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Political Roundup for November 20th, 2017

Over the weekend, ex-State Rep. John Schroder (R) won LA-Treasurer as expected, councilwoman LaToya Cantrell (D) won New Orleans Mayor, Covington Councilman Mark Wright (R) won LA-LD-77, and ex-federal prosecutor Conor Lamb (D) won the right to take on State Rep. Rick Saccone (R) in PA-18. In Chile, ex-President Sebastian Pinera of the center right will face Senator Alejandro Guillier of the center-left in a December runoff.


MI-Sen/MI-06: Well, I think that this turned out for the best. Rep. Fred Upton (R) has backed off of his Senate campaign and is running for reelection to his Southwest Michigan congressional seat.  Not having his district open next year can only help House Republicans, and he just wasn’t catching on in the primary for Senate.

MI-Sen Continued: With Upton out of the race, all eyes are now on frontrunner veteran/businessman John James (R). James still has a few notable primary opponents, including ex-State Supreme Court Justice Bob Young (R) and newly-entered businessman Sandy Pensler (R), but he’s polling ahead of them. He’s also African-American, so expect a bit more coverage than your run-of-the-mill Republican Senate candidate would get. Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D) is a tough candidate to beat in any year, so James has his work cut out for him if he makes it out of the primary.

MN-Sen: If this opinion piece is at all representative of progressive opinion on the matter, we won’t be seeing any special Senate election fun in Minnesota. Sen. Al Franken (D) has been caught up in the wave of allegations of sexual misconduct that is currently sweeping the upper echelons of American public society. However, it seems like many are willing to close ranks around him not necessarily because he might be innocent, but because he votes the right way. This woman is just more honest about it than most.

TX-Sen: Some Dude Bruce Jacobson (R) is challenging Sen. Ted Cruz (R) in the Republican senatorial primary next year. Jacobson doesn’t seem to have much of a platform aside from criticizing gridlock. Jacobson may be a Some Dude, but I expect he might actually might have a bit of funding because he’s a television producer for a Christian outlet.

IL-03: Off the Sidelines, a PAC linked to New York Sen. Kirsten Gellibrand (D) has endorsed Some Dude Marie Newman (D) in her bid to oust Blue Dog Rep. Dan Lipinski (D) in the Democratic primary for his seat, based in Chicago’s southwestern inner suburbs. This has fueled speculation that Gellibrand, who’s been an ideological chameleon since entering elected office, may be trying to burnish her progressive credentials ahead of the 2020 Democratic Presidential primary.

MD-07: This is from Gateway Pundit, so take it with a grain of salt. However, it’s fascinating if true. Rep. Elijah Cummings (D) may have colluded with elements of the IRS to suppress some Republican-friendly outside groups. It’s still early, but Cummings has been contemplating leaving the House in one way or another for a while now. This could be the push that finallyopens up his Baltimore-based seat.

NJ-05: Well-connected lawyer John McCann (R) has joined perennial candidate Steve Lonegan (R) in the race to take on freshman Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D). Trump actually narrowly won this district based in suburban, exurban, and rural North Jersey, so the moderate McCann might have a decent shot even in a good year for Democrats. First, though, he has to get by Lonegan, who rarely wins races, but does have high name recognition.

PA=15: Well, State Rep. Ryan Mackenzie’s (R) life just got a bit easier. Fellow State Rep. Justin Simmons (R), Mackenzie’s biggest stumbling block on the way to winning the Republican primary for this swingy open seat based in the Lehigh Valley, has dropped out of the race. Mackenzie isn’t out of the woods yet, though. He still has, at the least, a tough general election campaign ahead of him.


CO-SD-27: In the current wave of sexual harassment allegations, at least a few are likely false or not representative of the person’s general behavior. It seems that this may be the case with the allegations against Colorado State Sen. Jack Tate (R). Multiple women who work alongside him have spoken out in defense of his conduct. It looks like Democrats will have to wait until 2020 if they want to try and take Tate’s Centennial-based seat.

FL-Leg: I think that Ryan may be right in his oft-repeated prediction that the tsunami still has yet to rush in on the sexual misconduct allegation phenomenon. 97% of Florida political insiders surveyed by the Tampa Bay Times seem to agree with both of us. What’s interesting is that it’s so nearly unanimous. They can’t all know about the same single offender. Expect more open legislative seats in next year’s election than are currently forecast.

VA-Leg: Democrats in the Old Dominion are still trying to flip the House of Delegates. They plan to file for recounts in HD-28, HD-40, and HD-94. All three races were extremely narrow Republican victories. If Democrats get one more seat, they can tie the chamber. Two more seats get them the majority. There was an earlier report that hundreds of voters in HD-28 had bee given the wrong ballots, but that appears to have been erroneous.

TX-HD-134: In a move that has surprised many, Texas Governor Greg Abbott (R) is backing a challenger to a fellow Republican. Susanna Dokupil (R) is challenging State Rep. Sarah Davis (R) for her seat on Houston’s wealthy west side, and has the Governor’s backing in her endeavor. Abbott’s move may have something to do with an ethics reform that Davis proposed that would bar donors to governors from serving on state boards and commissions.

Political Roundup for November 14, 2017


CO-Gov: Arapahoe District Attorney George Brauchler (R) is dropping out of the race for governor and will instead run for the open Attorney General spot. Brauchler was once considered one of the favorites for the Republican nomination but the GOP primary has gotten especially crowed with the entry of former Rep. Tom Tancredo, Attorney General Cynthia Coffman, Walker Stapleton and Victor Mitchell. Brauchler should have a clear shot at the Attorney General position.

RI-Gov: We want the Fung, gotta have that Fung! A TargetPoint Consulting internal poll for Allan Fung (R) shows him leading the GOP primary by more than 20 points; Fung 45%, Patricia Morgan 24%, Joseph Trillo 10% and unsure at 20% and Fung beating incumbent Gov. Gina Raimondo (D) 46% to 41%.

WI-Gov: The field of Democrats seeking their party’s gubernatorial nomination has grown even larger. Firefighter union chief Mahlon Mitchell announced he will run for Governor. Mitchel, who is African American, was the Democrat nominee for Lt Governor in the 2012 recall elections. Other Democrats that are running or actively exploring a run include Madison Mayor Paul Soglin, former state Rep. Kelda Roys, state superintendent of public instruction Tony Evers, former Democratic Party chairman Matt Flynn, Milwaukee businessman Andy Gronik, former Wisconsin Democracy Campaign executive director Mike McCabe, Sen. Kathleen Vinehout, Rep. Dana Wachs, Michelle Doolan, Bob Harlow, Dave Heaster, Brett Hulsey, Kurt Kober, Jared Landry, Andrew Lust, Jeffrey Rumbaugh and Ramona Whiteaker. Candidates have until June 1 to submit all paperwork to appear on the Aug. 14 gubernatorial primary ballot. The winner of the Democrat primary will face Gov. Scott Walker who will have his 4th statewide run for Governor in 8 years.


AL-Sen: At a press conference yesterday Beverly Young Nelson accused Roy Moore (R) of sexually assaulting her when she was 16 years old. Nelson produced a copy of her High School yearbook which Moore signed “To a sweeter more beautiful girl I could not say ‘Merry Christmas, Love, Roy Moore, D.A.”. As the scandal widens and polls show Democrat Doug Jones leading the election calls have increase for Roy Moore to step aside. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R) became the latest to call on Moore to “step aside” and NRSC Chair Cory Gardner said Roy Moore is “unfit to serve in the United States Senate and he should not run for office. If he refuses to withdraw and wins, the Senate should vote to expel him, because he does not meet the ethical and moral requirements of the … Senate.” It is becoming clear that the only shot the GOP has at keeping this seat would be through some sort of organized write-in campaign.

MI-Sen: A new poll shows Detroit businessman John James in the lead for the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate. John James is at 24%, Rep. Fred Upton (who is currently seeking re-election to the House) is at 19% and former Chief Justice Robert Young trails with 7%. The winner of the GOP primary will face Sen. Debbie Spenditnow Stabenow (D) who is probably breathing a heavy sigh of relief that her GOP opponent won’t have a nickname with the words “Kid” and “Rock” in it.

NJ-Sen: Jurors in the trial of Sen. Bob Menendez (D) seems to be deadlocked. They sent the judge a note on Monday saying they “can’t reach a unanimous verdict on any of the charges” and the judge ordered them deliberating to try and reach a verdict.


MA-3: Former ambassador to Denmark Rufus Gifford (D) announced his candidacy for the open  D+9 seat Rep. Niki Tsongas (D) is retiring from. Gifford, who is gay, has not lived in Massachusetts in 20 years but is originally from Manchester-by-the-Sea which is well outside the district. Gifford gained some notoriety in 2012 as one of Obama’s top fundraisers. He sent over 10 million emails to people on Obama’s email list asking for money and was even called the “Spam King” by BuzzFeed.

NJ-5: Our friend Miles Coleman has plugged the New Jersey gubernatorial numbers into the New Jersey congressional districts and finds that in NJ-5 was a virtual tie with Murphy edging out Guadagno by a mere 231 votes. Freshman Rep. Josh Gottheimer won this district last year despite Trump winning the district by 1.3%.

OH-16: Former NFL wide receiver Anthony Gonzalez (R) picked up the endorsement of neighboring OH-7 Rep. Bob Gibbs (R) for this open R+8 district. Gibbs will headline a fundraiser for Gonzalez at the Brookside Country Club in Canton, OH which is the home of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

PA-10: After several on again off again nominations for Drug Czar Rep. Tom Marino will seek re-election in 2018 to this fairly safe R+16 seat.

TX-29: In case you missed it, Rep. Gene Green (D) is retiring. Scroll down for our full write up and great mentioner on possible replacements for this D+19 seat.

SALT: The repeal of the state and local tax exemption could be the kiss of death for congressional Republicans in states like California, New York and New Jersey. Seven California Reps. Darrell Issa, Dana Rohrabacher, Mimi Walters, Ed Royce, Steve Knight, David Valadao and Jeff Denham could all face major blowback if the Republican “tax cuts” end up raising taxes on their constituents.

State, Local & Other:

PA-Lt Gov: I guess when you are living in a former Chevy dealership and off of the trust fund your parents set up for you an official residence in Harrisburg with a full staff of state workers waiting on you hand and foot must sound pretty good. With that in mind Braddock Mayor and former US Senate candidate John Fetterman (D) has announced he will challenge incumbent Lt. Gov (and friend to state troopers and household staff) Mike Stack III (D).

Albuquerque, NM-Mayor: Today is election day in Albuquerque. The latest Journal Poll published before the election had state Auditor Tim Keller (D) with a 16 point lead over City Councilman Dan Lewis (R). We will have a preview and open thread at Noon ET; our liveblog will start at 9PM.

New Orleans, LA-Mayor: The latest University of New Orleans Poll has Latoya Cantrell posting a 11 point lead over Desiree Charbonnet ahead of Saturday’s runoff election.

Political Roundup for August 25, 2017


TN-Sen: Former state Rep. Joe Carr (R) is considering running for US Senate, either as an open seat or challenging Sen. Bob Corker (R) in the Republican primary. Corker has not yet decided whether to seek re-election. Andrew Ogles, state director of Americans for Prosperity-Tennessee is said to be considering challenging Corker as well, and state Rep. Andy Holt (R) has expressed interest in running as well. Carr ran a respectable primary race against Sen. Lamar Alexander (R) in 2014, taking 41% and holding the senator to just under 50%. He was much less successful however in a 2016 primary challenge to Rep. Diane Black (R), losing by a 2-1 margin.

UT-Sen: Rep. Chris Stewart (R) says he would run for US Senate if Sen. Orrin Hatch (R) decides not to run. He made it clear however that he is supporting Hatch if the senator runs for an 8th term and would only run if Hatch decides not to run. Hatch said earlier this year that he plans to run again, but would not make a final decision until later this year.


IN-4: Indiana Department of Workforce Development Steve Braun is resigning his position to run for Congress. He joins former Mike Pence staffer Diego Morales in the Republican primary. Rep. Todd Rokita (R) is running for Senate. Braun’s brother, state Rep. Mike Braun (R) is also running for Senate.

IN-6: State Sen. Mike Crider (R) officially entered the race yesterday to replace Rep. Luke Messer (R) who is running for US Senate. Greg Pence, brother of Vice President Mike Pence is considering a run as well. Also said to be planning a run is David Willkie, great-grandson of 1940 Republican presidential nominee Wendell Willkie and a former political director for former Sen. Richard Lugar (R).

KS-2: State Sen. Caryn Tyson (R) has announced a run for Congress. She joins fellow state Sen. Steve Fitzgerald (R), state Rep. Kevin Jones (R) and Basehor councilman Vernon Fields in the GOP primary. So far, former state House Minority Leader and unsuccessful 2014 Democratic gubernatorial nominee Paul Davis is the only Democrat in the race. All 3 legislators in the GOP primary are considered conservatives.

KS-4/KS-Gov: State Senate President Susan Wagle (R) will not run for Congress or governor next year. Wagle was considered the biggest threat of a primary challenger to Rep. Ron Estes (R) and said she does not know of anyone else contemplating a primary challenge to Estes. Wagle had also said earlier this summer she was thinking of running for governor as well.

ME-2: State Rep. Jared Golden (D) is in the race to face Rep. Bruce Poliquin (R). Golden is a marine veteran who served for a short time as an aide to Sen. Susan Collins (R) before winning two terms in a heavily Democratic state House district. Golden joins 4 other Democrats in the primary.

MA-3: State Sen. Jamie Eldridge (D) will not run for Congress and will instead run for re-election. Eldridge lost to now Rep. Niki Tsongas (D) in the Democratic primary for a 2007 special election and was considered likely to run again after Tsongas announced her retirement earlier this month. Dan Koh (D), chief of staff to Boston Mayor Marty Walsh is the only person in the race so far.  State Sens. Eileen Donoghue (D), who like Eldridge lost in the Democratic primary to Tsongas in 2007 and Barbara L’Italien (D) are considering running, as is hospital consultant Ellen Murphy Meehan, ex-wife of former Rep. Martin Meehan (D), who held the seat before Tsongas. Businessman Rick Green, who considered a run against Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D) is said to be considering a run on the Republican side.

NJ-5: Former Bogota Mayor Steve Lonegan (R) announced yesterday he is running for Congress. Lonegan has run for various higher offices before, but has never been successful. Most recently, he took 44% as the Republican nominee against now Sen. Cory Booker (D) in the 2013 special election to replace the late Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D) and lost to now Rep. Tom MacArthur (R) in the 2014 Republican primary for NJ-3. Lonegan was a strong supporter of Sen. Ted Cruz for president last year and said nominating Donald Trump was “political suicide”, but is now saying he supports the president’s agenda. Lonegan is the first Republican to enter the race against freshman Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D), but others, including Warren County Freeholder Jason Sarnoski are considering running.


ME-Gov: Sen. Susan Collins (R) says she is still considering whether to run for governor next year, and will decide by the end of next month. A recent poll indicated that she may have trouble in a Republican primary however, with her losing to former Health and Human Services Secretary Mary Mayhew by double digits.

OR-Gov: Secretary of State Dennis Richardson (R) has confirmed that he will not run for governor next year. Although he had not been raising money for a gubernatorial bid, there was still speculation that he might run, building on momentum gained from becoming the first Republican to win a statewide office last year since 2002. Richardson lost to then-Gov. John Kitzhaber (D) by 5 points as the Republican nominee in 2014. State Rep. Knute Buehler (R) is already running, and Happy Valley Mayor Lori Chavez-DeRemer is considering running in the Republican primary as well. Gov. Kate Brown (D) is expected to run again, although she has not formally entered the race.

RI-Gov: Cranston Mayor Allan Fung (R) is running for governor again. Fung lost to Gov. Gina Raimondo (D) by 4 points as the Republican nominee in 2o14. Fung will likely have competition however-former state Rep. Joe Trillo (R), who served as honorary chairman of President Trump’s Rhode Island campaign last year is campaigning as well, although he hasn’t yet formally announced he is running. House Minority Leader Patricia Morgan is considering a run as well, although there are questions about whether she can raise the money to run an effective campaign.

TN-Gov: State Sen. Mae Beavers (R) is resigning her seat to run for governor full-time. Beavers has been lagging well behind in fundraising and would have been hampered by not being able to raise money during the legislative session. Beavers had been serving in the state Senate since 2002 after 4 terms in the state House. A special election will be held to fill her overwhelmingly Republican seat(TN-SD-17), that gave Trump 72% of the vote last year.

TX-Gov: Texas Democrats apparently want Rep. Joaquin Castro (D) to run for governor next year, but see the presidential aspirations of Castro’s twin brother, former HUD Secretary Julian Castro as getting in the way. A run by the congressman against Gov. Greg Abbott (R) would be a very uphill race, and the two Castros, who serve as political strategists for each other, are afraid a loss by him would make the two look like losers and hamper any chances for Julian Castro if he decides to enter the 2020 presidential race. Democrats in the state are eager to get the congressman in the race, because they see him as literally their only legitimate candidate in a long shot race.

Political Roundup for July 19, 2017

Polling Update: RRHelections is planning to poll the Republican special election primary for US Senate in Alabama and we need your help to make it happen! Unlike any other organization or news source our polls are funded by crowdsourced donations and put together by volunteer political junkies for political junkies. If you would like to help make this poll happen please go to and donate to our polling fund to be a part of this effort and to help make this happen!

Last night in RI-SD-13, Attorney Dawn Euer (D) won the Dem primary for this blue seat. In Bermuda, the center-left PLP took over from the center-right OBA, winning 2/3 of the seats in parliament.


Trump: PPP has polled the 2020 Presidential race. They find Trump trailing all Democrat challengers: Trump 39% to Biden 54%; Trump 39% to Sanders 52%; Trump 42% to Warren 49%; Trump 40% to Booker 45%; Trump 40% to Harris 41% and Trump 40% to Zuckerberg 40%. Sadly PPP did not test the man most likely to be Trump’s 2020 Democratic opponent so we don’t know how Kanye West would fare vs Trump if the election was held today. Please remember this is a PPP poll and they gave Democrats an 11-point advantage in partisan registration so salt to taste.

Hillary: The one Democrat who is still more unpopular that Donald Trump is Hillary Clinton. According the the latest Bloomberg National Poll Hillary Clinton has a 39% approval rating which is 2 points lower than the 41% they had President Trump at.


Ratings: Morning Consult is out with their Governor’s ratings. Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker (R) is America’s most popular Governor with a 71% approval rating. He is followed by Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan who sports a 68% approval rating. Newly installed Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey has a 64% approval rating. On the other end of the spectrum is America’s favorite beach comer Chris Christie who’s approval rating seems to have improved to 25%.

MI-Gov: Ambulance chaser Mark Bernstein (D) will not run for Michigan governor and urged Democrats to unite behind former state Senate Minority Leader Gretchen Whitmer’s campaign. Bernstein, who is independently wealthy and well known from his “Call Sam” TV ads, was being recruited by some Democrats to run for Governor. 1998 Democratic gubernatorial nominee Geoffrey Fieger is still considering another run for Governor and we here at RRH hope that the Democrats will unite around him.

NY-Gov: Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) has $25.7 million in his campaign account for his 2018 re-election effort. Cuomo raised $5.1 million during the latest filing period between January and mid-July. He spent $1.35 million over that period. But while Cuomo’s cash on hand his going up his poll numbers are going down. Last week’s  Quinnipiac University poll showed that Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s poll numbers has plummeted over the last two months. Cuomo’s job performance numbers dropped to a negative 43-55 rating, down from 51-46 in May. Cuomo’s re-elect numbers dropped from 53% in May to 46% now. Cuomo’s drop  in the polls has largely been driven by downstate voters as the Summer of Hell on NYC transit continues to get worst. Gov. Cuomo runs the MTA and voters are starting to blame him for the problems with New York City’s mass transit system.

OH-Gov: It looks like Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Head Richard Cordray (D) might enter the race for governor. His term at the CFPB does not end until July of 2018 and there is some speculation that he might announce his candidacy for governor in September. On the one hand it would be great to get the regulation loving progressive Cordray the heck out of CFPB as soon as possible, on the other he could be the best candidate the Democrats could get for Ohio governor. As of now, the Democratic candidates for governor include former Rep. Betty Sutton , former State Rep. Connie Pillich, State Sen. Joe Schiavone, and Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley.

TX-Gov: Former LGBT “International Mr. Leather” Jeffrey Payne (D) has launched his campaign for Governor vs Gov. Greg Abbott (R). RRH rates TX-Gov as Safe R.


AL-Sen: Hoover businessman Dom Gentile (R) ended his campaign for Senate and endorsed Rep. Mo Brooks (R). Gentile’s wife has been diagnosed with breast cancer and he wants to spend more time with her. On the Democrat side Vietnam veteran Brian McGee ended his campaign as well and endorsed former US Attorney Doug Jones.

CA-Sen: If transgender former Olympian Caitlyn Jenner runs for US Senate, Jenner will have the backing Michael Jackson’s daughter Paris Jackson. Jenner’s campaign could be a very unusual one in which Jenner puts together an unusual coalition of support.

MI-Sen: “I believe if you work your butt off and pay taxes, you should be able to easily understand and navigate the laws, tax codes, health care and anything else the government puts in place that affects us all”. This is a platform and a principal that all Republicans should be running and governing on. The fact that Kid Rock is the only one talking about this tells you all you need to know about the current state of American politics and society.

MI-Sen: Detroit businessman, West Point Graduate and Iraq war veteran John James has filed to run for U.S. Senate and has released THIS web video. But since John James was never married to Pamela Anderson no one really seems to care.

MO-Sen: Sources say Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley (R) is expected to start an exploratory committee to run for US Senate vs Sen. Claire McCaskill. Hawley would be the GOP’s marque recruit to run for this Senate seat and leads McCaskill in the last two publicly released polls.


CA-48: Nestle executive Michael Kotick (D) will run for Congress against Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R) next year. The 33 year old Kotick seems like a bit of a some dude and he will join a half a dozen other candidates who have announced they want to challenge Rohrabacher.

MI-6: Another candidate has entered the race for Democratic nomination for the right to lose to face Kate Upton’s uncle Rep. Fred Upton (R). Dr. Matt Longjohn will join Paul Clements, David Benac, Rich Eichholz and Eponine Garrod in seeking the Democrat nomination. Upton beat Clements by 22 points in 2016 and 15.5 points in 2014.

NJ-5: Former Bogota Mayor Steve Lonegan (R) is being floated as a possible challenger to freshman Democrat Rep. Josh Gottheimer. Lonegan, who is legally blind, gained some fame for his role in the 2003 documentary Anytown USA. Since then Lonegan has lost two GOP primaries for New Jersey Governor, the 2013 Senate special election to Corey Booker and the 2014 GOP primary in the south Jersey based NJ-3. Lonegan is a movement conservative and was an early endorser of Ted Cruz’s 2016 presidential campaign.

UT-3: The air wars are starting for this August 15th GOP special election primary. Former Provo Mayor John Curtis (R) released THIS ad of him riding a motorcycle and shooting a hand gun while Chris Herrod (R) has THIS ad attacking chameleons and bragging about his time in Russia. Tanner Ainge (R) intends to release his first ads soon.

State, Local & Other:

MI-Redistricting: A partisan Democrat group masquerading as a good government group called “Voters Not Politicians ” is trying to get a redistricting constitutional amendment on the 2018 Michigan ballot. The groups proposal would establish a 13-member independent citizens commission on which so called “independent voters” would have five members, and the two major parties would each have four. Instead of focusing on non-partisan immovable factors like county lines and other municipal boundaries when drawing districts the new commission would seek to create districts that are politically competitive by gerrymandering district lines across municipal boundaries to achieve a partisan balance different than the ones that naturally occur.

NYC-Mayor: Mayor Bill deBlasio (D) reported raising $428,473 for his re-election bid during the most recent campaign-finance filing period, expanding his cash-on-hand to $2.5 million and his total fund-raising count to $4.9 million. New York City taxpayers will give the Mayor another $536,000 in city matching funds because paying for Bill deBlasio’s campaign TV ads is a much bigger priority for the City than fixing the damn subways. Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis, the presumptive Republican nominee, raised nearly $250,000 for the most recent filing period and spent $74,097 during that time. She’s eligible for $134,804 in matching funds and has raised a total of more than $344,000.

NY-Corruption: Former New York State Senate Majority Leader and convicted felon (or did I repeat myself) Dean Skelos (R) still has over $843,301 left in his campaign account which he can use to pay for lawyers to appeal his federal corruption conviction. Former New York Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver (D) recently had his corruption conviction overturned and Skelos is hoping to have same luck. In all Skelos has spent more than $1.6 million in campaign contributions on his legal defense.

NY-Corruption: NYC Councilman Ruben Willis (D) flew threw a tantrum during his corruption trial. Willis isn’t a rookie to legal proceedings. When he was elected to the New York City Council he had two arrest warrants out on him for crimes he committed in the 1990s.

Political Roundup for April 25th, 2017


Abortion: Tom Perez, newly-elected head of the DNC, has declared that Democrats are completely Pro-Choice and that the DNC will not support insufficient Pro-Choice candidates. Naturally, this has caused quite a bit of controversy given that Abortion cuts across political lines far more than you would expect (something like 25% of the Democrat’s voters are Pro-Life, and something similar for the GOP and Pro-Choice), and Nonwhite Democrats in particular are far less likely to support Abortion than White ones. While this probably won’t change many minds, it is a nice reminder of the state of chaos the Democrats are in post-Clintonpocalypse, and a marked departure from the Democrat’s famous 50-state strategy that won them the House in 2006.

Evan McMullin: The former Independent Conservative Presidential candidate is going to be running for . . . something. He hasn’t told us yet, and in fact I’m not sure he knows yet. McMullin probably needs to find some way to get donors to back him to help pay off his staggering debt from his presidential campaign, but the polls so far have him doing remarkably well in Utah. Honestly, I think we can probably cross Texas off as the Senate seat the Democrats need to win next year to flip the Senate, as there’s probably a better chance they pick up 2 in 2018 and McMullin beats Hatch to give the Democrats a 50-49 majority in the body.

Taxes: Trump’s big tax announcement coming Wednesday is apparently not going to be a finalized proposal, which isn’t coming until June. Given how much we mucked up Healthcare, I’d prefer going nice and slow and making sure everyone knows what we’re doing as opposed to the make-it-up-as-we-go-along of the AHCA.

Trump: Despite all the wailing of the media establishment, Trump voters are sticking with their guy. Only 2% regret their decision, and 96% say it was the right thing to do. People may not like Trump, but the still consider him preferable to the status quo, which is probably going to be the story of his Presidency.


GA-6: Nate Cohn has notice an unexpected trend here—Trump actually did reasonably well with the voters who were registered in the district before mid-2015, but got walloped with those who registered since then. He predicts Trump would have won this seat by 10.5% had he been facing the 2012 electorate. There are two ways to read this—the first is that the Atlanta Suburbs are exploding with new people, and once the 2020 census comes around we’re all going to be amazed at the fact that this was once a GOP district based on the demographics, or Trump brought a whole bunch of reluctant Dem voters out of the woodwork . . .but not quite enough for him to lose.

MI-1: The Democrats have a candidate for this seat, and this one is actually a Yooper! Dwight Brady, a professor at NMU, has announced he is running for this seat, which absolutely galloped towards Trump last year. No word on whether or not he’s sufficiently Pro-Choice to receive DNC funding yet.

NJ-5: This seat, which is the latest in the Republicans-should-never-have-lost-it-but-did-with-a-knucklehead-incumbent tradition of seats, is apparently going to see a major GOP primary for the right to take on freshmen incumbent Josh Gottheimer (D) in this Northern-Jersey seat. The candidates are State Committee Chairman Sam Raia and Bergen fundraiser Chuck Shotmeyer. Expect this to be a big $ affair, as this is the closest seat to Wall Street that can realistically elect a Republican.

NY-24: John Katko, 2-time winner of the “How on earth do you win by that much?” award for Congressional overperformance, has shot down rumors that he was planning to run for New York Attorney General. This is good for us, as he is currently tying down a light-blue Upstate seat that would be tough to defend in a Trump midterm.

PA-Sen: Jeff Bartos, a Republican from Lower Merion, has announced he is running for Senate against Dem incumbent Bob Casey Jr. Bartos is an interesting pick, given that he’s from one of the bluest parts of the state and been a Democrat supporter and donor as recently as 2012, and is running very much in the Fiscon mold in a Republican party this is clearly moving in the other direction. Besides, who’s ever heard of a real estate mogul from a super-blue upscale area who has a history of donating to and supporting Democrats winning Pennsylvania as a Republican? Can’t be done I tell you!

State & Local:

CO-Gov: Jared Polis, the 5-term Democrat from Boulder, is thinking about running for Governor. Polis, who is probably one of the nicest members of Congress and who has a history of pushing an unorthodox form of upscale Liberalism, would be a strong contender for Governor of Colorado, but he faces the obvious challenge of fellow Dem rep Ed Perlmutter, who has already announced and who is far closer to Generic D. If he does pull the trigger, expect the Teacher’s Unions to carpet-bomb his candidacy back to the stone age over his strong support of school choice.

MA-Gov: Former Democratic Lt. Gov candidate Robert Massie has announced he is running for Governor of the Bay State. Massie has a long history as a progressive activist in Massachusetts, but is probably most famous for being on the same ticket as Mark Roosevelt’s 1994 blowout loss to Bill Weld. Considering he is now running against an uber-popular moderate Republican incumbent Governor, he might be interested in repeating history. Let’s see if he can lose Boston to a Republican again!

MI-Gov: Lt. Governor Brian Calley has released a new soft-spoken ad where he talks about his daughter, and hinted at a major announcement late next month. The smart money’s on a run for Governor, though I guess he could be aiming to take on Stabenow for Senate as well, since Michigan is the only Trump state in the country without at least one Republican Senator.

NH-State-House: A New Hampshire State Rep has switched her party from the Democrats to the GOP. I’m sure her ~150 constituents are heartbroken.

VA-Gov: Elizabeth Warren has endorsed Tom Perriello for Governor, continuing the trend of the Democrat’s Left wing jumping behind Perriello as opposed to the more moderate and established Lt. Governor Ralph Northam. This race is shaping up to be the first conflict in the Democrat’s looming ideological battle, and will be interesting to watch to see if the normally well-disciplined Democrats are still willing to vote for their establishment-backed candidate over the Bold Progressive.


France-1: Here’s a nice interactive map of the 2017 1st round French election results.

France-2: Le Pen has made the startling and unexpected announcement that she is stepping down as leader of the Front National ahead of the May runoff election. Nominally this is to let her focus more on competing for the runoff, but might also be an attempt to distance herself from the incredible baggage associated with the FN name and try to give her candidacy a more independent-oriented flavor like Macron has done.

UK-1: UK pollsters have finally found a demographic that is supporting Labor over the Tories! Unfortunately for Corbyn, that demographic is seats that Labor won by more than 15% in 2015 . . .and they’re only up 11 points there. The same poll has Labor seats that were closer than 15% voting for the Tories by 17 points. Corbyn is going to have to pull off one hell of a miracle if he wants to avoid going down in history as the worst leader the Labor party has had since Ramsay MacDonald.

UK-2: A poll of Wales has come out, and it shows the Tories with a 10-point lead there, even though the Tories have literally never held the most seats in Wales since the founding of the Liberal Party in the mid-19th century. If this holds, it will probably result in the Tories taking a healthy majority of Wales’s 40 seats, and probably wiping Labor out of everything outside its ancestral home in the Welsh Coal Fields north of Cardiff.

Political Roundup for March 1, 2017

Last night in Aurora, IL, city councilman Richard Irvin (R), a moderate conservative, and mayoral staffer Rick Guzman (D), a moderate liberal, surprisingly advanced with 31% and 28% respectively, boxing out the heavily favored Madigan-backed State Rep. Linda Chapa-LaVia (D). Guzman probably enters the general (in five weeks) as a slight front-runner based on the liberal lean of the city but Irvin’s strong showing means he should not be counted out. In Connecticut both sides held all their seats, leaving the Senate tied 18-18, though Democrats did cut SD-32 down to about a 10 point margin from a 30+ point loss last fall.

President & National:

Quasi-SOTU: Overall Trump’s speech last night is getting good reviews.

Interior, MT-AL: Rep. Ryan Zinke (R) is scheduled to be confirmed at 10:30 this morning as Interior Secretary, which means that the MT-AL special election will be either on 5/30 or (more likely) 6/6. Ex-State Rep. Ed Walker (R) also joined the field to succeed Zinke yesterday; he and half a dozen other Republicans look like underdogs at the convention to 2016 gubernatorial nominee Greg Gianforte (R).

State, UT-Sen: Former Utah Gov. and 2012 presidential candidate Jon Huntsman (R/I?) is in talks to take the #2 job in the State Department, which would presumably end his consideration of an Indie run for the seat of Sen. Orrin Hatch (R) in 2018. Hatch has indicated he will retire but may be attempting to walk back those plans.


CT-Gov: State Sen. Toni Boucher (R) is the latest Republican to consider a run for Governor. Three Republicans, Danbury Mayor Mark Boughton (R), Shelton Mayor Mark Lauretti (R), and State Rep. Pradad Srinivasan (R), are already in the race, while many others are considering. Extremely unpopular Gov. Dan Malloy (D) says he will decide on whether to seek a third term after the budget is completed this spring.

FL-Gov: That was fast. Barely a week after first acknowledging he was considering the race, Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum (D) has become the first Democrat to officially enter the race. Gillum will likely be the only major black candidate in the primary, but he may be hurt by hailing from the same place as a likely rival, ex-Rep. Gwen Graham (D). Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn (D), Miami Beach Mayor Phillip Levine (D), and prominent trial Lawyer John Morgan (D) are also considered possible D candidates. Agriculture commissioner Adam Putnam (R) is likely the front-runner for the GOP nod.

ID-Gov: Developer Tommy Ahlquist (R) has become the third Republican in this race. A former physician, Ahlquist is active in the LDS church and seems somewhat moderate. He joins LG Brad Little (R), who has the support of the Chamber-of-Commerce oriented faction of retiring Gov. Butch Otter (R), and State Sen. Russ Fulcher (R), who is alligned with the state’s more antiestablishment/libertarian conservative Republican faction, in the race.

MD-Gov: Former NAACP president Benjamin Todd Jealous (D) is considering a run for Governor of Maryland. Jealous considered runs for the Senate and Mayor of Baltimore last cycle but did not pull the trigger. As an African-American from Baltimore, Jealous could have a built-in geo-cultural base in a Dem primary. Two other major Democrats, Baltimore CE Kevin Kamenetz (D) and Prince George’s CE Rushern Baker (D), as well as some lesser-known candidates like State Rep. Maggie McIntosh (D), are considered likely to run. Gov. Larry Hogan (R) is broadly popular but no Democrat can be counted out in a state as blue as Maryland.

NM-Gov: EMILY’s List has made its first endorsement of the 2018 cycle, backing Rep. Michelle Lujan-Grisham’s (D) bid for Governor. Lujan-Grisham will likely face a crowded primary against several potential candidates, including AG Hector Balderas (D) and others, and the endorsement could be quite helpful.

OH-Gov: Rep. Tim Ryan (D) announced yesterday that he would not run for Governor, which seems to have opened up the floodgates among Democrats who were waiting on the potential field-clearer’s decision. State Sen. Joe Schiavoni (D) will declare his candidacy today, while ex-Rep. Betty Sutton (D) says she will decide on a bid by next week. Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley (D), State Supreme Court Justice Bill O’Neill (D), ex-State Rep. Connie Pillich (D), ex-Youngstown Mayor Jay Williams (D), and others have also been considering the race. Republicans look headed for a titanic 4-way primary betweeen LG Mary Taylor (R), AG Mike DeWine (R), SoS Jon Husted (R), and Rep. Jim Renacci (R).

OK-Gov: Ex-State Sen. and 2014 US Senate nominee Connie Johnson (D) will run for Governor. Johnson, a liberal who represented a deep-blue Oklahoma City district and couldn’t win the primary without a runoff against a total Some Dude, seems unlikely to be a formidable candidate, and Democrats may be looking for a more credible option. No other candidates have entered this race, but prosecutor and 2002 Indie candidate Gary Richardson (R) is exploring. LG Todd Lamb (R) is likely the front-runner in the GOP primary and general.

TN-Gov: Developer and 2015 Nashville Mayoral candidate Bill Freeman (D) will not run for Governor, but he is not impressed with the Democrat already in the race, ex-Nashville Mayor Karl Dean (D). Freeman has pre-emptively endorsed State Rep. Craig Fitzhugh (D), who says he is leaning toward a run. Fitzhugh, the State House minority leader from a rural area in West Tennessee, would likely run to Dean’s left in a hypothetical primary. State Sen. Mark Green (R) is the only Republican in the race but many others are considering.


VA-Sen: Perennial candidate Jim Gilmore (R), who served as Governor in the late 90s before a string of increasingly embarrassing losses, is considering a run for the seat of Sen. Tim Kaine (D) in 2018; hopefully if he enters he gets more than 12 votes.

KS-2: We have our first candidate into the race for the seat of Rep. Lynn Jenkins (R), who has already announced her 2018 retirement. Basehor (pop. 5K) councilman Vernon Fields (R), a retired veteran and correctional officer, is in the race; it’s unclear how serious he will be. State Sen. Dennis Pyle (R) is a rumored prospect for this medium-red Topeka-based seat.

MA-8: If you’re not from Boston you might not have heard the term “moonbat” before, which we use on the site to refer to particularly obnoxious left-wingers. It’s a coinage of local talk radio host Howie Carr,  but video game developer, minor SJW celebrity, and Rep. Steven Lynch (D) primary challenger Brianna Wu (D) is giving that term a whole new meaning with her “scientific” “expertise”. Be glad she is running for Congress and not applying to be NASA director… though on second thought, maybe she can be deputized as head of the Cosmonewt program.

MN-8: 2014/16 candidate Stuart Mills (R) is keeping the door open for a third bid for this seat after coming up short twice to Rep. Rick Nolan (D). Nolan is considering a run for Governor, which would open up this Trump-carried seat as a top GOP pickup opportunity.

NJ-5: Businessman Chuck Shotmeyer (R), a major GOP donor who runs an HVAC contracting company, is the latest name to be floated as a possible challenger to Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D) in this swingy suburban seat. There has been no concrete word on Shotmeyer’s plans, but he seems well-connected enough to be a major contender if he enters.

State Races:

PA-LG: Former state revenue secretary Dan Meuser (R) is considering a run for LG in this shotgun-wedding primary, where candidates run for Gov and LG separately in the primary but together in the general. Ex-State Rep. Gordon Denlinger (R) is also rumored to be considering a run.

SD-AG: 2014 Senate candidate and attorney Jason Ravnsborg (R), who came in last in the GOP primary as a Some Dude three years ago, is mounting a bid for AG in 2018. Ravnsborg seems to be more serious about his bid this time, but it’s unclear if bigger names will enter the race. The nomination for the seat of termed-out incumbent and likely gubernatorial candidate Marty Jackley (R) will be decided by convention.

WI-Supt: A liberal group is calling for an investigation of local superintendent Lowell Holtz (R) over a pretty classic amateur mistake Holtz made: sending out campaign material from a government email account. Holtz is a decided underdog to incumbent Tony Evers (D) in the election, which is in five weeks.

LA-LD-8: Robbie Gatti (R), a pro-Edwards RINO seeking a conservative State House seat in the Shreveport area, is defending his decision to appear in blackface at a costume party several years ago. saying he was “just having a good night at church” while dressed as Tiger Woods. Gatti faces three other Republicans in this special election three weeks from Saturday.

Local Elections:

NYC-Mayor: Quinnipiac shows Mayor Bill DeBlasio (D) with a middling but acceptable 50/42 approval rating and wide leads over hypothetical challengers in the D primary and general. Though his numbers aren’t strong enough to be cause for real celebration, they’re probably good enough to make this race relatively unexciting barring an Act of God Preet.

OKC-Mayor: Two candidates have entered the newly-open race for Oklahoma City Mayor next spring. State Sen. David Holt (R), a former chief of staff to retiring incumbent Mick Cornett (R), is in and looks likely to be a front-runner in the race. County commissioner Brian Maughan (R) is also in the race, while several others are considering.

Corpus Christi-Mayor: Ex-councilman Mark Scott (R) was booted off the ballot yesterday for trying to get around term limits by resigning from the council before his term ended late last year. Corpus Christi’s council term limits count against mayoral service. The decision likely leaves the May 6 mayoral special election down to just two major candidates, ex-Mayor Nelda Martinez (D) and councilman Joe McComb (R).

Political Roundup for February 22, 2017

“If I was Governor, I’d sure find better things to do with my time. Like getting Washington’s birthday and Lincoln’s birthday back to separate paid holidays. Presidents’ Day. What a rip-off.”

Last night in WI-Supt, we saw a moderate surprise as Beloit local superintendent Lowell Holtz (R), the more conservative candidate, easily bested the more moderate John Humphries (R) for the right to take on incumbent Tony Evers (D). Evers, however, cruised overall, winning 2/3 of the vote, and will likely have little trouble in the general in April barring something unexpected.


DNC Chair: NH Democratic Party Chair Ray Buckley (D) dropped his bid for DNC chair over the weekend and will back Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison (D). Buckley was considered a longer-shot to win but still had a significant base of support. His endorsement probably doesn’t give Ellison a huge advantage in his competitive fight with co-front-runner Obama Labor Secretary Tom Perez (D), but it probably does significantly hurt the chances of the third major candidate in the race, South Bend, IN Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D), who needs both Ellison and Perez to deadlock well short of a majority in order to have a shot. SC Democratic Party chair Jaime Harrison (D) is the only other candidate with any significant support, but he seems a long-shot.


MI-Sen: Buried in this Great Mentioner piece about possible challengers to Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D) is the revelation that ex-State Sen. Randy Richardville (R), who held down a swingy district at the state’s southeast corner from 2006 to 2014, is considering the race and will decide “by this summer.” Stabenow has not definitively said whether she will seek re-election, but is expected to; many other Republicans are considering the race, though Richardville seems to be the most obviously serious. One potential candidate taking herself out of the running though is termed-out SoS Ruth Johnson (R), who seems to have her eye on a safely Republican State Senate seat in her home of exurban northern Oakland County instead.

NJ-Sen: George Norcross (D), the dictator of the southern half of the state, and his brother, Rep. Donald Norcross (D), have made their decision on whether to play nice with indicted Sen. Bob Menendez (D) or seek to push him out the door, and they’ve chosen the former. La Cosa Norcross will host a fundraiser for Menendez next month, which probably closes the door on Don running against him. It seems they are betting on Menendez either going down quickly with time for Don to enter the primary, surviving his trial, or not going down until after the election, triggering a special – a combined outcome with reasonable chance to happen but still a bet that’s not without risk. It’s unclear whether the other major candidate interested in the seat, Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop (D), will make the same calculation. Menendez limping through the primary to a general election with a cloud over his head is probably the only chance Republicans have to make a serious play for this seat, but no Republicans have as yet indicated interest.

OH-Sen: State Sen. Matt Huffman (R) will not run for US Senate this cycle. Huffman had been mentioned as a potential more establishment-friendly alternative to the candidate already in the race to take on Sen. Sherrod Brown (D), State Treasurer and 2012 nominee Josh Mandel (R), and had apparently already secured some donor commitments. However, Mandel’s head start (he has been more or less running continuously since 2015) could pose a daunting obstacle to someone with little name rec. Rep. Pat Tiberi (R) is the only other major candidate thought to be considering the race.

WI-Sen: On the heels of Rep. Sean Duffy’s (R) announcement that he will not run for the Senate, State Sen. Leah Vukmir (R) is considering a run. Vukmir has represented a district in deep-red Waukesha County for over a decade, which could give her a geographic base. With the only field-clearer (Duffy) out of the picture, the GOP primary to taken on Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D) is expected to be very crowded.


AL-Gov: Former Auburn Football Coach Tommy Tuberville (R) is considering a run for Governor. Tuberville, who has lived in Texas and Ohio since leaving Auburn in 2008, could have a dedicated base of fans in the state where College Football is perhaps taken most seriously of all – but coming from the state’s second most popular school (and arch-rival of its most popular) could be a handicap. Many other Republicans are considering the race, most notably LG Kay Ivey (R), Rep. Bradley Byrne (R), State Sens. Del Marsh (R) and Cam Ward (R), and ex-State Supreme Court Justice and 2010 candidate Roy Moore (R). Ex-State Supreme Court Justice Sue Bell-Cobb (D) and State Rep. Craig Ford (D) are considering runs on the Dem side.

AR-Gov: Country radio host Bobby Bones (D/I?) had dinner with Gov. Asa Hutchinson (R) on Monday. It’s unclear what the conversation entailed; Bones has been considering a challenge to Hutchinson, but it’s not clear how serious he is about such a bid, as his show is based out of Nashville, TN. Anyone will likely face a very uphill battle against the popular incumbent.

CO-Gov: Ex-State Rep. Victor Mitchell (R), who served a term in the legislature a decade ago and has since become a prominent businessman and activist, will run for Governor and says he will self-fund $3M. Michell is the first GOP candidate to declare; State Sen. Mike Johnston (D) is in on the Democratic side and a large number of others from both parties are considering this race. Both primary fields are expected to be crowded.

FL-Gov: Two new candidates are considering this race on the Dem side, though neither sounds particularly serious about it. Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum (D) told Ebony that he is considering “what 2018 looks like” while self-funding 2010 Senate candidate Jeff Greene has been “talking to consultants”. Democrats’ major options here still look like ex-Rep. Gwen Graham (D), Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn (D), and prominent trial lawyer John Morgan (D), though many others have expressed at least some interest. Ag Commissioner Adam Putnam (R) is the front-runner for the GOP nod.

KS-Gov: Ex-Wichita Mayor Carl Brewer (D) has entered the race, giving Democrats a top-tier candidate here. Though Kansas is deep-red, Democrats sense an opening due to the extreme unpopularity of Gov. Sam Brownback (R) and the ongoing feud between moderate and conservative Republicans. Brewer, who led the state’s largest city from 2007 to 2015, may face ex-State Rep. and 2014 nominee Paul Davis (D) in the Dem primary. SoS Kris Kobach (R), LG Jeff Colyer (R), ex-State Rep. Ed O’Malley (R), and businessman and 2010 KS-4 candidate Wink Hartman (R) are considered the most likely candidates on the GOP side.

MN-Gov: State Sen. David Osmek (R), a staunch fiscal conservative, has indicated an interest in this race. Both sides’ conventions are likely to be crowded; Osmek could face any or all of State House Speaker Kurt Daudt (R), 2014 nominee Jeff Johnson (R), State Rep. Matt Dean (R), MNGOP Chair Keith Downey (R), State Sen. Michelle Benson (R), and Hennepin County Sheriff Rich Stanek (R). On the D side, Auditor Rebecca Otto (D), St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman (D), and State Rep. Erin Murphy (D) are already in the race, while LG Tina Smith (D), AG Lori Swanson (D), and Reps. Rick Nolan (D) and Tim Walz (D) are all thought to be interested.

WI-Gov: Rep. Ron Kind (D), whose western-Wisconsin prairie-populist House seat trended hard-right in 2016, is not ruling out a run for Governor. Gov. Scott Walker (R) is widely exprected to seek a third term; Kind would likely be Democrats’ strongest prospect given his two decades representing the swingy rural west of the state. Dane CE Joe Parisi (D) and State Sens. Jennifer Shilling (D) and Kathleen Vinehout (D) are other commonly-discussed names for the D side in this race, though no one has made strong moves as of yet.


CA-34: An internal from FM3 for nonprofit exec Sara Hernandez (D) shows her in second place in this Louisiana-Rules Top Two Jungle primary, trailing State Rep. Jimmy Gomez (D) 20-9. However, there are a ton of undecideds and it’s unclear we can really say anything about the race for this deep-blue downtown LA seat from this poll besides Gomez likely being in first.

GA-6: We have a new poll from Clout Strategies (aka Wenzel) for this April Louisiana-Rules Top Two Jungle Primary. Congressional Staffer Jon Osoff (D) leads with 32, followed by ex-SoS Karen Handel (R) at 25 and no one else above 11. However, this poll has a few problems: first, it does not test the second non-Some Dude Democrat in the race, ex-State Sen. Ron Slotin (D), who has lost out on most establishment support but may draw a few points. Second, the demographics of this poll seem a bit off as it is almost entirely white and very old. So bottom line, salt to taste.

MT-AL: A group of county officials is asking the state to hold the special election to replace Rep. Ryan Zinke (R) by mail instead of through normal polling places to save money. A bill has been proposed in the State Senate and will be considered today; it would give individual counties the choice of running a standard poll or all-mail election. Assuming Zinke’s confirmation proceeds as planned a week from today, the special election is likely to be held on June 6; 2016 gubernatorial nominee Greg Gianforte (R) will likely face off with either ex-State Rep. and 2014 Senate nominee Amanda Curtis (D) or musician Rob Quist (D).

NJ-5: State Rep. Holly Schepisi (R), who was widely considered the GOP’s top choice to take on Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D), has said will likely not run for Congress this cycle (though she did leave the door open the smallest of cracks). This decision puts the GOP back to square one in this suburban seat, based in wealthy northern Bergen County, that narrowly backed Trump but trended left.

SC-1: Buried in this worthwhile longread on Rep. Mark Sanford (R) is the revelation that Ted Fienning (R), a veteran and businessman will run against him in the 2018 primary and seed his campaign with $250K of self-funding. The full article is worth a look; Sanford is certainly one of the most complex characters in DC and his willingness to cross Trump in service of fiscal conservatism could make him a key player over the next few years.

State Races:

FL-Ag Comm: State Rep. Matt Caldwell (R) of southwest Florida is planning a run for Ag Commissioner. Should he enter, he will face State Sen. Denise Grimsley (R) and former Orlando mayoral candidate Paul Paulson (R) in the primary. No Democrats have as yet declared interest in this seat.

OK-AG: Gov. Mary Fallin (R) has appointed Secretary of State (an appointed position in OK) Mike Hunter (R) as the new Attorney General, replacing EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt (R). Hunter will most likely seek a full term in 2018.

IN-Supt ’20: The Indiana Senate has killed a bill that would transform the State Superintendent from an elected office to an appointed one under the purview of the Governor. Republicans had supported the change after then-Gov. Mike Pence (R) spent much of his term fighting with then-Superintendent Glenda Ritz (D), a staunch liberal. But last year Ritz was defeated by Jennifer McCormick (R), and so some of the partisan urgency was lost. A little under half the Senate’s Republicans decided to break ranks and join with Democrats to kill the proposal.

VA-LD-28: Virginia State House Speaker Bill Howell (R) of Stafford County in the DC exurbs will retire this year after a decade and a half as Speaker. Howell turned a narrow GOP majority into a dominant 66-34 one and was at times the key Republican figure in state Government when Democrats controlled the Governorship and Senate from 2007-09 and 2013-14. Howell will likely be succeeded as Speaker by Kirk Cox (R) of suburban Richmond.

AL-Redistrict: Alabama has started redistricting to unpack some black-majority legislative districts that courts have struck down as racial gerrymanders. General consensus is that there will be little more than minor tweaks to the lines.

Local Races:

Buffalo-Mayor: Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown (D) announced his campaign for a fourth term yesterday. Brown will likely be favored as he maintains most establishment support. Brown’s major challenger is mavericky city Comptroller Mark Schroeder (D).

Cincinnati-Mayor: The field is set for the Cincinnati Mayoral race; moderate incumbent John Cranley (D) will face two more liberal candidates in city councilwoman Yvette Simpson (D) and university board member Rob Richardson (D). The California-Rules Top Two primary is on May 2.

Detroit-Mayor: Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan (D) is broadly popular, and for a time it looked like he may not draw a significant challenger, but that changed as State Sen. Coleman Young Jr. (D), son of the longtime 70s and 80s Mayor of the same name, entered the race. Young will likely run to the left of Duggan, the first white Mayor to lead Detroit since the 70s.

St. Louis-Mayor: A new Remington poll of the St. Louis Mayoral Primary in two weeks shows councilwoman Lyda Krewson (D), the most moderate and only serious white candidate, with a wide lead. Krewson takes 36% to 16% for left-wing favorite city Treasurer Tishaura Jones (D), 13% for council President Lewis Reed (D), a black establishment liberal, and 12% for left-wing councilman Antonio French (D). Councilman Jeffrey Boyd (D) brings up the rear among serious contenders with 4%.


Ecuador: The Ecuadorean Presidential election has officially been called as heading to a runoff between left-wing ex-VP Lenin Moreno and center-right banker and 2013 presidential candidate Guillermo Lasso. Though Moreno led the first round by nearly 10 points, Lasso is considered a slight favorite in the April 2 runoff.

Political Roundup for November 4th, 2016

This is the final weekend before election day, which is a good time to remind you that regardless of who wins on Tuesday we will have to spend the next four years either dealing with stories about investigation into Hillary Clinton’s negligent handling of classified government information and pay to play donations to her “charitable” Foundation or stories about women Donald Trump sexually harassed, financial fraud allegations against him and a myriad of other shady business and tax dealing he’s engaged in over the years. Good work America!


Trump: Porn watchers like Donald Trump. Trump won porn site RedTube’s presidential poll 52% to 46%. Who could have guessed that guys who like to watch p***y prefer a candidate who likes to grab p***y!

Cruz: Ted Cruz’s conscience allows him to campaign for Donald Trump in Iowa. THIS is who Ted Cruz really is.

Johnson: Reason takes a look at how Gary Johnson’s vote total will effect Libertarian Party ballot access. 0.5% of the vote will get them access in Michigan and New Mexico for 2018. 1% will get full ballot access in in Kansas, Maryland, Nevada, and Wisconsin in 2018 and 2018 and 2020 access in Oregon. In Connecticut 1% will get their Presidential candidate ballot access in 2020. 2% gets the Libertarian Party full ballot access in 2018 in Iowa. 2.5% gets full ballot access for 2018 in Oklahoma. 7,500 votes gets 2018 access in Washington D.C. 3% gets 2018 ballot access in Arkansas, Idaho, and Massachusetts. 3% would have earned the party ballot access in Ohio for 2018 and 2020 but since Johnson is listed on ballot as an Independent and not a Libertarian it is not relevant. 5% gets full ballot access for 2018 in North Dakota, Tennessee, and Texas and for 2018 and 2020 in Arizona, Louisiana, Minnesota, Nebraska, Rhode Island, and Washington state. Finally these 13 states give third parties no special ballot access benefits no matter how well their presidential candidate does; California, Delaware, Florida, Indiana, Mississippi, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, South Carolina, South Dakota, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming.


WV-Gov:  Billionaire Jim Justice’s business debts has become an issue in the gubernatorial campaign.  Republican Bill Cole continues to attack Justice’s his failure to pay contractors who did work at his Greenbrier resort.


LA-Sen: The Louisiana Senate debate featuring former former Ku Klux Klan grand wizard David Duke went exactly how you would envision any debate featuring David Duke to go as you can see HERE.

FL-Sen: Rep. Patrick Erin Murphy (D) claimed he knew nothing about the FBI investigation into an illegal straw donor scheme run by a Saudi billionaire to help his congressional campaign until The Hill Newspaper reported on it on Wednesday. Considering we knew about it and reported on this story on RRHelections back on September 8th (See Here) I would hazard a guess that Murphy is lying.

FL-Sen: The Miami Herald takes a look at the over $400,000 Ibrahim Al-Rashid, son of Saudi billionaire Nasser Al-Rashid, has given to Patrick Murphy’s campaigns over the years.

IN-Sen: Where does a former US Senator invest the millions he makes peddling his influence in Washington? If you are former Sen. Evan Bayh (D-DC) you park your money in off-shore tax shelters and “death bet” hedge funds that you spent your time in Congress criticizing. The more we learn about Evan Bayh’s finances the more we can see how completely he sold out and monetized his time in the Senate into a multi-million dollar net worth.

IN-Sen: Even when Evan Bayh (D) was “living” in Indiana and representing the state in the US Senate he was not really living there. In 2009 while he was the US Senator from Indiana Bayh billed the taxpayers more than $2,000 in travel and lodging expenses for the 14 days he was visiting the city where he supposedly lived in a $53,000 condo he owned.

MO-Sen: VoteVets out with a new $900,000 ad buy in Missouri on behalf of Democrat Jason Kander.

NH-Sen: Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R) and Gov. Maggie Hassan (D) met for their final debate on Wednesday night. Both candidates spent the debate trying to avoid any final mistakes and trading barbs about cybersecurity.

OR-Sen: Sen. Jeff Merkley(D) reads Harry Potter in his latest ad and compares Donald Trump to Voldemort.

WI-Sen: Last month the NRSC cancelled $1.1 million TV buy in support of Sen Ron Johnson (R). Yesterday, they jumped back in with a last minute $1 million TV ad buy.


CA-20: Republican Casey Lucius get the help of Travis County, TX Commissioner Gerald Daugherty in her latest ad which features both of them and their spouses in a support group for policy-wonk spouses.

FL-13: Charlie Crist’s (R, I, D) campaign continues to rack up political contribution from lobbyist and Morgan & Morgan employees. Crist has been a subsidiary of Morgan & Morgan since the day his Senate campaign ended in flames.

IA-1: Ending Spending is up with a late $300,000 buy on behalf of freshman Rep. Rod Blum (R) in this D+5 district.

NJ-5: While Democrats have poured money into this district attacking Rep. Scott Garrett, the NRCC and Congressional Leadership Fund haven’t spent a penny trying to defend Garrett. The GOP leadership have hung him out to dry and their inaction has left Garrett on his own and made things a lot more difficult for him in what should be a fairly safe R+4 district.

NH-1: Progressive independent candidate Shawn O’Connor has a new ad up attacking fellow Democrat Shea-Porter for taking money from lobbyist and pro-Iranian PACs.

NV-3: According to Jon Ralston Democrats are leading the early vote by 6,800 in this open PVI-Even district. The vote breaks down 41-37 Democrats which is 2 points above registration.  Turnout is at 46 percent here, which means almost 60 percent of the district already has voted. This is bad news for Republican Danny Tarkanian.

NV-4: Unlike 2012 there seems to be strong turnout in the Clark portion of this D+ 4 district (Clark is 85 percent of district). Democrats have a raw vote lead in Clark of around 19,000. That’s 47-33, or a point below registration. Turnout is 43 percent there.

NY-19: Sen. Bernie Sanders released a last minute fundraising email on behalf of fellow Vermont socialist Zephyr Teachout (D).

NY-22: Independent third party candidate Martin Babinec is trying to tie himself to local Republican state Senators by sending out a mailing featuring them without their consent. Because of New York’s fusion voting Babinic is sharing the Reform Party ballot line with them in November. All three state Senators are backing Republican Assemblywoman Claudia Tenney for this open R+3 seat.

State, Local & Other:

NV-Early Voting: Jon Ralston says the early voting numbers are looking bad for the GOP. They are closer to the Democrat victories in 2012 than the GOP sweep of 2014.

WATN: Anthony Weiner checked himself into cybersex addiction rehab. My guess is this was done on the advice of counsel.

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