Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
November 30, 2015

October 4, 2013

Hollywood Produces Dollars for Cory Booker

Newark Mayor Cory Booker brought in big bucks in the final weeks of his Senate bid in th New Jersey special election. That’s in part thanks to some megawatt help from Hollywood.

Our sister blog, Political MoneyLine, flagged a number of players in the entertainment industry who contributed toward his $2.58 million total haul for August and September: Full story

New Dem Ad: Boehner Is Crybaby

A top Democratic super PAC will target Speaker John A. Boehner on his Ohio district’s airwaves, attacking him and the Republican Party for the government shutdown.

On Friday, House Majority PAC released the 40-second spot, which features a crying baby and blasts Boehner for his government shutdown strategy. The ad will only air this Sunday during the NFL game between the Cincinnati Bengals and the New England Patriots.

“Speaker John Boehner didn’t get his way on shutting down health care reform. So, he shut down the government and hurt the economy,” the ad says.

Full story

October 3, 2013

Two Democrats Rake in $600K in Massachusetts Special Election (Updated) | #MA05

Updated 7:12 p.m. | Middlesex County Sheriff Peter Koutoujian and state Sen. Katherine Clark, two of the five Democrats running in an upcoming special election primary in Massachusetts’ 5th District, raised more than $600,000 each in the past three months.

Koutoujian raised about $610,000, while Clark pulled in $616,000, which includes a $250,000 personal loan to her campaign, according to reports filed with the Federal Election Commission. Koutoujian reported $690,000 in cash on hand less than two weeks out from the Oct. 15 primary, while Clark reported $390,000.

According to Koutoujian’s campaign, about $560,000 of the funds raised in that three-month period are designated for the primary. The remaining $40,000 is reserved for a general election, according to federal campaign finance law.

Clark’s campaign says that of the $390,000 in cash on hand it has, $283,000 is designated for the primary.

Full story

Arizona Speaker Enters Race Against Ann Kirkpatrick

Arizona House Speaker Andy Tobin, a Republican, has announced his challenge to Democratic Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick in Arizona’s highly competitive 1st District.

“I’ve been blessed to serve and fight for you,” Tobin says in the rollout video. “I’ve done this before, and I’ll do it again.” Full story

Democratic Super PAC Slams GOP in Shutdown Ads

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

House Majority PAC, a super PAC that aims to elect House Democrats, announced Thursday it will unleash a major advertising campaign against nine House Republicans over the shutdown.

The total buy is for a “mid-six figure” sum, according to the political action committee’s spokesman. It will run web and TV ads against Republican Reps. Mike Coffman of Colorado’s 6th District, Steve Southerland II of Florida’s 2nd, Joe Heck of Nevada’s 3rd and David Joyce of Ohio’s 14th.

The buy will also include a “Google and Bing search advertising campaign,” according to a news release, that will target those four Republicans members plus five more:

  • Rep. Gary G. Miller of California’s 31st District
  • Rep. Rodney Davis of Illinois’ 13th District
  • Rep. Michael G. Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania’s 8th District
  • Rep. Michael G. Grimm of New York’s 11th District
  • Rep. John Kline of Minnesota’s 2nd District

The television ads targeting Coffman, Southerland, Heck and Joyce can be seen after the jump.

Full story

Democrats Land Montana Senate Recruit

Montana Lt. Gov. John Walsh will run for Senate, providing Democrats with a key recruit for an open-seat race in a highly competitive state.

“Too many lawmakers back in Washington put their own agendas ahead of their responsibility to their constituents and to all Americans,” Walsh said in an advance statement obtained by the Associated Press. Full story

Exclusive: Bill Shuster Stomps Tea Party Challenger in Early GOP Poll

Rep. Bill Shuster, R-Pa., holds a more than 50-point lead over his Republican challengers in the 9th District primary next year, according to a new automated telephone poll from a GOP firm.

In the survey — shared first with CQ Roll Call — nearly two-thirds of likely GOP primary voters, 63 percent, said they would back Shuster in a primary. Ret. Coast Guard Capt. Art Halvorson had the support of 11 percent of respondents, while 5 percent backed veteran Travis Schooley. Twenty-one percent of respondents said they were “not sure” in the poll.

In recent weeks, Pennsylvania GOP operatives have questioned if Shuster is vulnerable to a primary challenge from Halvorson. The House Transportation and Infrastructure chairman has ramped up his fundraising over the past year, and his campaign manager insisted to CQ Roll Call that his team takes every challenge seriously.

Full story

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

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