Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
May 26, 2015

Posts in "Open Seat"

May 20, 2015

Sanchez Stumbles Prompt SoCal Angst

Sanchez is running for Senate in California. (By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sanchez had a rough week announcing a Senate bid. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Long shut out of statewide office, Southern California Democrats saw a glimmer of hope last week, when Orange County Rep. Loretta Sanchez announced a bid for the Golden State’s open Senate seat.

But a series of stumbles out of the gate has left some of them hesitant about whether they will back her uphill battle against state Attorney General Kamala Harris — with some waiting on Rep. Xavier Becerra, who is still considering jumping into the primary.

Full story

Stutzman Staffs Up for Senate Bid

Jesmer will help Stutzman’s Senate bid. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

GOP Rep. Marlin Stutzman, who is vacating his House seat to run in Indiana’s open Senate contest, has hired an experienced senior campaign team to help his bid, according to a release provided first to CQ Roll Call.

Democrats, who will attempt to pick up the seat in 2016, are hoping to paint Stutzman as the type of fringe, tea party candidate that has caused the GOP troubles in cycles past. But Stutzman’s senior leadership lineup includes former top aides at the National Republican Senatorial Committee and National Republican Congressional Committee, as well as GOP consultants well-respected on Capitol Hill — a move that signals is willing to shed that image.

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May 15, 2015

Ousted Democrat Announces Indiana Senate Bid (Updated)

Hill, center, is a former member of Congress. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Hill, center, is a former member of Congress. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated, 1 p.m. | Former Democratic Rep. Baron Hill told a crowd at a Jefferson Jackson Dinner in Columbus, Ind., he’ll run for the open Senate seat in the Hoosier State in 2016, becoming the first Democrat to enter the contest.

“I want to be your next senator,” Hill told the audience, according to the Republic, a local newspaper based in Columbus.

Full story

May 14, 2015

Sanchez Senate Bid Opens Orange County House Seat

Sanchez is running for Senate in California. (By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

After waffling on a run earlier this week, Democratic Rep. Loretta Sanchez announced Thursday she is  running for California’s open Senate seat.

“I’m running to give a voice to every Californian,” Sanchez said at a rally in Santa Ana. Full story

Lieutenant Governor Moves Closer to Florida Senate Bid

Rubio is running for president in 2016.  (Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Rubio’s seat is open because he is running for president in 2016. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Florida Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera moved closer to entering the open Florida Senate contest late Wednesday, announcing a super PAC to help him raise money for a potential candidacy.

Lopez-Cantera would be the second top-tier Republican to enter the contest — left vacant thanks to GOP Sen. Marco Rubio’s presidential bid. GOP Rep. Ron DeSantis, a favorite of tea party-aligned outside groups, announced a bid earlier this month.

Full story

May 12, 2015

Mississippi Special Election Heads to Runoff

The race to replace Nunnelee is headed to a runoff. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The race to replace Nunnelee is headed to a runoff. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The special election in Mississippi’s 1st District is headed to a June 2 runoff, after none of the 13 candidates in the field captured the necessary votes to win outright.

In a surprising twist, Democrat Walter Zinn took the first-place spot, with 17 percent when The Associated Press called the race. Zinn advances with Republican Trent Kelly, a district attorney who took the second-place spot with 16 percent. Both are seeking to replace the late Rep. Alan Nunnelee, who died in February after a battle with brain cancer.

Full story

Loretta Sanchez May Announce California Senate Bid

Sanchez is running for Senate. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sanchez is running for Senate. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated, 8 p.m. | Rep. Loretta Sanchez, D-Calif., may announce a bid for Senate in the Golden State Thursday, which would set up a primary in the open-seat race to replace retiring Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer.

Citing an email intended for Sanchez supporters, sources told CQ Roll Call the congresswoman would make her announcement Thursday morning. That’s one day before Democratic operatives and activists gather in Anaheim, located in her district, for the annual California Democratic Party Convention. The plan described in the email was for Sanchez to stand beside her “husband, family and friends,” at the Santa Ana train station.

Full story

May 11, 2015

Expect the Unexpected in Mississippi Special Election

Thirteen candidates are vying to succeed the late Nunnelee. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Thirteen candidates are vying to succeed Nunnelee. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The special election in Mississippi’s 1st District is a political handicapper’s nightmare.

“If anyone tells you they know what to expect on Tuesday, they are lying to you,” said Casey Phillips, a GOP ad maker who is working for Republican Greg Pirkle.

Pirkle, an attorney from Tupelo, is just one of 13 candidates seeking the northeastern Mississippi-based seat, left vacant in February following the death of GOP Rep. Alan Nunnelee.

Full story

May 9, 2015

Marlin Stutzman Leaving House to Run for Senate

Stutzman will run for Senate in Indiana. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Stutzman will run for Senate in Indiana. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Rep. Marlin Stutzman will announce an Indiana Senate bid Saturday, according to multiple sources with knowledge of his plans, making him the second Republican to join the open-seat race.

Democrats are hoping Stutzman’s entrance into the contest will produce a bloody Republican primary that could endanger the GOP’s chances at holding on to retiring Sen. Dan Coats’ seat.

Full story

May 6, 2015

Ron DeSantis Announces Florida Senate Bid

DeSantis is running for Senate in Florida. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Florida Rep. Ron DeSantis announced Wednesday he is running for Florida’s open Senate seat, becoming the first well-known Republican to enter what’s expected to be among the most competitive races of the cycle.

The second-term member is a favorite of tea party-aligned conservative groups, a number of which encouraged DeSantis to run after GOP Sen. Marco Rubio said he would vacate the seat to run for president.

Full story

May 5, 2015

Dan Donovan Wins Special Election to Succeed Michael Grimm

Voters in Staten Island elected a successor to Grimm. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Voters in Staten Island elected a successor to Grimm. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Republican Dan Donovan easily won a special election in New York’s 11th District Tuesday night, solidifying his role as the successor to disgraced ex-Rep. Michael G. Grimm.

The Staten Island district attorney defeated his Democratic opponent, New York City Councilman Vincent Gentile, 58 percent to 41 percent, with 72 percent of precincts reporting, according to The Associated Press. With his victory, the seat stays in GOP hands.

Full story

Democrats Look Past Tuesday’s New York Special Election

Voters will elect a Grimm successor Tuesday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Republican Daniel Donovan is expected to cruise to victory Tuesday in the special election to replace disgraced former Rep. Michael G. Grimm, R-N.Y.

Despite the apparent opportunity for Democrats stemming from Grimm’s resignation in January, after the three-term Republican pleaded guilty to tax fraud, national Democrats did not see a path to victory and spent almost nothing to aid their party’s candidate, New York City Councilman Vincent Gentile. Full story

May 4, 2015

Darin LaHood Raises $500K in Race to Replace Aaron Schock

A special election is being held to replace Schock. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Illinois state Sen. Darin LaHood raised more than $500,000 in five weeks since entering the special election to replace Republican Aaron Schock, according to figures provided first to CQ Roll Call.

LaHood, the son of former Illinois Rep. Ray LaHood, faces a Republican primary against Mike Flynn, an editor of the conservative website Breitbart News. LaHood touted the haul in an early show of strength, with the pre-primary fundraising reporting deadline still seven weeks away.

Full story

April 21, 2015

Candidates Look to Make Family Legacies in Congress

Murkowski and her father are just some who claim a family legacy in Congress. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Murkowski, right, and her father are among those who claim a family legacy in Congress. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated 11 a.m. | When nine-term Democratic Rep. Lois Capps announced her retirement, all eyes turned to a potential successor: her daughter.

A nonprofit consultant and community activist who has never run for office, Laura Burton Capps has long been seen as a possible successor to her mother. (Her father Walter Capps first held the seat, but died after just nine months in office. Lois Capps won a special election to succeed him.)

The congresswoman’s daughter recently confirmed she is seriously considering a bid for the now-open Santa Barbara-based 24th District. If she opts to run, she would join the many politicians who have sought to follow in their parents’ footsteps and ascend to Congress — and she might be one of a handful who could attempt the feat this cycle.

Full story

April 16, 2015

Republican Launches Bid to Succeed Lois Capps in California

2016 house races

Capps will not seek re-election. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Republicans have landed a top recruit for a competitive open-seat House race in California.

State Assemblyman Katcho Achadjian will launch his campaign Friday in the race to replace retiring Democratic Rep. Lois Capps in the coastal Santa Barbara-based 24th District. Full story

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