Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
September 23, 2014

May 14, 2012

Obama, Romney Camps Trade Barbs Over Bain Capital

President Barack Obama’s campaign launched a new attack on the role of Mitt Romney and Bain Capital in a failed Missouri steel company today — while the Romney camp returned fire by pointing to failures on Obama’s watch, including Solyndra.

The Obama campaign released a new 6-minute web ad attacking Romney’s record, particularly the profits he and Bain Capital made at a bankrupt company called GST Steel. The ad comes a week after the campaign had talked about what it said would be a largely positive $25 million ad buy in swing states.

The campaign also created a 2-minute version of the ad, which it will be running on television in Iowa, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Colorado and Virginia. The ad will run for only one day – Wednesday – during the evening news in those states, according to the Washington Post.

Full story

Orrin Hatch Donated $10K to Richard Mourdock After Primary

Indiana Treasurer Richard Mourdock received a congratulatory call from Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) on Thursday, two days after Mourdock’s 20-point defeat of Sen. Dick Lugar in the Indiana Republican primary.

Hatch, who is facing a conservative challenge of his own in a primary next month, spoke with Mourdock for 10 minutes and cut him a check for $10,000 from his leadership political action committee, Orrin PAC. Full story

Arkansas: Tom Cotton Up in New 4th District Poll

A new poll shows attorney Tom Cotton has pulled ahead of 2010 GOP nominee Beth Anne Rankin in the 4th Congressional district’s GOP primary.

A May 10 Talk Business-Hendrix College survey of likely voters found Cotton garnered 51 percent to Rankin’s 33 percent. Ten percent didn’t know for whom they would vote.

An earlier poll by the same group, conducted on April 17, found the race tied at 38.5 percent each.

Cotton has been up on local TV with some strong biographical ads, which may explain his movement in the poll. Full story

May 11, 2012

Arizona: Babeu Polling Third Before Dropping Out

Arizona: Babeu Polling Third Before Dropping Out

Sheriff Paul Babeu (center) withdrew from the 4th district race today. A poll released today showed him in third place in the GOP field. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

State Sen. Ron Gould’s campaign conducted a poll this week of the GOP field in the Arizona 4th district race, and a source said Sheriff Paul Babeu was sitting in third place in that survey.

Babeu announced his withdrawal from the race early Friday morning. His own campaign had conducted a poll as recently as this week, according to his political consultant, Chris DeRose.

“We had a poll that came back Tuesday that showed us within single digits of the lead,” DeRose said.

A January poll from the Babeu camp had him as the frontrunner in the race. But then February came, and the Babeu campaign found itself at the center of a firestorm involving his sexuality and accusations about his ethics.

Full story

Florida: Democratic Poll Shows Allen West Tied With Patrick Murphy

Florida: Democratic Poll Shows Allen West Tied With Patrick Murphy

A poll released Thursday by Rep. Allen West's Democratic opponent showed the race as a dead heat. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

A poll released Thursday by Congressional candidate Patrick Murphy (D) found him tied with Republican Rep. Allen West 45 percent to 45 percent in a horse-race matchup. Ten percent of the likely voters polled were undecided. Murphy is challenging West in Florida’s newly configured 18th district.

The survey conducted by longtime Florida pollster Keith Frederick found that West, one of the 112th Congress’ most outspoken Members, has 83 percent name recognition in the district. The polling memo released publicly did not include Murphy’s name ID. Both decided to run for the newly-configured seat after redistricting; both were previously running in Florida’s 22nd district.

The survey found presumptive GOP White House nominee Mitt Romney leading President Barack Obama in the district. In a ballot test, Romney led with 49 percent to Obama’s 46 percent. Four percent were undecided.

Full story

Arizona: NRCC Releases New Ad Against Ron Barber

The National Republican Congressional Committee released a new ad targeting Arizona 8th district Democratic nominee Ron Barber that ties him to Medicare cuts, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and President Barack Obama.

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California: Howard Berman Greeted Obama in Brad Sherman’s District

Neither President Barack Obama nor former President Bill Clinton have officially picked sides in the clash of Democratic Congressmen from California’s San Fernando Valley. But Obama and Clinton have dropped strong hints regarding where they stand.

It was Rep. Howard Berman — not Rep. Brad Sherman — who greeted Obama on Thursday at the Bob Hope Airport in Burbank, which is in Sherman’s current district. Berman then rode with Obama in the motorcade to a campaign fundraiser at the Studio City home of actor George Clooney, which is in the Congressman’s district. Full story

Arizona: Sheriff Paul Babeu Drops Out of House Race

Sheriff Paul Babeu has dropped his Congressional bid.

The Arizona Republican, whose recent admission that he was gay roiled his campaign, made his announcement in an overnight email to supporters.

“I have decided to end our congressional campaign and seek re-election as Pinal County Sheriff,” he wrote. “Yesterday, I informed my campaign staff and our finance team of my decision to run for re-election.”

Full story

May 10, 2012

Kentucky: Rand Paul Backs Thomas Massie in Race to Succeed Geoff Davis

Kentucky: Rand Paul Backs Thomas Massie in Race to Succeed Geoff Davis

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) today filmed a TV ad in support of Congressional candidate Thomas Massie and plans to endorse him soon.

“I’ve made the decision today to go ahead and help him,” Paul said in an interview today in his Senate office. “I filmed an ad for him today.”

Massie, the Lewis County judge-executive, is locked in a competitive race for Kentucky’s open 4th district seat, currently occupied by retiring Rep. Geoff Davis (R). The other two top contenders in the race are state Rep. Alecia Webb-Edgington and Boone County Judge-Executive Gary Moore. Full story

Steve Israel Projects Democratic Gains, Says Gay Marriage Not Very Relevant in House Races

Steve Israel Projects Democratic Gains, Says Gay Marriage Not Very Relevant in House Races

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chairman Steve Israel (N.Y.) predicted his party would make gains in this fall’s elections but stopped short of guaranteeing it would net the 25 seats needed to make Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) Speaker again.

“Whether or not we take the majority back, there will be more Democrats in the House,” he told reporters today at a Christian Science Monitor breakfast.

Full story

NRCC Loads First Round of Young Guns

NRCC Loads First Round of Young Guns

Utah Congressional candidate Mia Love, who is in Washington, D.C., this week for meetings, was one of the candidates promoted to "Young Guns" status. (Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call)

The National Republican Congressional Committee today announced its first round of Young Guns — candidates who have reached the highest tier of the committee’s recruitment and candidate support program.

The candidates are a diverse group that includes two woman, one of whom is African-American; a man of Portuguese descent; an openly gay man and a Jewish man.

“These candidates have met a series of rigorous goals that will put them in position to win on Election Day,” NRCC Chairman Pete Sessions (Texas) said in a statement. Full story

Palins Endorse Ted Cruz in Texas Senate Race

Palins Endorse Ted Cruz in Texas Senate Race

Ted Cruz, who is battling to get into a possible runoff in the Texas Senate race, got the endorsement of Sarah Palin. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and her husband, Todd, have endorsed another Senate candidate in a contested Republican primary: former Texas Solicitor General Ted Cruz.

Cruz told supporters in an email that he sought her support via a letter.

“We’re proud to join conservatives in Texas and throughout the nation in supporting your campaign to become the next Senator from the Lone Star State,” Palin wrote back.

Full story

Massachusetts: Elizabeth Warren, Scott Brown Close in New Poll; Catholics Favor Brown

Massachusetts: Elizabeth Warren, Scott Brown Close in New Poll; Catholics Favor Brown

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sen. Scott Brown (R) and Harvard professor Elizabeth Warren continue to be locked in a statistical dead heat in their Massachusetts Senatorial race. According to a late April poll conducted by the nonpartisan MassINC Polling Group, Warren had an edge within the margin of error.

In a horse race among registered voters, the Democrat led Brown by 2 points, 43 percent to 41 percent. Full story

Marco Rubio Prepared for Role as Mitt Romney Surrogate

Marco Rubio Prepared for Role as Mitt Romney Surrogate

(Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sen. Marco Rubio might end up as Mitt Romney’s vice presidential running mate. But as demonstrated at this early stage of the general election campaign, the Florida Republican will be among the former Massachusetts governor’s most high-profile surrogates.

Rubio’s fulfillment of this role — potentially crucial for Romney given the Senator’s position as a leading Hispanic Republican and a conservative stalwart — was on display this past weekend during a lengthy interview on “Fox News Sunday.”

In fact, a prescient and strategic Rubio has been preparing to play this role at least since January, when Romney was battling former Speaker Newt Gingrich (Ga.) in Florida’s GOP presidential primary.

Full story

North Carolina: GOP Nominee Attacks Mike McIntyre in 7th District

State Sen. David Rouzer, who won a contested GOP primary contest Tuesday night in the 7th district, immediately took aim at his general election opponent, Rep. Mike McIntyre (D).

“He’s walked in lock step with Barack Obama and Nancy Pelosi,” Rouzer said in a short interview Wednesday, echoing national GOP talking points. “The stimulus bill in particular” would be an issue, he said. “Clearly the stimulus failed.”

Rouzer said he thought he needed to raise $1.5 million to $2 million to win. McIntyre had $764,000 in the bank in mid-April. Full story

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