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September 17, 2014

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June 10, 2014

Live Coverage: June 10 Primaries

The 2014 primary season rolls on Tuesday with races in Arkansas (runoff), Maine, Nevada, North Dakota, South Carolina and Virginia, and the Roll Call Politics Team has you covered on results and analysis.

Starting at 6:30 p.m., follow the action below the jump with Emily Cahn, Alexis Levinson, Stu Rothenberg and Nathan L. Gonzales (see poll closing times here). Full story

June 9, 2014

Ruben Gallego Seeks Arizona’s 7th District (Video Interview)

State Rep. Ruben Gallego, an Arizona Democrat, said he’s unsure how much money he’ll need to succeed retiring Rep. Ed Pastor, D-Ariz., in the 7th District, according to an interview with CQ Roll Call.

“It’s hard to say,” Gallego said. “It’s not going to be a cheap race. This is a five month race.”

The Democrat is running in a crowded Aug. 26 primary in this Hispanic-majority district based in PhoenixThe Democratic nominee is expected to win the general election in this strong Democratic district.

Gallego’s most formidable opponent is former Maricopa County Board Supervisor Mary Rose Wilcox, a longtime local official backed by Pastor and EMILY’s List. Full story

June 4, 2014

Fellow Mississippi Senator Says Thad Cochran is ‘Best Bet’ to Hold Seat

Fellow Mississippi Senator Says Thad Cochran is Best Bet to Hold Seat

Cochran, above, trails McDaniel by less than 2,000 votes. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Sen. Roger Wicker offered encouragement to his home-state colleague, Sen. Thad Cochran, on Wednesday, calling the Mississippi Republican’s re-election essential to the party’s effort to reclaim the Senate majority.

“He’s our best bet to hold the seat for a Republican majority,” Wicker said.

Asked if Cochran’s GOP opponent, Chris McDaniel, would be a viable candidate if he wins the runoff, the Mississippi Republican said, “I think if Thad Cochran is nominated three weeks from now — and I think he will be nominated — I don’t think the Democrats will play in Mississippi, I think they will spend their money elsewhere.”

His comments came hours after Cochran and his tea party opponent were in a virtual tie in the primary for the Republican nomination. McDaniel had a lead of less than 2,000 votes, with 99.8 percent of precincts reporting.  Full story

Florida Redistricting Trial to Conclude Wednesday

Florida Redistricting Trial to Conclude Wednesday

Jolly represents a legally controversial district in a Florida redistricting trial. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

A congressional redistricting trial in Florida was scheduled to conclude Wednesday afternoon, the results of which could force the legislature to redraw the district boundaries before November, throwing current congressional campaigns into chaos.

“I don’t think there’s any congressional campaign here that’s discounting that possibility,” said one Florida Democratic insider, who requested anonymity to speak candidly about the ongoing case.

The issue in the trial, known locally as Florida’s “Game of Thrones,” is whether the GOP-led Legislature violated the state’s new Fair Districts Amendment during redistricting following the 2010 U.S. Census. A verdict is expected by the end of the month.

Full story

May 19, 2014

Kirkpatrick Challenger Apologizes for Linking Democrats With Mass Shooters

Kirkpatrick Challenger Apologizes for Linking Democrats With Mass Shooters

Kirkpatrick could face one of several Republicans in November. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

A Republican challenger to Democratic Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick apologized Monday for saying over the weekend that most mass shooters are members of the Democratic Party.

In his initial Saturday comment, rancher Gary Kiehne stated that “if you look at all the fiascos that have occurred, 99 percent of them have been by Democrats pulling their guns out and shooting people,” according to The Arizona Daily Star.  “So I don’t think you have a problem with the Republicans.”

His campaign released a statement apologizing for the comment:

“This past weekend, I made a comment about the political affiliation of perpetrators of gun violence in the heat of a debate. I’ve since learned that the information that I based the comment off of was inaccurate and incorrect. I’ve always believed that when you make a mistake, you should own up to it. Too many politicians today offer nothing but spin and excuses when they say something they shouldn’t have. I’m not going to do that. Simply put, I shouldn’t have made the comment, and I want to offer my apology for making it without any reservations.”

Full story

April 23, 2014

Americans for Prosperity Targets N.H. Senate Race (Video)

Americans for Prosperity Targets N.H. Senate Race (Video)

Shaheen is seeking re-election in New Hampshire. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Americans for Prosperity is scheduled to air a new ad Wednesday attacking Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., for supporting the president’s health care overhaul law.

In the spot, shared first with CQ Roll Call, a female narrator argues the law has put “your doctors and hospitals further out of reach.”

“What’s health insurance worth, if care isn’t there if you need it?” she asks.

Full story

April 15, 2014

Democrats Lose Top Recruit in Florida House Race

Democrats Lose Top Recruit in Florida House Race

(Tim Boyles/Getty Images)

Alex Sink, the Democratic nominee in a recent high-stakes special election in Florida, will not challenge GOP Rep. David Jolly to a rematch in the 13th District this November.

“I am so honored and humbled by the outpouring of support our campaign received, but after reflection with my family I have made a personal decision not to run for the 13th Congressional District seat in the 2014 election,” she said in a statement released Tuesday. Full story

April 7, 2014

Tea Party Tested: In One Month, Establishment on Defense

Tea Party Tested: In One Month, Establishment on Defense

Cochran faces a June 3 primary. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

A seven-week gauntlet of Republican Senate primaries kicking off next month will decide the fate of the tea party’s success this year.

If a Republican senator loses a primary this year, it will more than likely occur in a span of nominating contests premiering in one month. Incumbents got the boot thanks to tea-party-backed hopefuls in both 2010 and 2012, and those lesser known Republican nominees went on to both triumphs and failures.

In the third election cycle since the rise of the tea party, fundraising and organization remain significant hurdles for anti-establishment candidates. The outside groups helping to fuel many of the primary campaigns concede they are realistic about their slim chances against incumbents and mainstream Republican candidates.

Still, tea party organizers said they remain hopeful about picking off a few House seats and perhaps a couple Senate seats in their continued pursuit of increased congressional influence.

“Some of our guys could lose, many of them could lose. We understand that,” said Daniel Horowitz of the Madison Project, which recruits and supports conservative candidates. “We take calculated risks. We want to see a path, but it’s very much an uphill path in many of these races, especially if you’re going up against an incumbent and even some of the open seats where you’re starting out with a lot less money.”

But, Horowitz added, “on a large scale we have already won by forcing most of the incumbents to embrace, at least publicly, many of our policies.”

The races to watch begin May 6 in North Carolina, followed by Nebraska on May 13, Kentucky and Georgia on May 20, Mississippi on June 3 and South Carolina on June 10. South Dakota’s open seat has also invited a June 3 primary with similar dynamics, but it has drawn less outside interest than the others.

Full story

March 20, 2014

DSCC Raised $6.8M in February (Updated)

Updated 8:57 a.m. | The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee raised $6.8 million in February, bringing its total fundraising for the cycle to $66 million.

According to figures announced by the committee Thursday, the DSCC has now raised more than $13 million in the first two months of the year. It ended February with $18.1 million in cash on hand and paid down its debt to $1.2 million.

The NRSC raised less than the DSCC — $5.47 million — during February, according to fundraising totals the GOP committee released on Thursday morning. The NRSC has $12.75 cash on hand and zero debt. Full story

March 10, 2014

Elizabeth Warren Campaign Staffers Talk Strategy at SXSW

Elizabeth Warren Campaign Staffers Talk Strategy at SXSW

Firestone, Miller, Coulombe and Myers said email and social-media efforts were key to the campaign's success. (Grace Dobush/CQ Roll Call)

AUSTIN, Texas — Staffers from Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s 2012 campaign gave an inside look at the strategies that helped the Massachusetts Democrat clinch victory at a South by Southwest panel Monday.

Warren had never run for office before her Senate campaign, but thanks to grass-roots organizing and extensive online efforts, she went on to defeat incumbent Scott Brown by 7.5 points. The panelists were digital director Lauren Miller, field director Mike Firestone, get-out-the-vote director Amanda Coulombe and campaign manager Mindy Myers, who is now Warren’s chief of staff. Full story

By Grace Dobush Posted at 5:43 p.m.
Uncategorized

January 23, 2014

Schumer: Administration, IRS Must ‘Redouble Efforts’ on Campaign Finance Enforcement

Schumer: Administration, IRS Must Redouble Efforts on Campaign Finance Enforcement

Schumer is a Democrat from New York. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sen. Charles E. Schumer, D-N.Y., said Thursday that Democrats, the administration and the IRS must immediately “redouble” efforts to close loopholes created by a recent Supreme Court ruling that opened the floodgates for money into politics.

“One of the great advantages the tea party has is the huge holes in our campaign finance laws created this ill-advised decision,” said Schumer, referring to Citizens United, in an afternoon speech at the Center for American Progress. “Obviously, the tea party elites gained extraordinary influence by being able to funnel millions of dollars into campaigns with ads that distort the truth and attack government.” Full story

January 16, 2014

Pro-McConnell Super PAC Slams Democrat on Coal

Kentuckians for Strong Leadership, a super PAC backing Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has hit the radio airwaves with an ad that slams his Democratic rival over the issue of coal.

The minute-long ad rails against Democratic Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes on the issue of coal.

Full story

January 9, 2014

Report: Ed Gillespie to Challenge Mark Warner

Former Republican National Committee Chairman Ed Gillespie is informing Virginia Republicans that he will challenge first-term Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., in 2014, according to The New York Times.

A spokesman for the National Republican Senatorial Committee declined to comment on the story. Full story

January 6, 2014

Jim Gerlach Won’t Seek Re-Election (Updated)

Jim Gerlach Wont Seek Re Election (Updated)

(Douglas Graham/Roll Call File Photo)

Updated 1:48 PM, 2:20 PM, 4:53 PM | Rep. Jim Gerlach, R-Pa., announced Monday he will not seek re-election in 2014, marking yet another moderate House Republican to leave Congress.

“Nearing the end of my sixth term in the House and following 12 years of public service in the Pennsylvania House and Senate, it is simply time for me to move on to new challenges and to spend more time with my wife and family,” Gerlach said in a statement to PoliticsPA.com, which first reported the news.

Gerlach’s departure gives Democrats a decent opportunity in southeastern Pennsylvania. Mitt Romney carried the 6th District with 51 percent in 2012. Full story

January 3, 2014

Most Fascinating Races of 2014: Florida’s 13th District

 

Most Fascinating Races of 2014: Floridas 13th District

Jolly, left, and Peters, right, are Republicans. (CQ Roll Call composite)

The competitive composition of Florida’s 13th District makes this race fascinating, but it’s also the first big contest on the calendar for 2014. This special election will serve as a test balloon for the parties to check their messaging with a split electorate months ahead of Election Day.

Longtime Rep. C.W. Bill Young’s death has spurred the first competitive race for the western Florida district in a few decades. Young carried the district easily, but President Barack Obama narrowly won the seat with 50 percent in 2012.

Full story

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