- McConnell Campaign Manager Quits Amid Scandal
- Obama Weighs Delay in Action on Immigration
- Judge Strikes Down Texas Abortion Law
- Neck-and-Neck in Arkansas
- Judge Dismisses McDaniel Challenge
Posts in "Rand Paul"
August 29, 2014
Jesse Benton, who had worked as the campaign manager for Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s re-election bid, said Friday he would resign.
The veteran operative with close ties to the Paul family released a lengthy statement making the announcement. The Lexington Herald-Leader first reported Benton’s resignation, which is effective Saturday.
The move comes just two days after a former Iowa state senator admitted to accepting $73,000 in concealed payments from former Rep. Ron Paul’s presidential campaign. In exchange for the money, that individual, Kent Sorenson, switched endorsements from Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., to Paul, a Texas Republican.
May 6, 2014
North Carolina House Speaker Thom Tillis scored a major victory on Tuesday night, when he won the GOP primary outright to become his party’s nominee to challenge Sen. Kay Hagan, D-N.C.
Tillis garnered 46 percent of the vote when The Associated Press called the race for him around 9:20 p.m. He defeated Greg Brannon, an obstetrician aligned with the tea party who had support from Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., who finished with 27 percent of the vote, and Mark Harris, a pastor, who had focused his appeal on social conservatism and was backed by former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, who had 17 percent of the vote.
The Republican needed at least 40 percent of the vote to avoid a late-summer runoff against one of his opponents.
Hagan is considered one of the cycle’s most vulnerable incumbents and a top target for Republicans in their quest to take back the Senate. Full story
In North Carolina, state Speaker Thom Tillis, Dr. Greg Brannon, and Pastor Mark Harris are vying for the GOP nomination to challenge Sen. Kay Hagan, D-N.C., in a marquee race that will help determine which party controls the Senate next year.
Further down the ballot, an American Idol runner-up hopes he’ll have better luck in a Tar Heel State House race and longtime Rep. Walter B. Jones, R-N.C., will try to avoid becoming the first incumbent to lose a primary this cycle. In Ohio, a spirited challenger — perhaps best known for parodying a Cialis commercial in his bid — will attempt to unseat Speaker John A. Boehner.
In North Carolina, the contests could drag out for months. Primaries for Senate, the 6th and 12th Districts might continue to a runoff on July 15 if no candidate receives at least 40 percent of the vote.
Here are six things to watch in those races and others on Tuesday: Full story
May 1, 2014
A trio of Republican presidential prospects is facing off in North Carolina by throwing their weight behind the top three contenders in the state’s high-stakes GOP primary for Senate.
Most recently, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush endorsed the frontrunner, state Speaker Thom Tillis, on Thursday.
“I am confident that the road to a majority runs through Thom Tillis in North Carolina,” Bush wrote in an email to Tillis supporters.
A candidate must get 40 percent of the vote in Tuesday’s primary to avoid a July runoff in the Tar Heel State. The winner will face Sen. Kay Hagan, D-N.C., in one of the most competitive Senate races of the cycle. Full story
March 6, 2014
Five Republicans who could share a presidential primary debate stage next year will all deliver speeches by lunchtime at today’s start of the Conservative Political Action Conference.
Potential 2016 White House contenders, elected officials and conservative darlings are lining up over the next few days to address thousands of conservative activists descending on the nation’s capital for the annual retreat.
The three-day program kicks off with a speech by Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, a freshman who’s built substantial support within the conservative movement since his upset victory in 2012. Other possible presidential candidates following him on the main ballroom stage throughout the morning include (in order of appearance) House Budget Chairman Paul D. Ryan, R-Wis., New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal and Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla. Full story
January 9, 2014
If the 2016 GOP nominee picks Sen. Rob Portman as a running mate, the Buckeye State senator will not have to chose between his Senate seat and a slot on the GOP national ticket.
This week’s Ohio edition of Roll Call’s Farm Team series looked at the future of Portman’s seat, and according to the Ohio secretary of state’s office, a Buckeye State candidate may appear on the ballot twice in federal races. Full story
November 1, 2013
The Senate class of 2010 produced a handful of GOP rising stars, some whom may run for president or vice president as soon as 2016.
But the timing presents a problem for these Republicans: Not all states allow candidates to appear on a ballot twice. This would negate their ability to run for re-election to the Senate and president or vice president at the same time.
Roll Call often addresses this issue in its weekly series “Farm Team,” which examines the future candidates and politicking in every state. Here is how three could-be contenders stack up with state laws: Full story
April 24, 2013
Any time a senator heads to New Hampshire for a state party event, he or she sparks presidential buzz.
But Sen. Rand Paul’s scheduled visit to the Granite State next month reveals just as much about New Hampshire Republican politics as his own national ambitions.
The state GOP’s recent electoral history demonstrates a deep divide between the tea party and more established Republicans. But in May, Paul will co-headline a dinner with Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus, a partnership that’s intended show unity in the party, according to New Hampshire Republican Party Chairwoman Jennifer Horn. Full story
April 5, 2013
Host David Brody explained at the outset of his Christian Broadcasting Network show that he doesn’t usually spend an entire half-hour on a single subject, but that Kentucky GOP Sen. Rand Paul merited a closer look — and that’s exactly what Paul got.
“The Special Rand Paul Edition of The Brody File,” as Brody described it, has the look and feel of the kind of profiles that are given to serious presidential candidates — including questions about Paul’s favorite bands, an interview with his wife, Kelly, and b-roll of the couple bird-watching near their Kentucky home.
The topics centered on Paul’s religious faith as well as his plans for a possible White House bid in 2016. Paul said he hasn’t yet decided whether to run for president, but he reaffirmed his desire to still be in politics three years from now.
“I think I’m in a position to be part of the solution to help the country grow again and to find its way. I do want to be part of that,” Paul said. “We don’t have an answer yet on whether that means I’ll do it still as a senator for Kentucky or whether it might be running for president. I haven’t sorted that out yet.” Full story
March 28, 2013
Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., warned Bluegrass State reporters Wednesday not to expect an announcement about a possible 2016 presidential bid until next year, while also opining about other policy priorities.
“I want to be part of the national debate,” Paul said. “I think the country faces a lot of problems, and I do want to be a part of trying to bring about answers and solutions for making the Republican party big enough that we can be competitive again, but I won’t make any decision until 2014 or so.”
Paul also would face re-election to the Senate in 2016.
Speaking to press assembled at the University of Kentucky, where the tea party favorite gave a wide-ranging policy speech, Paul spoke about some of his favorite subjects, including the gun violence debate and his bids to curtail foreign aid to countries such as Egypt. Paul also spoke about the Kentucky Legislature’s approval of legislation regarding regulation of industrial hemp production. Full story
March 19, 2013
Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul will headline an annual Republican event in Iowa next month, further signaling his interest in a 2016 presidential bid.
The announcement caps several high-profile weeks for Paul. On Saturday, he narrowly won the Conservative Political Action Committee straw poll, just after he delivered a rousing speech to the annual confab. Earlier this month, Paul filibustered for 13 hours John O. Brennan’s nomination to head the CIA.
And on Tuesday morning, Paul also announced support for a comprehensive immigration overhaul.
The Iowa Republican Party’s Lincoln Day Dinner is one of its top fundraisers of the year. It’s a platform for budding White House contenders to warm up potential supporters in the first presidential caucus state, even a full two years before candidates will begin launching their campaigns.
March 16, 2013
Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., won the Conservative Political Action Conference straw poll on Saturday, edging out fellow Sen. Marco Rubio. He follows in the footsteps of his father, former Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, who was a perennial CPAC straw poll winner.
Paul took 25 percent with Rubio garnering 23 percent at the annual event that took place at National Harbor, Md., this year. This comes about a week after Paul’s Senate floor filibuster that created the Twitter hashtag “StandWithRand.” The motto translated at CPAC – some of the biggest souvenir hits were Mad Men logo “Stand With Rand” stickers and t-shirts that featured Paul’s silhouette.
Other top finishers followed in this order:
- Former Sen. Rick Santorum, R-Pa. got 8 percent
- Gov. Chris Christie, R-N.J. got 7 percent
- Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis. got 6 percent
- Gov. Scott Walker, R-Wis. got 5 percent
March 15, 2013
The Conservative Political Action Conference is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year in a new location: across the D.C. line (but still within the Beltway) at National Harbor, Md. Although it’s a new location, the event remains a central focus this week for the Washington press corps, including team coverage from CQ Roll Call.
The event wraps up Saturday with straw poll results announced around 5 p.m.
Here are some of the highlights of CQ Roll Call’s coverage of the three-day conservative cattle call:
- David M. Drucker is regularly posting on his new “GOPPERS: Inside the Mind of the House GOP” blog, including this scoop on the Republican National Committee revamping its get-out-the-vote program.
- Roll Call’s gossip blog, Heard on the Hill, is also a source of ongoing coverage. HOH features some very choice on-the-ground photos.
- And don’t forget to monitor CQ Roll Call reporters’ Twitter accounts: David M. Drucker, Kyle Trygstad, Jonathan Strong and Heard on the Hill’s Warren Rojas and Neda Semnani
Below are some of the best shots captured Thursday and Friday by our award-winning photographers:
February 12, 2013
11:15 p.m.: Thus concludes the State of the Union live blog. Obama delivered a rather energetic speech, with some added policy flairs, such as a proposed minimum wage increase, to his usual government-centered approach. Democrats are likely to be very happy with what they heard, and Republicans not so much, leaving as still unknown the prospects for bipartisan cooperation on looming fiscal issues such as the budget and the debt ceiling.
Rubio’s rebuttal, meanwhile, will initially be remembered for that reach for a gulp of water in the middle of his speech — at least on social media. But for the difficult task that the rebuttal is, Rubio performed capably and probably helped his career because of it.
Good night from Roll Call in Washington.
10:16 p.m.: Obama concludes. Next up, Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida with the Republican rebuttal.
10:10 p.m.: The president is closing his State of the Union address with an emotional appeal for Congress to take up Democratic gun control legislation that he is pushing. While some proposals have bipartisan support, many of them do not. “They deserve a vote,” is a phrase the president is repeating over and over. “Gabby Giffords deserves a vote,” he says. “The families of Newtown deserve a vote.” — “The families of Aurora deserve a vote.” — The families of Oak Creek, and Tucson, and Blacksburg …”
This portion of the #SOTU is likely to stick the most with Democrats, at least. Easily the emotional portion of Obama’s address.
10:08 p.m.: “It has been two months since Newtown,” Obama says.
10 p.m.: Obama calls for the federal government to address threats to U.S. cybersecurity, as part of the latter sections of the State of the Union that declared victory over the “core” elements of al-Qaida in Afghanistan and vowed to prevent Iran from acquiring or developing nuclear weapons capability. The Iran comment drew the most bipartisan applause. Less noted by the members but sure to generate much opposition from Republicans: the president’s proposal for the U.S. to unilaterally reduce its nuclear weapons stockpile to set an example.
9:45 p.m.: Immigration makes an appearance, and for the first time it appears that most in the chamber, Democrat and Republican, stand and applaud, with some cheering to boot. Interestingly enough, Obama does not call specifically for a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants though he suggests that legalization should involve “going to the back of the line” behind those trying emigrate legally.
9:40 p.m.: Speech is full of the usual Obama flourishes — “reasonable” this, “common sense” that — expressions of incredulity that certain issues engender partisanship. But unusual for any president’s State of the Union, far fewer applause interruptions than normally occur. Meanwhile, Biden exhibits his usual earnestness as he looks on. Boehner actually looks less grumpy than in the past.
January 17, 2013
Florida Sen. Marco Rubio will speak at the Conservative Political Action Conference in March, becoming the latest potential 2016 Republican presidential hopeful confirmed to address the annual event.
Rubio joins House Budget Chairman Paul D. Ryan, R-Wis., and Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., who the American Conservative Union previously announced would speak at the gathering of conservative activists.
CPAC is a regular stop for members of Congress and presidential candidates alike, and two-time presidential candidate Mitt Romney even used the forum in 2008 to announce the end to his campaign. This year’s event will be held March 14-16 at the National Harbor outside Washington, D.C.