Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
July 30, 2014

Posts in "Michigan"

July 25, 2014

Tea Party Circles the Wagons Around Justin Amash

Tea Party Circles the Wagons Around Justin Amash

Amash is a Michigan Republican. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

No House Republican enrages the business-friendly wing of the GOP more than Justin Amash. But members and operatives who hoped to end his political career are running out of time and moxie before Michigan’s Aug. 5 primary.

So far, many of Amash’s cash-flush critics have passed on investing substantial resources in his GOP rival, former East Grand Rapids School Trustee Brian Ellis. At the same time, Amash allies such as the Club for Growth and Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, have tangibly backed the libertarian sophomore’s re-election in the 3rd District.

Full story

July 17, 2014

U.S. Chamber Backs Justin Amash Primary Opponent

U.S. Chamber Backs Justin Amash Primary Opponent

Amash faces a primary opponent in August. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce endorsed GOP Rep. Justin Amash’s primary challenger in Michigan’s 3rd District.

The group’s support could translate into television airtime for Brian Ellis, a former East Grand Rapids School Trustee, before the Aug. 5 primary. The primary has become one of this cycle’s top battles inside the GOP, with the party’s libertarian wing backing Amash and national business interests boosting Ellis.

“The U.S. Chamber is proud to endorse Brian Ellis’ congressional campaign to represent Michigan’s 3rd congressional district. Both candidates in the primary sought our endorsement, and the choice in support of Ellis on pro-growth issues was clear,” U.S. Chamber Senior Vice President and National Political Director Rob Engstrom said in a Thursday statement.

Full story

May 30, 2014

Michigan Officials Won’t Appeal John Conyers Ballot Slot

Michigan Officials Wont Appeal John Conyers Ballot Slot

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

The state of Michigan will not challenge a federal judge’s order to put Democratic Rep. John Conyers Jr. on the primary ballot.

“Based on the facts of the judge’s order, the state has decided not to appeal in the Conyers case,” Michigan Department of State spokesman Fred Woodhams said in a written statement.

Last Friday, Conyers’ hopes for appearing on the Aug. 5 primary ballot were all but lost. But then a federal judge ordered the state to put him on the ballot. Earlier this month, a county clerk ruled the 25-term ineligible to appear on Michigan’s 13th District ballot due to problems with his petition signatures. Full story

May 22, 2014

Tom Steyer’s 2014 Targets Start With Four Senate Races

Tom Steyer, the Democrats’ financial answer to the Koch brothers, has set his sights on specific Senate and gubernatorial races to spend the $100 million he’s earmarked for the midterm elections.

His super PAC, NextGen Climate Action, aims to promote candidates who support action to mitigate the effects of climate change. It was active in last year’s elections for Virginia governor and a vacant Senate seat in Massachusetts.

The group has now targeted the competitive Senate races in Colorado, Iowa, Michigan and New Hampshire, and the Florida, Pennsylvania and Maine gubernatorial contests. It will back the Democratic candidate in each case. Full story

May 13, 2014

John Conyers Does Not Qualify for Primary Ballot

John Conyers Does Not Qualify for Primary Ballot

Conyers will not appear on the primary ballot. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated 6:14 p.m. | Democratic Rep. John Conyers Jr. failed to qualify for the Michigan 13th District primary ballot, a local county clerk ruled Tuesday.

“Seeing that I do not have the authority to rule on the constitutionality of laws and statutes, that the County Clerks are bound by, it is my determination that in accordance with the current laws and statutes of the State of Michigan, the nominating petitions filed by Congressman John Conyers, Jr. are insufficient to allow his name to appear on the August 5, 2014 Primary Ballot,” Wayne County Clerk Cathy Garrett said, according to Detroit affiliate WDIV. Full story

April 16, 2014

Bentivolio’s Republican Rival Goes On the Air

The Republican challenger to Rep. Kerry Bentivolio, R-Mich., is on the air with a positive spot and is putting big money behind it.

Attorney David Trott’s campaign aired a spot featuring him commuting to work and touts him as a job creator and Washington outsider. A spokeswoman said the campaign’s ad buy was well into the six figures.

Trott has plenty of money to spend on advertising. He raised $587,000 in the first quarter of this year and reported a little more than $1 million in cash on hand. Part of his haul was self-funded: Trott contributed $400,000 to the campaign earlier this year.

Full story

March 28, 2014

Mike Rogers of Michigan to Retire (Updated)

Mike Rogers of Michigan to Retire (Updated)

Rogers will not seek re-election. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated 7:31 a.m. | Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Mich., announced Friday he will retire at the end of the year.

Rogers, the House Intelligence Committee chairman, was first elected in 2000 and is serving his 7th term in the House. He will become a nationally syndicated radio host beginning next year.

“It has been an honor to serve the people of Michigan’s eighth congressional district over the last 14 years. We have accomplished so much together, and I am most proud of our work to turn the House Intelligence Committee into a true legislative and oversight body,” Rogers said in a statement, as the Detroit News reported. Full story

February 24, 2014

Will Debbie Dingell Succeed Her Husband in Congress?

Will Debbie Dingell Succeed Her Husband in Congress?

Dingell, left, announced his retirement this morning. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

For the first time in 81 years, Michigan Democrats are contemplating a Congress without a Dingell.

Maybe not.

Rep. John D. Dingell, D-Mich., announced his retirement on Monday, finishing his 29th full term in the House after succeeding his father in the southeastern Michigan district. In the wake of his announcement, Democrats are already touting the congressman’s wife, Debbie, as the most serious contender for his seat.

(Update: Indeed, Debbie Dingell is expected to announce her candidacy on Friday.)

Full story

December 12, 2013

DCCC Unveils Final 2014 Recruits for Jumpstart Program

DCCC Unveils Final 2014 Recruits for Jumpstart Program

Israel is the DCCC chairman. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call Photo)

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee unveiled its final wave of Jumpstart candidates for the 2014 cycle on Thursday, giving the seal of approval to one final set of recruits before the election year begins.

New this cycle, the Jumpstart program provides “early financial communications, operational and strategic support” to candidates, according to the committee. It also gives members and potential donors a sense of the DCCC’s top candidates in competitive primaries.

“These four standout candidates are being added to the Jumpstart program because they’re committed to the right priorities, like working together to create good jobs, protect our seniors and give the middle class financial peace of mind,” said DCCC Chairman Steve Israel of New York in a statement.

The latest round of candidates are: Full story

December 9, 2013

Yet Another Democrat Runs for Open House Seat in Michigan

State Sen. Bert Johnson declared his candidacy on Monday for the Democratic nomination to succeed Rep. Gary Peters, D-Mich., in Congress.

“I represent the Democratic Wing of the Democratic Party,” Johnson said to a Detroit audience, per a news release. The statement was a nod to the late Democratic Sen. Paul Wellstone of Minnesota, who coined the phrase. Full story

December 3, 2013

House Democrats Shift to Back Bentivolio Challenger in Michigan

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee on Tuesday swiftly moved behind former State Department adviser Bobby McKenzie’s bid to oust embattled Rep. Kerry Bentivolio — hours after the party’s top recruitment prospect declined to challenge the Michigan Republican.

McKenzie is seeking the Democratic nomination in the 11th District. Bentivolio is also contending with a primary challenge from attorney David Trott.

Full story

Democrats Lose Top Recruit to Challenge Bentivolio (Updated)

Democrats Lose Top Recruit to Challenge Bentivolio (Updated)

Democrats lost their top recruit to challenge Bentivolio. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated 2:01 p.m. | Interim Wayne State University Law School Dean Jocelyn Benson will not run for Congress, according to a Capitol Hill source.

This fall, Benson expressed interest in running for the Democratic nomination to take on Rep. Kerry Bentivolio, R-Mich., in the 11th District. Top House Democrats had recruited her to run, and she attended a caucus meeting in mid-October amid the government shutdown. Full story

October 16, 2013

Democrats Recruiting Challenger to Bentivolio in Michigan

Democrats may have landed a candidate to run for the House seat currently occupied by Republican Rep. Kerry Bentivolio.

Interim Wayne State University Law School Dean Jocelyn Benson attended Wednesday’s House Democratic Caucus meeting and told attendees she is considering a run for the seat, according to two Democratic sources.

One of the sources said that House Democrats had unsuccessfully attempted to recruit her in the past, but the current government shutdown is a source of motivation for her run.

Bentivolio is in potential re-election trouble in both the primary and the general. In September, attorney David Trott announced he would challenge the incumbent in the primary.

Bentivolio produced a grim Federal Election Commission report this week — he raised just $59,000 — but he picked up several local endorsements over the past two days.

Five state party vice-chairmen endorsed Bentivolio on Tuesday, according to his Facebook page. Also, Michigan Republican National Committeeman Dave Agema endorsed Bentivolio on Wednesday, per a news release.

The race is rated Favored Republican by Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call.

October 7, 2013

Another Democrat Vies for Open House Seat in Detroit

Michigan state Sen. Vincent Gregory announced on Monday he will run for the open House seat in Michigan’s 14th District.

“Today in Washington, forces in the Republican party have lined up to derail the Affordable Care Act simply because they don’t want people to have the right to quality health care,” the Democrat said in a news release. Full story

Michigan Republican Posts $2 Million for Senate Campaign

Former Michigan Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land raised about $2 million in the third quarter for her Senate bid — with about $1 million of that sum coming from a personal contribution, according to a campaign source.

She is expected to report about $2 million in the bank in her race for the open Senate seat in Michigan. Full story

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