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Political Roundup for November 22, 2017

Happy Thanksgiving and safe travels. Roundups will resume next Monday; we will have open threads throughout the weekend and a policy thread tomorrow.


Trump: In his latest effort to flush money down the toilet Billionaire Tom Steyer’s $20 million dollars anti Donald Trump campaign will put up large “Impeach President Donald Trump” billboards in Times Square in the key swing state of New York. Steyer would probably have a higher probability of success if he spent that $20 million on building a time machine so he could travel back in time and pay Hillary Clinton to actually campaign in Wisconsin, Michigan and rural Pennsylvania.


ME-Gov: One day after we reported Maine businessman Shawn Moody (R) was contemplating a run for governor, Moody has made it official and thrown his hat in the ring. Moody ran for governor as an independent in 2010 and took about 5% of the vote.

MI-Gov: Heir Force cadet Andy Levin (D) had been toying with the idea of running for governor but has decided not to run. Our theory was Andy was just floating his name for Governor to raise his profile enough to make it seem less nepotistic when he eventually tries to take over his father’s House seat which he pointedly did not rule out a run for if his Dad, Rep. Sandy Levin (D), retires.


AL-Sen: Doug Jones (D) is on the air with a new ad that quotes Ivanka Trump, Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Sen. Richard Shelby (R) condemning Roy Moore (R-Gadsden mall). Jones should have plenty of money to put ads like this on the air as he reportedly has been raising about $250,000 a day since the allegations about Moore came out.

AL-Sen: It looks like the GOP is throwing in the towel on finding a write-in candidate to run in Alabama. Although we here at RRH are still holding out hope Nick Saban decides to make a go of it! The acceptable of Roy Moore as our candidate means the GOP is throwing in the towel on the AL-Sen election and resigned to supporting an alleged child molester and as a result having a Democrat represent Alabama in the US Senate until Jan 2021. With this in mind President Donald Trump threw some support Roy Moore’s way by saying “we don’t need a liberal Democrat in that seat,” and that Moore “totally denies” the allegations of molesting teenage girls when he was in his 30s. Although it might have been more presidential if Trump simply quoted JFK and said “Sometimes party loyalty asks too much”.


NJ-11: Bloomfield Mayor Mike Venezia (D) is taking a “hard look” at challenging Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen (R) in this R+3 district. Currently Navy helicopter pilot Mikie Sherrill, Passaic County Freeholder John Bartlett and counselor Tamara Harris are angling for the Democrat nomination. Venzia, a machine Democrat, could be a step up in terms of quality for the Democrats.

OH-16: State Rep. Christina Hagan (R) has landed the endorsement of former Trump aide Sebastian Gorka in her race for the open R+8 seat Rep. Jim Renacci (R) is vacating to run for Governor. The 28 year old Hagan has been a member of the Ohio House of Representatives since she was appointed to the seat her father once held when she was 22 years old and in college. Most of the local GOP establishment is backing former NFL wide receiver Anthony Gonzalez in the GOP primary.

PA-1: Because not every scandal can be about sex, Rep. Robert Brady (D) is now confirmed to be under FBI investigation for false statements, conspiracy and campaign fraud for allegedly bribing a potential Democrat primary challenger $90,000 to drop out.

TX-23: Emily’s List is backing Gina Ortiz Jones in the Democrat primary over Castro brother BFF Jay Hulings for the right to face two term Rep. Will Hurd (R) in this R+1 seat. Hopefully this Democrat primary will be get very expensive and very nasty.

VA-6: Rockingham County Clerk of Court Chaz Haywood (R) announced he is running for this open R+13 seat of retiring Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R). Haywood joins state Rep. Ben Cline and Cynthia Dunbar in seeking the GOP nomination.

State, Local & Other:

PA-Lt Gov: Because a person would have to be crazy to give up a free mansion full of state employees to verbally abuse, Lt. Gov. Mike Stack III (D) has announced his intention to run for re-election. Stack, the scandal plagued scion of a Northeast Philadelphia political family, will face small town trust fund Mayor John Fetterman (D) in the Democrat primary.

CT-Lt-Gov: New Fairfield (pop. 14k) Mayor Susan Chapman (R) is considering a run for Lt. Governor in the shotgun-wedding primary. State Sen Joe Markey (R) is already running for the GOP nomination.

Atlanta, GA- Mayor: Council Pres. Caesar Mitchell (D) is endorsing Mary Norwood (I) over Keisha Lance-Bottoms (D). This is the first major endorsement for Norwood, who is looking like the underdog as the Democrat establishment consolidates their support around Keisha Lance-Bottoms.

NYC-Mayor: Because it is never too soon to start the Wall Street Journal looks at the early jockeying for the 2021 New York City mayoral race.

Political Roundup for November 15, 2017

Last night, Tim Keller (D) won easily in Albuquerque, Democrats picked up the deep-red OK-SD-37 while the GOP held two other seats, and Ashley Trantham (R) won SC-LD-28 outright while SC-LD-99 will head to a runoff in two weeks.

As Roy Moore is plotting how to go after younger women with this level of media scrutiny to take Australia legalizing gay marriage off his mind, it is time for today’s political roundup:

Alabama Senate

FOX 10 News / Strategy Research:  The latest poll finds that Alabama voters have been mildly impacted by finding out that their “divine” hero former state Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore (R-Pedophile) maintains a 49-43 lead over former US Attorney Doug Jones (D-Lucky).  We can only hope that the poll is overestimating Moore’s support and underestimating the decency of Alabama voters.

RNC:  The RNC cut “Dirty Roy” off by terminating its joint fundraising agreement.  The RNC is evaluating what to do to salvage this race.

Trump:  President Trump (Himself) faces an interesting dilemma regarding Dirty Roy.  Does he push Attorney General Jeff Sessions (R) to run as a write-in?  Does he even get involved?

Sessions:  Speaking of Trump’s Attorney General (are they on good or bad terms?), Sessions says he has no reason to doubt Dirty Roy’s accusers.

Senate:  Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R) said that if Alabama decides to send Dirty Roy to Washington the Senate will promptly expel Dirty Roy.  Arguably expelling Alabama from the Union should be up for debate if they send Dirty Roy to Washington.


IN-Sen:  Businessman Terry Henderson (R) quit the Republican primary for US Senate.  Henderson deserves props for being honesty and admitting he could not raise money.

OH-16:  State Representative Tom Patton (RINO) dropped out of the race to replace Representative John Renacci (R), whose running for Governor.  Patton says he is dropping out due to a family emergency.

NJ-Sen:  The jury in the trial of Senator Robert Menendez (D) for corruption is deadlocked.  It is not clear if the jury is really deadlocked or just trying to drag this out as long as possible to stop Governor Chris Christie (R) from appointing a replacement.

States / International

Australia:  Over 60% of Australians who took part in a non-binding survey voted for same-sex marriage.   Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull (Coalition), who called the survey to pressure conservatives in the Coalition, said that same sex marriage will be legalized by Christmas.  Almost 80 percent of voters took part including the Prime Minister, who voted YES.

PA-Gov:  State House Speaker Mike Turzai (R) confirmed he will run against Governor Tom Wolf (D).  Turzai’s entry into the race is a bit of a surprise at this point.  State Senator Scott Wagner (R), the de facto leader of Senate Republicans, has been viewed as the only serious candidate.  Turzai’s entry will complicate Wagner’s run except to the extent Turzai is splitting the vote with 2 other candidates from Allegheny County, consultant Paul Mango and attorney Laura Ellsworth.

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 September 5, 2017

First off, there is a single legislative special today. SC-LD-113 is a D+19 (2016) seat covering a thin stripe of racially-mixed lower-middle-class suburbs of Charleston from North Charleston to Summerville. Trial lawyer Marvin Pendarvis (D), who is a close confidante of the area’s state Senator, looks like the clear favorite in the primary with a chance to win outright, but he also faces school board member Chris Collins (D) and marketing consultant Angela Hanyak (D), each of whom could potentially make a runoff. Two Republicans are facing off for the right to lose.


AL-Sen: This story looks at how ex-US Attorney Doug Jones (D) is not getting much national support for his Senate run in December, unlike several other Dem special election candidates from earlier this year. It seems in part due to Jones being more conscious of his red state and attempting to run as a conservative Democrat rather than a vanguard of the #resistance. As the runoff between appointed incumbent Luther Strange (R) and ex-State Supreme Court Justice Roy Moore (R) consumes most of the oxygen for this month, Jones is attempting to fly under the radar and emerge as an acceptable alternative to the GOP nominee. Regardless of Jones’s national support or lack thereof, his odds are still long in the deep-red state.

More AL-Sen: Moore had an embarrassing moment late last week in which he appeared to have no idea what the DACA program was. It’s too early to say if this gaffe will have resonance but it’s certainly not a positive for him so close to the runoff.

AZ-Sen: Rep. Kyrsten Sinema (D) is still “seriously considering” a run for Senate. Sinema is widely expected to run as she is considered to be Dems’ strongest possible recuit against vulnerable Sen. Jeff Flake (R). Ex-State Sen. Kelli Ward (R) is running against Flake in the primary.

IN-Sen: Another story is out corroborating allegations that Rep. Todd Rokita (R) is a bad boss to his staffers. The story has several nuggets of Rokita generally being a, for lack of a better word, jerk. For example, “a worker was booted from a staff meeting and instructed to clean Rokita’s vehicle, which included scrubbing the carpets” because a volunteer driver had BO. Rokita is facing fellow Rep. Luke Messer (R) in what is expected to be a tough primary for the right to take on Sen. Joe Donnelly (D).

MO-Sen: A new MOScout poll has AG Josh Hawley (R) leading incumbent Sen. Claire McCaskill (D) 50-45. Hawley, who is in his first term as AG, is widely expected to run against McCaskill after being recruited by the entire GOP establishment.


HI-Gov: State Rep. Bob McDermott (R) has abruptly dropped out of the race for Governor after learning that another Republican is planning to run. Rumors are that candidate is State Rep. Andria Tupola (R), a moderate who, unlike the staunchly socially conservative McDermott, could be a credible general election candidate. Separately this weekend, Rep. Colleen Hanabusa (D) surprisingly announced her intent to primary Gov. David Ige (D); click for our full recap on the decision and Great Mentioner for the now-open HI-1.

IL-Gov: State Sen. Daniel Biss (D) has lost an endorsement from Rep. Brad Schneider (D) with his choice of LG running mate, Chicago councilman Carlos Ramirez-Rosa (D). Ramirez-Rosa, 28, is a supporter of the anti-Israel BDS movement. Biss is facing businessmen J.B. Pritzker (D) and Chris Kennedy (D), Chicago councilman Ameya Pawar (D), state Rep. Scott Drury (D), and local superintendent Bob Daiber (D) in the primary. Pritzker is generally considered the front-runner to take on Gov. Bruce Rauner (R).

ME-Gov: Jon Jenkins (I), who served as Mayor of both Lewiston and Auburn, as well as a term in the State Senate in the 90s, is considering an Indie bid. Jenkins would be the third credible Indie contender in this race, joining appointed State Treasurer Terry Hayes (I) and comedian Karmo Sanders (I). Dems and Republicans look set to have crowded primary fields as well, with ex-Gov. John Baldacci (D) and Sen. Susan Collins (R) among the highest-profile candidates considering.

MN-Gov: Ramsey County commissioner Blake Huffman (R) has dropped out of the race for Governor. 2014 nominee and Hennepin County Commissioner Jeff Johnson (R), State Sen. David Osmek (R), State Rep. Matt Dean (R), and ex-State Rep. and MNGOP chair Keith Downey (R) remain in the GOP convention race, with several others, most notably State House Speaker Kurt Daudt (R), considering. Democrats have a crowded field as well.

OH-Gov: Speculation is growing that Consumer Financial Protection Bureau director Richard Cordray (D) will step down to enter the race for Ohio Governor. Cordray, a former AG and State Treasurer, would likely become the front-runner for the Democratic nomination over the current crowded field of “B” and “C” listers. Ex-Rep. Betty Sutton (D), Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley (D), State Sen. Joe Schiavoni (D), and ex-State Rep. and 2014 State Treasurer nominee Connie Pillich (D) are in the Dem race already. Four Republicans are also running.

WI-Gov: Nonprofit exec Mike McCabe (D) has entered the race for Governor. State Superintendent Tony Evers (D) is the front-runner for the nomination to take on Gov. Scott Walker (R), but State Rep. Dana Wachs (D) and businessman Andy Gronik (D) are also in the race.

KY-Gov ’19: Ex-State House Speaker and AG Greg Stumbo (D) is considering a run for Governor in 2019. Stumbo is a liberal who is known as a bare-knuckled political brawler but has proven himself convtroversial in his red state. AG Andy Beshear (D) is also thought to be considering a run; the primary winner will face incumbent Gov. Matt Bevin (R) in the general.


KS-2: Brownback admin official Antonio Soave (R), a former Italian semi-professional soccer player, is considered likely to run for this open Topeka-area seat. Soave currently lives in KS-3 but will move into the 2nd to run. He will join a crowded primary field of State Sens. Steve Fitzgerald (R) and Caryn Tyson (R), State Rep. Kevin Jones (R), and Basehor councilman Vernon Fields (R) in the GOP primary. Ex-state Rep. and 2014 gubernatorial nominee Paul Davis (D) is the likely Dem nominee for this medium-red seat.

OH-16: Former OSU football star Anthony Gonzalez (R) has filed to run for this open seat, joining moderate State Rep. Tom Patton (R) and Trumpist State Rep. Christina Hagan (R) in the race. Gonzalez has hired a former Rob Portman campaign operative as his campaign treasurer, suggesting he could have significant establishment support. The GOP field for this medium-red Cleveland and Akron suburban seat is likely to grow.

OK-1: Trump has tapped Rep. Jim Bridenstine (R) to serve as NASA director, but the question over whether there will be a special for this Tulsa-area seat before the 2018 general is very much up in the air. Bridenstine would need to resign before the end of the year to allow a special to be held at all. With a primary runoff likely to be necessary, March is the earliest the special general could be held. And even for that, Bridenstine would need to vacate the seat on the likely-too-short-timeline of within the next few weeks. Click here for our full report and Great Mentioner on the seat. As a side note, by contrast, the situation in the other seat for which Trump has tapped a sitting Rep. (PA-10) is much easier. Rep. Tom Marino’s (R) administration position does not require Senate confirmation, and Pennsylvania does not have special primaries, meaning the seat could be up as quickly as this November.

PA-15: Rep. Charlie Dent (R) has revealed text messages from his primary challenger, State Rep. Justin Simmons (R) in which Simmons asked for Dent’s endorsement for re-election and expressed a desire to replace Trump as the GOP presidential nominee. Simmons is attempting to portray himself as a stronger Trump supporter than the moderate Dent in this light-red Lehigh Valley area seat.

State & Local:

HI-LG: State Sens. Josh Green (D) and Will Espero (D) have declared for LG, joining fellow State Sen. Jill Tokuda (D) and Maui CE Alan Arakawa (D) in the shotgun-wedding race. Espero might be someone to watch for a quick exit from the race, as he ran for HI-1 in 2014 and could try again now that Rep. Colleen Hanabusa (D) is running for Governor.

LA-PSC-2: Ex-State Rep. Lenar Whitney (R) has secured the official endorsement of the state party in this race. Whitney is an antiesatblishment conservative who lost her 2015 re-election bid to a more moderate Republican. In this race, she is facing two RINOs for the deep-red seat, D-turned-R appointed incumbent Damon Baldone (R) and Gov. Edwards-endorsing surgeon Craig Greene (R).

Westchester, NY-CE: Incumbent Rob Astorino (R) has been sending out mailers to unaffiliated voters to get them to write his name in for the Reform Party nomination.  Astorino created the Reform Party as a vanity line (with the “Stop Common Core” name) for his 2014 gubernatorial run, but then lost control of it to talk radio host Curtis Sliwa. Sliwa’s organization has now endorsed Astornio’s most likely rival for re-election, State Sen. George Latimer (D). However, Astorino was able to force a primary, which is open to unaffiliated voters as well as the negligible number of Reform Party registrants.

Milwaukee, WI-Sheriff: Controversial DINO Sheriff David Clarke resigned last week without immediate explanation. It’s unclear if Clarke is in line for a Trump administration post or if he is headed to some sort of Cable TV gig.

Political Roundup for August 9th, 2017

About Last night, Democrat Phil Miller won IA-LD-28 by a 54% to 44% margin. Trump won seat 58% to 37%. In MO-LD-50 Sara Walsh (R) won by a narrower than expected 52% to 48% margin. In MO-SD-28 Republican State Rep. Sandy Crawford won.

In primaries, Marquette councilwoman Sara Cambensy (D) won the primary for MI-LD-109 with 37 percent of the vote. She will face Republican Rich Rossway in General Election. Tenisha Yancey (D) won the primary for the Safe D MI-LD-1, and Spartanburg councilman Rosalyn Henderson-Myers (D) won the primary for the Safe D SC-LD-31. Businessman Paul Rosino (R) prevailed in OK-SD-45, while retired cop Ross Ford (R) narrowly won in OK-LD-76 over the prior incumbent’s widow. Ford will face teacher Chris Vanlandingham (D) in the general.


Kasich: An American Research Group poll has Gov. John Kasich leading President Trump in a hypothetical New Hampshire Republican presidential primary 52% to 40%.  Unfortunately ARG did not do a three way poll of a hypothetical primary in which John Kasich plays spoiler allowing Trump to win again with 40% of the vote.


CO-Gov: State Treasurer Walker Stapleton (R) has found a novel way around Colorado’s restrictive campaign finance laws that limits donations to $1,150. Stapleton is holding off announcing his run for governor in order to raise unlimited cash for a super PAC-style group called Better Colorado Now. Stapleton’s situation highlights the problems with restrictive campaign finance laws that encourages the outsourcing the cost of running a political campaign to outside third party political groups.

FL-Gov: Despite serious questions that arose, a Florida grand jury has cleared Tallahassee Mayor and Democratic candidate for governor Andrew Gillum of criminal liability after an investigation into his use of a city-funded email program used to send private and political messages.

KS-Gov: Lt. Gov. Jeff Colyer (R) made it official and announced that he will run for Governor in 2018. Colyer is poised to takeover as Governor of Kansas when current Gov. Sam Brownback (R) finally gets confirmed to be ambassador at large for international religious freedom. Running for a full term as a sitting governor should give Colyer a leg up in the Republican primary where he could face a crowded field that includes Secretary of State Kris Kobach, Insurance Commissioner Ken Selzer (who entered the race earlier this week), businessman Wink Hartman, former state senator Jim Barnett and entrepreneur Ed O’Malley

NY-Gov: Oh, Miranda! Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) is taking the threat of a Cynthia Nixon primary challenge serious enough to offer to sit down with her and discuss education issues. Nixon meanwhile declined to rule out a bid for Governor during an appearance she made on the Today Show.

ME-Gov: Sen. Susan Collins (R) may want to do some more polling before deciding if she wants to run for Governor. According to a PPP poll of a potential GOP primary former LePage health commissioner Mary Mayhew would lead Collins in a hypothetical matchup, 44 percent to 33 percent. Collins would score just a mere 28% against a hypothetical “someone else”. We would advice taking this poll with a very big grain of salt as it is common practice to release polls like this to either motivate or demotivate a potential candidate from running.

TX-Gov: Texas Democrats still do not have a candidate for governor. No major Democrat has shown any interest in losing challenging Gov. Gregg Abbott (R) who has nearly $41 million in his campaign account and strong approval ratings. So far only former “International Mr. Leather” Jeffrey Payne (D) has announced his intentions to run.

VA-Gov: A new poll released by the L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs at Virginia Commonwealth University shows Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam (D) with a slight 42% to 37% edge over Republican Ed Gillespie in the Virginia governor’s race. Libertarian candidate Cliff Hyra gets 6% in this matchup while 13% are undecided.

WY-Gov: Former Rep. Cynthia Lummis (R) confirmed she will not run for Governor. Incumbent Gov. Matt Mead (R) is term limited and many people had thought Lummis would be a shoo-in to succeed him. Without Lummis running the field here seems to be wide open.


AL-Sen: President Donald J. Trump (R) has endorsed appointed Sen. Luther Strange (R) ahead for the upcoming special election. Assuming President Trump doesn’t start a nuclear war between now and August 15th this should help Sen. Strange bigly.

IN-Sen: ICYMI, fourth-term Rep. Todd Rokita (R) will join the primary for Sen. Joe Donnelly’s (D) Senate seat. We had full coverage of this yesterday.

MI-Sen: Kid Rock (R) has made it official! Robert Richie aka “Kid Rock” has left his two-decade affiliation with the Warner Music Group and signed on with Music City’s BBR Music record label. He is also contemplating a US Senate run.

NV-Sen: A Strategic National poll has  Sen. Dean Heller (R) leading perennial candidate Danny Tarkanian in a Republican primary by a 38% to 34% margin win 27% undecided. Of course this poll was taken before the Senate Leadership Fund PAC put any money into reminding Nevada voters about Tarkanian’s $17 million bankruptcy and other less than flattering business dealings.

VA-Sen: Nothing says you are a man of the people and a real Virginian more than flying out to the Hamptons and having a $10,800 a head fundraiser at the mansion summer home of New York Giants co-owner Jon Tisch, which is why Sen. Tim Kaine (D) plans to spend the last week in August on the South Fork of Long Island, NY raising some serious money.

WI-Sen: The NRSC has launched radio ads in the Wausau and La Crosse markets attacking Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D) over an opioid scandal in Wisconsin Veterans Administration Hospital that Sen. Baldwin tried to help sweep under the rug.

WV-Sen: Sen. Joe Manchin doesn’t “give a s–t” if his liberal voting record costs him re-election.


KY-6: Politico Magazine looks at Democrats fetish for getting behind the candidacy of US veterans. The latest example of this in in KY-6 where long shot formerly unknown Air Force pilot Amy McGrath was able to raise over $200,000 in 36 hours thanks to a viral video of her talking about serving as a combat pilot. McGrath faces State Sen. Reggie Thomas (D) in the primary. Both Donald Trump and Mitt Romney won KY-6 by double digits and Rep. Andy Barr (R) cruised to an easy 22 point win in 2016.

MT-AL: Newly elected Rep. Greg Gianforte (R) will get his first Democrat challenger. Some dude attorney John Heenan (D) announced he will run for Congress.

NJ-11: After the DCCC’s top recruit Assemblyman John McKeon (D) announced that he would not run for Congress, Woodland Park Mayor Keith Kazmark (D) announced he is “officially exploring” a run for the seat held by Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen (R). Donald Trump won this district by 1 point in 2016 and Frelinghuysen cruised to an easy 20 point victory in a seat that his ancestors have represented in one capacity or another since 1720.

NY-19: A pro-Obamacare group has launched a new digital ad aimed at freshman Rep. John Faso (R). No word on how much they intend to spend on the hit job digital ad.

OH-16: Former Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Anthony Gonzalez (R) recently met with the NRCC about a possible run for the seat Rep. Jim Renacci (R) is vacating to run for governor. 28 year old heir force state Rep.Christina Hagan (R) and State Rep. Tom Patton (RINO) are currently running for this seat.

TN-2: Financial advisor Brad Fullington (R) has become the third Republican to enter the open race for the safe R seat of retiring Rep. Jimmy Duncan (R). Fullington is not nearly as well known as  Knox County Mayor Tim Burchett and State Rep. Jimmy Matlock who are also seeking the GOP nomination.

WI-4: Milwaukee County Circuit Judge David Borowski (D) is considering challenging Rep. Gwen Moore (D) in a Democrat primary next year. Moore has not faced a serious challenge in years and easily defeated felon and (former state Senator) Gary George in her last two primary elections.

State, Local & Other:

Syracuse-Mayor: The September 12th Democrat primary for mayor of Syracuse has narrowed from 7 candidates to 3. Democrat organization endorsed City Councilor Joe Nicoletti, City Auditor Marty Masterpole and NY State Dept of Labor official and former Dean of Students at Syracuse University Juanita Perez Williams made the ballot while 4 others either dropped out, couldn’t get enough signatures or had enough of their nominating petition signatures invalidated by challenges to be knocked off the ballot (an art form in NY State). Syracuse has not elected a GOP mayor since 2001 and 55% of voters are Democrats, so the winner of the Democrat primary will be the favorite in November.

Political Roundup for August 1, 2017

As the Generals have taken control of the White House for now in the name of public safety and the Mooch joins the growing list of people who resigned or were escorted off the premises at  the direction of President Trump, it is time for today’s news.

Check back at Noon Eastern for our preview of today’s Washington State Primaries, including the Seattle Mayor race.


Scaramucci:  White House Communications Director is not an office many people care about or even knew existed until 11 days ago when President Trump appointed friend Anthony Scaramucci (R/D-Long Island) to be Communications Director, which prompted resignations by Press Secretary Sean Spicer and Chief of Staff Reince Priebus.  Once former General and Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly led the generals in taking over this freak show became Chief of Staff, the Mooch was forced out.

Kelly: Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump have given their blessing to General Kelly’s attempt to restore order to the Trump White House.

DNC/Abortion:  In a move that will likely send NARAL and Emily’s List into borderline jihad mode, the DNC will not withhold financing to candidates who at least allege pro-life views.  This came after former DNC Chairman Howard Dean (The only Democrat who knows how to run a 50 state campaign) threatened to withhold funds to the DNC.


AZ-Sen:  Senator Jeff Flake wants to alienate everyone.

MT-Sen:  Montana Auditor Matt Rosendale (R) will challenge Senator Jon Tester (D) next year.  Rosendale joins a crowded Republican field, but is now the favorite as being the only statewide candidate seeking the Republican nomination.  Rosendale was elected Auditor last year after serving as State Senate Majority Leader.

PA-Sen/PA-11:  Representative Lou Barletta (R-Trumpland) will run for US Senate against Senator Bobby Casey (D-Faux Pro-Life).  Barletta is probably the best candidate the Republicans could get, but this is still an uphill climb against Casey whose never won a race by less than 8 points.  PA-11 will likely lead to a spirited Republican primary.

ME-Sen/ME-Gov:  Governor Paul LePage (R-Trumpland) rallied fellow Republicans who are attacking Senator Susan Collins (R) for her assistance in torpedoing the various disastrous Republican health care bills.  LePage is term-limited as governor, but is considering a Senate run.  The best case for us would be if LePage and Collins switched offices and acted like they got along, which is probably hard for LePage.


TN-2:  Sixteenth term Representative John Duncan (R) will not seek reelection.  As one of the safest Republican seats in the country (it has not elected a Democrat since before the Buchanan administration), the real action is in the Republican primary with Knox County Mayor Tim Burchett being the early favorite.

OH-16: State Rep. Tom Patton (R), a union-friendly RINO, will run for Rep. Jim Renacci’s (R) open seat. Patton joins Trumpist State Rep. Christina Hagan (R) in the primary.

FL-23:  Representative Ron DeSantis (R) wants to investigate Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Clinton) regarding her employment of a staffer whose accused of submitting fraudulent activities including scamming House of Representatives employees.  DeSantis’ push has the backing of President Trump as evidenced by a tweet alleging the “Fake News” is covering it up.

PA-1/Philadelphia:  The Associated Press looks at why Philadelphia Democratic Party Chairman/Congressman Bob Brady (D-Meehanmander) holds on to power.  While his power is weakening and he is under Federal investigation, Brady still controls a significant portion of the city through one of the last great machines.

PA-6:  Representative Ryan Costello (R) continues to establish a narrative regarding his pathetic leading Democratic opponent, Chrissy Houlahan (D), every chance he gets.  This time his staff is having a great time trolling Emily’s List and Houlahan regarding Houlahan’s unwillingness to take a stand on health care after supposedly supporting single payer until realizing that PA-6 is one of the best insured districts in the country.  Take notes fellow Republicans… push your opponents far left early.


Political Roundup for April 4, 2017

Polling Update: We are raising cash to poll the GA-6 special election primary.  We are partnering with DecisionDeskHQ to bring you this poll.  In addition, as an incentive, anyone that donates $10 or more between now and the end of the day Friday will get a special poll release by email an hour before results are made public! .

Election Update:  Please read the writeup regarding today’s elections including the Louisiana top two rule CA-34 race.  We will have an occasional live thread/open blog starting at 8PM Eastern.

Now as Atlanta settles into its third work day descending into the seventh level of traffic hell and the Sherman Memes are dying down, it is time for today’s roundup:


Obamacare:  After threatening to make Republicans live with Obamacare and potentially entertaining Democratic offers after his high stakes negotiation tactics failed, President Trump (Art of the Deal) and House conservatives are mulling another attempt at repealing parts of Obamcare and replacing them with watered down versions.  It is not clear if the third largest party in the House, the House Freedom Caucus, will provide support to the minority government of Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Janesville) or cause parliamentary chaos, their usual tactic.

More Obamacare:  After golfing with the President, Senator Rand Paul (R-Libertarian) articulated something resembling a repeal and partial replace of Obamacare.  Basically Paul is trying to maintain optics of being against new entitlements by keeping the subsidy regime in place instead of creating a tax credit entitlement regime.  It really sounds like third largest party in the House and their Senate fellow travelers are looking at caving under “yuge” pressure from the Trumpian hordes.

Judiciary:  The Trump administration is scouring the countryside looking for young conservative lawyers in their late 30s early 40s to appoint to the federal judiciary.  Yours truly is not one of them, but I would not mind serving as a Bankruptcy Court judge.

Kaisch:  Ohio Governor John Kaisch (R-Weaverland) does not plan on running against President Trump in 2020, but he is spending a lot of time contrasting himself to Trump.  John Weaver is keeping himself fed apparently by stroking Kaisch’s enormous ego.  Talk about someone who could get me to actively support Trump in a primary.


Filibuster:  The filibuster of judicial nominees appears to be heading to the annals of history as the 30 plus year war on judicial nominations appears to be reaching the nuclear moment.  Democrats are threatening to filibuster Supreme Court nominee Circuit Court of Appeals judge Neil Gorsuch and the Republicans appear ready to vaporize the filibuster for Supreme Court nominees.

CA-45:  Representative Mimi Walters (R) will be facing a Bold Progressive onslaught in her Clinton Republican Orange County seat as Elizabeth Warren protege, law professor Katie Porter (Persistent Bold Progressive) will run against Walters.  I am not sure if a Persistent Bold Progressive is the right fit to take down a Republican in a #NeverTrump Republican district.

GA-6:  Speaking of GA-6 polling, internal Republican interest group polling indicates that progressive darling Jon Ossoff (D) is losing steam after being carpet bombed by conservative outside spending.  In case you missed it, we will be polling this race with our friends at DecisionDeskHQ.

OH-16: State Representative Christina Hagan (R-Trumpian) announced her candidacy Monday to replace Representative Jim Renacci (R), who announced recently a run for Ohio Governor.  Hagan is 28 and serving her fourth term in the Ohio House of Representatives.

OH-Gov: Rep. Jim Renacci (R) is in

As has been expected for some time, four-term Rep. Jim Renacci (R) announced today that he will enter the crowded GOP primary for Ohio Governor. The open Ohio Governor’s race seems likely to be the cycle’s most chaotic primary contest, on both sides. Renacci joins a titanic four-way collision with AG Mike DeWine (R), LG Mary Taylor (R), and SoS Jon Husted (R). He has a base in his suburban Akron and Cleveland based district, and independent wealth that will allow him to go toe-to-toe with his three statewide-elected rivals. Ideologically, Renacci seems to be trying to stake out a niche as the most populist/Trump-friendly candidate. Democrats are likely to see a crowded primary as well, with ex-Rep. Betty Sutton (D), State Sen. Joe Schiavoni (D), and ex-State Rep. Connie Pillich (D) already in the race and many others considering.

As for Renacci’s OH-16, the formerly light-red seat has been trending right in recent years and had a PVI of R+9 in 2016. The mostly-suburban and exurban seat stretches from the southwest suburbs of Cleveland around the south and west sides of Akron, with small pieces of the Canton area and some rural areas west of Canton as well.

The most obvious potential candidate is one of Renacci’s gubernatorial rivals, LG Mary Taylor (R), who could easily drop down to this race and be the clear front-runner if she decides she doesn’t like the way her polling for Gov is looking. State Sen. Frank LaRose (R), who has been looking at an SoS run, could also find this race a greener pasture. Beyond them, State Rep. Tom Patton (R), a former State Senate GOP leader, could have strong institutional support if he runs, but an incident last year in which he said his opponent couldn’t be an effective legislator because she was a mother could come back to bite him. State Senate President Larry Obhof (R) and young State Rep. Christina Hagan (R) also look like potentially strong candidates. Cuyhaoga County GOP chair Ron Frost (R), State Reps. Scott Wiggam (R) and Kristina Roegner (R), and Wayne county commissioner Ron Amstutz (R) have all been great-mentioned.

Democrats will have a tough time flipping this seat but may make a play for it if they are serious about putting the House in play. Ex-Parma Mayor Dean DePiero (D) looks like the most serious potential Dem candidate, and he has already said that he will consider a run for the open seat. There is also a possibility that Sutton, who lost to Renacci in 2012 after her seat was subsumed into this one by redistricting, could drop down from the Gov race. But overall any GOP nominee will be a relatively strong favorite to hold the seat.

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