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Posts in "Republicans"
May 20, 2013
To many on Capitol Hill, the burgeoning scandal dogging the IRS looks like a simple case of partisan political targeting by an overbearing federal agency.
But the IRS controversy has laid bare a far more serious and far-reaching problem: the agency’s utter failure to keep pace with drastically changing campaign finance laws. For decades, the IRS has taken heat for its muddy rules governing politically active tax-exempt groups, a recent CQ Weekly story notes. Among other problems, the recent inspector general’s report found:
- IRS employees did not understand and bickered over the agency’s own rules, repeatedly changing course over how to screen groups seeking tax-exempt status.
- The IRS went so far as to reject the IG’s recommendation that the tax agency clear up guidelines for how to handle such groups. The IRS instead recommended more staff training, an alternative the IG in turn rejected.
- Though lawmakers and watchdogs urged the IRS to curb deep-pocketed nonprofits spending hundreds of millions of dollars on the 2012 campaign, the IRS ignored the top-spending players and instead went after shoestring groups.
The fallout has exposed an agency that lacks the tools, the will or even the rules to regulate increasingly wealthy and influential tax-exempt groups unfettered by the Supreme Court’s 2010 ruling to deregulate political spending. Full story
Virginia Republicans voted on May 17 to hold a nominating convention next year — rather than a primary — to select a challenger to Democratic Sen. Mark Warner, the Virginian-Pilot reported.
The move, which came at the state party’s annual convention in Richmond, could affect the GOP field that vies for the nomination. Conventions, where only party activists vote, often nominate more conservative candidates than the broader GOP primary electorate. Full story
May 17, 2013
Former Ambassador Jim Cain is seriously considering seeking the Republican Senate nomination in North Carolina next year.
“The race is indeed something that I am considering,” Cain told CQ Roll Call in an email from China. “Many friends and supporters around the state are encouraging me to challenge Senator [Kay] Hagan.”
Cain is a former Republican National committeeman and served as ambassador to Denmark during President George W. Bush’s second term. An attorney at Kilpatrick Townsend, Cain previously served as president and chief operating officer of the National Hockey League’s Carolina Hurricanes. His candidacy would likely draw significant support from the Raleigh business community.
Despite the state’s GOP lean, Republicans know they will have a tough fight against Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan. Still, several Republicans are considering taking her on. Full story
Former Georgia Secretary of State Karen Handel announced her campaign for Senate on Friday morning, as the state’s Republican convention was set to kick off in Athens.
“States, especially those with Republican governors, are doing a good job — they are balancing budgets with targeted spending cuts, creating jobs, and tackling tax reform,” Handel said in a statement. “The biggest problems we face today are in Washington, and that’s where we so desperately need fresh thinking, bold solutions, and real leadership.”
Handel is the fourth Republican to enter the race for the seat of retiring GOP Sen. Saxby Chambliss. Notably, she is also the first woman and first candidate who is not a member of Congress. GOP Reps. Paul Broun, Phil Gingrey and Jack Kingston are running. David Perdue, the cousin of former Gov. Sonny Perdue, announced an exploratory committee this week.
In the party’s top pickup opportunity of the 2014 midterms, Democrats are awaiting word from Michelle Nunn, a philanthropist and daughter of former Sen. Sam Nunn. Full story
May 16, 2013
It’s hard to keep up with the number of Republicans vying for Georgia’s three open House seats.
Since publishing our Farm Team column on Wednesday about the likely field of candidates in the Peach State, another GOP politician has announced he will run for the open 10th District seat.
Thursday’s installment of Roll Call’s Farm Team tackled the long list of up-and-coming politicians in Georgia who are either running for Congress this cycle or who may do so down the line.
While the list of candidates includes everyone from a trail-blazing Atlanta city council member to a former Capitol Hill staffer, one notable trend from the list emerged: the sheer number of Carters looking to ascend Georgia’s political ladder.
May 15, 2013
Rep. Mark Sanford, who was sworn into the House Wednesday, is unlikely to have a primary challenger in the coming cycle, or any cycle, according to Republicans plugged into Palmetto State politics.
The consensus among state operatives and consultants is that if former governor can avoid any missteps, he will have a lock on the 1st District.
May 14, 2013
The list of Republicans lining up to challenge Democratic Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick, a Democrat in the marginally Republican 1st District of Arizona, is remarkably short. Among state and national Republican strategists, only one name emerges.
“All the buzz in CD 1 is centering around Adam Kwasman,” Arizona Republican political consultant Chris DeRose said. He described the field as “coalescing” around Kwasman, a 30-year-old freshman state representative.
DeRose is informally advising Kwasman but said he is not on any campaign payroll. While others worry that Kwasman is too green to challenge Kirkpatrick, he is the only name Republicans mention. Full story
David Perdue, a wealthy businessman and the cousin of former Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue, has formed an exploratory committee to run for the Peach State’s open Senate seat.
Should he run, Perdue would be the fourth Republican to enter the Senate race for the seat of retiring GOP Sen. Saxby Chambliss.
“I am truly concerned about the direction of our country, and I don’t think we can solve our nation’s problems by electing another career politician looking for a promotion,” Perdue said in a statement. “That is why I am strongly considering a run for U.S. Senate.” Full story
May 13, 2013
A former staffer for Republican Rep. Jack Kingston will announce on Wednesday that he’s running for his former boss’ seat.
David Schwarz, who served as a senior staffer for Kingston before moving to the consulting firm Pier Strategies, will become the third Republican to enter the 1st District race.
Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin has a small lead over two likely Republican Senate candidates in a hypothetical primary matchup, according to a GOP poll.
Palin has given no indication that she’s close to returning to public service, including next year in a challenge to Democratic Sen. Mark Begich. But the poll, conducted by GOP firm Harper Polling on behalf of the Tea Party Leadership Fund, found that a majority of Alaska Republicans still view her in a positive light.
With no indication of a Palin candidacy, the more telling news in the poll was that Joe Miller, who ran for Senate in 2010, had the worst image among the three Republicans and trailed Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell in a two-way race. Treadwell led 45 percent to 26 percent, with 29 percent unsure. Full story
May 10, 2013
Georgia Republicans expect Secretary of State Karen Handel to jump into the open-seat Senate race now that Rep. Tom Price announced he won’t run.
“I think it’s virtually guaranteed that Karen Handel is going to be announcing in the near future,” Georgia-based GOP consultant Joel McElhannon said.
A spokesman for Handel said it was unlikely she would announce her intentions at or before the state Republican convention on the weekend of May 18. In a statement released after Price’s announcement, Handel remained coy about her intentions.
“I am honored that so many people from across Georgia continue to urge me to run for US Senate, and I will let everyone know my decision in the very near future,” Handel said. Full story
Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski will lead the National Republican Senatorial Committee’s outreach effort to the American Indian community.
The move, announced Thursday evening, is intended to help further open lines of communication between the party and American-Indian voters. The community makes up about 14 percent of the population in Alaska, where Republicans are targeting Democratic Sen. Mark Begich in 2014. Full story
May 9, 2013
Missouri state House Speaker Pro Tem Jason Smith released his first advertisement in 8th District special election this week.
The Republican nominee’s biographical spot is intended to introduce him to voters in the final weeks before the June 4 contest.
Smith is excepted to win in the heavily Republican district located in the southeast corner of the state, which is open because Republican Rep. Jo Ann Emerson resigned earlier this year.