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Leading Off:

PA-17: Is Rep. Tim Holden actually shaping up to be an underdog in the Democratic primary? I don't know if I'd go that far, but Roll Call's Shira Toeplitz makes a good case for it in an excellent local color piece on the race, pointing out that the large majority of constituents in the new 17th are new to him and his opponent, Matt Cartwright, is a familiar face on local Scranton airwaves. The actions of the Campaign for Primary Accountability may bolster the case that Cartwright's on top, though: The an ostensibly bipartisan anti-incumbent PAC just announced that, while they're giving up on their efforts in the Pittsburgh-area PA-18 (against GOP Rep. Tim Murphy), they're going all in on their attempt to unseat Holden, suggesting they sense the possibility to claim another scalp. After previously spending $130K on TV advertising, they're now throwing in another $60K.

In addition, two left-leaning groups are getting in on the anti-Holden action. MoveOn announced its support for Cartwright (who's been trying hard to get to Holden's left, as seen in his recent repositioning efforts on the Affordable Care Act) on Tuesday, and the League of Conservation Voters is spending $230K on anti-Holden advertising. The LCV's ad can be seen here or below, and it prominently features an old familiar face whom we haven't seen trotted out in an ad in a while—except, interestingly, in this race: George W. Bush. (CPA's ad also made use of Dubya.)

(David Jarman)

1Q Fundraising:

CT-Sen: William Tong (D): $185K raised, $227K cash-on-hand

MO-Sen: Sarah Steelman (R): $179K raised, $600K cash-on-hand; John Brunner (R): $168K raised (plus $1.2 mil self-funding),

MO-Gov: Dave Spence (R): $593K raised (plus $250K loan), $1.7 mil cash-on-hand; Bill Randles (R): $35K raised, $5K cash-on-hand.

NY-Sen: Wendy Long (R): $142K raised, $69K cash-on-hand

WA-Sen: Sen. Maria Cantwell (D): $1.2 mil raised, $4.6 mil cash-on-hand; Michael Baumgartner (R): $188K raised, $145K cash-on-hand


FL-Sen: Hah, WOW. I guess I was wrong when I said a day ago that GOP grumbling over Rep. Connie Mack's Senate candidacy was pointless because it was far too late to think about recruiting anyone else. Remarkably, the state's chief financial officer, Jeff Atwater, is now saying he's thinking about getting into the race on account of conservative prodding. (Incidentally, Atwater's name popped up last October—after Mack reversed course and decided to run—but the rumors were so thin he never even bothered addressing them, so far as I know.) I wonder if Mack, clearly in over his head, would drop out and seek re-election instead if Atwater got in. If not, it sure would be a hell of a primary to see those two face off. You know what I'm wishing for!

IN-Sen: This is pretty funny. Sen. Dick Lugar has a new ad out trashing his GOP primary opponent, Richard Mourdock, over taxes, but he yanked it from YouTube thanks to a very amateurish mis-spelling, which you can see screen-shotted here. Of course, shoving something down the Internet's very narrow memory hole is no easy task, and unsurprisingly, Lugar failed at it, because we also have a copy of the original ad right here.

Lugar did get some much-needed help at the last minute, though: With the May 8 primary looming, the US Chamber of Commerce just endorsed him. Let's see if they put their money with their mouth is, though.

MI-Sen: In his quest to become 2012's single most tone-deaf candidate, Republican Michigan Senate candidate Pete Hoekstra has apparently decided to expand his portfolio from xenophobia to the War on Women as well. To do so, he went after the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, one of the least controversial accomplishments of the Obama administration. In response to a questioner at an appearance last week, Hoekstra said "that thing is a nuisance" and "shouldn't be the law." (David Jarman)

NE-Sen: We've got two new ads in the Nebraska Senate race, one from each side. The first is from Democrat Bob Kerrey, who starts off with various folks touting his military record, then segues into talking about his pledge to support bipartisanship. You can watch at the link or below:

The second is from Republican Jon Bruning, who promises to crack down on "accounting tricks." Amusingly, his closing line says he's running for Senate "to put an end to Washington's gimmicks"—but how did he release this ad? By leaking an "exclusive" to Politico's Morning Score, the ultimate insider DC newsletter. Anyhow, you can watch it here.

TX-Sen: Both of the major GOP contestants in the Texas Senate primary came out with new ads Tuesday, both of which are available at the link. (No word on the size of the buys, but they are running statewide, which is always a pricey endeavor.) Dewhurst, the presumptive favorite here, is going negative against Cruz for the first time, so you've got to wonder if there's some behind-the-scenes poll-tightening here. The one-minute spot hits Cruz for his legal work on behalf of a scaaaaary-sounding Chinese company. Meanwhile, Cruz's over-the-top new ad has to be seen to be believed: To the backdrop of a cinematic score, he defends millions of our brave veterans against an evil army of atheists, or at least something like that:

(David Jarman)


NC-Gov: I don't really believe in the aphorism, but I know people are fond of saying that it takes an ego to run for office—yet even so, I found myself a little uncomfortable with Democratic Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton's new ad (his first of the race). "It's a pretty simple name," begins Dalton, "but folks sure seem to like saying it." That's predictably followed by several people all calling out "Walter Dalton!" Hrm. (He then goes on to try to tout his record on education.) Maybe I'm wrong to feel this way—after all, I loved Don Cazayoux's ad in which his family tries to teach people how to pronounce his unusual surname. But I think that one worked better precisely because Cazayoux's daughters narrated the ad, not the candidate himself. Anyhow, have a look at the link or below and tell me your thoughts:


IL-13: Ah, music to my ears. This is the kind of grumbling that can really help sabotage a candidate selected via back-room deal, which of necessity is what Republicans in Illinois' 13th Congressional District must do in the wake of Rep. Tim Johnson's retirement announcement. A couple of candidates hoping to be considered as replacements by local GOP officials (including one sitting state senator, Kyle McCarter) are alleging that Johnson's departure was orchestrated behind closed doors long ago so that he could hand his seat off to his former chief of staff Jerry Clarke. Indeed, Clarke began publicly expressing his interest in the job the very day Johnson said he'd step down. If Clarke does get tapped and some of his cheesed-off fellow Republicans sit on their hands as a result, that's undoubtedly good news for Democrats.

KY-04: Lewis County Judge-Executive Thomas Massie is getting some heat from the man he's seeking to replace in Congress, retiring Republican Rep. Geoff Davis. A couple of years ago, Davis actually praised Massie in remarks made on the House floor, so Massie decided to repurpose Davis's speech and have it serve as the narration of a positive bio spot, which you can watch here or below:

Davis was pretty furious, though, seeing as he hadn't actually endorsed anyone in the race. He called the use of this footage "grossly inappropriate" and said that Massie employed it without his consent—and further demanded that the ad be pulled. Massie refused to do so, but he probably guaranteed that he now won't get Davis's backing.

MD-06 (PDF): Two weeks out from his primary victory, Democratic businessman John Delaney is out with a new internal poll of the general election in Maryland's 6th Congressional District, where he faces longtime GOP Rep. Roscoe Bartlett in a seat that's now much bluer thanks to redistricting. The survey, from Garin-Hart-Yang, finds Delaney up 48-39 over Bartlett (who, I'll note, squeaked out of the Republican primary clown car with an unimpressive 43% of the vote). Delaney notes that he lags the incumbent in name rec (unsurprisingly), but given the huge personal resources he undoubtedly plans to pour into the race, that will change. Bartlett, of course, will also go on the attack, but right now, 39% is not a place you want to be. (I should also add that GHY's final poll of the primary for Delaney called the race quite accurately, so if that's anything to go by, you won't want to discount these new results.)

NY-06: A whole bunch of current and former Democratic citywide elected officials, plus City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, endorsed Assemblywoman Grace Meng on Monday. As high-profile as the event may have been, I'm not sure that, say, Public Advocate Bill de Blasio is capable of moving a lot of votes, which is why I think another new endorsement for Meng's chief primary rival will probably be a bigger deal in the end. To wit, the Communications Workers of America got behind Assemblyman Rory Lancman, who so far has received the "lion's share" of labor support in the race, as City & State puts it.

NY-11: While the picture isn't completely clear yet (see the multiple updates at the link), it looks like freshman GOP Rep. Mike Grimm, who could use all the help he can get, may lose the Independence Party's ballot line for failure to file enough signatures. At the very least, it sounds like Democrat Mark Murphy plans to challenge the sufficiency of Grimm's burnt offering to the demigods who rule the most holy Board of Elections, which he must do by Monday.

PA-04: York County Commissioner Chris Reilly is going on the air with his first TV ad, though you may recall his chief booster, Sen. Pat Toomey, had previously put up his own spot on Reilly's behalf. In any event, the ad touts Reilly as the "true conservative" in the race, not exactly a surprising move since all the action here is in the Republican primary. One thing I don't quite get is why the ad tries to mimic an old-fashioned filmstrip, complete with distinctive whirring background noise. (I'll bet you youngins don't even recognize the sound!) Is he going for some kind of nostalgia effect? You can see what I mean at the link or below:

PA-12: Where's Joe Sestak now? Endorsing Jason Altmire in the member-on-member Democratic primary in the 12th, that's where. The ex-Rep. and 2010 Senate race loser was a fellow member of the class of 2006 along with Altmire. (Sestak has been keeping a toe in Pennsylvania's political waters this year, though some of his other endorsements, like activist Nate Kleinman over Rep. Allyson Schwartz in the PA-13 primary, haven't exactly earned him any chits.) (David Jarman)

TN-03: Ice cream mogul Scottie Mayfield was a late entrant into the GOP primary for Tennessee's redrawn 3rd Congressional District, but he's touting a new poll that already shows him in the lead—against an incumbent, no less. Mayfield's survey (from North Star Opinion Research) finds him at 34%, while freshman Rep. Chuck Fleischman and Weston Wamp are tied at 25 apiece. (Wamp is the son of Rep. Zack Wamp, who held this seat until he unsuccessfully ran for governor last cycle.) In his polling memo, Mayfield points out that his name recognition is as high as Fleischman's, and his favorability rating is even higher. That unusual situation is due to the fact that Mayfield's name has long been splashed across the dairy aisles and freezer cases of local supermarkets for years, and it also helps when you sell a product everyone loves—like ice cream. (Several folks have wisely noted, though, that this has not helped Jim Oberweis in Illinois.)

WA-01: Suzan DelBene, ex-Microsoft exec and 2010 WA-08 loser, continues to rack up endorsements in the quest to stand out from the large pack of Democrats in the open 1st district. On Tuesday, she got the backing of Rep. Rick Larsen, which is relevant to the extent that many of his current WA-02 constituents (the ones east of I-5 all the way up to the Canadian border) will be in the 1st starting in November. (David Jarman)

Grab Bag:

Arizona: This is an interesting move that could have repercussions all the way down the ballot in Arizona.  The Obama campaign is engaging in a three-month voter registration effort in the state, a test drive to see whether they can put Arizona in play this fall. If Obama does think he can compete here, that could provide a big boost to Democratic candidates running for the state's open Senate seat and in the competitive 1st, 2nd, and 9th Congressional Districts.

Candidate Filings: Filing deadlines passed in two states late last week, and you can get complete candidate lists here for Oklahoma and North Dakota. The federal filing deadline also passed on Monday in New York, but because it's New York, the situation is fucking complicated. Here's the deal: If a congressional district spans more than one county, then you file with the state Board of Elections. They have a list here (PDF). But if a district is contained wholly within a single county or wholly within New York City, then you file with the local board. That applies to 13 of the state's 27 districts: 1 (Suffolk), 4 (Nassau), 6-15 (NYC), and 25 (Monroe). Of course, none of those local boards post candidate lists on their websites, though I did get my hands on the filing list for Kings County (Brooklyn).

Originally posted to Daily Kos Elections on Wed Apr 18, 2012 at 05:00 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Arizona voter registration. (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LordMike, marina, bythesea, cocinero, bear83

    9th Circuit en banc panel rules a part of Arizona Proposition 200 preempted by the NVRA.

  •  CBS/NY Times poll: Obama and Romney tied (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:


    852 registered voters.

    "We calmly accept our uncertain position." Joey Rathburn.

    by Paleo on Wed Apr 18, 2012 at 05:12:11 AM PDT

    •  Seems like a small sample (5+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LordMike, jj32, askew, dopper0189, Amber6541

      What are the crosstabs also? Polling seems to be all over the place this week, but I'm relatively eased actually, if Obama can maintain an overall narrow lead despite a bad week or two of press and a little sluggish economic news, as well as Romney suddenly emerging as the coalesced, sole national candidate of Republicans. The electoral college looks even better, honestly. Obama could win, without even quite scraping 52% of the popular vote, 300-340 electoral votes. By that I mean a string of narrow victories in the midwest swing states, narrow pull outs in Nevada and Colorado, plus Virginia, PA, and Florida, and maybe North Carolina, which I feel is going to be Obama's number one target and battle ground state (the Democratic National Convention playing in Charlotte definitely helps). With a bunch of narrow victories, and Romney romping in the south and the rocky mountain west plus the plains states, would lead to a comfortable EC victory.

      "Once, many, many years ago I thought I was wrong. Of course it turned out I had been right all along. But I was wrong to have thought I was wrong." -John Foster Dulles

      by ArkDem14 on Wed Apr 18, 2012 at 06:04:43 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  It was probably the best week so far (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        LordMike, dc1000, dopper0189, ehstronghold

        for the Romney campaign.

        Wrapping up the nomination and the Rosen gaffe.

        •  And she was completely correct though (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          KingofSpades, stevenaxelrod

          And following Ann Romney's jokes about her "early birthday" present, I think the media is rightfully going to tone it down a bit.

          Rosen was making an excellent point, but she should have focused it on Mitt Romney's condescension in using his wife to deflect blame from himself and his pretty nasty policies towards Planned Parenthood, HUD, and Federal Assistance for Low-Income Families, not to mention things like Medicaid, and the sections of the Healthcare act that ban pre-existing conditions clauses in insurance and also allow families to cheap their college kids on the health plan. But the media should have never turned Ann Romney into a victim; sometimes they seem only too eager to snatch a Republican attack ad out of thin air and run full throttle with it with relatively little context and less moderation (same with the lipstick on a pig comment by Obama in 2008).

          "Once, many, many years ago I thought I was wrong. Of course it turned out I had been right all along. But I was wrong to have thought I was wrong." -John Foster Dulles

          by ArkDem14 on Wed Apr 18, 2012 at 08:39:21 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  CBS Polls Have Typically Skewed Democratic..... (0+ / 0-)

      ....but in recent months they appear to have a more Republican sample than other pollsters.  

    •  Any sample under 2800 nationally is suspect (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      It's too hard to get a representative sample of states with under that number. Remember we have a series of state elections not a national one.

      -1.63/ -1.49 "Speaking truth to power" (with snark of course)!

      by dopper0189 on Wed Apr 18, 2012 at 07:50:18 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  TN-03 Scottie Mayfield (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LordMike, stevenaxelrod

    has said very little.  He told the Times Free Press he doesn't differ on positions from Fleischmann.  No one can figure out why he is running if he doesn't have a platform.  

    Expect attack ads from Chip Saltsman - campaign manager for Fleischmann - within a month to six weeks.  Scottie Mayfield may have name recognition due to his family's ice cream business ( grandfather was a Democrat, btw) but he does not live here in Tennessee most of time.  He lives in Florida.  Think I can predict which way this is headed.

    Fleischmann is part of the Sen. Corker, Gov. Haslam machine.  This will get interesting pretty quick.

    ‎"When you are right you cannot be too radical; when you are wrong, you cannot be too conservative." (Martin Luther King, Jr.)

    by Sandy on Signal on Wed Apr 18, 2012 at 05:38:55 AM PDT

  •  Obama up 22 in NY. Marist (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jj32, LordMike, askew, KingofSpades, Amber6541

    "We calmly accept our uncertain position." Joey Rathburn.

    by Paleo on Wed Apr 18, 2012 at 06:22:33 AM PDT

  •  NJ-Sen (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LordMike, Satya1, itskevin, James Allen

    Bet you can't guess who Bob Menendez endorsed for president in 2008!

    22, male, RI-01 (voting) IL-01 (college), moving to Japan in July, hopeless Swingnut

    by sapelcovits on Wed Apr 18, 2012 at 06:30:29 AM PDT

  •  bummer i've been written out of (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    marina, PAbluestater

    Holden's district or I'd be happy to help him retire.

    I'm struck by how the meanest, cruelest, nastiest people brag about how they live in a Christian nation. It's rather telling.

    by terrypinder on Wed Apr 18, 2012 at 06:33:17 AM PDT

  •  We're having elections tonight... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jj32, bythesea, PAbluestater

    to elect the new board of Bruin Democrats for the next school year.  :-)

    For the first time in quite a few years, there's only one person running for President!  This makes it a bit anti-climactic, but in a few hours, we'll officially welcome in a girl who's originally from D.C. and went to the same school Obama's children currently attend.

    Then in about 3 weeks, we're having campus elections, at which point the entire school becomes divided, feelings get hurt, friendships get destroyed, lies and accusations get thrown around, and a race war damn near breaks out.  Happens every year.  Ah, college.

  •  Someone forgot to completely (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bythesea, bear83, itskevin, geoneb

    suspend their campaign:

    Santorum letter: Romney as nominee ‘truly frightens me’

    Weirdest thing is, why Iowa? Caucus there was months ago.

  •  love that IL-13 action (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bythesea, redrelic17, KingofSpades

    I would really love it if Dems pick up that CD. The question might be whether resentments will die down before the election.  But I don't see how any Repub voter can be happy about it.  Love this comparison from the article:

    Spradlin also made his views known in a 5-minute video he posted Sunday on You Tube. In it he predicted that if county chairmen choose Clarke, "you will have a mutiny on your hands."

    He said that "a lot of Republicans are crying foul that Tim ignored the primary process" and charged that this "seems like something that Rod Blagojevich would do."

    Thanks for keeping an eye on all these races for us.  

    I'm not liberal. I'm actually just anti-evil, OK? - Elon James White

    by Satya1 on Wed Apr 18, 2012 at 06:54:04 AM PDT

  •  PA-12 Altmire narrow lead over Critz (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Paleo, bumiputera

    I haven't seen any trendlines in this particular poll, but Altmire started with a much bigger lead so whatever Critz is doing should be work.

    Also, does Altmire remind anyone else of Reverend Newlin from True Blood?

    NY-12 in real life, @BobbyBigWheel on Twitter

    by Bobby Big Wheel on Wed Apr 18, 2012 at 07:36:00 AM PDT

  •  I'm very tempted to do this... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jj32, tietack, itskevin, askew

    As First Read suggest, just turn on, tune in, and drop out until the conventions come and the silly season ends.

    * What also continues? The silly season: Last week, we wrote that this presidential campaign had entered the “silly season,” with all the focus on that Hilary Rosen controversy. Well, the silly season is continuing – this time with Democrats trying to make Romney own what conservative rocker Ted Nugent said about the president. This campaign has taken on the negative stereotype of Twitter -- snarky, obnoxious, and biting. But we do have to ask: What did Romney expect when he courted the incendiary Nugent? And speaking of people who have been in the middle of manufactured controversies… Why is Romney continuing to hang out with Donald Trump? If Trump says something controversial -- and trust us, he will; he can’t help himself -- Romney will deserve more ownership of those comments than Team Obama did for what Hilary Rosen said. By the way, we’re not even going to discuss this dog-meat business. We don’t blame folks if they are wondering if it might be better to go into a political coma for the next 90 days and pick back up when the conventions begin.

    26, originally OK-1, currently NY-8. Former swingnut.

    by okiedem on Wed Apr 18, 2012 at 07:40:50 AM PDT

  •  phila turnout in african-amer wards on tues for Ob (0+ / 0-)

    I and others will be looking at turnout Tues in Philadelphia's mostly African-American wards.  Phila turnout historically is lower than rest of state in primaries.  If that continues Tues even with Obama on the ballot (I assume Obama team would want more votes for Obama than for Romney statewide even tho both primaries are uncontested).  Team O could also use primary to see how many AA voters have a proper ID - how much grunt work will be required to meet the stringent voter ID requirements the GOP will be using in every Phila voting division in November to suppress the Dem vote.  Cheap radio ads could be used to up Phila vote.  No evidence that Team O is doing any of this to avoid the November trainwreck when several tens of thousands of AA voters will have votes challenged by the GOP official at each voting division in November. Team O seems to be asleep.

  •  Mayfield milk (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    James Allen

    I know people who'd buy a few gallons of that very time they were home from college and bring back to college, they loved that stuff so much.

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