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Posts in "Mont. Senate"
May 2, 2013
- #IASEN: Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey will not run for Senate and has encouraged Republican Rep. Steve King to seek the open seat instead.
- #MTSEN: EMILY’s List President Stephanie Schriock confirmed her interest in a bid for Senate.
- #MISEN: Rep. Gary Peters, D-Mich. discussed his Senate campaign in an interview with CQ Roll Call.
- #MI14: Several Detroit-area Democrats are positioning to run for Peters’ seat including his primary foe from 2012, former Rep. Hansen Clarke.
What we’re mulling on Thursday…
EMILY’s List President Stephanie Schriock has confirmed she is considering a bid for Montana’s newly open Senate seat in 2014.
Since Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., announced his retirement plans last week, Schriock has mostly kept quiet about the race — until she spoke with reporters at a Thursday event for EMILY’s List. Full story
April 25, 2013
What you might have missed “At the Races” on Thursday …
- #FLgov: Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla, is mulling a gubernatorial run in 2014.
- #PA13: This blog premiered a new series, “The Candidate,” that questions the scores of congressional hopefuls who visit the CQ Roll Call offices each cycle. The first victim? State Sen. Daylin Leach, a Democrat running in a crowded primary for Rep. Allyson Y. Schwartz’s seat.
- Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chairman Steve Israel touted his recruits in a memo to his caucus. Notably missing? Former Rep. Joe Baca, D-Calif., who is trying to come back to Congress via the 31st District.
- #GAsen: Former Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, endorsed Rep. Paul Broun in the GOP primary to succeed retiring Republican Sen. Saxby Chambliss.
- #HIsen: Tensions from the 2008 Democratic presidential primary continue through the 2014 Senate primary. Several years ago, appointed Sen. Brian Schatz backed now-President Barack Obama and Rep. Colleen Hanabusa supported Hillary Rodham Clinton. Could Bubba or Obama campaign in the Aloha State first?
What we’re mulling on Thursday …
April 23, 2013
What you might have missed “At the Races” on Tuesday …
- #MTsen: All eyes are on former Gov. Brian Schweitzer to see if he runs for the Democratic nod in Montana. Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., suddenly announced his retirement Tuesday morning, and soon after a top Democratic official confirmed that Schweitzer was already considering the race.
- #HIsen: Rep. Colleen Hanabusa will likely challenge appointed Sen. Brian Schatz for the Democratic nomination in 2014. Notable timing here: Hours earlier, the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee indicated it would support Schatz.
- #SDsen: Democrats remain divided over who should run for the open Senate seat: U.S. Attorney Brendan Johnson or former Rep. Stephanie Herseth Sandlin. Neither has announced a campaign yet. Meanwhile, former Sen. James Abourezk joined the “Draft Brendan Johnson” movement.
- Shop Talk: A top GOP ad-maker, Nick Everhart, was fired from Rex Elsass’ firm via an email late on April 20.
- Shop Talk: A former campaign manager for Sen. Joe Manchin III has joined the new Democratic consulting firm Mack-Sumner. That firm sound familiar? Earlier this year, conflicting interests split Kevin Mack’s longtime partnership with Jim Crounse and the direct-mail firm Mack|Crounse Group.
Sen. Max Baucus’ surprising retirement announcement puts the onus on Democrats to recruit the state’s popular former governor, who could be the only candidate capable of holding the seat.
Thanks to a head’s up from the Senate Finance Committee chairman, party operatives have already begun with former Gov. Brian Schweitzer.
The bolo tie-wearing national party figure could tap into a fundraising network far beyond any other Democrat in the state — except, of course, for Baucus. There is little doubt that the two-term former governor would give Democrats a good chance at holding the seat.
The question is whether the unpredictable and ambitious Schweitzer will actually run. Full story
Updated 12:42 a.m. | Montana Sen. Max Baucus has decided to retire instead of seek re-election next year, a sudden move that caught many colleagues and state Democrats off guard.
Democratic sources confirmed the news to CQ Roll Call on Tuesday morning — after which Baucus told reporters he was working to spread word to his staff.
The Senate Finance chairman was considered one of the most vulnerable Democrats up in 2014 and Republicans had made clear they would heavily target the race. Baucus has served in the Senate since 1979 and has not faced difficult races in recent years.
Now that Baucus is exiting after this congress, Roll Call contributing editor Stuart Rothenberg rates this race as a Tossup in the Rothenberg Report.
Former Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer will be at the top of Democrats’ wish list as the candidate in the open-seat race. A Democratic source indicated the ex-governor is leaning toward running.
The retirement also opens up the Finance gavel come 2104. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., is next in line for that post, and Democratic sources indicated he would be likely to take it. Full story
March 27, 2013
The Supreme Court’s focus this week on gay marriage has put Democratic senators seeking re-election in 2014 under a microscope, with no shortage of media outlets asking their offices about evolving views on the issue.
With the court taking up the constitutionality of a portion of the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act, which restricted the federal definition of marriage to opposite sex couples, several Democratic senators have determined in recent days that now is the time to make public revised or clarified stands on the marriage issue. Sen. Kay Hagan of North Carolina, who is up for re-election in 2014, became the latest Democrat to announce her support for gay marriage Wednesday morning in an interview with the Raleigh News & Observer.
February 27, 2013
A second Republican challenger to Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., will officially announce his candidacy Thursday.
State Rep. Champ Edmunds will formally enter the race to challenge the chairman of the Senate Finance Committee at a press conference at Bitterroot Motors in Missoula at 2:30 p.m. ET, according to a release.
Edmunds, a Missoula banker and former Navy submariner, joins former state Sen. Corey Stapleton in what’s expected to be a crowded GOP primary for the chance to take on Baucus, who is seeking a seventh term. Full story
February 20, 2013
The National Rifle Association will launch a print advertising campaign targeting mostly Democratic senators up for re-election in 2014, according to sources close to the group.
On Thursday, full-page ads are scheduled to run in local newspapers in Arkansas, Louisiana, Maine, North Carolina and West Virginia. They will be supplemented by digital advertising in these states and 10 others, including Alaska, Colorado, Montana, New Hampshire and South Dakota.
Additionally, the group has scheduled full-page ads to run Feb. 25 in regional editions of USA Today, reaching parts of 15 states.
The campaign is estimated to cost north of $375,000, sources said. Full story
February 6, 2013
Former Montana state Sen. Corey Stapleton announced Wednesday that he will challenge Democratic Sen. Max Baucus, giving the six-term incumbent his first major Republican opponent.
“I want to make life better for Montanans, for all of us — our kids, our grandkids,” Stapleton said in a video posted to his campaign website. “That’s why I’m running for the United States Senate.”
Stapleton, a financial adviser, finished second last year in the seven-candidate Republican primary for governor. In 2012, Republicans lost both the governor’s race and the party’s challenge to Democratic Sen. Jon Tester, disappointments for the GOP in a state the party carried handily at the presidential level.
Baucus, 71, is one of six Democrats in the Senate seeking re-election in a state the president lost. Still, Tester held off a strong challenge from then-Rep. Denny Rehberg last year, and Baucus was sitting on a $3.6 million war chest as he began the 2014 cycle.
Stapleton is a Naval Academy graduate and served two terms in the state Senate, including stints as minority leader and chairman of the Legislative Campaign Committee.
Roll Call rates this races as Leans Democratic.
Joshua Miller contributed to this report.
January 28, 2013
Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., will kick off his re-election bid with $3.6 million in the bank, according to a copy of his fundraising report obtained by CQ Roll Call.
The Senate Finance Committee chairman raised $610,000 during the final three months of last year. His year-end report, which will be filed on the Jan. 31 deadline, showed he spent $121,500 during the same period.
Baucus’ big number comes as welcome news for Democrats, who face a difficult map in 2014. The six-term senator represents one of seven seats up this cycle in a state that the president lost.
January 7, 2013
Former Rep. Denny Rehberg told the Billings Gazette last week that he will not run for office again.
After six terms in the House, the Montana Republican lost his challenge to Democratic Sen. Jon Tester in November. It was Rehberg’s second Senate defeat, after challenging Democratic Sen. Max Baucus in 1996.
“I made the determination before [the 2012 race] that it would be up or out,” Rehberg said in an interview with the newspaper. “As it turned out, it was out.”
Baucus is up for re-election again this cycle and is definitely running. Tester survived by 4 points in the 2012 election, despite a 13-point victory in the state by GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney.
November 28, 2012
But that’s exactly how things looked two years before the 2012 elections, when Democrats surprised many with victories in Missouri and North Dakota on their way to picking up two seats. So the challenge for the GOP and incoming National Republican Senatorial Committee Chairman Jerry Moran of Kansas is to capitalize on their opportunities.
That and how voters feel about President Barack Obama in 2014 could determine how the parties fare at the ballot box less than two years from now. Democrats won their current majority in 2006, in the second midterm election under President George W. Bush.
Republicans are hoping Obama’s second midterm is similarly kind to them, if not equal to the president’s 2010 midterm shellacking, when the GOP won seven seats (and control of the House) despite beginning the cycle as the underdog.
November 7, 2012
Updated 11:23 a.m. | The Associated Press this morning declared Montana Sen. Jon Tester (D) the winner of his re-election race against Rep. Denny Rehberg (R).
The win means Democrats are guaranteed to have a larger majority in the Senate next year, with at least 54 seats. The open-seat race in North Dakota has still not been called, but Democrat Heidi Heitkamp is currently leading by nearly 3,000 votes over Republican Rep. Rick Berg. If Heitkamp wins, Democrats would have their majority expanded by two seats.
“Jon Tester knows his state like the back of his hand, and he is exactly the type of quality leader we need in the US Senate,” Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Chairwoman Patty Murray (Wash.) said in a statement. “Montanans saw right through the millions in attack ads from Karl Rove and others.”
With 85 percent of precincts reporting, Tester led Rehberg by about 18,000 votes. Montanans also had a third choice in the race. Libertarian candidate Dan Cox took more than 6 percent of the vote, much of that likely from voters who otherwise would have supported Rehberg.
“Senator Tester and I share an abiding love for Montana and America, a value which transcends political party or disagreements on matters of policy,” Rehberg said in a statement. “I congratulate Jon on his victory in this hard-fought campaign.”
Montana Sen. Jon Tester (D) led by 4 points in his bid for re-election with two-thirds of precincts fully reporting early Wednesday morning, but enough votes remained outstanding that the race was too close to call.
Tester led with 49 percent, while his Republican challenger, Rep. Denny Rehberg, had 45 percent. Libertarian candidate Dan Cox appeared to be giving Tester a significant boost by taking more than 6 percent of the vote. Full story