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Political Roundup for September 20th, 2017

As evidenced by the fact that someone in my North Philadelphia neighborhood actually took a minute out of their day yesterday to scrape and peel the John Kasich sticker off of my car, reality really has become stranger than an episode of Showtime’s Shameless.

Last night, Foxborough councilman Paul Feeney (D) and legislative staffer Jacob Ventura (R) won primaries for MA-SD-Bristol & Norfolk. The two will head to a general next month with retired investigative reporter Joe Shortsleeve (I).


2020: Democrats are clearly ready to defeat the Donald (R?) at all costs ahead of their 2020 presidential primary pileup. The succeeding failing New York Times reports that, while Bernie Sanders (“I”) plans a “very far left” approach, potential frontrunner Elizabeth Warren (D) will merely run a “far left” campaign.

Democrats’ Lurch off the Left Coast: Politico reports that many Democrats are now wondering if the recent wave of virtue signaling support of Bernie Sanders’ “Medicare for All” plan could distract from their efforts to fight another attempt at repealing Obamacare.


AL-Sen: Senate candidate and God’s Gift to the World Roy Moore (R) doubled down on his “red and yellow” comments from earlier in the week in a presidential series of tweets.

More AL-Sen: Both Mike Pence (R) and the Donald (R?) will be campaigning for Luther Strange in Alabama.

TN-Sen: Despite recent friction between the two men, Roll Call reports that the Donald (R?) has urged Senator Bob Corker (R) to seek a third term.

MI-6/MI-Senate: Ahead of a likely US Senate bid, everyone’s second-favorite Upton and Whirlpool heir Fred (R) was named a Michigander of the Year by the generally-conservative Detroit News for his bipartisan dealmaking in the midst of the bipartisan opening of the seventh seal.


Democrats/State Attorneys General: Still smarting from the Duchess of Chappaqua’s 2016 loss, some leaders of the ever-strategic Democrats have yet another plan to “avenge” the would-have-been First Woman President™’s defeat by… recruiting as many female attorney general candidates as possible. Yes, really.

IL-Gov/IL-AG: North Shore State Rep. Scott Drury (D-Highwood) has dropped his gubernatorial bid to pursue the state AG position after the surprise retirement of incumbent Dictator Heiress and Attorney General Lisa Madigan (D). Drury was the only State Rep to oppose Fearless Leader Mike Madigan’s re-election bid to the speakership, and he earns major kudos from this Illinois expat for that stand.

More IL-AG: In addition to Drury, the Chicago Tribune has a Great Mentioner on others considering this now open race.

NJ-Gov: Highlighting their desperation for any victory in the age of the Donald, the Democrats are going all out in this Safe D race by sending in top fundraiser Barack Obama to stump for Phil Murphy (D), according to The Hill.

More NJ-Gov: The RGA has released a 15-second ad attacking Phil Murphy by implying that he wants to raise New Jersey’s already-high taxes, a development sure to shock Garden State voters.

TX-Gov: While Governor Greg Abbott (R) lacked a signature issue, Texas Tribune explains that Hurricane Harvey gave him the political cover to move away from the hard right direction he had reluctantly taken on the urging of Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick (R). If this sounds strange, remember that the Texas Lieutenant Governor is arguably more powerful than the Governor.

More TX-Gov/TX-20: Congressman Joaquin Castro (D-San Antonio) reiterated yesterday that he has no plans to run for governor. Castro (not that one, as far as we know…) will seek re-election to the US House.

Local Races:

Urban Renewal/Detroit-Mayor: The Economist lays out Detroit’s improvements under Mike Duggan as a case study of tough love. It’s shocking what happens when voters elect a leader who tells them things that they don’t want to hear after decades of electing politicians who said anything to gain power.

Seattle-Mayor: Interim Mayor Bruce Harrell, clearly not touched, says that he does not intend to serve the rest of his disgraced predecessor’s term.

Political Roundup for September 15, 2017


MI-Sen: Businessman Sandy Pensler says he is taking a “serious look” at running for Senate. Businessman and Iraq war veteran John James is expected to formally announce his candidacy soon. The two potential entries come as announced candidate Lena Epstein is likely dropping out to run for MI-11. Former state Supreme Court Justice Bob Young is also running, with rock musician Robert “Kid Rock” Ritchie still considering a run.

TN-Sen: Conservative activist Andy Ogles is the first person to announce a bid for the US Senate seat currently held by Sen. Bob Corker (R). Corker has not decided whether to seek re-election, but says he will make a decision soon. Ogles, who recently stepped down as head of the Tennessee affiliate of Americans for Prosperity, however is planning to run against Corker in the GOP primary. Ogles criticized Corker for not being conservative enough. This isn’t the first time Ogles has run for office-he finished 3rd in the 2002 GOP primary for the then-open TN-4. Former state Rep. Joe Carr (R), who has been considering running was surprised by Ogles entry into the race, but is still contemplating entering the race himself. State Sen. Mark Green (R), who dropped a previous bid for governor after being considered for Secretary of Army, from which he later withdrew from consideration, confirmed he is still considering entering the race too, despite previously saying he would not run for any higher office next year.


KS-2: Former state Secretary of Commerce Antonio Soave has joined the Republican nomination for this open seat. Soave had previously indicated an interest in running, but has now officially entered the race. He joins state Sen. Steve Fitzgerald, state Rep. Kevin Jones and Basehor councilman Vernon Fields in the GOP primary.

MA-3: State Sen. Barbara L’Italien (D) is the 2nd Democrat to announce a run for this open seat. L’Italien joins Daniel Koh, former Chief of Staff to Boston Mayor Marty Walsh in the Democratic primary. Other Democrats said to be considering runs include Haverhill Mayor James Fiorentini and 2014 Democratic LG nominee Steve Kerrigan.

MI-11: It’s looking increasingly likely that current GOP Senate candidate Lena Epstein will drop down from her Senate bid and run for the now open MI-11. After previously saying she was considering the move, she now says she is “leaning toward” running for the House seat instead. Epstein is the co-owner of an automotive oil company.

MT-AL: Former nonprofit director Grant Kier is running for the Democratic nomination for Congress. Kier is the former director of Five Valleys Land Trust and the Bitter Root Land Trust. Billings attorney John Heenan is also running for the Democratic nomination to face Rep. Greg Gianforte (R).

NV-3: Philanthropist Susie Lee has announced her candidacy for Congress. Lee had previously lost in the Democratic primary for NV-4 in 2016. Lee is the second Democrat to announce a run for this open seat-businessman Jack Love is already running. 4 Republicans are currently running.


AL-Gov: The crowded Republican gubernatorial race has got slightly smaller. Jefferson County Commissioner David Carrington is dropping out of the race. He says he will finish out his term on the Jefferson County Commission and has no plans to ever seek office again. 5 other Republicans, including Gov. Kay Ivey (R) are running.

IL-Gov/LG: Gubernatorial candidate Chris Kennedy (D) has chosen Ra Joy, the Executive Director of Change Illinois, as his running mate. Change Illinois is a coalition of civic, business and labor groups. With the choice, most of the major candidates for governor have made their running mate choices-downstate regional school superintendent Bob Daiber is the only candidate who has not made his pick.

NE-Gov: State Sen. Bob Krist has made it official-he has changed his registration from Republican to independent and will run for governor next year as an independent. Although appointed to his seat by then-Gov. Dave Heineman (R) in 2009, Krist later became an opponent of Heineman and current Gov. Pete Ricketts (R) and has increasingly become known as an outspoken moderate in the Legislature. He supported Brad Ashford (D) for Congress in 2014 after contemplating running against then-Rep. Lee Terry (R) himself. Krist said he considered running for governor as a Democrat, but could not join a party that supported abortion rights. Krist will likely try to create a 3rd party for his run as it’s easier to get on the ballot than running as an independent. No Democrats have announced bids or even known to be considering running.

State & Local:

LA-Treas.: Democratic candidate Derrick Edwards is almost assured of finishing in the top two in the Oct. 14 primary for state Treasurer and securing a spot in the runoff, as he is the only Democrat on the ballot. But he is not running a serious campaign, so his chances of winning the runoff are practically nil. An indication of how unserious his campaign is-his campaign was actually in the red by $5900 last week and had shown no contributions. He does have $528 in his campaign account now due to a loan by a relative to get his campaign account in the black. He isn’t doing much campaigning and hasn’t hired staff to help with the race. State Sen. Neil Riser (R), state Rep. John Schroder (R), and former Gov. Bobby Jindal budget director Angele Davis (R) are battling for the other runoff spot.

NV-LG: Former State Treasurer Kate Marshall (D) announced Wednesday she is running for Lieutenant Governor. Democrat Chip Evans also announced his candidacy the same day, setting up a primary between the two. The two have one thing in common-both have lost to Rep. Mark Amodei (R) in unsuccessful campaigns for NV-2; Marshall lost in the 2011 special election, and Evans lost last year. Marshall served two terms as State Treasurer before making an unsuccessful bid for Secretary of State in 2014. Former Secretary of State Ross Miller (D) had been planning to run, but demurred after Marshall appeared to be the preferred candidate of the Nevada Democratic establishment.

Political Roundup for September 12th, 2017

It’s Primary Day in NY! Check out our preview HERE and check back with us tonight at 7:30pm ET for our election results liveblog!


MN-Gov: Throw another name into the crowded GOP gubernatorial great mentioner. State Sen. Julie Rosen (R) confirmed she is considering a bid for governor.


AL-Sen: Emerson has Roy Moore leading appointed Sen. Luther Strange by a 40% to 26% margin ahead of the September 26th GOP runoff. Emerson polled the general election as well and found Moore leading Democrat Doug Jones by a very narrow 44% to 40% margin.

MI-Sen: Kid Rock took to Facebook to fire back at Rev. Al “Slim Shady” Sharpton after Sharpton’s extortion protest scam operation National Action Network announced they would protest upcoming Kid Rock concerts. Kid Rock wrote “I love black people”, “Sam Riddle is a piece of sh*t criminal” and encouraged everyone to Google him, “F*ck ANYONE who takes a knee or sits during our national anthem!”, that the Tweet gloating about Al Sharpton’s daughter getting arrested for assaulting a cab driver did not come from him and the story was “fake news” and that “I can’t wait to rock everyone’s socks off at LCA the next few weeks!”. Oh, yeah this will be a fun senate campaign if he runs!

ND-Sen: Border States Electric CEO Tammy Miller (R) is considering a run for Senate against Democrat Sen. Heidi  Heitkamp. Miller has been heavily recruited by North Dakota GOP officials for weeks now but still has not made up her mind about running. State Senator Tom Campbell (R) is officially in the race and campaigning hard. Rep.  Kevin Cramer (R) is considering a run as well. State Rep. Rick Becker (R), former Congressman Rick Berg (R), and State Board of Higher Education member Kathy Neset (R) are also contemplating running for Senate. Miller is reportedly close with former Rep. Rick Berg so if she runs for Senate chance are Berg will not be seeking a rematch with Heitkamp.

NV-Sen: Donald Trump’s former White House chief strategist Stephen Bannon has met with perennial candidate Danny Tarkanian (R) and promised him his full backing in his primary with Sen. Dean Heller (R).

TN-Sen: Sen. Bob Corker (R) is contemplating his future and is considering maybe retiring in 2018. Corker is the Chairman of the Senate foreign relations committee and was once considered for a spot in President Trump’s cabinet. Since then Corker’s had a falling out with Trump. Corker has faced questions from the Feds about possible insider trading regarding his investments in Tennessee-based REIT, CBL & Associates but since that story broke in early 2016 not much more has come out about it. Corker is sitting on more than $7 million in cash in his campaign account so he either has plenty of money on hand to fund his re-election or pay for his legal bills or a great slush fund for his next career as a lobbyist.

UT-Sen: If Sen. Orrin Hatch (R) decides to retire in 2018 sources say that former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney (R) will run for his senate seat.

WI-Sen: Wisconsin state Sen. Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R) will not run for US Senate vs Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D) and will back state Sen. Leah Vukmir (R) instead.


MI-6: #FakeNews alert!!! Rep. Fred Upton (R) denies “The Failing New York Times” #FakeNews “report” and insists he has no plans to retire in 2018.

MI-11: In case you missed it, two term Rep. Dave Trott (R) will retire and will not seek re-election in 2018.

NJ-2: Rep. Frank LoBiondo (R) confirms to The Hill that he will seek re-election in 2018. Now let’s start the countdown until state Sen. Jeff Van Drew (D) confirms he will not challenge Rep. Lobiondo.

PA-7: DelCo GOP fans can rest easy as Rep. Pat Meehan (R) confirms that he is not the the retirement watch list and that he will seek re-election in 2018.

PA-10: When Rep. Tom Marino takes over as Drug Czar local party GOP officials will pick the GOP candidate for the special election. Former president of the Pennsylvania Farm Bureau and former chairman of Nationwide Mutual Insurance Keith Eckel (R) looks like the favorite to get the GOP nomination. Eckel is 70 years old. If Eckel passes Marino’s district director David Weber is also thought to be a likely candidate.

State, Local & Other:

NV-Lt Gov: Former two-term secretary of state Ross Miller (D) will most likely not run for Lt. Governor and will most likely defer to former state Treasurer Kate Marshall (D).

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 August 11, 2017


TN-Sen/TN-6: State Sen. Mark Green (R) will not run for any higher office next year. Green had previously announced a run for governor earlier this year, but suspended that bid while he was under consideration to be Secretary of the Army. He later withdrew his name from consideration, but did not restart his campaign for governor. Sen. Bob Corker (R) has not yet said whether he is seeking re-election, but some had hoped Green would challenge him or run for the open seat if Corker does not run fro re-election. There was also some speculation Green might run for TN-6, which Rep. Diane Black (R) is giving up to run for governor.

TX-Sen: Former Corpus Christi Mayor Dan McQueen (R) is challenging Sen. Ted Cruz (R) in the Republican primary. Running for Senate seems like a curious choice for McQueen after he resigned from his job as Corpus Christi Mayor earlier this year after spending just 37 days on the job. Among other things, McQueen is running on reducing the size of Congress to about one representative per 1 million people(the current average is about 1 per 711,000).


FL-6: Former state Rep. Fred Costello (R) is planning to run for Congress, but only if Rep. Ron DeSantis (R) decides to run for governor. Costello has run for Congress twice before, losing to DeSantis in the 2012 and 2016 Republican primaries.

IN-4: Diego Morales, an Army veteran and a senior advisor to VP Mike Pence when Pence was governor is running for this now open seat. Morales is the first candidate to announce plans to run since Rep. Todd Rokita announced on Tuesday he is running for US Senate.  Also, state Sen. Brandt Hershman (R) announced on Facebook he is not running.

MA-3: Dan Koh, chief of staff to Boston Mayor Marty Walsh (D) hasn’t said anything publicly yet about running for this newly open seat, but of he does, he has the full support of his current boss. Walsh says he is “100 percent behind” Koh running for the seat. Koh, whose name was mentioned in connection with the seat after Rep. Niki Tsongas (D) announced her retirement Wednesday has said in the past that he has considered running for Congress or another elected office.

TN-6: Former Tennessee Agriculture Commissioner John Rose (R) has announced he will run for Congress next year. Rose served as Ag Commissioner from 2002-2003 and also has been involved with the Tennessee State Fair Association and owns a business that trains IT professionals. Rose joins state Rep. Judd Matheny (R) in the GOP primary. Political strategist Scottie Nell Hughes, an ardent supporter of President Trump has also expressed interest in the race.


AL-Gov: State Senate President Del Marsh (R) will run for re-election to the state Senate and not run for governor. Marsh had been considering getting into the governor’s race, but said he wanted to wait until Gov. Kay Ivey (R) decided whether or not to run. Ivey says she is close to making a decision.

CO-Gov: Former Colorado State athletic director Jack Graham is considering running for governor, but wants to be sure he can win the Republican primary. Graham says he is a “different kind of candidate” who favors limited government and a strong defense but who is also pro-choice, pro-gay rights and favors some forms of gun control. He ran for US Senate last year, finishing a distant second behind Darryl Glenn in the Republican primary.

CT-Gov: Senate Republican Leader Len Fasano will not join the crowded GOP primary for governor. A gubernatorial bid by Fasano could have set up an awkward matchup between the Republican leaders of both the House and Senate with House Minority Leader Themis Klarides still deciding on a potential bid. 3 Republicans are already running with 3 others having formed exploratory committees, and others like Klarides could still join the race.

ME-Gov: Former state Rep. Diane Russell (D) is joining the Democratic primary for governor. Russell identifies herself as a “hardcore progressive” and favors single-payer healthcare. She was also a supporter in the Legislature of legalizing recreational marijuana and was also a supporter of the ranked-choice voting initiative. She joins 6 other Democrats in the primary.

MD-Gov: Krish Vignarajah, a former policy director for Michelle Obama, is joining the Democratic nomination for governor. However, questions have been raised about whether she meets Maryland’s residency requirements to run. Candidates must have been a registered voter in the state for 5 years, and while she says she registered to vote in the state as early as she was able, she also registered to vote in the District of Columbia in 2010 and voted there in 2014. She says she never voted in more than one place at a time, and doesn’t think being registered in more than one place precludes her from meeting the requirements.


Political Roundup for July 7, 2017


NV-Sen: Rep. Jacky Rosen (D) formally announced her candidacy for US Senate yesterday and has the support of former Sen. Harry Reid (D). But that is not stopping Rep. Dina Titus (D) from considering getting into the race herself. Titus and Reid have clashed behind the scenes in the past-she defeated former Henderson Mayor Jim Gibson, who was Reid’s handpicked candidate in the 2006 Democratic gubernatorial primary and won the 2012 Democratic primary in NV-1 despite Reid supporting then state Sen. Ruben Kihuen (D)-Kihuen later dropped out of that race and won in NV-4 in 2016.

TN-Sen: State Sen. Mark Green (R) is being encouraged to run for US Senate by a group of conservatives frustrated with Sen. Bob Corker (R). Green previously planned to run for governor, but dropped out after being nominated by President Trump to be Secretary of the Army. Green later withdrew his name from consideration, but did not re-enter the governor’s race. Corker has not declared his intention whether to seek re-election or retire. State Rep. Andy Holt (R) is also considering running.


CO-3: State Rep. Diane Mitsch Bush (D) announced yesterday she plans to challenge Rep. Scott Tipton (R) next year. Bush, who is from Steamboat Springs in the northern edge of the expansive district, plans to resign her state House seat soon to run for the seat full-time. She is the first Democrat to announce a campaign for the seat, but Grand Junction City Councilman Chris Kennedy and former CIA officer Bob Baer have been named as other possible contenders.

IL-12: St. Clair County State’s Attorney Brendan Kelly (D) has announced he plans to run for Congress next year against Rep. Mike Bost (R). Kelly is the 4th Democrat to get in the race, but easily the most high profile candidate. The others running are local museum director Dean Pruitt, small businessman and non-profit director David Bequette, former federal employee Adam King and Pat McMahan, a city councilman in the small town of Mascoutah. Businessman Nate Colombo also says he plans to run but has not formally announced a candidacy and nonprofit director Chris Miller is raising money online for a run.

IN-9: Dan Canon, a civil rights lawyer is the 3rd Democrat to announce a run against Rep. Trey Hollingsworth (R). He joins orthodontist and small business owner(and video game collector) Tod Curtis and Indiana University instructor Tom Pappas in the Democratic primary. Despite being seen as vulnerable because he carpetbagged into the seat from Tennessee, Hollingsworth won by a fairly comfortable 14% margin in 2016 and the DCCC does not have IN-9 currently on its list of districts where they are looking to invest in challengers.

IA-3: Theresa Greenfield, a Des Moines businesswoman announced a run for Congress on Wednesday. Greenfield joins two other Des Moines-area businesswomen running for the Democratic nomination to face Rep. David Young (R). They are Cynthia Axne and Heather Ryan. Ryan ran for Congress before in Kentucky, taking 36% against then-Rep. Ed Whitfield (R) in 2008. Pete D’Alessandro, an advisor to Bernie Sanders’ 2016 Iowa presidential campaign, is also considering a run.

NV-3: State Sen. Scott Hammond (R) has become the first candidate to officially enter this open seat race. 2016 nominee Danny Tarkanian and professional golfer Natalie Gulbis are other Republicans who are considering running.

PA-7: It’s official-bold progressive state Sen. Daylin Leach (D) is in for the Democratic nomination for this seat next year. In his announcement, he sounded more like he was running against President Trump than Rep. Pat Meehan (R). He had nice things to say about Meehan while blasting Trump. Leach previously ran in PA-13 in 2014, finishing a distant 3rd in the Democratic primary. 5 other Democrats are running for the Democratic nomination.

VA-2: Retired construction company owner Garry Hubbard entered the Democratic nomination for Congress on Wednesday, becoming the 2nd Democrat in as many days to announce a bid against Rep. Scott Taylor (R). He joins Virginia Beach Democratic Party chair and retired Air Force officer Dave Belote, who entered the race on Tuesday. The 2nd District Democratic Party has not chosen yet how to choose their nominee, whether through a traditional primary or convention or a “firehouse primary”-a primary run by the party and not the state.

State & Local:

AL-AG: Lawyer and criminal court judge Chess Bedsole (R) is running for Attorney general next year. Bedsole worked on Donald Trump’s presidential campaign and was also an advisor to US Attorney General Jeff Sessions; he also ran in the 2006 primary for State Auditor Appointed AG Steve Marshall (R) is planning to run for a full term, while former deputy AG Alice Martin (R) is also in the race.

GA-SOS: State Sen. Joshua McKoon (R) has entered the race for Secretary of State. Current SOS Brian Kemp (R) is running for governor. He joins state Reps. Buzz Brockway (R) and Brad Raffensberger (R) and Alpharetta Mayor David Belle Isle in the GOP primary. Democrats running include state Rep. Dee Dawkins-Haigler (D) and Democratic activist RJ Hadley.

LA-Treas.: State Rep. Julie Stokes (R) is dropping out of the October special election for state Treasurer because of a recent breast cancer diagnosis. Stokes was the first candidate to enter the race and was expected to be a major contender. State Rep. John Schroder (R) and state Sen. Neil Riser (R) are still in the race.

PA-LG: Democrat Aryanna Berringer plans to run for LG next year. Berringer is an information technology manager for a supermarket chain and has run for political office before, taking 39% in 2012 against then-Rep. Joseph Pitts (R) in PA-16.  Current LG Mike Stack plans to run for a 2nd term.

Political Roundup for June 28, 2017

Last night, Cindy Friedman (D), CoS to the late prior incumbent, won a primary for MA-SD-4th Middlesex, while endorsed Republican Jon Jacobsen (R) prevailed in IA-LD-22.


NV-Sen: Ralston says that Rep. Dina Titus (D) has told him she is polling the Senate race, as a potential prelude to an entry into the primary to take on Sen. Dean Heller (R). Should Titus enter it would set up a potential tough primary collision with fellow Rep. Jacky Rosen (D), who is far less politically experienced than Titus.

MT-Sen: Judge Russell Fagg (R) is exploring a bid against Sen. Jon Tester (D). Fagg is the latest lower-tier candidate to consider a run here, joining State Sen. Al Olszewski (R) and storage executive Troy Downing (R).

TN-Sen, TN-2: Knox CE Tim Burchett (R), who is termed out of his current post, is considering a run for Senate or House. If he runs, he could potentially face an uphill race against a longtime incumbent in either primary, as Sen. Bob Corker (R) and Rep. Jimmy Duncan (R) have not yet indicated any intention to retire. However, if either Corker or Duncan steps down, Burchett could be a top-tier candidate for either seat.

WI-Sen: Trucking executive Nicole Schneider (R) will not run against Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D), citing family concerns. No Republicans have entered this race as of yet, but State Sen. Leah Vukmir (R) is the name most-commonly connected with a bid.


KS-Gov, KS-4: State Senate President Susan Wagle (R), one of the few Republicans who has pull on both sides of the KSGOP’s moderate/conservative chasm, is considering a run for either Governor or Congress in 2018. Should she seek the House seat, she would challenge incumbent Ron Estes (R), whose underwhelming victory in this year’s special has fueled talk of a primary challenger. If she enters the Governor’s race, she would join a crowded primary field of SoS Kris Kobach (R), ex-State Sen. and 2006 nominee Jim Barnett (R), ex-State Rep. Ed O’Malley (R), and businessman Wink Hartman (R).

MI-Gov: Physician Jim Hines (R) became the first candidate to file for this race yesterday, tuning in an impressive number of signatures. The effort could suggest that Hines, who is basically of a “Some Dude” profile, may be serious enough to be a real contender in this race against multiple bigger-name candidates. LG Brian Calley (R), AG Bill Schuette (R), and antiestablishment-friendly State Sen. Patrick Colbeck (R) are expected to run on the GOP side; ex-State Sen. Gretchen Whitmer (D) currently looks like the front-runner for Dems.

RI-Gov: Ex-State Rep. Joe Trillo (R) has entered the race for Governor, becoming the first candidate into the race on the GOP side. Trillo, a vocal Trump supporter who retired from the State House in 2016, may face a primary with Cranston Mayor and 2014 nominee Alan Fung (R). Gov. Gina Raimondo (D) may face primary opposition on the Dem side.


ID-1: State Rep. Luke Malek (R) is considering a run for the seat of Rep. and gubernatorial candidate Raul Labrador (R). Malek hails from Coeur D’Alene in the panhandle, potentially giving him a geographic base in the primary. Ex-State Sen. and 2014 gubernatorial candidate Russ Fulcher (R) is considered the front-runner for this seat, with 80s-era ex-LG David Leroy (R) also in the race.

NY-22: In a somewhat surprising move, State Rep. Anthony Brindisi (D) has quickly pulled the trigger on a run for this medium-red seat. Brindisi was heavily recruited to run for the open seat in 2016, but demurred; he will now run against freshman incumbent Claudia Tenney (R). This Binghamton and Utica based seat trended strongly right last year but Tenney fell short of a majority due to a centrist independent candidate; Brindisi’s entry likely keeps this race as a high-tier target for Dems in 2018.

State & Local:

NH-State House: State Rep. Brandon Phinney has switched from Republican to Libertarian, giving the Libertarian party 3 members of the NH State House (out of 400), and thus their largest caucus in a legislative chamber in memory.

MD-Prince George’s-CE: State Sen. Anthony Muse (D), a moderate Democrat who challenged US Sen. Ben Cardin (D) in the 2012 primary, is running for Prince George’s County Executive. Incumbent Rushern Baker (D) is running for Governor.

MD-Baltimore-CE: Ex-State Rep. John Olszewski (D) is running for Baltimore County Executive, becoming the first candidate into what could be a crowded primary with county commissioner Vicki Almond (D) and state Sen. Jim Brochin (D). Olszewski has a base in the blue-collar Dundalk area. Antiestablishment conservative State Rep. Pat McDonough (R) and Insurance Commissioner Al Redmer (R) are considering runs on the GOP side. Incumbent Kevin Kamenetz (D) is termed-out and widely expected to run for Governor.

Political Roundup for June 14, 2017

Last night in Virginia, the Governor nominees weren’t surprising, but their margins were. LG Ralph Northam (D) prevailed by a surprisingly robust 12 points, while ex-RNC Chair Ed Gillespie (R) squeaked to a 1-point victory over Prince William CE and self-hating Yankee Corey Stewart. For LG, 2013 AG candidate Justin Fairfax (D) and State Sen. Jill Vogel (D) will face off. There were no particular surprises in the House of Delegates primaries, with one minor exception: Banker Mavis Taintor (D), who self-funded an insane $175K (!) for her bid in Loudon County’s LD-33, lost her primary 52-48 to a more traditionally-spending candidate. Hopefully for her Taintor self-funded most of that cash as a loan rather than a gift. In Las Vegas, Steve Seroka (D) ousted incumbent Bob Beers (R) for council district 2 while ex-State Rep. Michele Fiore (R) picked up the open district 6.


IN-Sen: State Rep. Mike Braun (R), who is in his second term representing a rural Southwestern Indiana seat, will explore a run against Sen. Joe Donnelly (D). Braun is the first candidate to definitively declare interest in this race, but is definitely well into the “C” list. Three far bigger names, Reps. Luke Messer (R) and Todd Rokita (R) and AG Curtis Hill (R), are thought to be considering the race, and it’s hard to see Braun as any kind of threat to them in the primary.

TN-Sen: Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R) announced last week that she would not challenge Sen. Bob Corker (R) in 2018, though she has not shut the door on a gubernatorial bid. Corker has announced he would not run for Governor, but has not firmly declared whether he will seek a third term in the Senate. Presumably Blackburn’s Senate calculations would change if the seat were to come open.

UT-Sen: The Romney for Senate speculation machine continues to churn, as Mitt has announced he remain active in politics by forming a SuperPAC designed to help House Republicans in 2018. Biden has encouraged Romney to run for the seat of Sen. Orrin Hatch (R), and Romney did nothing to brush away that suggestion when the two appeared together last week.


AL-Gov: Medical technology executive Josh Jones (R) is the latest candidate into this increasingly crowded primary. Jones joins (deep breath) Ag Commissioner John McMillan (R), PSC Chair Twinkle Cavanaugh (R), Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle (R), Jefferson County commissioner David Carrington (R), and minister Scott Dawson (R) in the race. Gov. Kay Ivey (R) has not indicated whether or not she will seek a full term and says she may not make an announcement until the fall.

FL-Gov: Now here’s something you don’t see every day: A prospective Democratic candidate holding a fundraiser for a prospective Republican rival. But that’s exactly what wealthy ambulance-chasing trail lawyer John Morgan (D) is doing for State House Speaker Rich Corcoran (R). Morgan, a staunch booster of medical marijuana, is holding the fundraiser as thanks to Corcoran for his work in making the state’s medical pot statute more permissive. Though neither has declared for the gubernatorial race yet, both men have said they are actively exploring bids. Morgan would join ex-Rep. Gwen Graham (D), Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum (D), and businessman Chris King (D) on the Dem side. Corcoran would join Ag Commissioner Adam Putnam (R) in the GOP primary, with Rep. Ron DeSantis (R) also considering.

MI-Gov: Businessman Shri Thanedar (D) is the latest candidate to officially enter this race. Thanedar has indicated he will partially self-fund; he will face ex-State Sen. Gretchen Whitmer (D), businessman Bill Cobbs (D), and Detroit official Abul El-Sayed (D) in the Dem primary, with Macomb CE Mark Hackel (D) the biggest name still considering a run. On the GOP side, LG Brian Calley (R), AG Bill Schuete (R), and State Sen. Patrick Colbeck (R) look like the major possible contenders.

PA-Gov: Businessman Kris Hart (R), who had been exploring a run for US Senate, will instead seek the nomination to challenge Gov. Tom Wolf (D). Hart joins State Sen. Scott Wagner (R) and businessman Paul Mango (R) in the race, with State House Speaker Mike Turzai (R) and ex-LG Jim Cawley (R) considering runs as well.

RI-Gov: Republicans have their first candidate making serious moves toward challenging Gov. Gina Raimondo (D). Ex-State Rep. Joe Trillo (R), who retired in 2016, is preparing a run and seems to be staking out a position as a Trumpist, which might be a questionable strategy in the deep-blue state. Cranston Mayor and 2014 nominee Alan Fung (R) is widely thought likely to make another bid, and a couple other Republicans are considering. The fiscally moderate Raimondo may face a significant primary challenge from her left as well, though no Democrats have made concrete moves toward the race yet.


CO-2: 2014 SoS nominee and Hickenlooper admin official Joe Neguse (D) announced a bid for Congress Tuesday, and quickly secured several prominent endorsements, including from ex-State House Speaker Dickey Lee Hullinghorst (D). Two other Dems, 2000 CO-6 nominee Ken Toltz (D) and executive Shannon Watts (D), who are both also prominent gun-control activists, are also publicly considering the race.

GA-6: A SUSA poll shows the race between ex-SoS Karen Handel (R) and Han Solo impersonator former congressional staffer Jon Ossoff (D) tied at 47, a significant improvement for Handel from their prior poll, where Ossoff led by 7 points. The closely-watched runoff for this seat is this coming Tuesday.

NC-9: Megachurch pastor and 2016 candidate Mark Harris (R) is resigning to consider another congressional run. Harris fell just short by 135 votes in a three-way race against Rep. Robert Pittenger (R). Pittenger has had multiple controversies related to questionable business dealings and making racist remarks on national TV, so there is a strong possibility he could be vulnerable to a primary in 2018; he is also high on retirement watchlists.

NH-1: State Sen. Andy Sanborn (R) announced Tuesday that he would run against on-again/off-again Rep. Carol Shea-Porter (D) in this purple seat. Sanborn, known as a staunch conservative with libertarian tendencies, joins former local police chief Eddie Edwards (R) in the GOP primary.

NY-22: State Rep. Anthony Brindisi (D) is considering a run against Rep. Claudia Tenney (R) in 2018. Brindisi considered a run for the open seat, and was heavily recruited by national Dems, in 2016 before deciding not to run. This formerly light-red seat moved strongly right in 2016, but the conservative Tenney fell short of a majority, winning 47-40 in a 3-way race.

OH-2: Jerry Springer (D) has been floated for multiple offices by Ohio Democrats in recent years, including for this cycle’s Governor race. But it seems he may have a different seat in mind, as someone has apparently been polling Springer against Rep. Brad Wenstrup (R). This deep-red Cincinnati-area seat would likely be a tough hill to climb for Springer or any other Democrat.

TN-6: Prominent pro-Trump talking head Scottie Nell Hughes (R), who also runs a pro-Trump press group, will consider a run for this deep-red central Tennessee seat if Rep. Diane Black (R) gives it up to run for Governor. Hughes, the first candidate to publicly declare interest in the seat, has said that she would not challenge Black in the primary.

WI-6: Nonprofit exec Dan Kohl (D), nephew of ex-Sen. Herb (D), will challenge Rep. Glenn Grothman (R) for this medium-red seat stretching from the northern Milwaukee suburbs to Oshkosh.

State & Local:

AL-AG: Former US Attorney Alice Martin (R), who also served as chief deputy to now-Sen. Luther Strange (R) when he was AG, will run for the AG slot in 2018. Martin will face appointed incumbent Steve Marshall (R), whose appointment by disgraced then-Gov. Robert Bentley (R) may be problematic for his chances of keeping the seat. However, Martin may find hitting Marshall on his Bentley ties problematic herself, as she interviewed for the appointment as well.

CA-LG: Ex-Richmond Mayor Gayle McLaughlin (G), who for her eight years from 2006-2014 made Richmond by far the largest city with a Green Party Mayor, will run for LG in 2018. McLaughlin’s odds are probably long with several prominent Dems in the race, but she has a chance to stake out a position as the farthest-left candidate in an already-left-wing field. McLaughlin will face State Sen. Ed Hernandez (D), former Ambassadors Eleni Kounalakis (D) and Jeff Bleich (D), and physician Asif Mahmood (D), and likely others, in this race.

FL-Ag Comm: Ex-State Rep. Baxter Troutman (R) is running for Ag Commissioner, becoming the fourth Republican into this primary. Troutman joins State Sen. Denise Grimsley (R), State Rep. Matt Caldwell (R), and 2015 Orlando Mayoral candidate Paul Paulson (R) in the race.

FL-CFO: CFO Jeff Atwater (R) will resign on June 30th to take an academic position. Gov. Rick Scott (R) is tasked with appointing his replacement. One possible appointee took his name out of the running this week though, as State Sen. Jack Latvala (R) announced he was not interested in being appointed. The move probably means Latvala is considering his 2018 options as running for Governor and bowing out of politics entirely.

KS-SoS: Sedgwick County Clerk and KSGOP chair Kelly Arnold (R) is the first person to consider a run for the open seat of SoS Kris Kobach (R), who is running for Governor. With his base in the Wichita area and institutional ties, Arnold would likely be a formidable candidate for the seat.

NM-LG: Ex-State Rep. Rick Miera (D), the former House Majority leader until his 2014 retirement, will explore a run for LG in this shotgun-wedding primary. Miera joins two little-known candidates, civil servant David McTeigue (D) and teacher Jeff Carr (D), in the Dem primary race, and thus would seem to be the front-runner. The primary winner will be combined on a ticket with the winner of the (entirely separate) Gov primary.

Mobile-Mayor: Ex-Mayor Sam Jones (D) will kick off a run to get his old job back this Saturday. Jones served two terms as Mayor before losing his 2013 to re-election race to now-incumbent Sandy Stimpson (R). Jones will likely face a rematch with Stimpson in this year’s race, in late August.

CA-SD-29: Legislative Democrats are pushing bills to delay the state’s recall process in order to help State Sen. Josh Newman (D). Newman won a formerly-red Orange County seat in 2016 in a considerable upset and is now the target of a recall campaign by Republicans upset with his vote for a recent tax hike. The bills under consideration would slow down the recall process so that a successful Newman recall effort would be unlikely to trigger an election before the 2018 general election.

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