Trump: It is less than 50 days until the election and Donald Trump’s television advertisements have all but vanished. It has been over a week since the Trump campaign has paid to run a TV ad in Florida, North Carolina, Ohio and Pennsylvania. This begs the question of what the heck is Donald Trump spending all the campaign cash he is raising on? We know that Trump’s campaign has spent at least $8.2 million on business owned by Trump and his family (see here). The eventual post-election FEC investigation into Trump’s campaign spending could be a major scandal and a major embarrassment to the GOP.
Hillary: It must be nice to have Russian oligarchs, Saudi princes and Wall Street investment banks shower millions of dollars on you for giving speeches. Bill and Hillary Clinton just shelled out $1.16 million to buy the house next door to their Chappaqua mansion to use as a guest house for staff and visitors (because who doesn’t have a $1.16 million guest house on their estate). I guess when you are running for President against Donald Trump you don’t even need to make a pretense of being an average American.
Cruz: Ted Cruz is apparently taking bids on his conscience. Politico is out with a story claiming Ted Cruz is considering endorsing the man who claimed his father murdered JFK. I have to believe these stories where planted by people trying to troll Cruz because there is no way he could be politically stupid enough to endorse Donald Trump now after the stunt he pulled at the Republican National Convention.
NH-Gov: Libertarian Vice Presidential candidate William Weld has made two donations to Republican Chris Sununu’s gubernatorial campaign.
NY-Gov: Federal corruption charges were filed against two close aides to Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) and six other people. The sweeping corruption charges are a result of an investigation from the office of US Attorney Preet Bharara into the Buffalo Billions project. This is a devastating blow to the governor’s innermost circle and a repudiation of how Gov. Cuomo’s prized upstate economic development programs were managed. And if you are wondering why an investigation of a Buffalo development project was run out of the US Attorney’s office in Manhattan, the US Attorney for the Western District of New York is William Hochul who is the husband of New York Lt. Governor Kathy Hochul (D).
AK-Sen: Generalissimo Francisco Franco is still dead and former Sen. Mark Begich (D) is still not running for Senate. Begich made a big to-do about releasing a statement on Thursday about his political plans only to announce that he would not run a write-in campaign for Senate against Sen Lisa Murkowski (Write-in R). Murkowski is facing a 4 way re-election campaign against Democrat Ray Metcalfe, independent Margaret Stock (who is running with lots of Democrat support) and Libertarian Joe Miller who beat Murkowski in the 2010 GOP primary. On the bright side Begich little publicity stunt should help him with his current career as a Washington lobbyist.
FL-Sen: The NRSC points out in Spanish that Patrick Murphy lied about about his resume. “Patrick Murphy si es un contador pero de cuentos” is a really cute line. Wish there was a good English equivalent of that Spanish play on words.
IL-Sen: The judge overseeing the Downstate retaliation lawsuit against Democrat senate candidate Tammy Duckworth has set an October 5th date for both sides to talk. Two former employees of Duckworth at the state’s Department of Veterans Affairs have sued claiming Duckworth tried to fire one of them and gave the other a bad review that cost her raises after they complained about Duckworth’s leadership at the VA home, where they work. Duckworth’s politicization of her work at the VA at the behest of former Gov. Rod Blagojevich (D) has become an issue in the Senate campaign and has been features in ads by Sen Mark Kirk (see here).
MO-Sen: Republican Sen Roy Blunt’s latest TV ad features lots of people assembling guns and makes the point that anyone can learn how to assemble a gun but what’s important is how you stand on the issues.
MT-AL: In sad news Libertarian candidate Michael Fellows was killed in a car crash this week. Fellows had run for office every year since 1996, when he ran for a seat in the Montana House. He ran for Congress in 1998, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2008 and 2010; for Secretary of State in 2000, and for the Montana Supreme Court in 2012. He was unsuccessful every time. Our prayers and thoughts go out to his family.
NV-Sen: Freedom Partners is spending $1.2 million on TV ads to remind voters that as Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto ignored numerous request to investigate a guardianship program that exploited and abused seniors.
PA-Sen: Freedom Partners Action Fund has released a new ad attacking Democrat Katie McGinty for supporting “special interest profits for her and higher taxes for you”.
WA-Sen: Sen. Patty Murray is clearly not sweating her re-election campaign against Republican Chris Vance. Murray has transferred $1 million from her campaign account to the DSCC.
FL-18: Democrat congressional candidate Randy Perkins is kind of a dick. Perkins had a meltdown over his double-amputee Republican opponent Brian Mast citing his military service as qualifying him to serve in Congress. Perkins actually had the gall to ask a man who lost both his legs fighting for his country to tell him “why the sacrifices and the services that you have provided for this country make you capable of solving issues?” Perkins also accused Mast (who once again lost both of his legs serving his country in Afghanistan) of not being a man for standing behind ads put out by the NRCC which Perkins took issue with. In Perkins world making money off of ripping off taxpayers during national disasters qualifies you for Congress but losing both your legs fighting for your country does not. Perkins is clearly trying to take Alan Grayson’s place as the biggest a-hole in Florida politics.
NH-1: Despite the best efforts of the New Hampshire Democratic Party former Democrat and Bernie Sanders supporter Shawn O’Connor will officially be on the ballot as an Independent candidate. O’Connor originally intended to run in the primary as a Democrat but pulled out after Democrat Party officials sandbagged his campaign in favor of former Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter. O’Connor could draw progressive votes on the left away from Shea-Porter and could give Republican Rep. Frank Guinta a slightly better shot at re-election in this R+1 district.
NY-3: Tom Suozzi, you’re no Jack Kennedy! Democrat candidate Tom Suozzi released a new TV ad in which he compared himself JFK. Unless Tom Souzzi was referring to using dead voters to win (see here) I’m not sure the analogy holds.
NY-21: In a sign of how nasty politics can be a speaker at a campaign event for Democratic congressional candidate Mike Derrick called his Republican opponent Rep. Elise Stefanik a “cow”. After he was called out on it Derrick tried to distance himself from the disparaging remarks made at his own campaign event.
NY-22: The Oneida Indian Nation, which has feuded with Republican Assemblywoman Claudia Tenney, has given $500,000 to the Democrat aligned House Majority PAC.
NY-24: Rep. John Katko (R) released a new TV ad using his Democratic opponent Colleen Deacon’s own words against her. When asked for her view on what the U.S. should be doing to combat ISIS Deacon replied “Um … fighting ISIS, obviously, I … I don’t know what the answer is …”.
NY-25: Republican Mark Assini came a few hundred votes short of upsetting Rep. Louise Slaughter in this D+7 district in 2014. Now the 87 year old Slaughter is not taking any chances with her re-election. Her campaign has dug up online comments Assini made over a decade ago on gay marriage and other LGBTQ issues and is now trying to manufacture a controversy against him.
State, Local & Other:
Philadelphia District Attorney: Joe Khan has left his job as a federal prosecutor and announced that he will challenge Philadelphia DA Seth Williams in the 2017 Democrat primary.
NYC CD-21: Fresh off his loss in a bid for Democratic district leader position, former New York State Senator (and total scumbag) Hiram Monserrate will try for a comeback bid by running for City Council against Queens Councilwoman Julissa Ferreras-Copeland (D) next year. Monserrate was part of the 2009 coup with Sen. Pedro Espada (D) that briefly gave control of the NYS Senate to the GOP. Monserrate was later expelled from the Senate for doing THIS to his girlfriend.
NYC-Mayor: Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) is desperately trying to find a sane Democrat to take on Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) next year. Unfortunately, it seems state Democratic Party Executive Director Charlie King, a Cuomo ally, was sounding out support for a mayoral run by longtime Harlem Assemblyman Keith Wright. Wright is a Charlie Rangel
hack protege and recently lost the NY-13 Democrat primary to soon to be Congressman Adriano Espaillat. Seriously, for the sake of New York you have to hope that a better challenger than Keith Wright emerges.