- 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 "Race Ratings"
August 6, 2012
Businessman Paul Hirschbiel launched the first television ad of his campaign for Virginia’s 2nd district.
The ad begins airing Tuesday and is designed to introduce the Virginia Beach Democrat, whose first bid for public office is a challenge to freshman GOP Rep. Scott Rigell. The spot highlights Hirschbiel’s work in the community, specifically founding early childhood education programs in the Hampton Roads area. Full story
August 2, 2012
Rep. Jerry McNerney (D-Calif.) and his Republican challenger, Ricky Gill, are in a dead heat in the 9th district, according to a poll conducted for Gill and the National Republican Congressional Committee. Full story
August 1, 2012
Former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-Pa.) on Wednesday backed former Rep. Pete Hoekstra in his bid against Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D).
Santorum’s endorsement comes a few days before Michigan’s Republican Senate primary, which is set for Tuesday. Hoekstra’s main competition in that race is charter schools executive Clark Durant. Republicans expect Hoekstra to win the nomination, but Durant has garnered endorsements from several nationally recognized conservatives, including Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.).
“It is clear that the people of Michigan have tremendous choices in the Republican primary that [would all] be superior to Debbie Stabenow, but there is only one candidate with a proven track record of conservative leadership,” Santorum said. “That is Congressman Pete Hoekstra.”
The winner of the GOP primary has a tough battle ahead. Roll Call rates this Senate race as Likely Democratic.
A poll conducted for Rep. Jerry McNerney found the Democrat ahead of his Republican challenger, Ricky Gill, 49 percent to 33 percent.
McNerney led Gill by 24 points among “decline to state” voters, according to the polling memo from Lake Research Partners. The firm conducted the poll of 504 likely voters from July 8-11, and it had a 4.4-point margin of error. Its sample included 45 percent Democrats, 38 percent Republicans and 18 percent DTS or other voters.
This is one of a number of competitive races in California this cycle. Roll Call rates it as Leans Democratic.
Rep. David Cicilline (D) went on the air with a positive TV ad that stresses his office’s work in constituent services.
The buy is at least five figures and will be on broadcast television during the Olympics.
An internal poll that Rep. Ron Barber’s (D-Ariz.) campaign released today showed the incumbent has a solid lead over retired Air Force Col. Martha McSally as they head into the fall election.
Barber has the support of 53 percent of respondents, while 40 percent said they backed McSally. Both are their parties’ likely nominees.
July 31, 2012
Gov. Mark Dayton (D) endorsed former Rep. Rick Nolan (D) in his comeback bid in the 8th district.
“I am proud to endorse and I enthusiastically support Rick Nolan for Congress,” Dayton said in a statement. “We need more than a ‘good vote’ in a Congress. We need a proven leader who can get past the partisan gridlock and get things done.”
Nolan is engaged in a spirited primary with former state Sen. Tarryl Clark. The winner will face Rep. Chip Cravaack (R) in the fall. Clark picked up an endorsement from President Bill Clinton last week.
Roll Call rates this race as a Tossup.
Updated 9:43 p.m. | Former Texas Solicitor General Ted Cruz, a virtual political unknown only a year ago, has shocked the Texas political system and defeated Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst in the GOP primary to replace retiring Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, according to the Associated Press.
Cruz had 53.6 percent of the vote to Dewhurst’s 46.4 percent at the time the AP called the race, with just 22.5 percent of precincts reporting. Although that result was widely anticipated in the final days of the campaign, it cannot be emphasized enough how much of a stunning development this is.
Texas is not akin to GOP Sen. Dick Lugar’s loss in Indiana or in states where a tea party insurgent knocked off a party favorite in 2010.
The media market is one of the most expensive in the country, and the money needed to travel the geographic expanse sets the Lone Star State apart from other states. And yet, Cruz and his coalition of national tea party figures and groups such as the Club for Growth and Sen. Jim DeMint’s (R-S.C.) Senate Conservatives Fund beat the odds.
Nearly every GOP state Senator and Gov. Rick Perry (R) backed Dewhurst. Perry campaigned vigorously on his behalf. Republicans in the state disagree over whether Perry’s failed effort for Dewhurst will show weakness.
Cruz is all but assured he will be elected to the Senate in the fall.
Updated 9:43 p.m.
Sen. John Cornyn (Texas), chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, praised Cruz in a press release shortly after the race was called.
“Ted believes, as I do, that we need to make Washington DC look a little more like the great state of Texas, and that starts with restoring common-sense, conservative values in our nation’s Capital,” he said.
“With a strong, hard-working ally in Ted Cruz, we will work to pass a balanced budget amendment, remove the federal government’s boot off the neck of our small businesses, and repeal-and-replace ObamaCare,” he added.
Chris Chocola, president of the Club for Growth, said in a press release that Cruz “clearly articulated the pro-growth message that Republican voters across the country have responded to.”
The Club for Growth PAC spent more than $5.5 million in independent expenditures on the campaign, according to the release.
The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee slammed the voting record of former Rep. Heather Wilson (R) in its first TV ad in the New Mexico Senate race.
The spot, launched today, accuses Wilson of supporting corporate tax breaks that helped to send jobs to China and India. Wilson faces Rep. Martin Heinrich (D) in a competitive race to replace retiring Sen. Jeff Bingaman (D). Full story
The House Majority PAC, a Democratic super PAC, released two polls this morning that indicate Democrats are well-positioned in high-profile races in Utah and Maryland.
In the tossup race for Utah’s 4th, 51 percent of respondents said they would vote for Rep. Jim Matheson (D), while 33 percent supported Mia Love (R). In the Maryland 6th district survey, businessman John Delaney (D) had the support of 44 percent of those polled, while 42 percent said they would vote for Rep. Roscoe Bartlett (R). The difference is within the poll’s margin of error.
July 30, 2012
Retired Air Force Colonel Martha McSally posted on her Facebook page over the weekend that “the entire AZ Republican Congressional delegation will host a meet and greet” for her Wednesday evening. She added that her campaign’s goal is to raise “another $315k” by Sept. 1.
“I arrived this evening in D.C for four days … [National Republican Congressional Committee] candidate school plus meetings with many people, members of Congress, and organizations,” she also wrote.
McSally is the presumptive GOP nominee to challenge Rep. Ron Barber (D) in the fall in the race for the new 2nd district.
Roll Call rates this race as Leans Democratic.
NOVI, Mich. — Former state Sen. Nancy Cassis will not support her primary opponent if he wins the 11th district Republican nomination next week.
“Not after what I’ve seen,” she told Roll Call over a late breakfast at Big Boy restaurant last week. “I couldn’t in good conscience.”
Cassis is running a write-in campaign to defeat Kerry Bentivolio, an Iraq veteran and reindeer rancher who is the only Republican on the Aug. 7 primary ballot. They are running in the 11th district in the suburbs and exurbs west of Detroit.
Former Rep. Thaddeus McCotter (R) prompted the divisive primary earlier this summer when he filed faulty ballot petitions and did not have enough signatures to make the ballot. A few weeks later, McCotter resigned from Congress. Full story
Come Wednesday morning, at least one pollster will have some explaining to do about final numbers heading into Tuesday’s Texas Senate runoff. That’s because the last surveys released over the weekend showed both Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst and former Texas Solicitor General Ted Cruz ahead.
A Dewhurst poll conducted last week showed him ahead of Cruz by 5 points. Then Public Policy Polling, a Democratic polling firm, released an automated survey that showed Cruz up by 10 points.
Cruz has steadily built momentum since the late May primary, and most observers of the race believe he will win — probably by a comfortable margin. Sources in the Cruz camp were confident going into the weekend, saying their polling has held steady since Roll Call obtained a late June internal survey that showed Cruz in the lead.
July 27, 2012
Former North Dakota Attorney General Heidi Heitkamp (D) led Rep. Rick Berg (R) 50 percent to 44 percent in a Senate race poll conducted for the North Dakota Democratic Party. Full story
Wisconsin Assemblyman Mark Pocan (D) changed tactics in his race to succeed Rep. Tammy Baldwin (D) in Wisconsin’s second district, launching a new television ad that defends his record and seeks to discredit criticism leveled by his primary opponent.
State Assemblywoman Kelda Helen Roys (D) wasted little time before responding. Her campaign called the spot as a “false, negative attack ad” that went against Pocan’s promise to run a clean campaign. Pocan had previously devoted his television advertising time to highlighting his accomplishments.
“He’s been telling voters that he was going to run a clean campaign and he caved,” said Roys campaign manager Rick Coelho. “It fits in with our core message that he caves when the going gets tough.”
The Pocan campaign said that it stands by the ad and responded to the Roys campaign in a statement to Roll Call.
“Our ad speaks for itself. Mark is running a positive campaign about providing real results to Wisconsinites,” said campaign manager Dan McNally in the statement. “We hope it sets the record straight after Rep. Roys’ attacks on his strong record as an effective progressive.”