Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
July 28, 2014

March 28, 2012

Rubio: Convention Fight ‘Recipe for Disaster’

Rubio: Convention Fight ‘Recipe for Disaster’

(Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sen. Marco Rubio said all of the things you’d expect in a TV interview explaining his decision to back Mitt Romney for president.

The Florida Republican said Romney offers “such a stark contrast” to President Barack Obama’s record, adding that “I have zero doubt in my mind that Mitt Romney will govern as a conservative.”

But it’s what else Rubio said during the interview on Fox’s “Hannity” that caught my attention. Rubio appeared to set about very purposely to shoot down the notion — currently being promoted by former Speaker Newt Gingrich (Ga.) and ex-Sen. Rick Santorum (Pa.) — that a contested or brokered nominating convention would be good for the Republican Party’s chances of defeating Obama on Nov. 6.

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Marco Rubio Endorses Mitt Romney

Marco Rubio Endorses Mitt Romney

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Nearly two months after the Florida primary, Sen. Marco Rubio endorsed Mitt Romney for president.

In an appearance on Sean Hannity’s show on Fox, the first-term Florida Republican said Romney had “earned this nomination” and criticized talk of an open convention.

“I think that’s a recipe for delivering four more years of Barack Obama,” he said.

As a Hispanic lawmaker from a key swing state, Rubio has been discussed as a vice presidential candidate since he won election to the Senate in 2010. Full story

New Hampshire: Politicians Move Closer to Redistricting Map

Updated 6:23 p.m. | New Hampshire might finally be moving toward a redistricting map, according to the New Hampshire Union Leader.

State lawmakers had delegated the map drawing to the state’s two Members, Reps. Charles Bass and Frank Guinta. Both men are Republicans and had been at odds over the state’s single Congressional line.

“This plan, we’re told, helps Bass somewhat while preserving Guinta’s slight lean-GOP district,” the Union Leader reported. “It gives the 1st District swing towns that slightly lean GOP in exchange for swing towns that generally lean a little more heavily to the GOP.”

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Anti-Incumbent Super PAC Adds Jones, Moran to Target List

Anti Incumbent Super PAC Adds Jones, Moran to Target List

Rep. Walter Jones Jr. is one of two Members that an anti-incumbent super PAC has decided to target. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated 7:39 p.m. | The Campaign for Primary Accountability plans to launch spending crusades against Reps. Walter Jones Jr. (R-N.C.) and Jim Moran (D-Va.) as part of the super PAC’s growing list of targeted races.

The deep-pocketed super PAC also announced a “Watch List” of more than two dozen veteran Members whom it plans to evaluate and potentially target during the height of primary season during the next three months. Full story

Arizona: Bivens Drops Out, Democratic Field Clears

Former state Democratic Party Chairman Don Bivens is dropping out of the race to replace retiring Sen. Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.).

“The continuing head-to-head competition of our Democratic primary is draining resources that we will need as a Party to win the U.S. Senate race in November,” he wrote in a statement. “While I am confident we would win this primary, the cost and impact on the Party I’ve spent my life fighting for could diminish our chance to achieve the ultimate goal: winning in November.”

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Pennsylvania: Brady Donates to Critz in Primary Against Altmire

Pennsylvania: Brady Donates to Critz in Primary Against Altmire

Rep. Robert Brady is picking sides in Pennsylvania's only Member-vs.-Member race. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Rep. Robert Brady donated to Rep. Mark Critz in his primary against fellow Rep. Jason Altmire, making him the first Democrat in the Pennsylvania delegation to wade into the Member-vs.-Member race.

The influential chairman of the Philadelphia Democratic City Committee gave $2,000 to Critz in early March, Critz’s campaign confirmed.

“I am grateful for Bob Brady’s support,” Critz said in a statement to Roll Call. “He has been a good friend and mentor in Congress and I look forward to working with him for years to come.” Full story

March 27, 2012

Newt Gingrich Scales Back Presidential Campaign

 

Newt Gingrich Scales Back Presidential Campaign

(Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Former Speaker Newt Gingrich is dramatically scaling back his presidential campaign, according to news reports.

The Georgia Republican will cut one-third of his staff and has already replaced campaign manager Michael Krull with deputy campaign manager Vince Haley.

The campaign will also refocus its strategy around persuading delegates to the August convention in Tampa, Fla., to support him, according to multiple news reports. Full story

Shop Talk: Carolyn Fiddler Joining AFT

Carolyn Fiddler is leaving the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee on Thursday for a new position with the American Federation of Teachers.

In an email, Fiddler said she will join the union in April for “an exciting new gig developing an aggressive and agile communications operation with AFT” as assistant director for communications and strategic response. Full story

March 26, 2012

California: GOP Ballot Challenge Is Out of This World

A lawsuit was filed in Sacramento County Superior Court last week challenging the validity of a Democratic Congressional candidate’s stated occupation on the ballot.

José Hernandez, who worked at NASA for 10 years and is challenging Rep. Jeff Denham (R) in the redrawn 10th district, will have “Astronaut/Scientist/Engineer” listed next to his name on ballots this year unless the challenge is successful. The Sacramento Bee reported that the lawsuit argues Hernandez must list his current occupation, which no longer includes astronaut. Full story

Biden Back to Iowa on Wednesday

Biden Back to Iowa on Wednesday

(Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Vice President Joseph Biden will deliver remarks in Iowa on Wednesday for the second time this month.

Biden will speak at PCT Engineered Systems in Davenport about the administration’s efforts to improve the economy and the importance of manufacturing. It’s the third in a series of speeches Biden is delivering on the economy, which kicked off two weeks ago in Toledo, Ohio. Full story

Texas: DeMint Continues to Help Boost Cruz

Texas: DeMint Continues to Help Boost Cruz

Sen. Jim DeMint (above) praised Ted Cruz in his Senate primary race against Texas Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) emailed supporters Monday morning to aid the effort of former Texas Solicitor General Ted Cruz (R) to replace retiring Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R). Full story

New York: Gillibrand Pitches for Hochul, Slaughter

New York: Gillibrand Pitches for Hochul, Slaughter

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Popular Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand made an email fundraising pitch to her supporters Sunday for Democratic Reps. Kathy Hochul and Louise Slaughter. Full story

Pennsylvania: Mark Critz Poll Shows Momentum Against Jason Altmire

Pennsylvania: Mark Critz Poll Shows Momentum Against Jason Altmire

Rep. Mark Critz got the endorsement from the Pennsylvania AFL-CIO. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Updated 7:30 p.m. | A new poll released today by the campaign of Rep. Mark Critz (D) showed him in a tightening primary with frontrunner Rep. Jason Altmire (D) in Pennsylvania’s newly reconfigured 12th district. The poll coincided with the Pennsylvania AFL-CIO’s endorsement of Critz today.

“We’re proud to endorse Congressman Critz in the 12th Congressional District.  He’s the best candidate to represent the over 100,000 union members in CD12 who are looking for someone to fight for jobs and an economy that works for everyone,” Pennsylvania AFL-CIO President Richard Bloomingdale said in a statement to Roll Call.

A Democratic operative familiar with the race said by endorsing, the labor group is asserting independence and a willingness to wade into Democratic primary fights. The source also said the race is a dry run for the AFL-CIO’s post-Citizens United campaign operation. Beyond endorsing, an AFL-CIO official said the group would be putting resources into campaigning for Critz. Full story

Supreme Scenes: The Health Care Arguments (PHOTOS)

Supreme Scenes: The Health Care Arguments (PHOTOS)

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The Supreme Court kicked off the widely anticipated arguments over President Barack Obama’s health care law today. You can read Steven Dennis‘ roundup from the opening day arguments here.

Today’s proceedings were more procedural than anything, with both sides in agreement that the case should be heard now and not in three years’ time.

Justices on both the liberal and conservative wings of the court pressed attorneys for ways around an 1867 law that prohibits people from filing a lawsuit against tax provisions until after they have already paid the tax in question. Both sides of the lawsuit agree that an exemption should be granted, but for different reasons, although the court appointed an attorney to defend the notion — held by a lower court — that the case won’t be ripe until 2015.

Tuesday’s arguments over the constitutionality of the individual mandate are expected to be much more heated. Indeed, on this first day there was more drama outside the court than inside the chamber. Full story

North Carolina: Killian Picks Up McCain Endorsement

State Rep. Ric Killian, an Army Reserve colonel running in a crowded GOP primary in the Tar Heel State’s 9th district, picked up the endorsement of Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) today.

“Leaders need the courage to make hard choices for the long-term benefit of our country. Ric has shown that kind of courage throughout his lifetime of service,” McCain said in a statement released by the Killian campaign. “His experience in business and the legislature make him the best candidate for this seat and I am proud to support him, but it is his record of duty, honor and service to our country that will make him an outstanding Congressman.”

A McCain aide confirmed the endorsement to Roll Call. Killian co-chaired a Veterans for McCain coalition in North Carolina in 2008.

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