Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
November 27, 2014

July 11, 2013

Vitter Super PAC Rakes In Big Bucks for Re-Election or Gubernatorial Bid

Vitter Super PAC Rakes In Big Bucks for Re Election or Gubernatorial Bid

Vitter could run for governor or Senate in the next couple of years. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

A super PAC that supports Sen. David Vitter raised a whopping $750,000 in the past six months to aid the Louisiana Republican’s re-election or a possible gubernatorial bid in the next couple of years.

The Fund for Louisiana’s Future will report more than $700,000 in the bank at the end of June, according to figures provided exclusively to CQ Roll Call before they plan to file later this week.

The super PAC is set up to help Vitter with his re-election in 2016, or a potential gubernatorial bid in 2015. In January, veteran GOP fundraiser and attorney Charlie Spies filed paperwork with both the Federal Election Commission and Louisiana election officials to create the super PAC. Full story

July 10, 2013

Wednesday Fundraising Roundup: Incumbents Announce Big Hauls

Republican and Democratic House campaigns continued to tout their second-quarter hauls Wednesday, but a handful of Republican incumbents posted striking sums around the half-million dollar mark.

From the following numbers released today, it’s clear $400,000 is the new high-bar for campaigns to raise in a quarter:
Strong Incumbent Hauls:
  • #PA08: Republican Rep. Michael G. Fitzpatrick raised $502,000 in his re-election bid, and he will report $681,000 in the bank, according to a national GOP source. He far outpaced his Democratic rival, veteran Kevin Strouse’s, quarter-million-dollar haul.
  • #MN02: Republican Rep. John Kline raised $482,ooo and has $1.1 million in cash on hand, according to the Minneapolis Star Tribune. His Democratic challenger, ex-state Rep. Mike Obermueller lagged behind him, raising $130,000 with $100,000 in the bank. Full story

Walden Pledges Improvement for GOP Online Fundraising

Walden Pledges Improvement for GOP Online Fundraising

Walden is the chairman of the NRCC. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

After Democrats trounced Republicans in online fundraising in recent cycles, the House GOP’s campaign chief has promised improvements for the party’s digital donor base in 2014.

“We’re coming out of this cycle wondering what the heck happened to us, and how did we fall behind, and how do we leapfrog ahead?” said Greg Walden, the chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee, in a Wednesday interview with CQ Roll Call. “I look at this as an opportunity.”

The NRCC’s effort comes as the party looks to protect, and possibly even expand, its 17-seat advantage over House Democrats. Despite holding the majority, the NRCC has brought in less cash than the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee every month this election cycle. Full story

Republican Joins Crowded Senate Primary #IASEN

State Sen. Joni Ernst appears set to join the crowded GOP primary field for the Senate seat in Iowa.

On Wednesday, a campaign website set up for Ernst went public ahead of a formal announcement. First reported by the Des Moines Register, Ernst says on the site, “Washington has failed us. We need and deserve better leadership. And that’s why I am running for U.S. Senate.”

Reached by phone, Ernst told CQ Roll Call she had no comment at this time but might have one “later next week.” Meanwhile, media consultant Todd Harris tweeted that he has joined her team.

Full story

Senate Candidate Making Rounds in D.C. #COSEN

Senate Candidate Making Rounds in D.C. #COSEN

A new GOP challenger for Udall, above, is visiting Washington, D.C., today. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Randy Baumgardner, a Colorado state senator and rancher, is on Capitol Hill today meeting with various organizations as he gets set to formally kick off his campaign against Democratic Sen. Mark Udall on Friday.

Baumgardner, likely a long-shot candidate at this point, has not reached out to the National Republican Senatorial Committee and has no meetings scheduled there, according to a GOP source. But he was spotted on the other side of the Hill at the National Republican Congressional Committee headquarters. Full story

Feinstein Endorses in Contested House Primary #CA31

Feinstein Endorses in Contested House Primary #CA31

Feinstein endorsed in a House primary. (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., endorsed Redlands Mayor Pete Aguilar for the Golden State’s 31st District on Wednesday, becoming the most high-profile Democrat to endorse in the state’s most contested congressional primary this cycle.

Aguilar, a Democrat who has the support of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, has received the endorsement of the majority of California’s Democratic congressional delegation in a four-way Democratic primary.

But he faces several Democratic opponents: former Rep. Joe Baca, attorney Eloise Gomez Reyes, who is poised to receive the support of EMILY’s List, and school board official Danny Tillman. The quartet of Democrats is looking to unseat Republican Rep. Gary G. Miller in one of their party’s most sought-after seats in 2014.

Full story

Club for Growth Backs Boehner Ally’s Primary Opponent

The Club for Growth backed a primary challenge to longtime Rep. Mike Simpson, R-Idaho, in its first major endorsement of the cycle.

On Wednesday, the influential conservative group announced its support for Bryan Smith, an attorney, to challenge Simpson, an eight-term member and close ally of Speaker John A. Boehner of Ohio.

“We met with Bryan months ago after hearing about him through PrimaryMyCongressman.com, and we’re confident that he’ll be a strong conservative alternative to RINO incumbent Mike Simpson,” Club for Growth President Chris Chocola said in a press release.

Full story

DesJarlais Challenger Posts Big Fundraising Haul #TN04

Jim Tracy, a Republican state senator in Tennessee, is continuing to stock up his war chest for a primary next year with embattled Rep. Scott DesJarlais.

Tracy raised $303,000 in the second quarter, according to a release obtained first by CQ Roll Call. He’s raised nearly $750,000 since entering the race on Jan. 2 and will file having $656,000 in cash on hand as of June 30 — a strong sum for a House challenger.

“I have now had the opportunity to visit with people from every county in the district and I won’t let them down if I have the honor to serve them in Congress,” Tracy says in the release. Full story

Democratic Primary Challenger Raises $1M #CA17

Democratic attorney Ro Khanna announced Wednesday morning that he raised more than $1 million in the second quarter for his primary challenge to longtime Rep. Michael M. Honda in California’s 17th District.

Khanna now has more than $1.7 million in cash on hand, making him the first legitimate primary challenger Honda has faced in his more than 10 years in Congress. Full story

July 9, 2013

Aguilar Raises $300K in Second Quarter #CA31

Redlands Mayor Pete Aguilar announced Tuesday night that he raised $300,000 in the second quarter for his highly contested primary bid in California’s 31st District.

Aguilar now has almost $290,000 cash on hand in the race.

Aguilar, who has the backing of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, is facing three fellow Democrats and current Rep. Gary G. Miller, R-Calif., in this targeted race.

Full story

Cory Booker Launches Second TV Ad #NJSEN

Cory Booker, the heavy favorite to win the New Jersey special election for Senate, launched his second TV ad on Tuesday.

Like his first ad, released two weeks ago, Booker’s new spot highlights his record as mayor of Newark. It’s a statewide ad running on cable, according to an aide.

Full story

Tuesday Fundraising Roundup: Mooney’s Money

Former Maryland GOP Chairman Alex Mooney raised $65,000 for his campaign across state lines in West Virginia’s 2nd District.

Mooney had more than $100,000 in cash on hand at the end of the second quarter, according to a campaign press release. Of that haul, $35,000 was left from when he explored a run for ex-Rep. Roscoe G. Bartlett’s seat in western Maryland last year.

The congressional hopeful’s tally was one of many fundraising numbers that trickled in on Tuesday. Congressional candidates and members must turn in their second-quarter fundraising reports by July 15.

Here is a roundup of the day’s campaign fundraising news:

Senate Full story

Conservatives Warn Ex-Congressman of ‘Bloody Primary’ if He Runs (Updated) #CA07

Conservatives Warn Ex Congressman of Bloody Primary if He Runs (Updated) #CA07

Ose might run again for Congress. (Scott J. Ferrell/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated: 2:53 p.m. | Conservative activists are urging former GOP Rep. Doug Ose to stay out of California’s 7th District race, threatening a “bloody primary” if he runs, according to a letter obtained by CQ Roll Call.

“While we respect your commitment to public service, your record in Congress would leave us no choice but to actively oppose your candidacy should you decide to run,” reads the letter signed by more than a dozen conservative and tea party activists from Northern California. (Read the letter below.) Full story

Landrieu Raises Big Bucks for Targeted Re-Election Race #LASEN

Landrieu Raises Big Bucks for Targeted Re Election Race #LASEN

Landrieu is a top GOP target in 2014. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sen. Mary L. Landrieu, D-La., announced Tuesday that she raised $1.7 million for her re-election campaign during the second quarter.

Her haul is half a million more than the likely GOP nominee, Rep. Bill Cassidy, who brought in nearly $1.1 million in the same time period.

Full story

Rounds Gets Conservative Challenger #SDSEN

Former South Dakota Gov. Mike Rounds, a target of state and national conservatives, now officially has a hurdle in his path to the Republican Senate nomination.

Larry Rhoden, the state Senate majority whip, told the Sioux Falls Argus Leader that he intends to announce a Senate bid on Wednesday. He’s the first to step forward with a GOP primary challenge to Rounds, whose eight-year tenure in the governor’s office left activists on the right unhappy.

Rhoden told CQ Roll Call in March that he was considering running, though conservatives at that time were still awaiting word from GOP Rep. Kristi Noem. She has since declined to run, leaving activists still in search of an alternative. Full story

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