- Franken Maintains Lead in Minnesota
- Senator's Refusal to Resign Changed South Dakota Politics
- Political Ads Flood the Airwaves
- Bonus Quote of the Day
- Rubio Changes Tune on Immigration
Posts in "Nev. Senate"
February 21, 2013
His answer wasn’t exactly Shermanesque, but Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., indicated to his home-state press Wednesday that he intends to run for re-election in 2016.
“Sure, why not?” Reid, 73, responded to a question, according to the Reno Gazette-Journal.
That’s certainly not the kind of statement that will halt questions about his political future, and Reid has years before he needs to make a decision. Full story
November 7, 2012
Sen. Dean Heller (R) was able to overcome President Barack Obama’s Nevada coattails and defeat Rep. Shelley Berkley (D).
The Associated Press called the race around 4 a.m., with Heller leading by about 1 point.
The Silver State race is one of the few disappointments for Democrats on the Senate map this year. It was expected that Obama would have to carry the state by a large margin for Berkley to win. He won by more than 6 points, but it was not enough for Berkley.
Heller, who was appointed to the Senate last year, was thought to be especially vulnerable because he voted for Rep. Paul Ryan’s controversial budget blueprint as both a Member of the House and Senate.
November 5, 2012
A slew of Congressional candidates dipped into their own wallets over the past week to fund one final push in their campaigns.
Here’s Roll Call’s running tally, according to local reports and online filings with the Federal Election Commission:
- Last week, former Sen. George Allen (R-Va.) guaranteed a $500,000 loan for his campaign against former Gov. Tim Kaine (D). An Allen aide described it as a bridge loan to ensure available funds while the campaign processed credit card donations. Roll Call rates this race as a Tossup.
- Rep. Shelley Berkley (D-Nev.) made a last-minute, $250,000 loan to aid her bid against Sen. Dean Heller (R). Roll Call rates this as a Tossup.
- Former WWE CEO Linda McMahon (R) continued to fund much of her campaign against Rep. Christopher Murphy (D). As of Oct. 17, she had contributed $40 million of her own funds to her race. Roll Call rates this as Leans Democratic.
- Attorney Kathy Boockvar (D) contributed $15,000 to her campaign to unseat Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick (R-Pa.). Roll Call rates this race as Safe Republican.
- Rep. Mark Critz (D-Pa.) loaned his campaign $35,000 on Oct. 25. That’s in addition to the $64,400 Critz, a former House aide, still owes his campaign from his primary against fellow Rep. Jason Altmire (D). Critz faces attorney Keith Rothfus (R) in a race Roll Call rates as a Tossup.
- Former Rep. Bill Foster (D-Ill.) contributed $500,000 to his campaign to defeat Rep. Judy Biggert (R-Ill.) in the 11th district southwest of Chicago. A scientist and businessman, Foster has loaned his campaign big bucks in his previous bids. Roll Call rates this race as a Tossup.
- Rep. Nan Hayworth (R-N.Y.) wrote a check for $100,000 to her campaign on Oct. 29. She faces attorney Sean Patrick Maloney (D) in a race Roll Call rates as a Tossup. She also donated funds to her 2010 bid.
- State Rep. Randy Weber (R) gave his campaign $25,000 to defeat former Rep. Nick Lampson (D-Texas). Weber already loaned his campaign $226,500 earlier this cycle. Roll Call rates this race as Leans Republican.
October 30, 2012
The Republican-affiliated sister groups American Crossroads and Crossroads GPS will begin a massive $10.5 million Senate ad blitz today and Wednesday, blanketing competitive Senate races, including those in Maine, Montana and New Mexico, with hard-hitting attack ads.
With control of the Senate in the balance, the deep-pocketed groups are making a concerted final push to help put GOP candidates over the line.
The ads that begin today are in the following Senate races:
October 18, 2012
Rep. Shelley Berkley’s Senate campaign released an internal poll this afternoon after two new public autodial polls found the Democrat down by at least 6 points.
A memo from the Mellman Group polling firm reported that Berkley led Republican Sen. Dean Heller, 41 percent to 38 percent, with 11 percent undecided. The campaign released a poll last week that had Berkley ahead by an identical margin.
“As you know, every public poll in the 2010 Senate race proved to be far off the mark,” the polling memo stated in reference to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s (D-Nev.) race last cycle. “So it is with the 2012 polling.” Full story
October 16, 2012
About a month ago, Roll Call published a story about how operatives adjusted their TV messaging in anticipation of ad inundation. This week, the New York Times and Ad Age have stellar pieces that dig deep into the economic implications of the nationwide ad blitz. Each article explains how it is getting harder and harder for ads to break through the clutter.
Here are the ones that are worth highlighting in that endeavor today:
This spot, courtesy of the Service Employees International Union, is one of the best ads of the cycle. Sure, it makes a point that surfaces in a lot of ads — a politician puts his personal gains over those of his home district or state. But what separates this ad from all of the others is how the images and depressing narration are set to an almost sarcastic sounding version of the University of Wisconsin fight song “On Wisconsin.” SEIU put $600,000 behind the ad.
October 8, 2012
President Barack Obama isn’t the only Democrat running this year that’s benefiting from appearances by Bill Clinton.
For the past month, since his well-received speech at the Democratic National Convention, the former president has hit the campaign trail for Obama. He has said his top goal is returning Obama to the White House, but he’s also finding time in the final push before Election Day for some downballot Democrats who also find themselves in close races and could use the boost Clinton can provide. Full story
September 26, 2012
A “great wall” of ads continues to slam voters in competitive districts, especially on the topic of China.
But the biggest news today in political ads is that Sen. Claire McCaskill (D) is no longer keeping her powder dry in the Missouri Senate race. She went right for the jugular with a new statewide television ad almost as soon as it was certain Rep. Todd Akin (R) was her general election opponent. On the House front, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has canceled a week of airtime in Florida’s 18th district, where Rep. Allen West (R) is seeking re-election. Officials said they were shifting resources to other races because House Majority PAC, a Democratic super PAC, has reserved ad time in West’s district. House Majority PAC is also shifting resources, as the House battleground map continues to come into sharper focus.
Here are the other best TV ads and trends we saw today:
Parents of the Deceased
Two Senate campaigns put up ads offering testimonials from the parents of someone who is deceased. In each, the parent vouched for the character of the candidate.
A father of a deceased young man described the work Sen. Sherrod Brown (D) did to increase bus safety. The ad is on Ohio airwaves, which includes some of the most saturated markets in the country.
A mother described former Sen. George Allen’s (R) sympathetic reaction to the death of her son, who died was serving in the Marine Corps in Iraq. Ad spending is saturating Virginia airwaves, and this new ad is part of ongoing statewide ad buys.
China, China, China
At least there is one thing the two parties can agree on — that China is an issue to use against the other side. It is a way to attack one’s opponent on the outsourcing and deficit fronts. China was similarly prominent in 2010 general election ads. China has been raised as an issue in the presidential campaign as well.
September 20, 2012
Senate Democratic leaders today expressed optimism about their prospects of holding on to control of the chamber in November.
The grandest pronouncement came from Senate Democratic Conference Vice Chairman Charles Schumer (N.Y.).
“For this entire Congress, Republicans thought if they blocked anything helping the economy and deprived the president of any accomplishments, it would deliver them a huge political victory in November. Then they could deal with all of the nation’s challenges entirely on their own terms,” Schumer said. “The strategy is backfiring on them.”
A day after the Democratic Conference met with Obama Campaign Manager Jim Messina, Schumer argued that recently revealed comments by GOP nominee Mitt Romney about 47 percent of Americans not paying federal income taxes are having downballot effects that bolster Democratic chances of at least holding the Senate by a thread.
“Their presidential nominee just offended half the country,” Schumer said of Romney. “His flailing campaign is now having a drag effect for Republican Senate candidates across the country, and this has them a little cranky.”
Schumer then pointed to the coordinated speeches this morning by about 30 Republicans on the Senate floor, criticizing Obama and Senate Democrats on a slew of issues including the economy and gasoline prices.
“We have recruited amazing people to run in these Senate races,” said Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Chairwoman Patty Murray (D-Wash.).
Murray name-checked as strong Senate candidates Rep. Shelley Berkley (Nev.), Heidi Heitkamp in North Dakota and former Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine. While North Dakota is a Republican majority state, Heitkamp is running to succeed a Democratic Senator, Budget Committee Chairman Kent Conrad.
“I have been so impressed with the people who have stood up to say yes, I do want to serve my country at a difficult time and run in what is an easy thing to do for the United States Senate,” Murray said.
Candidate recruitment has helped the Democrats in some states, along with perceived weakness on the Republican side in some races, but the inverse is sometimes true as well.
For instance, Democrats have a real race on their hands in Connecticut between Rep. Christopher Murphy (D) and Republican Linda McMahon to fill the seat being vacated by Independent Sen. Joe Lieberman.
Nonetheless, “This is not where Republicans thought they’d be with 50 days left before election,” Schumer said.
July 12, 2012
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid reiterated on Thursday that he is unconcerned about the viability of the Senate candidacy of Rep. Shelley Berkley, despite the Ethics Committee launching a formal investigation of his fellow Nevada Democrat.
“Frankly, I think it’s good that this is all coming out in the open,” Reid said of the investigation while on a conference call with reporters. Full story
Rep. Shelley Berkley responded with two new Senate campaign television ads launched three days after the Ethics Committee announced that she was the subject of a formal investigation.
The Democrat’s ads, unveiled today, both downplay the scrutiny the Congresswoman is facing and turn the focus back onto the voting record of Sen. Dean Heller (R), whom Berkley is challenging. The Las Vegas Sun first reported the ads this morning. A source told Roll Call that it is a “very significant buy.” Full story
July 11, 2012
The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee made a significant show of support today for Rep. Shelley Berkley, announcing a $2.3 million reservation of television time in Nevada for the fall.
The announcement comes two days after the Ethics Committee announced a formal investigation into whether the Democrat used her influence in Congress to benefit her husband’s interests.
Berkley is challenging Republican Sen. Dean Heller in a race that will help decide control of a closely divided Senate. Heller launched a new campaign ad today targeting Berkley on the ethics investigation. Full story
Nevada Sen. Dean Heller’s campaign launched a TV ad this morning highlighting the ethics investigation into his Democratic challenger, Rep. Shelley Berkley. Full story
July 10, 2012
Rep. Shelley Berkley, the Democratic nominee for the Nevada Senate seat once held by scandal-plagued Republican John Ensign, is now embroiled in an ethics investigation of her own — making a top pick-up opportunity for her party a steeper climb.
Berkley is running to unseat appointed Sen. Dean Heller (R) in a presidential battleground state that is crucial to Democrats’ chances at holding both the White House and Senate. Her bid was clouded Monday by the House Ethics Committee announcement — less than four months from Election Day — that it is investigating whether Berkley broke any ethics rules or laws by saving a kidney transplant program at a hospital where her physician husband had a lucrative contract. Full story
June 18, 2012
There has been a flurry of activity on the Nevada airwaves in recent weeks, with the presidential campaigns, outside groups and now both Senate campaigns on the airwaves.
Sen. Dean Heller (R) launched the first TV ad of his bid for a full Senate term on Sunday. It’s a positive spot that urges the Senate to pass a budget, and Heller closes the ad by saying: “It’s time Washington delivered on something.” The campaign has so far placed about $160,000 to air the ad statewide on broadcast and cable for the next 10 days, with further placement possible.