Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
November 26, 2015

February 24, 2014

House Dean John Dingell to Announce Retirement (Updated) (Video)

Updated 11:32 a.m. | Rep. John D. Dingell, the longtime Michigan Democrat and dean of the House, will announce on Monday that he will not seek re-election.

“I’m not going to be carried out feet first,” Dingell said in an interview with the Detroit News.

“I find serving in the House to be obnoxious,” Dingell, 87, added in the interview. “It’s become very hard because of the acrimony and bitterness, both in Congress and in the streets.”

Full story

February 22, 2014

Tom Cotton Takes On Obama in Weekly Address

Cotton, left, delivered the GOP's weekly address Saturday. (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Republicans chose Rep. Tom Cotton, a Senate candidate in one of the hottest races this cycle, to deliver the party’s weekly address and go after President Barack Obama as “causing” the problems people face in Arkansas and across the country.

It’s the latest example of how leaders in both parties are showcasing Senate candidates to let their battles play out under the Dome as well as back home. Already Arkansas Sen. Mark Pryor and Cotton have been on opposite sides of legislative battles, including the farm bill. And Democratic leaders gave Pryor a ready-made political wedge issue recently on a topic related to veterans benefits.

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February 21, 2014

Texas Pols File Fundraising Reports Before Primary

Texas will hold the first congressional primaries of 2014 in less than two weeks, but so far the races are so under the radar that one of the candidates to watch failed to file a pre-primary fundraising report due Thursday.

The reports that did come in ahead of the March 4 primaries offered some new insight into the limited number of contests worth keeping an eye on, including four House incumbents and an open-seat race.

Facing a competitive GOP primary challenge, Rep. Ralph M. Hall, who could be running is his last race, stepped up his fundraising game. Meanwhile, freshman Rep. Marc Veasey’s Democratic primary opponent dropped $800,000 of his own money on the race.

Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, kept up his fundraising dominance, bringing in $928,000 from Jan. 1 to Feb. 12. With Rep. Steve Stockman challenging Cornyn in the primary, the incumbent spent $2.6 million during the first six weeks of the year, much of that on media buys. Stockman’s report, which was not filed electronically, was not immediately available.

In numerical order by district, here’s how Texas House candidates in the races to watch fared during the pre-primary fundraising period:

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Steve Israel Fundraises for Bill Hughes Jr. in New Jersey

New York Rep. Steve Israel, chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, headlined a fundraiser Friday morning for attorney Bill Hughes Jr., a Democrat looking to oust Rep. Frank A. LoBiondo, R-N.J., according to an invitation obtained by CQ Roll Call.

The fundraiser took place at the Atlantic City Country Club, located in the heart of this district, according to the invitation.

Democrats are targeting LoBiondo — one of more than a dozen Republicans to represent a district President Barack Obama carried in 2012 — despite his past electoral success.

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The Slowest House Race of 2014

In the last few weeks, congressional hopefuls have piled into newly open House seats across the country, climbing over each other for a head start and their best shot in decades to ascend to Capitol Hill.

Except for one: The Pelican State’s 6th District has experienced a remarkably slow start, even for Louisiana, and especially for safe GOP territory filled with ambitious local Republican politicians. Full story

February 20, 2014

Olympic Snowboarder Makes Senate Endorsement

Stassel, left, has endorsed Treadwell for Senate in Alaska. (Joe Scarnici via Getty Images)

In what’s likely the first congressional endorsement by an Olympian in 2014, snowboarder Ryan Stassel has left the winter games in Russia and returned home to Anchorage, where he will formally endorse Alaska Senate candidate Mead Treadwell.

In a statement released Thursday by the Republican’s campaign, the 21-year-old Stassel said he worked as a fisherman to support his dream of making the 2014 Winter Olympics and sees in Treadwell the same dedication it takes to become an Olympian. He also trumpeted the campaign’s argument that Treadwell, currently the state’s lieutenant governor, is the true Alaskan in the Republican primary. Full story

DCCC Outraises NRCC in January

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee outraised its Republican counterpart in January by $700,000, according to figures provided Thursday by both committees.

The DCCC brought in $6.8 million last month, bringing the committee’s cash on hand to $32 million as of Jan. 31.

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New Internal Poll Gives Murphy Wide Lead in Crowded Iowa Race

A new poll from state Rep. Pat Murphy, one of five Democrats running for Iowa’s open 1st District, shows him with a wide lead, according to a memo from his House campaign.

Murphy received 36 percent in the poll of 400 likely Democratic primary voters, conducted by Myers Research and paid for by his campaign. Also per the poll, Murphy has a 19-point lead over Cedar Rapids City Councilwoman Monica Vernon.

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The Businessman Taking On Mia Love (Video)

The candidate: Businessman Bob Fuehr
The member: Democratic Rep. Jim Matheson is retiring from Congress after seven terms.
The district: Utah’s 4th is House Republicans’ most certain pickup this cycle. Matheson had a unique political brand and without him in the equation, the battle to watch for this seat is the GOP nomination process. Fuehr will face off against Saratoga Springs Mayor Mia Love.

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Former NRCC Chairman Endorses in Competitive New York Primary

The chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee during the 1994 Republican revolution is backing investment banker Matt Doheny in the race for New York’s 21st District.

Doheny, who launched his campaign for the open seat on Wednesday, announced the endorsement of former Rep. Bill Paxon, R-N.Y., in a release shared first with CQ Roll Call. In a statement, Paxon sought to undercut a perceived weakness — that Doheny already lost the district twice as the GOP nominee — and instead portrayed it as a strength.

“In my judgment, Bill Owens is not seeking re-election solely because of the tireless groundwork laid over the last four years by Matt Doheny,” he wrote. “Now, Matt will have the opportunity to finish the job he started in 2010 and win this seat for the GOP.” Full story

February 19, 2014

Jason Mraz to Perform at LA Fundraiser for House Hopeful

Grammy-winning singer-songwriter Jason Mraz will headline an upcoming fundraiser for author Marianne Williamson, an independent running for Congress in California’s 33rd District.

The $500-a-head fundraiser will be held Feb. 23 at a private residence in Malibu.

Mraz, who knew Williamson before she announced her bid for Congress, is not being paid to perform at the event, according to Williamson’s campaign.

“He’s a supporter of the campaign and he wanted to participate in some way, so he agreed to do a performance at this fundraiser,” said Ileana Wachtel, a spokeswoman for Williamson’s campaign.

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T.W. Shannon Releases First Ad in Oklahoma Senate Special (Video)

State Speaker T.W. Shannon, one of a handful of Republicans running for the Senate special election in Oklahoma, is up with his first TV ad of the cycle, his campaign announced Wednesday.

The minute-long bio spot, which details Shannon’s faith and his stance on lowering the debt, is backed by a $150,000 buy. It will run on broadcast stations in Oklahoma City and Tulsa, and statewide on cable stations.

“T.W. Shannon is a sixth-generation Oklahoman,” a narrator says in the ad. “T.W. is guided by his faith. Raised by working class parents, T.W. learned that success comes from hard work, not handouts. And it’s those values that T.W. and his wife, Devon, are teaching their two kids.”

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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:

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Republican Launches Third House Bid in New York

Doheny is a Republican from New York. (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Investment banker Matt Doheny announced Wednesday that he will make a third run at New York’s 21st District.

Doheny, a Republican, narrowly lost to Rep. Bill Owens, D-N.Y., by 2 points last cycle. But Republicans are newly optimistic they could pick up this seat in 2014 since Owens announced his retirement last month.

“I was honored that more than 120,000 voters chose me to represent them during the last election,” Doheny said in a news release.

Full story

DSCC Outraises NRSC in January

The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee outraised its Republican counterpart in January by $2 million, according to figures released by the committees.

The DSCC announced Wednesday it raised $6.6 million in the first month of the year. The monthly haul brings the committee’s cash on hand to $15 million as of Jan. 31. It also paid down its debt to $2.5 million.

The National Republican Senatorial Committee announced Tuesday it raised $4.6 million in January and ended the month with more than $10 million in cash on hand. The NRSC carries no debt. Full story

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