Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
July 28, 2015

Posts in "Outside Groups"

July 7, 2015

Walter Jones Primary Challenger Looks for Rematch in 2016

Jones is facing a repeat primary challenge in his quest for a 12th term. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Jones is facing a repeat primary challenge from Griffin. (CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Republican Taylor Griffin plans to announce a primary bid against North Carolina 3rd District Rep. Walter B. Jones on Wednesday, according to a release first obtained by CQ Roll Call.

Republicans in the state had long expected Griffin to mount a repeat challenge after he came within 6 points of knocking off the 11-term congressman in 2014. In a conservative district that Mitt Romney carried by double digits, the winner of the GOP primary will win the seat.

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June 18, 2015

Cruz, Paul and Rubio Make Their Case to the Faithful

Cruz greets guests at the Faith & Freedom Coalition’s Road to Majority conference. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Cruz greets guests at the Faith & Freedom Coalition’s Road to Majority conference. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Of the three presidential candidates who spoke at the Faith and Freedom Coalition’s Road to Majority Conference in Washington, D.C., Thursday, there was no question whom the audience was waiting for.

Texas Sen. Ted Cruz walked on and offstage to raucous applause. The 300 or so lunching faithful erupted into cheers even before his introduction was complete.

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June 15, 2015

Outside Conservative Groups Playing Defense This Cycle

Lee, who rose to power in an anti-incubment wave, now benefits from the same protections as other incumbents. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Lee, who rose to power in an anti-incumbent wave, now benefits from the same protections as other incumbents. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Five years ago, Mike Lee rode the anti-establishment wave and unseated Utah Sen. Robert F. Bennett, one of the first casualties of the tea party revolution.

This cycle, with Lee in the Senate, conservative outside groups — known in the past for provoking GOP primaries against incumbents — share a common goal with the National Republican Senatorial Committee in deflating primary challenges from Lee’s left and defending him in the general election.

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June 8, 2015

Outside Groups Wage Ad War for Votes on Export-Import Bank

The Club for Growth cancelled its in Stewart's district after he came out against the Export-Import Bank (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The Club for Growth canceled its ad in Stewart’s district after he came out against reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Rep. Chris Stewart represents Utah’s solidly red 2nd District. And he sounds like it.

“Oh yeah, duh,” he told CQ Roll Call when asked whether he thought the free market could do a better job than the government promoting U.S. exports overseas. “I’m a conservative Republican.” Full story

June 4, 2015

Arizona’s Salmon Bides His Time on McCain Challenge

Salmon said some of his colleagues have been pressing him to run for Senate. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Salmon said some of his colleagues have been pressing him to run for Senate against McCain. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The pressure for Arizona Rep. Matt Salmon to challenge Sen. John McCain doesn’t end with conservative outside groups hoping to unseat the five-term senator.

“Numerous members in the House — and some members of the Senate,” have encouraged Salmon to run in a GOP primary, “which has shocked me greatly,” the congressman told CQ Roll Call Wednesday.

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Democrats Frustrated by Unions’ Cash Freeze Over ‘Fast Track’

Richard Trumka is president of the AFL-CIO, which has frozen campaign contributions to Democrats. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Richard Trumka is president of the AFL-CIO, which has frozen campaign contributions to Democrats over a trade bill being debated in Congress. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

One of Democrats’ best team players on the campaign finance front is playing hardball this cycle, withholding campaign cash over a package of trade bills being debated in Congress.

The AFL-CIO, along with some public sector unions, announced a campaign finance freeze in March. Unions hoped the threat of withholding contributions would scare Democratic lawmakers out of supporting President Barack Obama’s Trade Promotion Authority, or “fast track,” to negotiate the Trans-Pacific Partnership — a trade agreement labor groups say would hurt manufacturing jobs in the U.S.

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December 11, 2014

Club for Growth President Steps Down

club for growth

Chocola is photographed in his downtown office. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Club for Growth President Chris Chocola, a former Indiana congressman, announced his retirement Thursday from the conservative outside group that often serves as a thorn in the side of Republican leadership.

Former Rep. David M. McIntosh, also a Hoosier State Republican, will take over for Chocola, who led the group for six years. Full story

October 28, 2014

New Ad Attacks Joni Ernst on Education

joni ernst

The National Education Association will start airing a new ad Tuesday attacking Joni Ernst on education.

The ad, provided first to CQ Roll Call, features voters speaking directly to camera as a narrator attacks Ernst’s record on education.

Joni Ernst is leading the fight to take funding from public school students and give it to wealthy private schools instead,” a male narrator says. Full story

October 27, 2014

Democratic Super PAC Ups Ante Against Michael Grimm

michael grimm

Democrats are targeting Grimm, right. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Democrat-aligned House Majority PAC has placed a massive broadcast television buy against New York Rep. Michael G. Grimm for the final week of the campaign.

The group is spending $1.7 million in support of Democrat Domenic M. Recchia Jr. on New York City broadcast, and the  reservation will last until Election Day, according to a spokesman. Combined with a previous cable buy, the super PAC is on track to spend $1.9 million against the legally and politically embattled Republican.

An analysis of ad spending provided by a Democrat monitoring the media market reflects a congressman fighting alone against a Democratic onslaught of advertising in the Staten Island-based 11th District. Full story

October 20, 2014

Mark Begich Targeted on Arctic Oil Drilling in New GOP TV Ad (Video)

mark begich

Begich is being targeted on ANWR in a new TV ad. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

A Republican-aligned outside group is hitting Alaska Sen. Mark Begich for failing to persuade his party to support opening drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

Utilizing a theme of broken campaign promises from 2008, when Begich defeated Republican Sen. Ted Stevens, the new TV ad from American Crossroads hammers the Democrat for both the percentage of votes on which he agreed with the president last year and the fact that Congress has not approved ANWR oil exploration.

“We’ve had six years of Begich’s broken politics,” the ad’s announcer says. “Alaska needs a change.” Full story

October 16, 2014

EMILY’s List Endorses Kansas Candidates

emily's list endorsements
Yoder is a Kansas Republican. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

EMILY’s List, an organization that backs female Democratic candidates who support abortion rights, announced Thursday a pair of endorsements in two late-breaking House races in Kansas.

The group offered its full endorsement of Margie Wakefield and Kelly Kultala, who are challenging GOP Reps. Lynn Jenkins and Kevin Yoder, respectively.

For now, both races are rated Safe Republican by the Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call. But highly competitive races for Senate and governor have roiled the ballot this cycle, causing concern for Kansas Republicans in two House districts. Full story

October 10, 2014

DCCC Cuts Ad Time in Top Colorado Race

dccc

Romanoff, left, toured the theater catering to the Latino community. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee is cutting its ad reservations for the last two weeks of the campaign in a race that represents one of its top offensive opportunities this cycle.

According to a committee aide, the DCCC has pulled $1.4 million in airtime in Colorado’s 6th District, where Republican Rep. Mike Coffman is facing off against former state Speaker Andrew Romanoff.

The committee will partner with Romanoff in ads next week, said the aide, but the DCCC’s portion of the buy was not immediately available.

“This is still a very winnable race, and Romanoff is well-funded and in a competitive position to bring it across the finish line,” said the aide, who stressed the committee still views the race as top target. Full story

Steve King Tops NumbersUSA Scorecard

NumbersUSA likes what it sees in King. (Tom WIlliams/CQ Roll Call)

NumbersUSA, the conservative group that wants to reduce immigration, has graded members of Congress on its signature issue and its scorecard sees an institution with overall average marks.

The downloadable survey lists yes-or-no questions on topics, such as whether a member supports reducing “unnecessary foreign workers” and reducing “anchor baby citizenship.” The Senate got a “C,” while the House scored a “C-,” bringing the overall congressional score to “C.”

Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, had the highest score of any member of Congress, 98 percent, good for an “A+.” Eighteen members, all Republicans, scored in the “A+” category, which had a range of being simpatico with 95-100 percent of NumbersUSA’s positions. Seven Democrats and six Republicans scored an “F-.” Rep. John Barrow of Georgia was the highest-scoring Democrat, getting an 89 percent on the scorecard, or an “A-.”

Roll Call Election Map: Race Ratings for Every Seat

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October 9, 2014

Super PAC Goes Big for Vulnerable Florida Republican

super pac spending

Southerland is one of this cycle's most vulnerable House Republicans. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

A House GOP super PAC is making a major television buy in the final two weeks of the campaign to boost vulnerable Rep. Steve Southerland II, R-Fla.

The Congressional Leadership Fund, a super PAC affiliated with House GOP leadership, made a $600,000 media buy in the Tallahassee and Panama City television markets in their effort to fend off attorney Gwen Graham, a top Democratic recruit.

The buy includes television and digital advertising. Full story

Super PAC Drops $1.5 Million Targeting Fred Upton

mayday pac

Upton is a Michigan Republican. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Mayday PAC, a super PAC aiming to overhaul campaign finance laws, will spend $1.5 million to target House Energy and Commerce Chairman Fred Upton in Michigan, the group announced Thursday.

The group will spend $1.2 million of those funds on a 30-second ad that seeks to connect the PAC money Upton has received from drug and health insurance interests to his vote against allowing Medicare to negotiate lower drug prices. The rest of the money will go toward a grassroots field operation and direct mail campaign, the group said.

The spending comes on the heels of the group’s Tuesday announcement that it will spend $1 million in South Dakota’s open-seat Senate contest in support of the Democratic nominee, Rick Weiland.

Mayday PAC is spending millions this cycle, an ironic effort to elect a congressional majority in favor of ending super PACs.

Full story

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