Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
March 28, 2015

July 9, 2013

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

DeMaio Raises Almost $500K in Second Quarter #CA52

Republican Carl DeMaio announced on Tuesday that he raised more than $480,000 in the second quarter for his quest to unseat freshman Rep. Scott Peters, D-Calif., in the 52nd District.

DeMaio, a former San Diego City Council member, boasts nearly $470,000 in the bank for this highly targeted race.

DeMaio, an openly gay candidate who has branded himself as a “new generation Republican,” filed his federal paperwork to run in this San Diego-area district at the beginning of June.

Full story

Poll: Booker Tops 50 Percent #NJSEN

Poll: Booker Tops 50 Percent #NJSEN

Booker is the frontrunner for Senate. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Newark Mayor Cory Booker’s commanding Democratic primary lead in the New Jersey Senate special election is holding strong.

The latest Quinnpiac University Poll, released Tuesday, found Booker far ahead of the competition. He led with 52 percent, followed by Rep. Frank Pallone Jr. with 10 percent, Rep. Rush D. Holt with 8 percent and state Speaker Sheila Oliver with 3 percent.

With the race half over, the numbers highlight how difficult it will be for Booker’s opponents to move the needle. The institute’s previous poll, released June 10, showed almost identical results. Full story

Graham Scion Could Face Primary in Florida #FL02

Graham Scion Could Face Primary in Florida #FL02

Lawson is thinking about running again. (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Attorney Gwen Graham, daughter of the state’s former governor and senator, is raising cash and consolidating Democratic establishment support behind her bid for Florida’s 2nd. But looming over her campaign is a potential primary challenge from the party’s 2012 nominee, former state Sen. Al Lawson.

“I’m interested,” Lawson said in an interview with CQ Roll Call. He indicated that his decision on whether to run will come in the next 30-60 days.

Florida’s 2nd District tops Democrats’ list of pickup opportunities this cycle. The seat is held by freshman Republican Rep. Steve Southerland II, who beat Lawson by 6 points in 2012.

State and national Democrats like Graham’s chances against Southerland. Their fear is that Lawson has high enough name identification to win the primary but his fundraising weaknesses could hurt him in the general election.

Lawson is well-known in the Tallahassee-based district from more than two decades in the state legislature. One Florida Democratic operative praised his political skills but acknowledged that his ability to raise money is a serious concern.

Democrats say raising money is one of Graham’s strengths. She hauled in more than $375,000 in the second quarter — her first in the race — and will report more than $300,000 in cash on hand.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee named her to its Jumpstart program, a designation for the committee’s top-tier recruits. Graham announced her candidacy in early April and recently made the rounds in Washington to meet with national reporters. (Read Roll Call’s interview with Graham.)

Bob Graham served as the Sunshine State’s governor from 1979 to 1987 and as senator from 1987 to 2005. He unsuccessfully ran for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2004.

“The national Democrats, from what I can observe, they pretty much have been leaning more toward Graham,” Lawson said. “They say they’re not going to get involved but her father knows a lot of people who can give money.”

Lawson says his own name identification would offset any Graham financial advantage, adding that lobbying groups approached him about running. He is trying to schedule a trip to Washington, D.C., to meet with those groups and members who have supported him in the past. He hopes several officials who backed his 2012 bid will help him again, including House Assistant Minority Leader James E. Clyburn, Rep. Corrine Brown and her fellow Floridian, former Rep. Peter Deutsch.

So far, no meeting with the DCCC is scheduled.

Lawson described Graham as “a nice lady” but criticized her for not being well-known enough in the area. “She has a lot of work to do,” he said. “Even if I don’t run, she will have a major uphill battle against Southerland.”

Lawson is no fan of Graham’s father, a result of a bad experience they had two years ago.

“I called him and asked him for help against the Republican [Southerland], and he said he didn’t want to get involved,” Lawson said of his 2012 campaign.

He said Graham went so far as to refuse to make a $25 donation. The former senator cited being “out of politics” as the reason for not donating, Lawson said.

“I was really surprised,” he said. “I helped him a lot and thought he’d be interested in helping a candidate for U.S. Congress. But I was a guy that really campaigned hard for him that was running.”

Gwen Graham’s camp declined to address Lawson’s charge. Her campaign manager, Julia Gill, wrote in an email, “Gwen is committed to bringing a new kind of leadership to Washington and to be an independent voice for the people of North Florida.”

Lawson’s central strategy, if he runs and wins the primary, is to run a general-election campaign that reaches out to the region’s rural voters who are registered Democrats but habitually cross over to vote Republican.

He added that he will conduct polling before he makes his decision.

“I’ve always wanted to go to Congress,” Lawson said.

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

Romanoff Raised $500K Last Quarter #CO06

Romanoff Raised $500K Last Quarter #CO06

Romanoff had a strong fundraising quarter. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Former Colorado Speaker Andrew Romanoff, a top Democratic recruit, raised more than $500,000 in the second quarter of this year to challenge Republican Rep. Mike Coffman for the 6th District.

Romanoff finished June with almost $920,000 in the bank, according to a campaign press release. Full story

July 8, 2013

Reyes Raises $200K in Second Quarter #CA31

Attorney Eloise Gomez Reyes will announce on Tuesday that she raised more than $203,000 in the second quarter in her quest for California’s 31st District, according to figures provided exclusively to CQ Roll Call.

Reyes is facing a highly contested primary against three other Democrats — Redlands Mayor Pete Aguilar, former Rep. Joe Baca, D-Calif., and local school board official Danny Tillman — as well as current Rep. Gary G. Miller, R-Calif. The top two vote recipients, regardless of party, will advance to a general election under the state’s new primary system.

Paul Ryan Rakes In Big Bucks in Second Quarter

Paul Ryan Rakes In Big Bucks in Second Quarter

Ryan raised a lot of money in the second quarter. (Photo By Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Several campaigns released their fundraising figures today, following the holiday weekend. The reporting period ended June 30, but House and Senate campaigns have until July 15 to report their figures to the Federal Election Commission.

Here are some of the new figures released on Monday:

Senate

  • #MISEN: Rep. Gary Peters raised more than $1 million in the second quarter and has $1.8 million in the bank.

House

  • #WI01: Rep. Paul D. Ryan raised $1.1 million and reported nearly $2.2 million in the bank, according to his campaign fundraising report.
  • #FL18: Democratic Rep. Patrick Murphy raised more than $520,000 and has $1 million in the bank, according to a campaign press release.
  • #PA07: Republican Rep. Patrick Meehan raised $402,0000 in the 2nd quarter and has $1.4 million in cash on hand, according to national Republican sources.
  • #IL13: Rep. Rodney Davis raised more than $450,000 and will report having more than $700,000 in cash on hand.

Full story

Freshman Rodney Davis Raises $450,000 #IL13

Freshman Rep. Rodney Davis, R-Ill., will report raising more than $450,000 during the second quarter, according to fundraising figures provided exclusively to CQ Roll Call.

Davis’ haul gives him more than $700,000 in the bank as he heads into what is expected to be one of the most competitive House contests of the cycle. Full story

Gary Peters Raises $1M for Senate Race #MISEN

Gary Peters Raises $1M for Senate Race #MISEN

Peters is running for Senate. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Rep. Gary Peters has raised more than $1 million as a Senate candidate in Michigan, according to his campaign.

The Democrat will report having $1.8 million in the bank as of June 30, the end of the second fundraising quarter this year.

Full story

Schilling Announces Comeback Bid #IL17

Schilling Announces Comeback Bid #IL17

Schilling is back for a rematch. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Former Rep. Bobby Schilling, R-Ill., announced on Monday that he will challenge freshman Rep. Cheri Bustos, D-Ill., to a rematch in Illinois’ 17th District.

“Incumbent Congresswoman Bustos has proven during her time in Washington that she doesn’t understand or feel the pain of middle class families,” Schilling said in a news release announcing his bid. “We need a true representative fighting for us in Washington and incumbent Congresswoman Cheri Bustos has refused to act.” Full story

Democratic Recruit Files to Challenge Latham #IA03

Democratic Recruit Files to Challenge Latham #IA03

Latham has a new challenger. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Former state Sen. Staci Appel filed federal paperwork this weekend to challenge longtime Rep. Tom Latham, R-Iowa, in the competitive 3rd District.

Appel, a Democrat, has been considering a run for several months against Latham, one of Speaker John A. Boehner’s top allies on Capitol Hill. In April, she told the Des Moines Register she had decided against a run, even though Democrats heavily recruited her for the race.

But Appel reversed course in the following months. Last week, she started hiring a team for a congressional bid, according to Iowa Democratic sources. Appel declined to comment last week, but she filed her candidacy paperwork with the Federal Election Commission on July 3. She did not immediately return a request for comment this morning.

Full story

Lautenberg Family Backs Pallone #NJSEN

Lautenberg Family Backs Pallone #NJSEN

Pallone, above, was endorsed by the late senator's family. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The family of the late Sen. Frank R. Lautenberg, D-N.J., has endorsed Rep. Frank Pallone Jr. in next month’s special election Democratic primary.

“We are saying: Stick with Frank,” the family said in a statement released Monday by the Pallone campaign.

Pallone is facing three other Democrats in the Aug. 13 primary: Newark Mayor Cory Booker, Rep. Rush D. Holt and state Speaker Sheila Oliver. The winner will be heavily favored in the Oct. 16 special to fill the remaining year of Lautenberg’s term. Full story

Kirkpatrick Gets First GOP Challenger #AZ01

Kirkpatrick Gets First GOP Challenger #AZ01

Kirkpatrick has a GOP challenger. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Republican state Rep. Adam Kwasman announced today an exploratory committee to challenge Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick, D-Ariz., a top target for the House GOP in 2014, according to a press release from his new campaign. Full story

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