● NH-Sen, PA-Sen: With Donald Trump's numbers in the gutter nationwide, the well-funded pro-Hillary Clinton super PAC Priorities USA can devote some of its resources to ensuring that Clinton gets to work with a Democratic Senate. Last week, several media organizations reported that Priorities was readying ads in key Senate contests, and on Tuesday, they confirmed it. Priorities says that they'll launch commercials in New Hampshire and Pennsylvania tying Sens. Kelly Ayotte and Pat Toomey to Trump. The group did not say how much they'll spend in each state, or if they plan to get involved in any other Senate races.
Polls show that while both Ayotte and Toomey are in tight races, they're still doing much better than Trump in their states. However, a recent DSCC poll argued that, when voters are informed that their GOP Senate candidate used to back Trump but only recently withdrew their support, Team Red lost critical support. Ayotte infamously spent most of the campaign saying she was voting for Trump, and only dumped him after his "grab them by the pussy!" video surfaced; Toomey continues to be evasive about who he plans to vote for in the presidential race.
Both Republicans are absolutely aware that if too many voters associate them with The Donald, they're in trouble. Toomey recently launched a strange ad where he halfheartedly noted that he has "a lot of disagreements with Donald Trump," though he didn't provide any actual examples. Ayotte and Toomey's Democratic foes, Maggie Hassan and Katie McGinty, have been airing their own ads tethering the two senators to Trump. Priorities has run some of the most effective commercials of the cycle that used Trump's own words against him. If they can use Trump's many awful comments to drag down Ayotte and Toomey, Democrats will have a lot to smile about on election night.
Be sure to check out our third quarter Senate fundraising chart, which we're updating as new numbers come in. Also, be sure to check out our House fundraising chart.
● CA-Sen: Loretta Sanchez (D): $504,000 raised, $879,000 cash-on-hand
● MO-Gov (September): Chris Koster (D): $3.4 million raised, $6.6 million cash-on-hand; Eric Greitens (R): $4.2 million raised, $2.7 million cash-on-hand
● FL-Sen: Barack Obama not only personally advocates for Democrat Patrick Murphy in a new spot, the president does it in Spanish. Obama tells the audience that Murphy "will fight for immigration reform, better education and higher wages."
● Polls: What would we do without polls?
● AZ-Sen: Behavior Research Institute: John McCain (R-inc): 50, Ann Kirkpatrick (D): 40 (43-38 Clinton) (June: 40-31 McCain)
● IN-Sen: Ball State: Evan Bayh (D): 49, Todd Young (R): 43
● NC-Sen: SurveyUSA:
Richard Burr (R-inc): 44, Deborah Ross (D): 37 Richard Burr (R-inc): 45, Deborah Ross (D): 43 (44-42 Clinton) (Oct.: 46-44 Burr)
● NC-Sen: National Research (R) for Civitas Institute: Burr (R-inc): 44, Ross (D): 37 (44-42 Clinton) (Sept.: 44-39 Burr)
● NC-Gov: SurveyUSA:
Pat McCrory (R-inc): 46, Roy Cooper (D): 42 Roy Cooper (D): 47, Pat McCrory (R-inc): 45 (44-42 Clinton) (Oct.: 48-44 Cooper)
● NC-Gov: National Research (R) for Civitas Institute: McCrory (R-inc): 46, Cooper (D): 42 (44-42 Clinton) (Sept.: 45-44 McCrory)
● WI-Sen: Monmouth: Russ Feingold (D): 52, Ron Johnson (R-inc): 44 (47-40 Clinton) (Aug.: 54-41 Feingold)
● WI-Sen: PPP (D) for End Citizens United: Feingold (D): 47, Johnson (R-inc): 41 (50-38 Clinton) (Aug.: 49-42 Feingold)
● Behavior Research Institute gives Clinton her largest Arizona lead in some time, but it doesn't seem to be helping Kirkpatrick.
● Somehow, SurveyUSA finds Cooper slipping 8 points and Ross dropping 5 in just the last two weeks—even as Clinton holds steady and keeps her head above water. That seems odd.
● Right as they were dropping this new poll, the conservative Civitas Institute announced it was filing a lawsuit against Cooper in his capacity state attorney general, claiming he'd "illegally funneled settlement money to special interest groups." That's some timing.
● A couple of surveys earlier this month, including the respected Marquette Law poll, suddenly found a tight race between Feingold and Johnson, after Feingold had led comfortably for the better part of two years. These latest polls now show a wider advantage for the Democrat. Interestingly, Monmouth finds Feingold running ahead of Clinton while PPP sees the opposite; our polling average has Clinton slightly in front of Feingold.
● OR-Gov: After a month-long polling drought, we have our third survey in the last week of the Oregon gubernatorial race. On behalf of several local news groups, Riley Research gives Democratic Gov. Kate Brown a strong 48-34 lead over Republican Bud Pierce, while Hillary Clinton carries the Beaver State 46-36. DHM Research recently found Brown up by a similar 46-33 spread, but SurveyUSA gave her just a modest 46-42 lead. National groups aren't spending here, which strongly indicates that Riley and DHM have a better read on this contest than SurveyUSA does.
● VT-Gov: On behalf of Vermont Public Radio, the Castleton Polling Institute gives us our first-ever look at Vermont's gubernatorial race. They give Republican Phil Scott a 39-38 lead over Democrat Sue Minter, while Hillary Clinton leads Donald Trump 45-17, though a massive 13 percent say they'll vote for another presidential candidate who isn't Gary Johnson or Jill Stein.
Both parties are spending here, so we have every reason to think this contest is competitive. However, it's worth noting that this poll has was in the field from Sept. 29 to Oct. 14, which is an absurdly long time. Donald Trump was never going to carry Vermont, but it's very possible that the many events that occurred as this survey was being conducted still hurt him here, and to a lesser extend, hurt Scott as well.
Several campaign ads from both sides also went up during this 17-day period, and if they helped shift the contest one way or another, this poll likely didn't catch it. Castleton may be completely on target: Scott has plenty of crossover appeal and we've always rated this contest as a Tossup. But hopefully, we'll get some better data in the next three weeks.
● WV-Gov: On behalf of MetroNews West Virginia, Repass Research takes another look at the open gubernatorial race. They give Democrat Jim Justice a 44-33 lead over Republican Bill Cole, while left-leaning Mountain Party candidate Charlotte Pritt takes 8 and the Libertarian grabs 5. In early September, they gave Justice a similar 46-32 edge.
While West Virginia is a very red state in federal races, this poll indicates that Justice may be the one who has more room to grow: In a two-way matchup, Justice's lead expands to 52-36. Only 29 percent of Cole voters also say they're definitely or probably supporting him, while 44 percent of Justice's supporters say the same thing about their candidate. Presidential numbers were not included in this release.
A few days ago, Justice released his own poll showing him up 44-34. In response, Cole dropped a survey showing a 39-39 tie. The Center for Public Integrity estimates that the RGA has only spent a modest $406,000 on broadcast TV, so right now at least, national Republicans aren't acting like this race is tight.
Importantly, all three of these polls were conducted after Oct. 7, when NPR reported that Justice still owes $15 million in taxes and fines across six states. That story doesn't seem to be hurting his numbers much, if at all, but Cole is hoping to change that. Cole is finally running a commercial on the subject that argues that Justice owes $3 million in state taxes, and that his delinquency hurts local schools. The narrator lays out other taxes Justice owes and says that while Justice "bragged about making huge contributions to the Boy Scouts and a hospital, turns out Justice never paid them." The spot then features pictures of Justice, Obama, and Hillary Clinton, and concludes that he's "one of three people we would never ever want as our governor."
Why, the Justice described in the Cole ad sounds a lot like a certain stubby-fingered orange man who is likely to easily carry West Virginia's five electoral votes next month! As Politico noted last month, even though Justice and Donald Trump come from opposite parties, they have both built up similar cults of personality as populist billionaires. While Trump's tax issues and charity scandals have hurt him elsewhere, those stories don't seem to have noticeably eroded his support with his base, and Justice's may not either.
● Fundraising: Daily Kos Elections is pleased to present our House fundraising roundup for the third quarter of 2016, the last big-picture look we'll get at the broad House financial picture before Election Day. In total, we have numbers 146 candidates in 72 different races, representing the full spectrum of competitive and potentially competitive seats this fall. Click through for all our data.
● CA-10: House Majority PAC released a huge batch of polls on Wednesday, starting with a survey from Clarity Campaign Labs of California's 10th Congressional District that gives Democrat Michael Eggman a 46-45 lead over Republican Rep. Jeff Denham.
The sample gives Hillary Clinton a similar 41-40 edge in this Modesto seat. Obama won here 51-47 and the district is home to a large Hispanic population, so it's a bit surprising the poll has Clinton underperforming. However, the district has a much smaller proportion of college-educated residents than the nation as a whole, so Donald Trump may actually have room to improve on Romney's performance.
Until recently, there was little outside spending here, and Denham looked likely to win a fourth term. But a few weeks ago, House Majority PAC's allies at the DCCC launched a $791,000 ad campaign for Eggman. The conservative Congressional Leadership Fund quickly committed a hefty $2 million to this seat as well. Denham pulled off a 53-47 win in 2012 against a highly-touted Democratic foe even while Obama was carrying his seat, so he still won't be easy to beat. But with both sides spending here and this poll showing a tight contest, an upset doesn't look so hard to envision anymore.
● CA-25: Bryan Caforio just became one of the first Democrats in the nation to run a general election commercial starring President Barack Obama. Caforio begins by describing his middle class roots, before Obama appears and tells the audience that he's backing Caforio "because he'll take on the big banks, just like he did as a consumer attorney. He'll fight Republican efforts to privatize Social Security, he'll keep Planned Parenthood funded and protect women's health, and pass equal pay for equal work."
Interestingly, Obama actually lost this Antelope Valley seat by a slim 50-48 margin in 2012, though he carried it 49-48 four years earlier. However, most polls show Obama with a solid approval rating going into Election Day, so we may see him advertise in other areas where he barely won or narrowly lost. Caforio faces freshman GOP Rep. Steve Knight in a contest that only recently has begun to attract outside spending.
● FL-07: The DCCC is out with another poll from Global Strategy Group and Lester & Associates giving Democrat Stephanie Murphy a small lead over Republican Rep. John Mica. They have her ahead of the 12-term incumbent by a 48-45 margin, while Hillary Clinton leads 49-39 in this suburban Orlando seat. Last week, the DCCC released a survey from their in-house polling arm showing Murphy up 45-43, while Clinton led 47-36. Mica and his allies dusted off a mid-September poll a few weeks ago that gave him a huge 52-34 edge, but that survey was taken before the many ads run here went up. So far, Team Red hasn't released contradictory numbers to the two DCCC polls showing Murphy narrowly ahead.
Redistricting transformed Mica's seat from a district that Romney carried by about 5 points to one that Obama took by a very slim margin. Murphy, a former official at the Defense Department, entered the race late, but the DCCC and House Majority PAC made an early decision to reserve over $3 million in this seat to help her, even though she was an unproven candidate. According to these polls at least, the Democrats’ early ads targeting Mica and promoting Murphy helped turn what could have been a backwater race into a tight contest. So far, national Republicans don't appear to have made any serious reservations here, so maybe they believe that Mica is still in good shape. Mica does have a clear financial edge over Murphy so it’s also possible that Team Red thinks he can fend for himself.
● FL-27: Even with Donald Trump on the ballot, national Democrats don't have much optimism about beating entrenched Republican Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen in this 53-46 Obama seat. Democrat Scott Fuhrman is hoping to change that, and he's out with a survey from Frederick Polls showing Ros-Lehtinen up by a relatively modest 41-32, while Hillary Clinton takes the Miami seat 52-33. Not only does Fuhrman argue that he's made gains since an unreleased September poll had him down 57-38, but he says that, after unidentified negative messages are tested against Ros-Lehtinen, Furman leads 40-31.
While Furman has done some self-funding and aired some ads, he doesn't have much cash left, so he'll almost certainly need significant outside support to win. However, there's no sign that will happen. And while Furman's poll tested a scenario where voters only heard negative information about Ros-Lehtinen, that's not how real campaigns play out, as Ros-Lehtinen has already run a commercial attacking Furman for his past history of reckless driving.
● IL-10: Both parties are releasing polls saying that they feel good about the race for this suburban Chicago seat, but spending like they think it's tight. House Majority PAC is out with a Clarity Campaign Labs survey showing Democrat Brad Schneider leading Republican Rep. Bob Dold! by a strong 48-38 margin, while Hillary Clinton leads 53-30 here. But just last week, the NRCC dropped their own poll showing Dold up 50-43 even though Clinton had an almost identical 53-31 edge. The DCCC and HMP have reserved a combined $2.7 million (and are spending more on so-called “hybrid” ads with Schneider) while the NRCC has committed $3.56 million, so no one is acting like this race is a gimme.
● IN-09: House Majority PAC isn't just out with a poll arguing that this race for this red southern Indiana seat is close, they're actually putting their money where their mouth is and airing ads for Democrat Shelli Yoder.
We'll start with the poll, which was conducted by Normington Petts. They give Republican Trey Hollingsworth just a 40-38 lead; HMP did not include presidential numbers in their release. Two weeks ago, the DCCC dropped a poll showing Hollingsworth up 44-42, while Donald Trump led 50-43. Team Red never released contradictory numbers for that poll, and they have yet to respond to this one either.
Romney carried this seat by a wide 57-41 margin and even disastrous 2012 GOP Senate nominee Richard Mourdock narrowly took it while he was losing 50-44 statewide, so this is not friendly turf for Democrats. However, Hollingsworth only moved to Indiana from Tennessee last year just before he launched his campaign for this open seat, and Yoder has raised enough money to exploit his weakness.
She's also getting some help from House Majority PAC, which launched a $650,000 ad buy on Wednesday. Yoder has already been attacking Hollingsworth as a carpetbagger, and HMP continues the offensive. Right off the bat, the narrator labels him "Tennessee Trey Hollingsworth," and says that his “dad's money is trying to buy our congressional seat." The spot goes on to accuse Hollingsworth's company of getting Indiana taxpayer money while he was still living down south and insists that he went to court to get out of paying Indiana property taxes.
Hollingsworth may have an unappealing background, but he won't lack the resources to fight back. Hollingsworth is wealthy and as the ad alludes, his father set up a super PAC to help him win the primary. The group, Indiana Jobs Now, recently dropped $174,000 in media placement for the general election, though we haven't seen their new ads. It won't be easy for Yoder to win on turf this red, but House Majority PAC's poll and actions show that they believe she has a real shot.
● KS-03: For the second time in little over a week, a Democratic poll sees a very close race in Kansas' 3rd Congressional District—and places the incumbent well below the 50 percent mark. On behalf of House Majority PAC, Global Strategy Group finds GOP Rep. Kevin Yoder leading Democrat Jay Sidie by just a 41-37 spread, while Hillary Clinton is bashing Donald Trump 44-35. That follows a recent DCCC poll from Garin-Hart-Yang that put Yoder up 44-40 with Clinton leading 52-42.
Yoder's response to the latest survey didn't even try to address the numbers at all. Whined a spokesperson, "Washington Democrats are dumping millions in outside money into this race to try and steal this seat. We're going to continue to fight back against their lies and we are going to win." Weak.
It is true, though, that Democrats have poured in a bunch of outside money: Just a few days ago, the DCCC reserved $1 million in TV time for the final weeks of the race to help Sidie. The committee's first ad yokes Yoder to deeply unpopular Gov. Sam Brownback, who sports a truly toxic 14-65 favorability rating in the new HMP poll. The spot's narrator says that Yoder "helped Brownback become governor" and "wrote plans to cut hundreds of millions from Kansas schools to pay for corporate tax breaks instead," the very thing that's made Brownback so despised. (Unsurprisingly, Sidie's own latest ad hits the same theme.)
In a further sign of just how vulnerable Yoder is, the pro-GOP Congressional Leadership Fund is answering back with an $800,000 media buy of its own, though we haven't seen any actual ads from them yet. Yoder, meanwhile, began attacking Sidie immediately after the Democrat first started advertising late last month, and he's continuing to take him seriously. A new Yoder spot stays on the offensive, accusing Sidie of being an "unlicensed and unregistered financial advisor, breaking Kansas law" who was "accused of cheating and defrauding a client, losing over a million dollars." (Sidie says he's exempt from the law and says that no action has been taken on the ethics complaint in question.) These are not the actions of a candidate—or party—who's certain of victory.
We're as surprised as anyone that a contest for a seat that Mitt Romney won by a wide 54-44 margin just four years ago is as competitive as this one, but Trump has done strange things to these elections. In particular, as we've noted many times, Trump has driven away scores of well-educated, affluent voters who were once reliably Republican, and this district is full of them. Brownback's horrific approval ratings here also add an extra problem for Yoder that other congressional Republicans don't have to deal with. Sidie still has a difficult "last mile," especially because Yoder still has a huge financial advantage. But with both parties spending here and with an upset looking more and more possible, we're moving this race from Likely Republican to Lean Republican.
● ME-02: House Majority PAC is out with new numbers from Clarity Campaign Labs showing former Democratic state Sen. Emily Cain sporting a 47-43 lead over Republican Rep. Bruce Poliquin. This northern Maine district is heavily rural, white, and working-class, meaning it's been stubborn territory for Team Blue in 2016 despite a history of leaning toward Democrats. But Cain's most recent internal had her up 46-45 two weeks ago, while Poliquin has failed to produce any contradictory numbers. Hillary Clinton's campaign even recently devoted $250,000 to the district, with an eye toward boosting Cain.
But even though Maine's 2nd has voted for every Democratic presidential nominee since 1992, HMP's poll also found the presidential race tied at 39-39 apiece. However, that's a marked improvement from surveys several weeks ago, which found Donald Trump picking off the district thanks to his resilience with working-class whites. If that holds, a draw or even a Clinton victory here would make it much easier for Cain to prevail since she would not have to rely on as many Trump voters splitting their tickets for her. Both parties are treating this race as a top-tier contest, with Democratic groups having reserved $2.6 million in ads and Republican groups directing $3.7 million here.
As part of that $3.7 million, the NRCC continues an appalling line of attack in a new ad that tries to slam Cain for supposedly wanting to fat-shame young girls by forcing schools to weigh them and report it to the state. The spot even shows several distraught-looking teenagers waiting in line to step on a scale. But the bill the ad actually refers to was one Cain sponsored to help fight childhood obesity by collecting data on it, and what the ad doesn't tell you is that not only was any information gathered confidential, parents could also opt out—not that those details are going to stop the NRCC. After the last NRCC ad ran, Cain aired a spot accusing the GOP of "exploit[ing] the insecurities of teenage girls," and also saying that, like many women, she's struggled with her own weight.
● MN-03: While it's clear that Republican Rep. Erik Paulsen has a lead in this suburban Twin Cities seat, it's really tough to know how secure he is. A few weeks ago, House Majority PAC canceled its entire planned ad reservation here, and a recent SurveyUSA poll showed Paulsen beating Democrat Terri Bonoff by a wide 49-38 margin, even as Hillary Clinton was posting a 48-35 lead. However, House Majority PAC released a Clarity Campaign Labs poll on Wednesday that gave Paulsen just a 45-42 edge here, with Clinton up 47-28, so maybe they have renewed faith in Bonoff.
HMP's allies at the DCCC also are continuing to air ads tying Paulsen to Donald Trump, and there's no indication that they're planning to cut their planned $2.2 million ad campaign. In fact, according to new ad reservations data that is not yet reflected in our chart, the opposite has happened, and they've earmarked an additional $500,000 for this race.
Bonoff also unveiled a web ad on Wednesday starring Barack Obama, though his interest in this contest goes beyond just helping his party flip another seat. Bonoff's son is the president's body man (the job performed by Charlie Young on "The West Wing"), and Obama even starts out the commercial by telling the audience, "Some say you can learn a lot about a person by how they've raised their kids. Well, Terri Bonoff's son is one of my closest aides. And he and his mom are both amazing." The president goes on to praise Bonoff's bipartisan record in the state legislature and calls her "somebody special." The spot doesn't appear to be airing on TV yet, though there's a good chance Obama will appear in a television ad for Bonoff soon.
● MN-08: On behalf of House Majority PAC, Clarity Campaign Labs is out with a survey showing Democratic Rep. Rick Nolan up 49-41 against Republican Stewart Mills. While Obama carried this rural northeast Minnesota seat 52-46, the sample gives Donald Trump a 39-38 lead. However, this Iron Range district has a lower proportion of college graduates and a smaller median income than the nation as a whole, and even with Trump's problems, he can definitely outperform Romney here. In fact, back in September, Nolan himself said that his early polls showed Hillary Clinton "unbelievably far behind" in the district.
At least that seems to have changed, though so far, neither side is acting like Nolan is anything like 8 points up. The DCCC and HMP have reserved at least $3.85 million here, while the NRCC and the Congressional Leadership Fund have committed at least $3.6 million. In fact, Roll Call reports that the CLF and their allies at the conservative non-profit American Action Network will send an additional $2.3 million here, though some of that will go to web ads.
Mills is also exceedingly wealthy and won't need to worry about running out of resources. Nolan beat Mills 49-47 during the 2014 GOP wave, so he's proven that he can win under tough conditions, but both parties are behaving like they think this contest is far closer than this HMP poll says.
● CA-Sen: Labor-affiliated Standing Up for California's Middle Class puts down $1 million to tout Democrat Kamala Harris for her work as attorney general, particularly her efforts to keep children safe and her plans to invest in education.
● IN-Sen: The National Education Association continues a common Democratic line of attack that hammers Republican Todd Young for standing up for those who outsource jobs at the expense of Indiana workers.
● MO-Sen: Republican Sen. Roy Blunt speaks directly to the camera to blast Obamacare, attacking Democrat Jason Kander as a Hillary Clinton stooge who will expand the law.
● NC-Sen: The League of Conservation Voters has launched a $3 million campaign. Their first ad excoriates Republican Sen. Richard Burr for showering oil and gas companies with billions of tax breaks while they returned the favor with hundreds of thousands in campaign contributions. They note Burr even held tens of thousands of dollars in oil stocks even while voting for measures that could personally benefit his investments.
● NH-Sen: Republican Sen. Kelly Ayotte monotonously attacks Democrat Maggie Hassan over Northern Pass, a high-power electricity transmission line that might mar the landscape of New Hampshire's scenic foliage. Ayotte says she has always insisted the project only move forward if developers bury their power lines but claims Hassan has equivocated on the issue. She further blasts Hassan for supposedly taking tens of thousands in illegal campaign contributions that she says represent dirty money from special interests who "want to ram the project through and build the towers."
Hassan's campaign shot back that she has long prioritized the environment when considering this project, that Ayotte has major support from fossil fuel industry interests, and that environmental groups back Hassan. As for the contributions, Hassan counters her return of $24,000 in donations was due to a technicality, noting that even the state's attorney general agreed with their interpretation of campaign finance law: The money was disbursed before a crucial deadline, but Hassan's 2014 gubernatorial campaign only physically received the money after that deadline and had to return them.
● NV-Sen: The Senate Leadership Fund continues common Republican attacks against Democrat Catherine Cortez Masto for supposedly being weak on crime as state attorney general. Citizens for Responsible Energy Solutions starts off by scaremongering about national security with images of Islamist extremists, then pivots to saying that's why we need energy security. They praise Republican Joe Heck for pursuing an "all of the above" energy strategy that will supposedly promote American energy independence.
● PA-Sen: End Citizens United lays down $900,000 to excoriate Republican Sen. Pat Toomey for being a millionaire bank owner who used predatory foreclosure practices to unfairly squeeze vulnerable business owners. They blast him for voting for rules that favor bankers like himself while sitting on the banking committee. The DSCC similarly skewers Toomey on the very same subject, noting his bank used predatory practices banned in most states, but says that Toomey fights for weaker banking regulations from his powerful perch on the banking committee. Meanwhile, the Republican Jewish Coalition attacks Democrat Katie McGinty over the Iran nuclear deal as part of $500,000 TV, mail, and canvassing effort.
● WI-Sen: Republican Sen. Ron Johnson has utterly no shame when he misleadingly attacks Democratic ex-Sen. Russ Feingold for being two-faced on protecting Social Security. Johnson, who has frequently called Social Security "a legal Ponzi scheme" and wants to privatize it, claims Feingold wants to increase taxes on benefits, saying it would hurt seniors. However, Feingold merely supports raising the yearly earnings limit of $118,500, where workers pay no additional taxes into Social Security on any earnings above that level. You have to earn roughly four times the median income to make that much money, meaning ultra-wealthy people like Johnson pay a much lower overall rate in Social Security taxes than the other 94 percent of Americans, something Feingold wants to rectify.
● IN-Gov: Republican Eric Holcomb once more features his wife Janet speaking on his behalf, this time to say he is a friend of small businesses. Holcomb once again touts his ties to former Gov. Mitch Daniels, but tellingly not current Gov. Mike Pence, the guy he actually serves under as lieutenant governor.
● MT-Gov: Republican Greg Gianforte attacks Democratic Gov. Steve Bullock over Montana ranking near dead last in the nation in terms of wages, promising he will use his business experience to bring good-paying jobs to Montana. Gianforte also name-drops his running-mate Lesley Robinson as a fourth-generation Montana rancher who has fought supposed federal overreach to argue the state needs political outsiders like them.
● NH-Gov: Republican Chris Sununu's first general election ad bemoans attacks on his family over their business, saying that when he ran the Sununu family’s resort, he created good-paying jobs and expanded the business. He touts his record as an environmental engineer cleaning up hazardous waste sites right before saying he'll cut regulations as governor, seemingly unfazed by the apparent cognitive dissonance between those two statements. Sununu finishes by promising to be a bipartisan leader.
● WV-Gov: Republican Bill Cole lays out his values, saying West Virginia needs to prioritize education, jobs, and less dependence on Washington.
● AK-AL: Democrat Steve Lindbeck speaks to the camera and lays out his many reasons for running against Republican Rep. Don Young. Lindbeck describes how Young cursed at high school students and blamed them for a friend's suicide, and talks about the incumbent’s many legal and ethical issues.
● AZ-02: Even though national Democrats haven't shown much interest in Matt Heinz's campaign, the Congressional Leadership Fund is apparently taking no chances here. They accuse Heinz of backing Obamacare and demonize the program. They also blame him for a proposed sales tax hike.
● CA-10: The Congressional Leadership Fund uses actual footage of the aftermath last year's shooting in San Bernardino to accuse Democrat Michael Eggman of being weak on national security. Interestingly, they bash Hillary Clinton in a seat that Obama carried 51-47, which suggests that they don't think she polls well here. A recent survey of this district from House Majority PAC had Clinton up just 41-40 (see our CA-10 item in the House section), so they may be on to something.
● CO-06: The narrator in Republican Rep. Mike Coffman's spot highlights his endorsement from the Denver Post and praises him for taking "action against his party's presidential nominee, Donald Trump." She also says Coffman urged his party to stop stalling on immigration reform. (Somehow, that last line is supposed to help convince the audience that Coffman is effective.) The spot then cites the Post bashing Democrat Morgan Carroll as "disingenuous and partisan."
● IA-03: The Congressional Leadership Fund portrays Democrat Jim Mowrer, an Iraq War veteran, as weak on national security.
● KS-03: Republican Rep. Kevin Yoder defends himself against Democratic attempts to tie him to Gov. Sam Brownback and his education cuts and calls Democrat Jay Sidie a liar.
● MN-08: Republican Stewart Mills argues that both Hillary Clinton and Democratic Rep. Rick Nolan are a threat to local mining jobs.
● MT-AL: Democrat Denise Juneau is out with two spots (here and here). She speaks to the camera in the first one and promises she will be an independent voice who will put Montanans first. Her second one attacks Republican Rep. Ryan Zinke for putting his Washington political ambitions ahead of Montana residents, slamming him for standing by Donald Trump even after Trump's sexual assault tape scandal.
● NY-19: Democrat Zephyr Teachout says she has stood up for everyday New Yorkers and excoriates Republican John Faso for being a lobbyist who puts special interests first instead.
● NY-22: Independent Martin Babinec touts his positive campaign focused on jobs and bemoans partisan attacks against him that call him too conservative or too liberal. He claims he'll be an independent and not in the pocket of special interests like his opponents.
● NY-24: The DCCC links Republican Rep. John Katko to Donald Trump, playing several clips of Trump’s offensive statements and noting Katko has supported his party’s nominee in spite of Trump's long history of awfulness.
● WI-08: Republican Mike Gallagher continues to portray Democrat Tom Nelson as weak on crime for voting for the early release of prisoners.
The Daily Kos Elections Morning Digest is compiled by David Nir, Jeff Singer, and Stephen Wolf, with additional contributions from David Jarman, Steve Singiser, Daniel Donner, and James Lambert.