in the country. As the vote count stands now, West trails just outside the 0.5 percent margin that would trigger an automatic recount across the whole district. But there’s the possibility that, if this retabulation narrows the vote margin, a recount could be triggered.
Murphy has declared victory and has been attending freshman orientation on Capitol Hill. The Associated Press has not yet called the race.
Murphy’s team has asked a court to issue an injunction, stopping the retabulation. It’s unclear if that effort will succeed, given that it’s a Saturday.
“The election was conducted the first time properly and legally,” said Murphy advisor Eric Johnson. “Patrick Murphy won outside the percentage for an automatic recount. The canvassing baord does not have the legal authority to operate a recount. They’re operating outside the law.”
Johnson said no matter how this turns out, Murphy is and will be the winner.
West was pleased with the Board’s decision.
“We are pleased the Canvassing Board has done the right thing for the voters of St Lucie County by agreeing to a retabulation of early votes,” Allen West said in a statement. “All we have been fighting for since the very beginning is to ensure the citizens of this county have their votes accurately and fairly counted.”
November 16, 2012
Ballot returns over the past week indicate that Democratic Rep. Ron Barber is on the verge of defeating Republican Martha McSally in Arizona’s 2nd District.
Democrats have been increasingly bullish on the numbers they are seeing for Barber, not just because his margin has increased to 923 votes, but because of the geography of the returns. The outstanding ballots to be counted are in Pima County, home to Tucson, which is Barber’s stronghold.
Even Republicans are beginning to that concede the outlook is grim. There is a sense in Arizona circles that The Associated Press is especially cautious to call this race, which explains why it is one of three races still outstanding after Election Day. The counting is expected to continue into next week. Full story
A St. Lucie County Judge ruled against Rep. Allen B. West, R-Fla., Friday, denying his request to force the county to recount all of the early ballots.
Earlier, the county recounted only some of the early votes after it said it would recount all of them. The St. Lucie County supervisor of elections is a Democrat and the West campaign alleges impropriety.
But the judge declined to force a recount of all early votes in St. Lucie County, one of three counties that are in the 18th District.
West trails Democrat Patrick Murphy by more than 1,900 votes, according to The Associated Press. Murphy has declared victory and attended freshman orientation on Capitol Hill this week.
Rep. Brian P. Bilbray, R-Calif., has conceded his re-election bid in the 52nd District to Democrat Scott Peters.
Bilbray called Peters Friday to deliver the news, a spokesman said, and released a statement to the press.
Peters, a San Diego port commissioner, led Bilbray by 2,660 votes when counting concluded on Thursday, according to the California secretary of state’s office. His lead grew in the week and a half since Election Day, when the two were separated by fewer than 1,000 votes. Full story
House Republicans borrowed $12 million in the waning weeks before Election Day, according to a source with knowledge of the transaction.
The National Republican Congressional Committee secured the loan in late October to help fund the final push of TV ads and boost its candidates to victory.
It’s common for the campaign committees to go into debt in a campaign year. But the NRCC’s loan is significantly smaller than the $17 million the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee borrowed in October, according to reports.
There’s some risk to taking out large sums because the committees must pay them back during the next cycle. It often takes parties months, sometimes even more than a year, to get rid of this debt. Full story
November 15, 2012
Democrat Ami Bera has officially prevailed over House Administration Chairman Dan Lungren, R-Calif., who becomes the 24th House incumbent to lose in the Nov. 6 elections.
The Associated Press called the race Thursday, more than one week after Election Day, with Bera leading by about 5,700 votes. Vote counting has been slow in the Sacramento-area district, where Bera’s lead on election night was only 184 votes.
With the race in the 7th District called, there are now four outstanding House races. They are in California’s 52nd District, Florida’s 18th District, North Carolina’s 7th District and Arizona’s 2nd District. A fifth race in Louisiana’s 3rd district between two GOP members will be decided in a December runoff. Full story
Republican leaders on Capitol Hill were largely silent as new revelations stemming from Rep. Scott DesJarlais’ messy decade-old divorce came to light Thursday.
The office of Speaker John A. Boehner of Ohio declined to comment on a report in the Chattanooga Times Free Press that said the Tennessee lawmaker and doctor had “sexual relationships with at least two patients, three coworkers and a drug representative while he was chief of staff at Grandview Medical Center in Jasper, Tenn.” The paper also reported that records showed DesJarlais “supported his ex-wife’s decision to get two abortions before their marriage.”
The revelations came from DesJarlais’ 2001 sworn testimony from his divorce trial. A staunch social conservative, the freshman Congressman has run for office as an anti-abortion candidate.
At votes Thursday afternoon, DesJarlais was seen having an intense conversation with Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan on the House floor. Jordan is the outgoing chairman of the conservative Republican Study Committee. Full story
Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chairman Steve Israel of New York announced Thursday that he has picked Kelly Ward as the committee’s executive director for the 2014 cycle.
Ward served as the DCCC’s political director during the 2012 cycle and as a DCCC regional political director during the 2010 cycle.
“I couldn’t be happier or prouder that Kelly Ward will be our new Executive Director,” Israel said in a statement. “Kelly brings the right mix of smart political instincts and experienced leadership to aggressively take on this Tea Party Republican majority.”
Ward will succeed current Executive Director Robby Mook, who is moving on to run Terry McAuliffe’s gubernatorial campaign in Virginia. Full story
Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Executive Director Robby Mook is headed across the Potomac to work on former Democratic National Committee Chairman Terry McAuliffe’s nascent Virginia gubernatorial campaign, according to a CNN report.
Mook has been on the political scene for the past decade.
Mook ran the DCCC’s independent expenditure arm in 2010 and has worked for a who’s who of high profile Democratic campaigns. He also has Old Dominion experience; he managed a successful 2005 state delegate campaign.
November 14, 2012
House Republicans tapped Oregon Rep. Greg Walden as the chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee for the 2014 cycle. Walden, who ran unopposed, succeeds Texas Rep. Pete Sessions, who oversaw two successful cycles, in which Republicans won and held the chamber.
Walden, Sessions’ longtime deputy, was magnanimous in his victory.
“Under Chairman Sessions’ leadership at the NRCC, House Republicans have won the two biggest majorities since World War II. I have big, Texas-sized boots to fill,” he said in a statement. “But as Pete’s deputy for the last four years, I’ve helped implement a shared vision for the NRCC and now seek to build on that foundation.” Full story
Rep. Greg Walden, Ore., is not officially the new National Republican Congressional Committee chairman, but he is already fundraising like he is.
Walden, who is running unopposed for the post, emailed NRCC supporters Wednesday about the news that House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, Calif., will continue to lead the Democratic Caucus.
“So Pelosi is not going to retire — even though you and I have put her in the Minority for two straight elections,” Walden wrote. “They’re going to let the most liberal Democrat there is run the most liberal House Democratic Caucus ever…We want to send a message to former Speaker Pelosi and her far-left colleagues that America can’t afford what they’re selling.” Full story
Rep. Allen B. West, R-Fla., who trails his Democratic opponent with 100 percent of precincts reporting, went to court Tuesday, asking a judge to order a recount of all early votes in St. Lucie County, one of three counties in the reconfigured 18th district.
West also asked the court to keep the county “from certifying results of the election for the 18th Congressional District until all ballots cast during the early voting period have been counted,” according to a campaign statement.
The crux of the issue: the county recounted only some of the early votes after it said it would recount all of them. The St. Lucie County Supervisor of Elections is a Democrat and the West campaign alleges impropriety.
November 13, 2012
Special election speculation swirled this weekend amid reports that Democratic Rep. Jesse L. Jackson Jr. could resign his seat as part of a plea deal with federal investigators.
CBS Chicago reported Jackson has not pleaded guilty to misusing campaign funds, but he’s discussing a deal that includes his resignation by the end of the year, plus some jail time.
Possible Democratic candidates who would run to succeed Jackson include Cook County Chief Administrative Officer Robin Kelly and state Sens. Toi Hutchinson and Napoleon Harris, a former linebacker for Northwestern University, according to several Illinois sources. Full story
November 12, 2012
Five House races remain unresolved almost a week after Election Day.
The two main developments since Friday in uncalled races were in California and Arizona. Earlier today, Democratic former state Sen. Kyrsten Sinema won the race against Republican Vernon Parker in Arizona’s 9th district. On Friday night, Rep. Mary Bono Mack (R) formally conceded to Democrat Raul Ruiz. Here are the races still up in the air: Full story
Former Democratic state Sen. Kyrsten Sinema has officially defeated Republican Vernon Parker in Arizona’s 9th District race, according to The Associated Press.
The narrow margin between Sinema and Parker put the race into overtime and led to a delay in declaring a winner, but Sinema has slowly increased her lead since Election Day.
Looking forward, this Phoenix-area seat will remain highly competitive. It is a new seat created after reapportionment and Sinema will be the first person to occupy it. Full story