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October 22, 2014

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October 11, 2012

Crossroads GPS Launches House Blitz Across the Country

The juggernaut GOP-affiliated group Crossroads GPS will soon announce a massive $8.1 million television and radio effort for House Republicans slated to begin Saturday and run for three weeks.

The group will target races in 11 districts from the West Coast to the central plains to just north of New York City.

The targeted seats are:

  • California’s new 21st district, where state Assemblyman David Valadao (R) faces Central California Hispanic Chamber of Commerce CEO John Hernandez (D)
  • Illinois’ open 12th district, where retired businessman Jason Plummer (R) faces retired Maj. Gen. Bill Enyart (D)
  • Illinois’ 17th district, where Rep. Bobby Schilling (R) faces former East Moline Alderwoman Cheri Bustos (D)
  • Indiana’s open 2nd district, where former state Rep. Jackie Walorski (R) faces Iraq War veteran Brendan Mullen (D)
  • Iowa’s 3rd district, where Rep. Leonard Boswell (D) faces Rep. Tom Latham (R)
  • Iowa’s 4th district, where Rep. Steve King (R) faces former Iowa first lady Christie Vilsack (D)
  • Michigan’s 1st district, where Rep. Dan Benishek (D) faces former state Rep. Gary McDowell (D)
  • Nevada’s new 4th district, where businessman Danny Tarkanian (R) faces state Sen. Steven Horsford (D)
  • New York’s 1st district where Rep. Tim Bishop (D) faces businessman Randy Altschuler (R)
  • New York’s 18th district, where Rep. Nan Hayworth (R) faces attorney Sean Patrick Maloney (D)
  • New York’s 25th district, where Rep. Louise Slaughter (D) faces Monroe County Executive Maggie Brooks (R)

October 10, 2012

Virginia: NRSC Launches First IE Ad in Senate Race

The National Republican Senatorial Committee kicked off its independent expenditure spending in Virginia today by launching a television ad that criticizes former Gov. Tim Kaine (D) for supporting increased federal spending.

Full story

New York: Chris Gibson Leads in Polls, but Margin Varies

New York: Chris Gibson Leads in Polls, but Margin Varies

(Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Freshman Rep. Chris Gibson (R-N.Y.) recently led his Democratic challenger by a little or a lot, depending on which pollster did the asking.

A new poll commissioned for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee found Gibson leading Julian Schreibman 43 percent to 41 percent with 16 percent of those likely voters surveyed undecided. The president led Mitt Romney by 7 points in the poll conducted by Democratic firm Grove Insight.

But a new poll commissioned for the independent expenditure arm of the National Republican Congressional Committee and obtained by Roll Call found Gibson leading Schreibman 47 percent to 39 percent, with 16 percent of those likely voters surveyed undecided. The president led Romney by 3 points in the poll conducted by Republican firm On Message Inc.

The breakdown of those surveyed in the Republican poll: 36 percent Republican, 36 percent Democratic and 25 percent other. The breakdown of those surveyed in the Democratic poll: 32 percent Democratic; 35 percent Republican; 33 percent other.

In 2008, the president would have beaten Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) by about 8 points in the district.

Full story

October 8, 2012

Democrats Shift Money in House Races as Map Evolves

Updated 8:30 p.m. | The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s independent expenditure arm is shifting TV buys in a series of races, as the House battleground map continues to evolve.

The DCCC has cut ad buys Oct. 23-29 in four districts where the Democratic nominee is seen as having a comfortable lead, according to a party source with knowledge of the buys:

  • Arizona’s 2nd district, where Rep. Ron Barber (D) faces Republican Martha McSally
  • Florida’s new 9th district, where former Rep. Alan Grayson (D) faces Republican Todd Long
  • Florida’s 26th district, where embattled Rep. David Rivera (R), reportedly under federal investigation, faces Democrat Joe Garcia
  • New Mexico’s open 1st district, where Democrat Michelle Lujan Grisham faces Republican Janice Arnold-Jones Full story

Wisconsin: New GOP Poll Gives Sean Duffy an 11-Point Edge

Wisconsin: New GOP Poll Gives Sean Duffy an 11 Point Edge

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

A new Republican survey showed freshman Rep. Sean Duffy (R-Wis.) leading his challenger by 11 points.

Duffy had 51 percent of the vote, while former state Senate President Pro Tem Pat Kreitlow (D) had 40 percent in the poll paid for by American Action Network, a third-party, center-right group that spends heavily in House races.

The new numbers come less than a week after House Democrats announced they would increase their financial commitment to the 7th district. The survey’s accompanying memo aims to dispel that, declaring the district “not a good pick-up opportunity for Democrats.”

Full story

October 1, 2012

North Carolina: DCCC Cancels Yet Another Week of Ads for Larry Kissell

North Carolina: DCCC Cancels Yet Another Week of Ads for Larry Kissell

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee hasn't aired any TV ads to help boost vulnerable Rep. Larry Kissell in North Carolina. (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

It looks more and more like Nov. 6 will be curtains for North Carolina Democratic Rep. Larry Kissell.

Today the independent expenditure arm of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee canceled a third week of advertising in Kissell’s 8th district. Roll Call has learned that more than $180,000 worth of advertising in the Charlotte media market from Oct. 16-22 was canceled by the DCCC.

The move is as clear a sign as any that national Democrats, who have not yet aired any TV advertisements for the vulnerable incumbent, no longer see the race as winnable.

Kissell faces Republican Richard Hudson, a former aide on Capitol Hill, on the ballot next month. The 8th district was redrawn to be substantially more Republican during redistricting, which was controlled by the GOP-majority state Legislature. Full story

Voters Blame Both Parties for Big Money in Politics

Democrats enjoy no advantage over Republicans when it comes to public opposition to big money in politics, but the issue resonates with key voting blocs, according to a new survey of voters in 54 battleground House districts.

“Candidates avoid this issue to their detriment,” said David Donnelly, executive director of the Public Campaign Action Fund, which backs a campaign finance overhaul. “There’s an incredible opportunity to be leaders on this issue, on what has become a leaderless field.”

The poll released today found that more than half of voters surveyed “overwhelmingly” believe that money corrupts politics, and 78 percent want Congressional candidates to propose ways to “dramatically reduce the amount of money in politics and super PACs.”

The poll was the third in a series by Public Campaign Action Fund and Greenberg Quinlan Rosner conducted for the Democracy Corps, a nonprofit run by Democratic strategists James Carville and Stanley Greenberg.

A striking finding, Greenberg said, was that a full 43 percent of respondents said neither Democrats nor Republicans would do a better job “cleaning up corruption in Washington, D.C.,” an option not even offered by the poll, which instead asked voters to choose between the parties.

“I’m struck by the fact that the Democrats have no advantage on the question of changing the corruption in Washington,” said Greenberg, CEO of Greenberg Quinlan Rosner.

But Greenberg said linking policy issues to political corruption intensified voter responses, particularly among seniors, independents and suburban voters. For example, 55 percent of respondents said they would be less likely to vote for a candidate who backed the plan to partially privatize Medicare offered by GOP vice presidential candidate and Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.).

But asked in a follow-up question whether they would vote for that candidate if he or she backed Ryan’s Medicare plan and “took thousands in campaign donations from insurance executives, lobbyists and PACs,” a full 70 percent of voters answered “less likely.”

“If you’re looking for an extra shot, this is where your extra shot is on that issue,” Greenberg said, describing the issue’s potential resonance in battleground House districts.

September 28, 2012

Massachusetts: New GOP Poll Has Richard Tisei Leading John Tierney

Massachusetts: New GOP Poll Has Richard Tisei Leading John Tierney

Rep. John Tierney (left) is among the more vulnerable Members on the ballot in November. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

A new Republican poll commissioned by YG Action Fund, a super PAC created by former aides to House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.), found Republican Richard Tisei leading Rep. John Tierney (D) in Massachusetts’ 6th district.

The poll, in the field Sept. 25-26 and conducted by respected GOP firm North Star Opinion Research, found Tisei ahead of Tierney 45 percent to 37 percent. An August poll conducted by the same company found Tierney ahead of Tisei 45 percent to 43 percent. Negative advertising against both candidates has been plentiful in the district over the past month. Full story

September 26, 2012

Virginia: DSCC Launches First Ad in Senate Race

The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee is making its first foray into the Virginia Senate race with an ad accusing Republican George Allen of supporting the privatization of Social Security.

The ad, launched today, is part of the committee’s $8 million reservation of TV time in the state on behalf of Democrat Tim Kaine. Kaine has also received significant support from the Democratic-aligned Majority PAC.

The National Republican Senatorial Committee has not yet made any independent expenditures in the state but has reserved about $5.5 million of TV time. Republican-aligned groups American Crossroads and Crossroads GPS have spent significant resources to help Allen.

Allen also released a TV ad today featuring a 60-second testimonial from the mother of a Marine killed in Iraq.

The Tossup race between the two former governors is likely to go down to the wire in one of the top presidential and Senate battleground states.

New York: House Majority PAC Ad Hits Chris Collins on Tenure as County Executive

New York: House Majority PAC Ad Hits Chris Collins on Tenure as County Executive

(Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

House Majority PAC, a third-party group supporting Democrats in Congressional races, today released an attack ad against Republican Congressional candidate Chris Collins, who is taking on Rep. Kathy Hochul (D) in New York’s 27th district.

The 30-second spot hits Collins, the former Erie County executive, for his tenure. “As county executive, Collins gave jobs to his friends,” a male narrator says. “Collins awarded his own company a lucrative county contract and had products manufactured overseas, creating jobs in Korea and China. Jobs we could really use in Western New York.”

Full story

September 23, 2012

NRCC Launches 26 New Ads Backed by $6.3 Million

NRCC Launches 26 New Ads Backed by $6.3 Million

The National Republican Congressional Committee, led by Rep. Pete Sessions (above), is trying to hold the GOP's 25-seat majority in November. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The partisan ad wars in the battle for control of the House are heating up, as the countdown to Election Day enters the final weeks.

The National Republican Congressional Committee launched a huge new ad blitz backed by $6.3 million.

The NRCC ads are airing Sept. 21-27 against incumbents and challengers from Arizona to West Virginia, with a heavy focus on districts in California and New York. The spots run the gamut from standard GOP attack ad fare — connecting a candidate to House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) or President Barack Obama — to knocking a Member for their vote in favor of the stimulus or the Affordable Care Act to creative, eye-catching spots. Full story

September 21, 2012

California: House Majority PAC Targets Jeff Denham

California: House Majority PAC Targets Jeff Denham

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

House Majority PAC, a Democratic-aligned group, is going on the air in California’s 10th district against freshman Republican Rep. Jeff Denham.

The group is launching a Medicare-themed television ad that targets “Denham’s plan” for Medicare and states that his Democratic opponent, astronaut Jose Hernandez, would strengthen the program. The ad hits the Sacramento airwaves Saturday and will run for a week and a half behind a six-figure independent expenditure. Full story

September 20, 2012

DCCC Shifts Resources, Going After Mary Bono Mack

DCCC Shifts Resources, Going After Mary Bono Mack

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee is shifting ad dollars to target Republican Rep. Mary Bono Mack. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has begun shifting advertising dollars and is now targeting a California Congresswoman not originally included in its television reservations while canceling buys in two districts — one each in Ohio and North Carolina.

The DCCC is set to launch its first independent expenditure advertisement against Rep. Mary Bono Mack (R-Calif.), but has pulled a week of advertising it had reserved in the districts of Reps. Larry Kissell (D-N.C.) and Michael Turner (R-Ohio). The committee won’t be running any ads in those districts during the week of Oct. 2-8. Full story

September 18, 2012

Daily Ad Track

Beginning today and continuing through Election Day, Roll Call will offer a daily smattering of campaign ads that the Politics Team finds worthy of highlighting. Look for the Daily Ad Tracker most week-day afternoons.

Today’s offering features a collection of television spots launched in House and Senate races and run by candidate’s campaigns, national party committees and third party groups, such as super PACS. The theme of today’s Tracker: “Firsts.” Full story

Florida: DCCC to Launch First Ad Against Allen West

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s independent expenditure arm on Wednesday is launching its first television ad of the election cycle against firebrand Rep. Allen West (R) in Florida’s newly configured 18th district.

The 30-second spot hews to the standard Democratic line of attack, knocking West for voting in favor of House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan’s budget plan, which would fundamentally change the way future seniors interact with Medicare. The Wisconsin Republican is GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney’s running mate.

“I have to say it as it is,” West says in a clip at the beginning of the ad.

“But what’s behind the talk?” a female narrator asks. “Allen West voted for Paul Ryan’s plan that would essentially end Medicare,” she says. “And leave seniors at the mercy of the insurance industry.”

“Behind Allen West’s talk,” the narrator intones at the end of the spot, “a plan that ends Medicare and overwhelmingly benefits the rich.”

West faces political newcomer Patrick Murphy (D) in a battle that, at its essence, will be a referendum on the Congressman.

The DCCC ad, unlike some of Murphy’s most memorable ads, hits West for his votes, not his words.

The new spot is backed by about $250,000 on broadcast television in the West Palm Beach media market.

Roll Call rates the 18th district race as Leans Republican.

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