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Posts in "NRSC"
August 15, 2013
Steve Lonegan, the New Jersey GOP’s nominee for the Senate special election, has high expectations for the Republican National Committee and the National Republican Senatorial Committee to boost him to victory.
Lonegan faces an uphill climb in the Oct. 16 special election against the Democratic nominee, Newark Mayor Cory Booker. A Republican has not won a New Jersey Senate seat in 40 years, and President Barack Obama carried the state with 58 percent in 2012.
On Wednesday, Lonegan told WOR Radio that he is “expecting really the whole NRSC and RNC to be focusing on this race.”
“The entire Republican Party is organized behind my campaign,” Lonegan, a legally blind conservative activist, said on “The John Gamble Show.”
August 14, 2013
Senate Republicans are using a classic video game and tonight’s season premiere of “Duck Dynasty” to target Sen. Mary L. Landrieu, D-La., in their campaign arm’s first televised ad of the midterm election cycle.
The ad, obtained first by CQ Roll Call, utilizes Nintendo’s “Duck Hunt” game, familiar to kids of the 1980s. Titled “Misfire,” the National Republican Senatorial Committee’s spot says Landrieu has “bad aim” when it comes to issues such as “health care, energy, taxes and jobs.”
It will air only in New Orleans during the first episode of the Louisiana-based A&E reality show Wednesday night, as well as next week’s episode. Watch “Misfire” here:
August 2, 2013
Two Democratic polls released in the past two days showed Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell virtually tied in his re-election race in the Bluegrass State.
Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes, who formally launched her challenge to the Republican this week, led 44 percent to 42 percent in a survey conducted by her pollster, Mark Mellman. The poll of 750 likely voters was taken July 20-24.
The Democrat’s 2-point lead was within the poll’s 3.6-point margin of error, but the results indicate at this early point that McConnell has a race on his hands in this Republican-leaning state. Full story
July 31, 2013
Senate Democrats’ campaign chief urged patience with the party’s recruitment progress as Republicans picked up a top challenger this week in a key race.
“Everyone wants the races to be jelled today,” Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Chairman Michael Bennet told reporters in a Wednesday briefing after the quarter-mark of the cycle. “They’re not, and they never are.”
Congress may be preparing for a monthlong recess, but the 2014 battle for the Senate is only gaining steam. Fifteen months removed from the midterm elections, both Senate campaign committees are still deep in the recruitment phase of cycle.
July 22, 2013
Twenty-six senators raced in and out of the Ronald Reagan Republican Center last week with varying enthusiasm for a most-often-dreaded, but necessary, activity: fundraising.
Inside the National Republican Senatorial Committee’s marathon call day, even the GOP’s weakest fundraisers were on hand to dial for dollars to help the party gain the net six seats necessary to win the majority.
“I’m not real good at it, asking people to give money,” said Sen. Jeff Sessions of Alabama, who had one of the lowest fundraising hauls in the second quarter. “But I do, because it’s just part of it. People are nice when you talk to them. They understand the process.”
South Dakota Sen. John Thune made it look easy. He strolled in just after a vote, took a seat toward the back and placed a plastic cup of lemonade and bag of Nutter Butter cookies on the table. With the phone to his ear, he leaned back in his chair and said, “Hey, Al, how’s it going?” Al did much of the talking.
More than half of the caucus stopped in July 18 to fundraise for the NRSC, and CQ Roll Call was given exclusive access to the marathon call session.
The effort to get more senators personally involved was intended, in part, to help reverse a trend. Recently, Democrats have been far more generous in committee donations out of their personal campaign accounts.
In the 2012 cycle, 20 of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee’s top 25 largest contributors were senators’ campaigns, and they gave a total of $8.6 million, according to figures compiled by Political MoneyLine. By comparison, nine of the NRSC’s top 25 contributors were senators’ campaigns and collectively gave just more than $1 million. Many of the GOP’s top donations came from joint fundraising committees.
July 19, 2013
The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee raised $1.5 million more than its GOP counterpart in June, bringing in a total of $3 million more during the second quarter, according to figures released by the parties on Friday.
The DSCC raked in some $5.3 million last month, but the committee did not release its cash-on-hand or debt figures. As of May 31, the DSCC had $9.6 million in the bank and was carrying $12.5 million in debt, according to its June report to the Federal Election Commission. Full story
July 15, 2013
Senate Democrats’ inability so far to lure top-tier talent to run for their three most vulnerable open seats shifts the spotlight to recruits in its two most promising pickup opportunities — a relative term in this lopsided landscape.
Former Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer’s decision this weekend to eschew a Senate race came as an unexpected boon for the GOP’s hopes of netting the six seats necessary to win the Senate majority next year. Pulling off that feat would be an accomplishment for Republicans, even if they are waging war in friendly GOP territory.
But there is a realistic scenario that could force Democrats to rely on two first-time federal candidates in states where the party has enjoyed little success in recent years. If Montana moves off the competitive playing field and Republicans are also favored to pick up the open seats in West Virginia and South Dakota, the GOP would need to pick up just three more seats from their most promising targets in Alaska, Arkansas, Iowa, Louisiana and North Carolina.
July 13, 2013
Updated 1:15 p.m. | Former Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer, a Democrat, will not run for the Senate, according to an Associated Press report.
The stunning decision immediately puts the open seat in jeopardy for Democrats and makes the party’s hold of the majority in 2014 a heavier lift.
“I love Montana. I want to be here. There are all kinds of people that think I should be in the U.S. Senate,” Schweitzer told the AP. “But I never wanted to be in the U.S. Senate. I kicked the tires. I walked to the edge and looked over.”
Just a few days ago, he was expected to run. Earlier in the cycle, operatives believed he would have been the frontrunner if he sought the seat given his popularity as governor.
July 3, 2013
Rocky Mountain State Republicans continue to struggle in their search for a challenger for Sen. Mark Udall, D-Colo., thanks to the fractious nature of the state’s party.
The field of potential candidates reflects a shallow GOP bench in a race that should pique the interest of any ambitious Colorado Republican. Since the start of the cycle, the field of potential candidates has evolved into a mix of young talent, old names, and middle-rank state legislators.
“There are a lot of viable candidates who wouldn’t scare the hell out of suburban women …who could actually win a general,” said lobbyist Mike Beasley, a former staffer to former Gov. Bill Owens, a Republican. “But a lot of them wouldn’t want to suffer through … what continues to be these weird, stranger and stranger primaries.”
June 28, 2013
With a stagnant number of women in its caucus, the House GOP’s campaign organization announced a new program Friday, Project Grow, to recruit, mentor and elect more female candidates in 2014.
“We need more women to run,” Rep. Virginia Foxx, R-N.C., said. “Project Grow will plant that seed that will get them thinking of doing it.”
CQ Roll Call reported earlier this week that the National Republican Congressional Committee was in the early stages of formalizing a female candidate recruitment program for the upcoming midterm cycle. The NRCC’s announcement was part of a joint event with six GOP committees that are making an new organized effort to help female candidates. Full story
June 24, 2013
If Republicans lose on Tuesday for the second time in the past seven months, the Bay State’s short run as a stomping ground for competitive Senate races will come to an abrupt halt.
Former Sen. Scott P. Brown’s surprise win started it all in 2010, but GOP nominee Gabriel Gomez appears unlikely to pull off an encore performance in the special election to replace Secretary of State John Kerry. In recent days, polls showed Democratic Rep. Edward J. Markey with a sizable lead over Gomez in the state’s third Senate race in as many years.
A Gomez loss, especially by a double-digit margin, would offer GOP donors, operatives and prospective statewide candidates for federal office even less incentive to expend the time and resources needed to win Massachusetts in 2014. The defeat would also further highlight the GOP’s recent disappearing act among New England’s congressional delegations. Full story
June 20, 2013
Updated 4:00 p.m. | The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee announced raising $4.9 million last month and ending May with “nearly $10 million” on hand.
“We still have a very long road to travel, but we are off to a strong start,” DSCC Executive Director Guy Cecil said.
June 5, 2013
National Republican Congressional Committee Chairman Greg Walden signaled that he plans to stay on offense in 2014 with the aim of expanding his party’s 17-seat majority.
In a Wednesday memo to the House Republican Conference obtained exclusively by CQ Roll Call, Walden says his committee will be “aggressively expanding the playing field” thanks, in part, to Democratic recruitment struggles.
“The question facing Democrats is how, if they are struggling on their home court, will they ever win the Republican-leaning districts they need to regain the majority?” Walden wrote to his colleagues.
He went on to highlight Democratic candidates who dropped their House bids early in the cycle, framing them as recruitment failures. He named-checked former candidates such as hotel magnate Jim Graves in Minnesota’s 6th District and former state Sen. Staci Appel in Iowa’s 3rd District.
Walden also cited promising polling in a handful of House seats held by Democrats, including:
June 4, 2013
A new automated poll out Tuesday found Rep. Edward J. Markey, D-Mass., with a 12-point lead over Republican Gabriel Gomez in the upcoming Senate special election.
Markey took 52 percent in the New England College poll, with 40 percent backing Gomez and 8 percent undecided. Both candidates received the support of about three-quarters of voters in their own party, which — given the state’s severe Democratic lean — gave Markey a big edge over Gomez.
The poll arrived as both campaigns launched new TV ad campaigns this week. Just three weeks remain before the June 25 race to fill the remaining Senate term of Secretary of State John Kerry. Full story
May 31, 2013
The National Republican Senatorial Committee has hired Michael Joffrion as its new regional political director for the Southeast.
That area will play a pivotal role in the 2014 elections — especially for Senate Republicans. Joffrion will oversee the committee’s efforts to topple Democratic incumbents in Arkansas, Louisiana and North Carolina, as well as hold on to retiring Sen. Saxby Chambliss’ GOP-held seat in Georgia.