Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
November 23, 2014

Posts in "Primaries"

February 12, 2014

Ralph Hall Braces for ‘Final’ Primary Challenge

Ralph Hall Braces for Final Primary Challenge

Hall has vowed this will be his final re-election campaign. (Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Texas Rep. Ralph M. Hall, the oldest member of Congress, has promised this will be his final campaign.

He’s said it before — several times, in fact — and gone on to run again anyway. But this time, some Texas operatives think the 17-term Republican incumbent could very well be running his last race, though not by choice. Full story

Northern Va. Dems Opt for Nominating Convention for Wolf Seat

Northern Virginia Democrats are utilizing a nominating tactic more commonly associated with state Republicans to choose the party’s nominee in a nationally targeted district.

Seeking to bolster its chances at winning the open 10th District seat, the local party decided last weekend to choose a nominee by convention rather than a primary. The rare move limits the number of people who will decide the party’s general election candidate and moves up the nomination process by nearly two months.

Party leaders in Virginia’s 10th Congressional District Democratic Committee hope the earlier date and limited universe of voters will allow their eventual nominee to avoid a costly primary and instead focus on the November general.

“Our committee had a very thoughtful conversation about this, and we just feel very strongly that we need a nominee as soon as possible, and we need to help our eventual nominee conserve resources,” said Charlie Jackson, chairman of Virginia’s 10th District Democratic Party. “Whoever our nominee is can conserve those resources so we spend them in a general election and not against ourselves.”

Full story

February 11, 2014

Lindsey Graham Launches First Campaign Ads

South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham, who is facing a few Republican primary challengers, released his first TV and radio ads of the year on Tuesday.

The ads work to burnish Graham’s conservative credentials with four months left until the June 10 primary. The ads are backed by a six-figure buy and will run statewide for more than a week, according to a release.

The TV ad notes Graham “opposed Obamacare from Day One,” “led the fight on Benghazi,” and is “a conservative leader who gets things done.” Full story

Paul Broun Picks Up Endorsement in Georgia Senate Race

Rep. Paul Broun, one of several Republicans running in Georgia’s open-seat Senate contest, got an endorsement Tuesday from the Madison Project, a group that seeks to boost tea party candidates into office.

“Congressman Paul Broun is a doctor, soldier, citizen legislator, and proven constitutional warrior,” Madison Project Chairman Jim Ryun said in a news release. “He has been inviolable, while even the fiercest conservative fighters have succumbed to the establishment meat grinder in D.C. Broun is the consummate constitutional champion who puts people and principle before politics. That is why his leadership is needed in the United States Senate, which is full of governing-class elites from both parties who seek endless growth of the federal government.”

Georgia has traditionally been reliable statewide territory for Republicans. But many GOP operatives argue that if Broun wins the Republican nomination, he could jeopardize the party’s control of the Senate seat.

Full story

February 10, 2014

Tea Party Express Endorses Colorado Senate Candidate

The Tea Party Express has endorsed state Sen. Owen Hill in his bid for the GOP nomination to take on Democratic Sen. Mark Udall in the fall.

“I have no doubt that Hill will join the new wave of conservative leaders in the Upper Chamber that have bucked the establishment of both parties to tackle America’s unsustainable debt, crippling taxes, and intrusive, big-government policies,” Tea Party Express Chairwoman Amy Kremer said in a statement.

The backing of the national tea party organization signals Hill’s potential conservative support in the competitive GOP primary, which will be held June 24. Still, none of the contenders so far appear to be giving Udall or national Democrats much of a scare, despite recent polling that indicates otherwise. Full story

Alpha Epsilon Pi Fraternity Leader to Vie for Waxman Seat (Updated)

Updated 2:30 p.m. | Elan S. Carr, a veteran, Los Angeles County deputy district attorney and the head of the Alpha Epsilon Pi fraternity, will announce his bid Monday for the open California 33rd District seat, according to an email obtained by CQ Roll Call.

AEPi is a prominent, international Jewish fraternity, and Carr is currently the supreme master. With his announcement, Carr would likely become the first Republican to announce a bid for the seat of retiring Rep. Henry A. Waxman in this solidly Democratic, Los Angeles-based district.

“With the retirement of legendary Congressman Henry A. Waxman, West Los Angeles faces an historic election for an open seat in the U.S. House of Representatives,” Carr said in an email to the AEPi fraternity. “After consulting with a team of political professionals and reaching out to supporters, Dahlia and I have decided to enter that race.”

Full story

Coburn Endorses in Competitive Nebraska Senate Primary

Coburn Endorses in Competitive Nebraska Senate Primary

Coburn voiced his support for a candidate in Nebraska. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., has declared his support for Midland University President Ben Sasse’s bid for Senate in Nebraska.

“Ben is just the kind of person we need in Washington,” Coburn told the Lincoln Journal Star in a Sunday story. “He is a totally open and honest guy who is very responsive and responsible. If Ben was running in Oklahoma, I’d vote for him.”

Sasse, a Republican, faces a number of other GOP candidates in the primary, including former state Treasurer Shane Osborn, banker Sid Dinsdale and attorney Bart McLeay, among others. The seat is open because Sen. Mike Johanns, R-Neb., is retiring.

Conservative groups are divided between two Republicans: Sasse and Osborn.

Full story

February 7, 2014

Montana Lt. Gov. John Walsh Appointed to Replace Baucus

Montana Lt. Gov. John Walsh Appointed to Replace Baucus

Walsh, far right, visited the Capitol in November along with West Virginia Senate candidate Natalie Tennant. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Win or lose in November, Democratic Lt. Gov. John Walsh will be the next senator from Montana.

Gov. Steve Bullock appointed his former running mate to fill the seat of retiring Democratic Sen. Max Baucus, who is leaving the Senate early after being confirmed Thursday as ambassador to China.

Walsh was already running for the seat, but he’ll now run as the incumbent senator. That change could provide some inherent advantages in his quest to hold one of the party’s most vulnerable seats.

“I wanted to appoint someone who I truly believed would wake up each and every day wanting to put Montana and Montanans first,” Bullock said in a Friday news conference to announce the appointment. Full story

EMILY’s List Endorses in Race to Replace Henry Waxman

EMILY’s List, an organization that seeks to boost women who support abortion rights into elected office, announced their endorsement of former Los Angeles Controller Wendy Greuel in her race in California’s 33rd District.

Greuel is one of two Democrats looking to replace Rep. Henry A. Waxman, who announced last week he will retire after a 40 year career in the House. State Sen. Ted Lieu is also running, with other Democrats mulling whether to enter the contest.

“Wendy Greuel has demonstrated outstanding leadership as a public servant fighting for education, small businesses, and government accountability for California families,” Stephanie Schriock, president of EMILY’s List, said in a news release.

The EMILY’s List endorsement, which often comes with fundraising and organizational support, could be instrumental in this race, which is likely to see a crowded field of Democratic contenders.

Full story

Republican Eyes Hamptons House Seat (Video)

Republican Eyes Hamptons House Seat (Video)

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The candidate: Republican state Sen. Lee Zeldin
The member: Six-term Rep. Timothy H. Bishop, D-N.Y.
The district: New York’s 1st District. It covers the eastern half of Long Island, encompassing both working-class regions and the tony Hamptons. Bishop won re-election in 2012 by 5 points, as President Barack Obama carried the district by 1 point.
The candidate’s team: Brabender Cox (media); John McLaughlin of McLaughlin & Associates (polling); Majority Strategies (direct mail); Chapin Fay (campaign manager). Full story

Ami Bera Challenger Gets Tea Party Backing

The Madison Project, a group that seeks to boost tea-party-aligned candidates, will endorse former Capitol Hill aide Igor Birman on Friday morning in the crowded GOP field in California’s 7th District, according to a release provided first to CQ Roll Call.

Birman, a former chief of staff to Rep. Tom McClintock, R-Calif., faces a competitive top-two primary against former Rep. Doug Ose and autism activist Elizabeth Emken. All three are looking to oust freshman Democratic Rep. Ami Bera, a top GOP target in 2014.

The Madison Project plans to back up its endorsement by opening a get-out-the-vote headquarters in the district to help mobilize voters for Birman in the June 3 primary.

“Igor is uniquely articulate in communicating all the principles of conservative public policy and is the only candidate in this race who will not be beholden to liberal special interests,” Madison Project Political Director Drew Ryun said in a statement. “He won’t need to be pressured or shamed into keeping his campaign promises because he will pursue constitutional governance, even when the party leaders stray from its principles.”

Full story

February 5, 2014

Sandra Fluke Decides Against Congressional Bid

Women’s rights activist Sandra Fluke will not run for Congress in California’s open 33rd District, instead opting to run for a seat in the state Senate, according to a local report.

Fluke’s decision to run for lower office comes just one day after news broke that she had filed paperwork with the California Democratic Party to seek the seat of retiring Rep. Henry A. Waxman.

“I am extremely moved by the outpouring of local and national support I have received since I announced that I was considering running for office. My entire career has been devoted to the public interest, whether representing victims of human trafficking or advocating for working families,” Fluke told the Los Angeles Times. “I am committed to continuing that fight in Sacramento, working to protect our environment, ensure our access to health care, and create the jobs that are desperately needed. While I strongly considered offering my candidacy for Congress, I feel there is a better way for me to advance the causes that are important to our community.”

Full story

GOPAC Endorses Four House Candidates

GOPAC, an organization that grooms Republican state legislators to run for Congress, will endorse four candidates in competitive House races Wednesday, according to a release provided first to CQ Roll Call.

The group’s endorsement will come with monetary support, including the maximum allowed federal contributions, GOPAC member-driven donations and independent expenditures on behalf of the candidates, according to GOPAC President David Avella.

The state legislators who earned GOPAC’s endorsement are:

Full story

February 4, 2014

Super PAC TV Ad Touts Dan Sullivan in Alaska

An Alaska-based super PAC formed to support the Senate campaign of Republican Dan Sullivan launched a TV ad Tuesday that paints him in the mold of Ronald Reagan and longtime Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens.

Sullivan, a former state attorney general and commissioner of the Department of Natural Resources, is vying for the Republican nomination to take on Democratic Sen. Mark Begich, who defeated Stevens in 2008. Begich is a top target of national Republicans, who are hoping to net six seats this fall to regain control of the Senate.

The ad, from Alaska’s Energy/America’s Values, is backed by a $41,000 buy and will air statewide this month, according to a release shared first with CQ Roll Call. It starts off with the voices of Reagan and Stevens before cutting to a clip from Sullivan’s campaign announcement press conference in October. Full story

Conservative Considering Bid for Wolf Seat in Virginia

Updated 2:12 p.m. | Conservative state Del. Bob Marshall is “seriously considering” entering the open-seat race for Virginia’s 10th District.

Should Marshall run for the seat of retiring GOP Rep. Frank R. Wolf in this competitive Northern Virginia district, he would face fellow state Del. Barbara Comstock in a GOP “firehouse primary.” The seat is a top target for national Democrats.

“I spoke to Bob yesterday, and he is seriously considering it,” said John Whitbeck, chairman of the 10th District GOP. “He did not say he was entering the race at this point.”

Reached for comment, Marshall declined to discuss his intentions, saying only: “I’m talking to people, and that’s all I want to say.”

Marshall is a hard-line social conservative who sponsored the controversial “personhood” bill in the state Legislature in 2012. He lost bids for the Republican Senate nomination in both 2008 and 2012, first at a nominating convention with former Gov. Jim Gilmore and then in a primary against former Gov. George Allen. Full story

Sign In

Forgot password?

Or

Subscribe

Receive daily coverage of the people, politics and personality of Capitol Hill.

Subscription | Free Trial

Logging you in. One moment, please...