Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
October 5, 2015

October 2, 2013

Carl DeMaio Posts More Strong Fundraising in California Campaign

DeMaio is a top recruit for House Republicans. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Former San Diego City Council Member Carl DeMaio, a Republican challenging freshman Rep. Scott Peters, D-Calif., raised more than $325,000 in the third quarter, his campaign announced Wednesday.

DeMaio now has more than $700,000 in the bank more than a year from the election, when the 52nd District is expected to host one of the most competitive contests of the cycle.

His haul is also remarkable because DeMaio had toyed with running for mayor of San Diego instead for much of the third quarter. There is currently a special election to replace former San Diego Mayor Bob Filner, who resigned in the wake of a sexual harassment scandal. DeMaio lost to Filner in the 2012 mayoral contest by a slim margin.

Full story

Bentivolio Primary Challenger Reports Huge Fundraising Haul

Bentivolio faces a tough primary challenge in 2014. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Attorney David Trott has raised at least $425,000 for this primary challenge to freshman Rep. Kerry Bentivolio, R-Mich.

The sum does not include any money from Trott’s personal wealth, according to his spokeswoman. He announced his candidacy in early September, so the third-quarter fundraising report is the first of his campaign. Full story

Top Republican Declines Bid for Open Alabama Seat

Bachus will not seek re-election, leaving a wide-open race for his seat. (Scott J. Ferrell/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

State Sen. Cam Ward, a top Republican in Alabama, declined Wednesday to run for the newly open 6th District, saying he will  run for re-election in the state legislature instead.

“God has given me a short window of time to spend with a little girl who means more to me than anything in this world,” Ward said in a statement to, referring to his autistic daughter. “The fact is she has made tremendous progress, but it has taken both of us, my wife Julie and me, being there every day for her and running for Congress at this time would essentially make me a part-time father and I just can’t do that.” Full story

October 1, 2013

Cory Booker Airs Negative Shutdown Ad Against GOP Rival

Newark Mayor Cory Booker is going on the air with a new television ad that attacks his GOP rival on the government shutdown — just two weeks out from the special election for Senate in New Jersey.

The first few seconds of the spot feature typical Democratic attacks against Republican rivals: tying opponent Steve Lonegan to Social Security and Medicare privatization, saying he supports an abortion ban and labeling him as “too extreme.”

But the advertisement also includes a new, timely line of criticism: Lonegan would “shut down government.” Full story

First-Time GOP Senate Candidate Posts Knock-Out Fundraising Quarter

Midland University President Benjamin Sasse has raised $800,000 in his first quarter as a candidate for Nebraska’s open Senate seat, one of his top aides confirmed to CQ Roll Call.

Republican Sen. Mike Johanns is retiring, leaving an open GOP primary for his seat in 2014. Sasse’s top competition for the nomination is former state Treasurer Shane Osborn. The GOP nominee will likely be the next senator from this reliably Republican state. Full story

Lt. Governor Explores House Primary Challenge in Missouri | #MO08

Missouri Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder, a Republican, launched an exploratory committee for Missouri’s 8th District on Monday, according to the local press, potentially setting up a GOP primary with the newest member of the House.

If Kinder runs, he would face Rep. Jason Smith, a Republican who won an under-the-radar special election for the seat in June. Smith succeeded former Rep. Jo Ann Emerson, R-Mo., who announced her resignation from Congress shortly after the November elections to take a job at the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association. Full story

September 30, 2013

A Contracting Company Ad … for Congress? | #MN06

Former state Rep. Tom Emmer, a Republican running in a crowded primary to replace retiring Rep. Michele Bachmann in Minnesota, may have violated campaign finance rules by appearing in a local contracting company’s television advertisement.

In the ad, Emmer identifies himself as a congressional candidate, stands in front of his campaign sign, then provides a glowing testimonial for a general contracting company located in the 6th District. The ad appeared on local cable channels in the district, according to Blue Stem Prairie, a left-leaning blog in Minnesota.

Emmer has since asked that the ad be taken off the air, saying he did not intend for the testimonial to be a spot for his campaign, according to the Minnesota Pioneer Press.

Full story

Campaign Poll: Democrat Widens Lead in Massachusetts Special Primary | #MA05

State Sen. Katherine Clark, one of five Democrats running in a special election in Massachusetts’ 5th District, has released a new poll that shows her leading the pack two weeks from the Oct. 15 primary.

Clark had the lead with 27 percent of the vote — 9 points more than her next closest competitor, state Sen. Karen Spilka.

The rest of the field hovered in the teens. The survey found Spilka in second with 18 percent, Middlesex County Sheriff Peter Koutoujian in third with 16 percent, state Rep. Carl Sciortino in fourth with 15 percent and state Sen. William Brownsberger with 12 percent.

Full story

Democrat Runs For House Seat in Southern Indiana

Former state Rep. Bill Bailey, a Democrat, is scheduled to announce his candidacy against Rep. Todd Young, R-Ind., in the Hoosier State’s 9th District.

On Wednesday, Bailey will make his announcement in two population centers in the southern Indiana district: the Social Security Administration offices in Bloomington and New Albany. Full story

Crowded GOP Race Expected in Bachus District | #AL06

Bachus is retiring at the end of this Congress. (Scott J. Ferrell/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

GOP Rep. Spencer Bachus’ retirement from Alabama’s 6th District will likely spark a crowded GOP primary in 2014 to succeed him. A host of GOP candidates are expected run — many of whom have been waiting for his exit for two decades.

Alabama Republican operatives say the race is likely to include a wide array of candidates, from tea party stalwarts to popular state legislators in this heavily Republican district located in suburban Birmingham.

Potential Republican candidates include: Full story

Spencer Bachus Will Not Seek Re-Election in 2014

Bachus is leaving Congress at the end of his term. (Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Longtime Rep. Spencer Bachus, R-Ala., announced on Monday that he will not seek re-election in 2014, according to several local news outlets and a statement from his office.

“It has been the greatest privilege imaginable to serve as the representative of the people of Alabama in the United States House of Representatives,” Bachus said in a statement. “It is an honor that I never dreamed could have been possible for me and the words ‘thank you’ are far from adequate. But as Ecclesiastes 3 says, to everything there is a season and I feel in my heart that now is the time for me to announce this decision and allow others to have the opportunity to serve.” Full story

September 27, 2013

Democrats Land Ex-Hill Aide for Top House Race in California

Renteria is running for Congress. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Former Capitol Hill aide Amanda Renteria plans to announce on Sunday her campaign to oust Rep. David Valadao, R-Calif., in the 21st District.

Nathan Gonzales of the Rothenberg Political Report reported earlier this month that Democrats had recruited Renteria to run. An ex-Capitol Hill staffer, she previously worked for Democratic Sens. Dianne Feinstein of California and Debbie Stabenow of Michigan. Renteria was also the subject of a 2008 Roll Call profile. Full story

Tillis Sets $12M Goal for Senate Race (Video) | #NCSEN

The candidate: North Carolina Speaker Thom Tillis, a Republican
The member: Sen. Kay Hagan, a first-term Democrat.
The state: In 2012, GOP nominee Mitt Romney carried North Carolina by a 2-point margin. In 2008, Hagan defeated former Sen. Elizabeth Dole, a Republican, by 8 points in a favorable year for Democrats.
The candidate’s team: Brad Todd of OnMessage Inc. (media), Paul Shumaker (general consultant), Bellwether Consulting Group (fundraising), Public Opinion Strategies (polling).

Full story

Super PAC Hits McConnell With New Ad | #KYSEN

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell

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

A top Democratic super PAC announced Friday that it will launch a radio ad targeting Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, calling him “out of touch with Kentucky” on local airwaves.

The ad — run by Senate Majority PAC and backed by a roughly $75,000 buy – is a response to a pro-McConnell spot run by a Kentucky-based super PAC last week. Full story

Obama Campaign Manager Fundraises for House Candidate

Messina is a former deputy chief of staff in the White House. (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

President Barack Obama’s 2012 campaign manager will help his former colleague, John Lewis, a Democrat who faces a tough challenge in the at-large House seat race in Montana.

Jim Messina sent a fundraising email to boost Lewis, who worked with him in the office of Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont.

“And as someone personally invested in the progress and success of Big Sky Country, I know he’s the right person to represent this great state in Congress,” Messina wrote on Thursday.

A veteran operative in Montana, Messina served as chief of staff to Baucus before he joined Obama’s operation. Baucus will retire after this Congress, creating a domino effect in Big Sky State politics. Rep. Steve Daines, R-Mont., will likely run for Baucus’ Senate seat in 2014, leaving a wide-open race for the state’s only House seat. Full story

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