Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
January 30, 2015

Posts in "Shop Talk"

January 29, 2015

Top GOP Ad-Maker Recovering From Cardiac Arrest

Scott Howell, a top Republican ad-maker, is being treated in an intensive care unit in Texas after going into sudden cardiac arrest on Monday.

Howell is making progress, according to Dan Allen, a principal with Howell’s firm. Full story

January 27, 2015

Exclusive: DSCC Hires National Political Director, Press Secretary

Exclusive: DSCC Hires National Political Director, Press Secretary

Tester is the chairman of the DSCC. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee will add Simone Ward and Sadie Weiner to its senior staff roster, according to a Tuesday news release provided first to CQ Roll Call.

Ward will serve as the committee’s national political director, and Weiner will take the role of national press secretary.

Full story

January 18, 2015

GOPAC Announces 2015 Advisory Board

GOPAC Announces 2015 Advisory Board

Ernst was a member of GOPAC's Emerging Leaders Program. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

GOPAC, an organization that grooms Republican state lawmakers to run for higher office, will announce its 2015 Legislative Leaders Advisory Board Monday, according to a release provided first to CQ Roll Call.

The board pinpoints promising state legislators for GOPAC’s Emerging Leaders Program, which seeks to foster a bench of talent to eventually run for federal and statewide elected office. Previous members of the Emerging Leaders Program include now-Sens. Joni Ernst of Iowa and Cory Gardner of Colorado. Both Republicans won targeted Senate races in 2014.

Full story

January 9, 2015

Exclusive: NRCC Names Senior Staff for 2016

Exclusive: NRCC Names Senior Staff for 2016

Rep. Greg Walden of Oregon is the NRCC Chairman. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The National Republican Congressional Committee will announce Friday its senior staff for the 2016 cycle and the return of several top aides, according to information shared first with CQ Roll Call.

“This exceptional team is already working to gain and maintain our majority in the 2016 cycle,” NRCC Executive Director Rob Simms said in a statement. “We are very fortunate that many members of the team who built the historic majority in 2014, are moving into senior positions to continue helping successful Republican campaigns.” Full story

January 4, 2015

Exclusive: NRSC Names Senior Staffers

Exclusive: NRSC Names Senior Staffers

Wicker is the chairman of the NRSC in 2016. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The National Republican Senatorial Committee will announce its senior staff for the 2016 cycle Monday, according to a release provided first to CQ Roll Call.

Last year, Senate Republicans netted nine seats to take control of that chamber for the first time since 2006. Several of the top staffers are staying on from last cycle, while others come from the other side of the Capitol.

Full story

December 18, 2014

Veteran GOP Fundraiser Moves On After 37 Years

Steve Gordon, who helped raise money for high-profile Republicans for nearly four decades, announced Thursday he will turn his focus on issue advocacy.

Gordon served as a fundraiser for Sen.-elect Cory Gardner, R-Colo., who defeated Democratic Sen. Mark Udall last month in the Centennial State.

Full story

December 8, 2014

Democratic Staffer Killed During Louisiana Canvass, Ernst Hires New Spokeswoman

Democratic Staffer Killed During Louisiana Canvass, Ernst Hires New Spokeswoman

A staffer for the Louisiana Democratic Party died Saturday while canvassing for Landrieu. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

SeDestini Fields, a staffer for the Louisiana Democratic Party, died at 11 a.m. on Dec. 6 after a motorist struck her while she was canvassing for the Pelican State’s runoff elections, officials announced in a statement.

Fields, 23, was struck by a pickup truck at while working to get out the vote in Shreveport, La., for Democratic Sen. Mary L. Landrieu.

Landrieu, who lost to now Sen.-elect Bill Cassidy, asked for prayers for Fields’ family during her concession speech, The Times-Picayune reported.

Full story

November 21, 2014

DSCC Announces 2016 Staff Roster

DSCC Announces 2016 Staff Roster

Tester was appointed DSCC chairman Nov. 13. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee announced on Friday its top staffing decisions for the 2016 cycle.

Many of the key staffers have previously worked for incoming DSCC Chairman Jon Tester of Montana, who is tasked with helping win back a Democratic majority. The party would need to net five seats to ensure a majority if Democratic Sen. Mary L. Landrieu loses the runoff next month in Louisiana.

“This is an experienced team with a long history of winning incredibly tough races,” Tester said in a statement.

November 18, 2014

New DCCC Chairman Eyes Current Executive Director

New DCCC Chairman Eyes Current Executive Director

Ward served as the DCCC's executive director in 2014. (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Incoming Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chairman Ben Ray Luján said Tuesday he hopes the current Executive Director, Kelly Ward, will stay on for the 2016 cycle.

House Democrats endured sweeping losses in 2014, but Ward earned top praise from Luján, who said she is respected by the caucus.

“I have tremendous respect for Kelly Ward,” Luján told CQ Roll Call in a Tuesday interview. “It’s been an honor working with her throughout the years, getting to know her, she reaches out to members, she respects members, and I think she’s incredible. So someone like Kelly, if not Kelly herself is someone that I hope that we would serve.”

Full story

October 6, 2014

The Big Campaign Question: Cable or Broadcast?

The Big Campaign Question: Cable or Broadcast?

Rep. Renee Ellmers, R-N.C., does a live TV hit from the Cannon House Office Buildings in 2013. (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Think the television ad wars are raging between Democrats and Republicans this fall? Check out the battle behind the scenes between cable and broadcast stations for campaign ad dollars.

For the past three decades, television audiences splintered as cable and alternative viewing habits (Netflix, iPads), broke up the hold the big three channels — ABC, CBS and NBC — once had on the American television-viewing public.

In politics, the difference is simple: Cable offers campaigns armed with micro-targeting data a chance to narrowcast, while broadcast still provides the largest audiences. Today, most political campaigns spend approximately 80 percent of their ad money on television and 20 percent on cable, according to multiple sources. Full story

September 15, 2014

Shop Talk: Republican Group Starts Women’s Outreach Series

Shop Talk: Republican Group Starts Womens Outreach Series

Ellmers is scheduled to participate in a women's outreach town hall this month in Charlotte. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Main Street Advocacy, a group that seeks to promote moderate Republican ideas, will launch a nationwide initiative later this month to bring more women into the political process.

“Women2Women” kicks off Sept. 25 in Charlotte. GOP Reps. Renee Ellmers of North Carolina and Susan W. Brooks of Indiana are expected to attend the discussion of issues that women say drive them to the ballot box.

The idea is the brainchild of Sarah Chamberlain, the group’s chief operating officer, who grew frustrated over the past two cycles when Republican candidates’ comments on social issues helped squander GOP pickup opportunities — hindering the party’s past efforts for Senate control. Remarks on rape from former Missouri Rep. Todd Akin and former Indiana Treasurer Richard Mourdock in 2012 — who both lost their Senate races — sullied the GOP’s image among women and likely hurt the party’s chances in other states.

Full story

August 11, 2014

Cantor Spokeswoman Joins Georgia Senate Campaign

Cantor Spokeswoman Joins Georgia Senate Campaign

Whittemore, front, is joining Perdue's campaign. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The press secretary to former House Majority Leader Eric Cantor is heading to the South to help Republicans retain one of their two most endangered Senate seats.

Megan Whittemore told reporters in an email Monday that beginning later this week, she will be communications director for David Perdue’s campaign in Georgia.

Whittemore’s exit comes as Cantor is set to resign from Congress, effective Aug. 18. The Virginia Republican’s descent from leadership and early exit followed his stunning June 10 primary defeat — and Whittemore was one of several top Cantor staffers identified as likely attractive candidates for new jobs.

Full story

June 3, 2014

Former Clinton Operative Dies in Texas Car Crash

Grace Garcia, a former longtime Clinton operative, died Monday in a car accident in Waxahachie, Texas, according to a release from Annie’s List, where she served as executive director.

“It is with a tremendous sense of loss that we announce the passing of our executive director and leader Grace Garcia, who lost her life in a car accident Monday afternoon,” Annie’s List Board Chair Amber Anderson Mostyn said in a statement. “Another staffer was injured in the crash and is in the intensive care unit at Parkland Hospital.”

Annie’s List is a group that supports female Democratic candidates who back abortion rights for state office in Texas.

Full story

By Abby Livingston Posted at 10:12 a.m.
Shop Talk

April 28, 2014

America Rising Expands Staff | Shop Talk

America Rising, a GOP opposition research firm, unveiled a host of new hires Monday as it expands for the 2014 and 2016 cycles.

The new staffers are:

  • Vice President for State and Local Research Initiatives Amanda Iovino
  • Vice President for House Research Alexandra Angel
  • Vice President for Video and Tracking Operations Aaron Baer
  • Vice President for Special Research Projects Tim Killeen
  • Senior Research Analyst, House, Dan Knight

“The America Rising LLC leadership team brings years of diverse research experience to the field in 2014,” the group’s president, Joe Pounder, stated. “Because of their work already, America Rising’s operations extend from D.C. to Anchorage as we track more than 50 campaigns to date.”

Full story

By Abby Livingston and Emily Cahn Posted at 7:32 p.m.
Shop Talk

February 7, 2014

Jesse Ferguson Named DCCC Independent Expenditure Director

Democratic Congressional Campaign Chairman Steve Israel announced Friday that Jesse Ferguson, a longtime staffer, will be the committee’s independent expenditure director in 2014.

This position is tasked with spending tens of millions of dollars late in the campaign. But, like other IE directors, campaign finance law will prohibit Ferguson from directly coordinating with committee staff.

“Jesse Ferguson has a relentless approach to strategizing and winning tough campaigns making him an excellent leader of the IE team,” Israel said. “Jesse has an unmatched understanding of the 2014 battlefield and the experience to elect problem solving Democrats to Congress.” Full story

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