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Posts tagged ‘Scott Brown’

Democrats Have 11 Videos Ready to Slam Christie on Bridge-gate.

Democratic Party strategists are focusing on a systematic strategy to undermine New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s national image by capitalizing on the backlash from the George Washington bridge scandal.

According to The New York Times, Democratic operatives reaching up to the highest levels of the party are using every opportunity to define Christie as a corrupt bully as they aim to sabotaging his chances of mounting a successful run for the White House.

Democrats have already created 11 different videos to capitalize on Christie’s links to the bridge-gate scandal. They are also organizing protests and news conferences in different parts of the country to dog Christie during his travels in his role as chairman of the Republican Governors Association.

“If Republican governors want to keep embracing him as their chair, as their model for the future, we’re happy to help them out,” Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee, told the Times.

Democrats have also resorted to attacking GOP candidates and lawmakers who have come to Christie’s defense, from a potential Senate candidate in New Hampshire to a New York congressman, according to The Times.

For example, when former Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown, who is considering a run for Senate in New Hampshire, defended Christie on television, the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee immediately ridiculed him as being “defender-in-chief of scandal-ridden Chris Christie,” according to The Times.

The Democratic National Committee has issued 58 emails to the media about the Christie administration’s alleged acts of political revenge, while American Bridge, a Democratic research group, has issued 169 requests for internal documents from the Christie Administration, the Times reports.

The escalating attacks have begun to limit Christie’s ability to work on behalf of GOP candidates, with aides being forced to conceal the details of fundraisers and events. But key donors have so far said they will not turn their backs on him.

Related stories: 

© 2014 Newsmax. All rights reserved.
By Melanie Batley

Rove: Republicans Have Good Chance to Win Senate Control.

Image: Rove: Republicans Have Good Chance to Win Senate Control


By Cathy Burke

Seven Democratic senators are hobbled by diminished fundraising and their support for an increasingly unpopular President Barack Obama — giving Republicans a clear shot at regaining the Senate, political consultant and policy adviser Karl Rove says.

In an op-ed piece published in the online Wall Street Journal on Wednesday night,
President George W. Bush’s former deputy chief of staff says other nail-biters are shaping up in both traditionally GOP and swing states.

If Republicans can claim 10 Democratic seats, “the chances of regaining Senate control and providing an important institutional check on Mr. Obama’s agenda during his last two years go up dramatically,” Rove writes.

Rove argues that the dollar figures show it’s possible, citing Federal Election Commission filings, news reports on campaign fundraising for the fourth quarter of 2013, and cash-on-hand Dec. 31.

Rove says that in the seven states carried by Mitt Romney in 2012 where Democratic senators are on the ballot, filings show the leading GOP contenders have raised $6.5 million, compared with the Democrats — including four incumbents — who have drummed up $6.7 million during the last quarter.

Five Republicans in the targeted states outraised their Democratic rivals, including in Montana, South Dakota and West Virginia, where the Democratic senators are leaving, Rove writes.

Similarly, GOP contenders have collected more money in two of the four targeted states — Alaska, Arkansas, Louisiana and North Carolina — where Democratic incumbents are in tough re-election bids.

Obama’s dismal job-approval rating also spells trouble for Democrats, he writes. It was stuck at an overall 42 percent for the week ending last Sunday, and is averaging about 36 percent in the seven Senate states up for grabs.

“If that’s the case on Election Day, he will likely sink his party’s candidates, who probably cannot run more than 5 points ahead of Mr. Obama’s rating,” Rove predicts.

According to Rove, voting patterns of senators who were ardent supporters of Obama’s policies might work against them as well.

Four “red state” Democratic senators running for re-election gave the president nearly absolute support, including Louisiana’s Mary Landrieu and Alaska’s Mark Begich at 97 percent, followed by North Carolina’s Kay Hagan at 96 percent and Arkansas’s Mike Pryor at 90 percent.

“They are now trying to distance themselves from the president,” Rove says.

“These problems . . . could cause problems for Democratic senators in purple states as well,” Rove writes, noting that in 2010 Republicans picked up six Senate seats, five of which were won by Obama in 2008: Florida, Illinois, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.
Rove says four purple states “appear promising.”

In Michigan, Republican Terri Lynn Land has out-raised Democratic opponent Rep. Gary Peters in the last two quarters. In New Hampshire, Democratic Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, who has backed Obama policies 99 percent of the time in 2013, has raised $3.4 million.

“What happens if former Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown . . . runs?” Rove asks. “”He raised $28.2 million for his last campaign.”

In Minnesota, Democratic Sen. Al Franken rolled up a perfect record of backing Obama last year; in Virginia, Sen. Mark Warner was behind the president’s policies 97 percent of the time.

“Both could face Republican challengers — businessman Mike McFadden in Minnesota and former GOP National Chairman Ed Gillespie in Virginia — who can raise money and could take advantage of Mr. Obama’s unpopularity,” he said.

Other “purple possibilities” could include Oregon, New Mexico, Colorado and Iowa, Rove writes.

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© 2014 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

WSJ: GOP Making Bold, Massive Bid to Take Senate.

Image: WSJ: GOP Making Bold, Massive Bid to Take SenateScott Brown, left, and Ed Gillespie

By Melissa Clyne

In its bid to gain the Senate majority in the midterm elections later this year, the GOP is crafting its strategy straight from the 2012 Democratic playbook, according to The Washington Post.

Republicans are casting a wide net to pick up the six seats needed to secure a majority, putting up viable candidates in a plethora of states where they hope to capitalize on President Barack Obama’s dismal job performance ratings as well as the national furor over Obamacare.

“The key to the Republican strategy is making the next tier of seats [and recruits] as large as possible since a few candidates will flame out, some incumbents will prove tougher to beat than they appear, and the national political environment could shift several times between now and November,” the Post notes.

Republicans need to win six new seats to flip the current Democratic majority of 55-to-45. In the current political climate, they are expected to gain between four and seven seats, according to the non-partisan Rothenberg Political Report. 

States where the GOP can prevail include Alaska, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Arkansas, Louisiana, Michigan, Montana, West Virginia, South Dakota, Virginia, and possibly Minnesota. Five of the vulnerabilities stem from retirement announcements by Democratic senators Max Baucus of Montana, Carl Levin of Michigan, Tom Harkin of Iowa, Jay Rockefeller of West Virginia, and South Dakota’s Tim Johnson.

Midterm elections are historically unkind to the sitting president’s party. Add to that the hysteria over a botched healthcare law rollout and millions of Americans receiving notices of canceled insurance plans and it’s a recipe for an ouster.

According to the Wall Street Journal, five states Obama won in 2012 — Colorado, Iowa, Michigan, Virginia, and New Hampshire — are now considered vulnerabilities.

In Virginia, former Republican National Committee Chairman Ed Gillespie should be “a very credible contender who can raise considerable money,” according to the Rothenberg Report, and former Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown trails New Hampshire Sen. Jeanne Shaheen by just three points and he hasn’t even announced whether he intends to run.

“I’d be more worried if I were a Democrat than if I was a Republican,” Rothenberg Report editor Stuart Rothenberg told the Journal. “The Republicans’ prospects in the existing targets are improving because of the president’s approval ratings, and they are continuing to put other races on the board.”

By offering voters strong GOP alternatives in a variety of states, even those historically blue, Republicans hope that hijacking the Democrats 2012 strategy proves to be a winner.

“One thing’s for sure,” political columnist Chris Cillizza writes in the Post. “If they make it over the top this November, Senate Republicans should send their Democratic counterparts a nice thank you gift for showing them the way.”

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© 2014 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

Scott Brown Takes Heat in NH on Assault Weapon Ban.

Image: Scott Brown Takes Heat in NH on Assault Weapon Ban

By Melissa Clyne

Though he hasn’t announced any plans to run for the U.S. Senate from New Hampshire, Scott Brown is causing a stir in in the Granite State.

The moderate Republican and former senator from Massachusetts headlined a state GOP holiday party in Nashua that drew supporters and protesters, many of them gun-rights activists who take issue with Brown’s position favoring a federal ban on assault weapons,The Boston Globe reports.

“His coming here is calculated disrespect, just as if he went to Saudi Arabia with pork chops in his suitcase,” protester Jay Simkin told Politico. “If he wants gun control, he should stay in Massachusetts.”

Brown, who also is pro-choice, changed course on the gun control debate after last year’ deadly shootings in Newtown, Conn. His move angered Second Amendment purists.

“If it’s Brown, flush it down,” one protester’s sign read. Others featured scrawled slogans such as “Keep New Hampshire Scott Free” and “Brownbagger go home to Mass.”

Brown has a vacation home in the Granite State, where he is relocating full-time,  sparking speculation that he plans to run for office from his new state.

Republicans there are looking for someone to challenge incumbent Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, the former governor elected to the U.S. Senate in 2008.

Brown has been coy about his intentions, but polling data collected before the launch of troubled Obamacare showed him trailing Shaheen by four percentage points, according to USA Today. His chances are thought to have risen since national outrage over policy cancellations and skyrocketing premiums.

“I didn’t think she was all that vulnerable,” Cook Political Report Senior Editor Jennifer Duffy told USA Today. “I feel a little bit differently about that now. But having said that, Republicans need a candidate and they don’t have one right now.”

In Massachusetts, Sen. Elizabeth Warren unseated Brown in 2012. He won the seat in 2010 in a special election.

A popular governor, Shaheen supported the Affordable Care Act, a decision that is coming back to haunt her in the form of a vicious TV spot skewering her and the president for the failed initiative.

“Obamacare, as you know, is a mess, and it’s really dramatically affecting people’s everyday lives,” Brown said.

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© 2013 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

Scott Brown Moving to New Hampshire, New Talk of Senate Bid.

Image: Scott Brown Moving to New Hampshire, New Talk of Senate Bid

Former Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown is selling his home and plans to move to New Hampshire, the latest sign that he’s considering a U.S. Senate bid from that state.Brown, 54, has found a buyer for his Wrentham home and is set to close on that deal this week, Andrew I. Glincher, managing partner and chief executive officer at Brown’s employer Nixon Peabody LLP, said in an interview. Brown will continue to work out of the law firm’s Boston office because he isn’t licensed to practice law in New Hampshire, Glincher said.

Brown didn’t respond to an e-mail inquiry.

The move will fuel speculation that Brown intends to challenge New Hampshire’s Democratic U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen, who is seeking re-election next year. Brown lost his Massachusetts Senate seat to Democrat Elizabeth Warren in 2012.

Republicans need a net gain of six seats in the 2014 midterms to take control of the Senate. The party already has a majority in the U.S. House.

A former New Hampshire governor, Shaheen, 66, was elected in 2008 with 52 percent of the vote in a three-way race, according to the New Hampshire Secretary of State’s office data. Two Republicans, former state Senator Jim Rubens and activist Karen Testerman, already have announced intentions to challenge Shaheen.

A WMUR Granite State Poll showed Shaheen with a 57 percent favorability rating. The poll was conducted from Oct. 7 to Oct. 16.

Vacation Home

Brown owns a vacation home in New Hampshire and made a number of public appearances in the state this fall. He is scheduled to headline the New Hampshire Republican State Committee’s annual holiday party on Dec. 19 in Nashua.

Earlier this year, Brown won clearance to spend money from his federal political action committee in the state.

Glincher said Brown hasn’t made up his mind about running for the Senate, although he thinks the former senator has ambitions beyond the law firm.

“Some people, when they start, you are already writing the press release for when they leave,” Glincher said.

Brown, in a 2010 special election, won the Massachusetts Senate seat held for almost half a century by Democratic Senator Edward M. Kennedy, who died in 2009.

After losing to Warren in November 2012, Brown considered running again in a special election to replace Senator John Kerry, who was appointed Secretary of State in February by President Barack Obama. Instead, Brown began working as a counsel at Nixon Peabody in March.

In recent days the New Hampshire Democratic Party has pressed Brown to release his client list at the law firm. Glincher said the information won’t be made public.

“The bottom line is that is unobtainable,” Glincher said. “Simply, it is not going to happen.”
© Copyright 2013 Bloomberg News. All rights reserved.


GOP Launches Major Push to Capture Blue State Senate Seats.

Republicans are targeting blue states with competitive races in an effort to win back a majority in the SenatePolitico reports

The GOP currently holds 45 seats in the Senate to the Democrats‘ 55, so it needs to win only six of those elections. Seven states currently represented by Democrats were carried by Mitt Romney in 2012, but Republicans want to increase their chances, so they are also targeting other close elections in purple states, and even some blue ones.

Republicans hope to capitalize on anti-Obamacare sentiment as the program has suffered glitches in its website and in trust in a White House that promised people they could keep their insurance and that premiums would not rise.

Even if a GOP hoped-for backlash against Obamacare doesn’t pan out, Politico notes that Democrats could be forced to pull money from bigger races to spend money on less-consequential contests.

Republicans already hold a majority in the House of Representatives.

New York Times statistician Nate Silver has been predicting a possible GOP turnover of the Senate since early this year. Silver’s predictions were made months before the disastrous rollout of Obamacare.

Among the states Politico sees as most likely GOP prospects are Michigan, Iowa, New Hampshire, Minnesota, Colorado, Oregon and Hawaii.

With Sen. Carl Levin retiring in Michigan, Republicans there have rallied behind state Sen. Terri Lynn Land. In Iowa, Sen. Tom Harkin also announced his retirement. No clear leader has emerged there.

In New Hampshire, Democratic Sen. Jeanne Shaheen won in 2008 with only 52 percent. Former Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown has now moved his primary residence to the Granite State and has been toying with challenging Shaheen.

In Minnesota, Democrat Al Franken won after a heated recount, which Republicans called a stolen election. Finance executive Mike McFadden appears to be the most likely GOP contender.

Sen. Mark Udall in Colorado has low approval numbers, with only 47 percent saying he should be re-elected. His strongest GOP opponent is Ken Buck.

In Oregon, Sen. Jeff Merkley could face Republican Monica Wehby, a neurosurgeon making her first run at public office.

Hawaii is considered a GOP longshot, but Republicans hope former Rep. Charles Djou could beat the winner of a tough Democratic primary between incumbent Brian Schatz, appointed by the governor to fill the seat of the late Sen. Daniel Inouye, and Rep. Colleeen Hanabusa, who is backed by Inouye’s widow.

© 2013 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

By Greg Richter

Kick Them Out: Pew Finds Voters Want Incumbents Gone.

Image: Kick Them Out: Pew Finds Voters Want Incumbents Gone

By Elliot Jager

Nearly four in 10 voters are so disillusioned with Congress that they want their own representatives kicked out of office.

A new survey from Pew Research Center finds that 38 percent of voters don’t want their senators and representatives re-elected.

Anti-incumbent sentiment is nothing new, but voters traditionally have been more indulgent of their own elected officials. In 2010, for instance, 29 percent of voters were willing to give their representatives the boot.

Pew found Americans overwhelmingly dissatisfied with the way the fiscal battle in Washington has played out. Looking to 2014, 74 percent of Americans want to see most incumbents defeated in the midterm elections.

But dissatisfaction with incumbents may not translate into gains for the opposing party. In many states, the number of House seats in “swing districts,” that are not solidly in the hands of either party, has declined in recent years due to gerrymandering.

Pew’s survey, released Wednesday, pointed out that 90 percent of House members were re-elected in their last race and only one senator — Massachusetts Republican Scott Brown — was beaten in the General E. election and Indiana Sen. Dick Lugar lost in a primary.

Of 435 House members, 391 sought re-election in 2012 and only 40 lost, a phenomenon referred to as congressional stagnation. That, Pew said, is making red districts getting redder and blue districts bluer.

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Anti-Incumbent Super-PAC Claims ‘Deferred Win’ Over Bachus

Liberal Polls Show Democrats Could Take Back House 2014

© 2013 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

Ryan: Abortion Opponents Should Find Common Ground.

Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan is urging anti-abortion activists to find common ground with supporters of abortion rights as a way to advance their agenda.

The 2012 Republican vice presidential nominee says in a speech to be delivered Thursday to the Susan B. Anthony List that those who oppose abortion need to work with people who support abortion rights. He says, “Our task isn’t to purge our ranks. It’s to grow them.”

He notes that “labels can be misleading,” pointing to former GOP Sen. Scott Brown, whose 2010 election nearly derailed President Barack Obama’s health care law. Brown supports abortion rights.

Many opponents of abortion opposed the health care overhaul because it requires most employers to cover birth control free of charge. The law exempted churches and other houses of worship.

© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Massachusetts Republicans can’t find a Senate candidate.

In the few days since John Kerry resigned to become Secretary of State, five prominent Republicans have passed on the chance to run for his seat in a June 25 special election.

On the Democratic side, two well-known lawmakers, Rep. Ed Markey (D) and Rep. Stephen Lynch (D), have launched their bids, setting up an April 30 primary.

Why the cold feet among Republicans?

One reason is timing. The candidate who wins in June will have to quickly gear up to run again in 17 months, when Kerry would have been up for re-election.

Another reason is the strong and heavily financed Democratic field of potential candidates who could run either this year or next.

But Massachusetts voters famously bucked their Democratic tradition a few years ago and elected Scott Brown (R) to fill the vacancy left by the death of legendary Sen. Ted Kennedy (D). It was a groundbreaking election and made a genuine difference in the power Republicans could wield in facing President Obama.

This time around, the only two Republicans exploring the chance are little known state Rep. Dan Winslow (R) and unknown venture capitalist Gabriel Gomez.

The fact that not a single prominent Republican is willing to take a chance at running for an open Senate seat is shocking.

It’s embarrassing.

And it’s another sign of the disarray the party finds itself in after a string of tough election losses in 2012.


Taegan D. Goddard

The top 6 political races to watch in 2013.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is a heavy favorite to win re-election, especially since Cory Booker won't challenge him.
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is a heavy favorite to win re-election, especially since Cory Booker won’t challenge him.
Spencer Platt/Getty Images
For anyone still suffering from election fatigue, here’s some good news: In terms of momentous races, 2013 is no 2012. But the paucity of marquee contests doesn’t mean there won’t be any drama at the ballot box this year — in fact, quite the opposite. The nation’s biggest cities are picking new chief executives, and a few states are already gearing up for potentially epic face-offs in November. Here’s a look at the six races to keep an eye on in 2013:

1. New Jersey governor: Chris Christie’s big dance
Christie, once seen as a divisive and abrasive governor, has already launched his bid for a second term amid amazingly high popularity numbers — 77 percent, according to a late-November Fairleigh Dickinson University poll. But the Republican star’s post–Hurricane Sandy bump will inevitably fade somewhat before November. The only Democrat who has entered the race so far is state Sen. Barbara Buono — who trails Christie, 60 percent to 22 percent, in a recent Rutgers poll. Cory Booker, the extremely popular Democratic mayor of Newark, says he won’t run. The primary is June 4.

2. Massachusetts Senate: The race to replace John Kerry
Barring a remarkable upset, Kerry (D) will leave the Senate to become Obama’s Secretary of State in early 2013, and Gov. Deval Patrick (D) has indicated he will appoint a placeholder senator who won’t run in the special election in May or June. The most obvious candidate on the Republican side is outgoing Sen. Scott Brown (R), who won the last Massachusetts special Senate election in 2010 but lost his seat in the 2012 general election. In a late-December WBUR poll, Brown led a generic Democratic candidate 47 percent to 39 percent, and his favorability rating was a remarkably high 58 percent — pretty good for a man Bay Staters just rejected, and higher than any of his potential rivals. But of course Brown, who hasn’t said if he’s even running, would face a real Democrat not a generic one, and “contrary to many pundits’ expectations, Kerry’s elevation to the State Department will not automatically lead to Scott Brown’s return to the Senate,” says Ben Jacobs at The Daily Beast. Massachusetts is a solidly blue state, and Brown’s best shot would be Democrats sinking themselves in a “furious and divisive” primary. To head that off, “the Democratic establishment inside and outside Massachusetts is quickly lining up behind Rep. Ed Markey (D),” says Rachel Weiner at The Washington Post. Kerry himself is backing the 26-year House veteran, as are Ted Kennedy’s widow, Vicki Kennedy, and the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee.

3. New York City mayor: Looking toward a post-Bloomberg future
Media mogul Michael Bloomberg (I), elected as a Republican right after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, is term-limited (again — he pushed through a law in 2009 that allowed him to seek a third term), so New York is gearing up to elect its first new mayor in 12 years. And “for the first time since 1989, a Democratic candidate has a chance at winning in a city where the Democrats outnumber the Republicans 3-1,” says Ken Rudin at NPR. Since Hillary Clinton reportedly turned down Bloomberg’s entreaties to fill his shoes, the early favorite is City Council Speaker Christine Quinn (D), who would be the first woman to lead the city. Still, the potential Democratic roster is long: Former city comptroller Bill Thompson, Public Advocate Bill de Blasio, and current Comptroller John Liu are all possibilities. On the Republican side, former Bronx borough president (and former Democrat) Adolfo Carrion Jr. is eyeing a run — and could we be lucky enough that Donald Trump doesn’t throw his hat in the ring? The primary takes place in September.

4. Virginia governor: A Clintonite-Tea Party showdown?
“Imagine the two most polarizing politicians in a state,” says The Washington Post‘s Chris Cillizza. “Then imagine them running against one another.” That’s the most likely outcome in Virginia, where the race to replace term-limited Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) is shaping up to be Attorney General Ken Cucinelli (R), a conservative darling, versus former Democratic National Committee Chairman Terry McAuliffe, a confidante of Bill Clinton. Both men are popular among their respective bases, and hated by the other side, says Cillizza. “Neither man has an obvious appeal to the ideological middle of the Commonwealth, but both have to find one if they want to win. This is going to be a very nasty race.” The two most likely alternatives, Sen. Mark Warner (D) and Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling (R), have declined to run, though Bolling hasn’t ruled out a third-party run. The Democrats’ primary and GOP convention is June 11.

5. Los Angeles mayor: Life after Villaraigosa
Antonio Villaraigosa (D) is term-limited, and the three frontrunners to replace him are current office holders with strong ties to organized labor. “Like New York, Los Angeles has never had a female mayor, but Controller Wendy Greuel and Councilwoman Jan Perry are hoping to change that,” says NPR‘s Rudin. City Councilman Eric Garcetti is running, too. Along with corralling the union vote, notes Cillizza, “getting support from Latino voters will be huge in a city where Hispanics make up 40 percent of the vote.” The primary will be in March, and the election itself in May.

6. Illinois’ congressional race: Who will replace Jesse Jackson Jr.?
A late addition to the calendar, prompted by Jackson’s not-unexpected resignation, the race for the Chicagoland congressional district heated up quickly. All the viable candidates are Democrats, and except for former Rep. Debbie Halvorson, all of them are black — former NFL linebacker (and incoming state senator) Napoleon Harris, alderman Anthony Beale, and State Sen. Toi Hutchinson. “Black leaders openly fear that an election with multiple black candidates could elect Halvorson,” says Rudin. We’ll find out soon enough: The primary — “tantamount to deciding the winner in this overwhelmingly Democratic district” — is Feb. 26.


By Peter Weber

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