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April 24, 2014

Posts in "N.C. Senate"

April 7, 2014

Kay Hagan Raised $2.8 Million for Re-Election in 2014

Kay Hagan Raised $2.8 Million for Re Election in 2014

Kay Hagan raised $2.8 million in the first quarter. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

North Carolina Sen. Kay Hagan raised $2.8 million in the first quarter — an impressive sum for the top target of outside spending in the 2014 midterms.

The first-term Democrat ended March with $8.3 million in cash on hand, according to the Hagan campaign. That’s far more than any of her potential Republican opponents are likely to report, though she’s already the target of millions of dollars worth of ads from Americans for Prosperity.

“Kay’s strong fundraising total for the first quarter shows the excitement and momentum behind her campaign,” Hagan spokeswoman Sadie Weiner said. “These funds will ensure the campaign can reach voters in every corner of the state to talk about Kay’s record of putting North Carolina first.” Full story

March 7, 2014

Tea Party Senate Candidates Descend on CPAC

Tea Party Senate Candidates Descend on CPAC

Maness is running for Senate in Louisiana. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. — Much of the attention surrounding the Conservative Political Action Conference is understandably focused on the plethora of Republicans here who may be running for president at this time next year.

But, mostly offstage and behind the scenes, a handful of tea-party-backed Senate candidates — each running uphill against better-funded Republicans — are here among the thousands of conservative activists. They’re shaking hands, meeting potential supporters and raising some money.

They include Matt Bevin of Kentucky and Milton Wolf of Kansas, each waging primary challenges to Republican senators. Also in attendance are lesser-known hopefuls Rob Maness of Louisiana, Greg Brannon of North Carolina and David Clements of New Mexico, plus Joe Miller of Alaska, who are fighting for their party’s nomination to take on Democratic senators.

Kentucky, Louisiana, Alaska and North Carolina are on the front lines of the battle for Senate control. Republicans need to pick up a net six seats to win the majority.

“It’s a good opportunity in one centralized location to meet as many people as possible, and get your name and face in front of them,” said Maness, a retired Air Force colonel who is battling GOP Rep. Bill Cassidy and Democratic Sen. Mary L. Landrieu in Louisiana’s jungle primary. Full story

Rand Paul Headlining CPAC Fundraiser for N.C. Senate Hopeful

Rand Paul Headlining CPAC Fundraiser for N.C. Senate Hopeful

Paul will make time for a fundraiser for a Senate hopeful while at CPAC. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. — Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., is headlining a fundraiser Friday at the Conservative Political Action Conference for a tea-party-backed Senate candidate in North Carolina.

Greg Brannon, a physician, is one of a handful of Republicans hoping to take on Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan, who is a top GOP target in her bid for a second term. Brannon has collected the endorsements of Paul and Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, though state Speaker Thom Tillis is the GOP front-runner.

Paul will follow up his mid-afternoon address at CPAC by appearing with Brannon at a McCormick & Schmick’s near where the conference is being held. Tickets to the event cost up to $500, according to the online invitation. Full story

February 19, 2014

America Rising Names Top Opposition Research Targets for 2014

America Rising, a GOP group that procures and publishes research on Democratic candidates, announced Wednesday its first wave of top targets for the midterm elections.

The list of candidates, posted on America Rising’s newly launched website, includes information on almost all of the Democratic House and Senate candidates in the GOP’s top pickup opportunity races in 2014.

“We’ll roll out additional candidates as the map changes and expands, but that’s our initial list of candidates that we have research on,” said Tim Miller, executive director of America Rising.

America Rising also zeroed in on seven top targets:

Full story

January 14, 2014

White House Defends Hagan Skipping Obama N.C. Event

White House Defends Hagan Skipping Obama N.C. Event

Hagan will stay in Washington, D.C., to vote this week. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney defended Tuesday the decision of Sen. Kay Hagan, D-N.C., to skip an event in the Tar Heel State, citing the Senate’s potential voting schedule.

The Senate is currently considering an extension of unemployment benefits, and North Carolina ranks 15th in highest jobless rates by state. Senators could also vote on legislation to avert a government shutdown.

“I think Sen. Hagan’s office has addressed that,” Carney said in his daily press briefing. “I think she’s here working on important business. The president looks forward to his visit to North Carolina.” Full story

January 2, 2014

Tillis Drops First Ad of Midterm Cycle in North Carolina Senate Contest

State Speaker Thom Tillis, one of a handful of Republicans looking to take on Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan in the midterm elections, released his first ad of the cycle, Tillis’ campaign announced Thursday.

“Obamacare is a disaster, but the president won’t admit it. The debt is out of control, and neither party has stopped it,” Tillis says in the 30-second spot. “Kay Hagan has enabled the president’s worst ideas. She refuses to clean up his mess. So you and I have to clean up hers.”

Full story

Most Fascinating Races of 2014: North Carolina Senate

Most Fascinating Races of 2014: North Carolina Senate

Hagan is vulnerable in 2014. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

This cycle’s best bellwether for Senate control is North Carolina, where Sen. Kay Hagan, a Democrat, is seeking re-election in this increasingly frequent battleground state.

Senate Republicans must pick up a net of six seats to win control, and the Tar Heel State has served as that chamber’s best barometer in recent cycles. Since 2000, the party of North Carolina’s Senate victor has picked up seats across the country.

That’s what happened in 2008, when Hagan defeated then-Sen. Elizabeth Dole, and Democrats picked up several Senate seats on the coattails of President Barack Obama’s first election. Hagan won’t have that benefit in 2014, when the president’s poor approval rating will not help her re-election efforts. Full story

December 15, 2013

The Most Expensive Senate Race of the Cycle — So Far

The Most Expensive Senate Race of the Cycle — So Far

Hagan's race has already witnessed a barrage of advertising. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

About halfway through the midterm election cycle, North Carolina is on pace to host the most expensive Senate race of 2014.

But the Tar Heel State shouldn’t necessarily get too comfortable in the top spot.

Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan’s re-election battle is one of at least four Senate contests where outside spending has already eclipsed the $2 million mark. The others include the re-election races of Sens. Mark Pryor, D-Ark., Mary L. Landrieu, D-La., and Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.

The potential for Republicans to win back the Senate majority, combined with the media-market makeup of the competitive landscape, has invited a superfluity of early spending. Republicans need a net gain of six seats next year, and most of the competitive races are for Democrat-held seats in less populous states.

“Given the president’s plummeting job approval ratings, there is growing optimism that Republicans can win back the Senate, and that’s why you’re seeing some very early spending in key U.S. Senate races,” GOP media consultant Erik Potholm said. “And Democrats, especially their vulnerable incumbents, are feeling that same pressure — that’s why Sens. Landrieu and Pryor are on the air.” Full story

December 5, 2013

Democratic Super PAC Drops Major Buy in North Carolina

Democratic Super PAC Drops Major Buy in North Carolina

The latest ad targets Tillis. (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

While Democrats up for re-election are facing heat over Obamacare, a Democratic-aligned super PAC launched a TV ad targeting the leading Republican in the North Carolina Senate race on the issue of health care.

According to a Republican tracking ad buys, Senate Majority PAC is spending $736,000 over the next two weeks across four media markets to defend Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan and criticize her top Republican challenger, state Speaker Thom Tillis. Full story

November 21, 2013

LCV Launches Ads in Battleground House, Senate Races

LCV Launches Ads in Battleground House, Senate Races

Schatz will get some help from an environmental group. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The League of Conservation Voters has launched a $1 million ad campaign across five states, including two battleground House districts and two competitive Senate races.

The group, which backs candidates who support its environmental policy goals, is running television ads praising Sens. Kay Hagan, D-N.C., Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, and Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., as well as Reps. Pete Gallego, D-Texas, and Scott Peters, D-Calif., “for protecting public health and promoting clean energy jobs.” Full story

November 20, 2013

Conservative Group Launches Ads Against House, Senate Dems

A conservative outside group launched a new round of television ads on Wednesday targeting congressional Democrats for their support of Obamacare.

The new ads from Americans for Prosperity are backed by $4 million and come as the White House continues to struggle with the rollout of the president’s health care law. The ads hit Sens. Mark Begich of Alaska, Kay Hagan of North Carolina and Mary L. Landrieu of Louisiana, and Reps. Patrick Murphy and Joe Garcia of Florida and Ron Barber of Arizona.

Here is the ad targeting Hagan:

Full story

November 5, 2013

Democratic Super PAC Defends Hagan on TV

A Democrat-aligned super PAC is coming to the defense of North Carolina Sen. Kay Hagan, who was hit last week in a TV ad from a conservative outside group.

Senate Majority PAC launched a TV ad today that attempts to debunk the attack ad from Americans for Prosperity, which slammed the Democrat over her support for the health care law. The new spot, backed by a $400,000 buy, also highlights Hagan’s record, calling her an “independent senator working to help balance budgets and create jobs.”

Full story

October 16, 2013

Rand Paul Endorses in North Carolina Primary

Rand Paul Endorses in North Carolina Primary

Paul picked a side in a top Senate primary. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., offered an endorsement on Wednesday to a tea party activist running for the GOP Senate nomination in North Carolina — a top pickup opportunity for Republicans.

Physician Greg Brannon, one of several Republicans vying to take on Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan, touted the endorsement from the conservative senator and potential presidential contender as a momentum boost for the campaign. The campaign’s announcement referred to Brannon as “an anti-establishment candidate … who will oppose the Big Government, big spending status quo in both parties.”

In a statement, Paul called Brannon “a true constitutional conservative who will join me in fighting against business as usual in Washington.” Full story

September 27, 2013

Tillis Sets $12M Goal for Senate Race (Video) | #NCSEN

The candidate: North Carolina Speaker Thom Tillis, a Republican
The member: Sen. Kay Hagan, a first-term Democrat.
The state: In 2012, GOP nominee Mitt Romney carried North Carolina by a 2-point margin. In 2008, Hagan defeated former Sen. Elizabeth Dole, a Republican, by 8 points in a favorable year for Democrats.
The candidate’s team: Brad Todd of OnMessage Inc. (media), Paul Shumaker (general consultant), Bellwether Consulting Group (fundraising), Public Opinion Strategies (polling).

Full story

September 23, 2013

Top North Carolina Republican Declines Hagan Challenge | #NCSEN

Top North Carolina Republican Declines Hagan Challenge | #NCSEN

Hagan will seek re-election in 2014. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

North Carolina Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger announced on Monday that he will not challenge Democratic Sen. Kay Hagan in 2014, relieving the GOP of a brutal primary between two of the state’s top lawmakers.

Berger had toyed with entering the crowded GOP cast of candidates — including state Speaker Thom Tillis — looking to unseat Hagan for several months.

“It’s just not the right time for me,” Berger said, according to local North Carolina radio station WRAL. “That has a lot to do with the situation at the state level. There’s a lot of things we’ve started that I want to see finished.”

Full story

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