Apr 29 2016
ABOUT TUESDAY NIGHT. Tuesday night was a great night for Democrats, and a not so great night for Senate Republicans. Katie McGinty scored a commanding victory in her primary on Tuesday, and Donald Trump swept the five Republican primaries, which is bad news for the vulnerable Republican Senators who have promised to support him.
Here’s what they’re saying in the aftermath of Tuesday night:
Washington Post: Why Tuesday was a very good night for Senate Democrats
Politico: GOP senators in denial about Trump
National Journal: Senate Democrats Get Late Recruiting Boost
Associated Press: Democrats eye Senate takeover after establishment wins
TERRIBLE WEEK FOR TOOMEY. It was a pretty bad week for Pat Toomey in Pennsylvania. With Katie McGinty’s 10-point win Tuesday night, Toomey and his special interest allies are already running scared. Toomey along with Club for Growth and Chamber of Commerce went up on the air to prop him up, a clear sign of how panicked they are about losing their friend in the Senate. Toomey also appeared on a Pennsylvania radio show to complain about being tied to Donald Trump, but nearly in the same breath doubled down on his support for Trump if he’s the nominee. Uh, what? Moving into the general, it’s clear Toomey has an uphill climb for reelection and Katie McGinty will run a strong campaign to hold him accountable for putting special interests ahead of Pennsylvania.
POLITIFACT: TOOMEY WOULD PREFER CORPORATIONS PAY “NO TAX AT ALL.” Not good and not hard to believe from the Senator who has put Wall Street & corporate interests ahead of Pennsylvanians. Read the fact check & WATCH Toomey tell CNBC he’d “prefer” no tax at all.
COLORADO GOP IS A MESS. In the latest installment in the mess that is the Colorado Republican Senate race, three of the remaining candidates failed to qualify for the ballot. Yesterday, the Colorado Secretary of State announced that Ryan Frazier and Robert Blaha both failed to make the ballot, and earlier in the week, the Secretary of State announced that Jon Keyser failed to qualify, as well – a major embarrassment for the candidate known to be National Republicans’ candidate of choice. Even if Keyser’s legal challenge gets him back onto the ballot, this major slip-up won’t inspire confidence among donors or voters about his prospects of beating such a well-organized and well-funded candidate like Michael Bennet.
DEJA VU? We don’t blame you: it’s the second high profile screw up from a National Republicans’ preferred candidate. Todd Young did not secure enough signatures in Indiana and was challenged by his primary opponent, Marlin Stutzman. Procedural rules saved Young – but an acrimonious primary has hurt both candidates.
BONUS: In a sign of just how terrible things are for the Republican candidates, a group of Colorado Springs Republicans endorsedthe Libertarian candidate for Senate instead of a member of their own party. Yikes.
REPUBLICANS BATTLE IN FLORIDA. The Republican candidates for Senate in Florida have been at each other’s throats for months, and are showing no sign of slowing down. This week, Todd Wilcox hit Carlos Beruff for attempting to buy the Senate seat and being a political insider who’s been “reaping the benefits of appointments that help him and his crony capitalist buddies down in Sarasota.” He also called out David Jolly’s Stop Act proposal as an election year gimmick that’s just an excuse for his poor fundraising. Carlos Lopez-Cantera also piled on to Jolly, slamming him for saying that Judge Merrick Garland deserves a Senate hearing and a vote. Though they are quick to bash each other, the Florida Republican Senate candidates remained silent on Carlos Beruff’s shameful proposal to ban all Middle Eastern people from entering the country. Beruff’s latest attempt to out-Trump Donald Trump is shameful, and his fellow Republican Senate candidates should condemn it as such.
NRSC ALL OVER THE PLACE IN #FLSEN. The NRSC is all over the place on where they stand in the Florida primary. Ron DeSantis’ fundraiser sent an email saying NRSC Executive Director Ward Baker would be headlining an event for him, but then was immediately forced to retract his comments. And Carlos Lopez-Cantera is holding a fundraiser at the NRSC next week. It seems like everything NRSC-involved lately has turned into a mess.
BAD POLLS SIGNAL TROUBLE FOR BURR. Two new polls out this week in North Carolina signaled big problems for Senator Richard Burr. Burr has continued to stand firm him in his support of controversial law HB2 – calling questions about its harm to the state’s economy “crap” – but a PPP poll found his constituents disagree. The poll found that 45% of North Carolinians oppose HB2 and 54% of voters believe it’s negatively impacting the economy. Another new PPP poll shows an extremely close Senate race between Burr and Deborah Ross, with Ross only down by four points and slightly ahead with independents. Burr’s approvals are underwater with 39% approving and a whopping 31% having no opinion, showing how little of an impact he’s had for North Carolinians. PPP noted that “Multiple polling companies are finding that this may be a better pick up opportunity for Democrats than had previously been expected.”
MEMO: SCOTUS OPPOSITION HURTS GOP APPROVALS. The DSCC released a memo this week outlining how GOP Senators’ Supreme Court obstruction is taking a toll on their approval ratings. The memo focuses on recent polling in New Hampshire, Ohio and Pennsylvania. These dropping approvals are even more worrisome for vulnerable GOP Senators, as they are faced with the prospect of sharing the ticket in November with toxic GOP frontrunner Donald Trump, who they are ready to let make the next SCOTUS nomination.
IN THE STATES
NEW HAMPSHIRE – A new ad from NARAL hits Kelly Ayotte for having the wrong priorities. It calls out Ayotte for working to restrict access to abortion and birth control, while also refusing to even consider President Obama’s Supreme Court nominee. Watch “Sen. Ayotte Has the Wrong Priorities” here.
OHIO – The Strickland campaign released a video this week that highlights Ted Strickland’s “No More Terrible Trade Deals Tour.” Strickland held events in eight Ohio cities to speak about Senator Portman’s record of support for unfair deals that saw Ohio jobs shipped overseas and how Strickland will protect Ohio jobs in the Senate. Watch the video here.
MORE OHIO — A new ad from Senate Majority PAC slams Rob Portman for being a DC insider. It calls out Portman for being a Washington insider for thirty years, spending time as a lobbyist, congressman and Senator. Watch “The Insider” here.
MISSOURI — Jason Kander held a roundtable on college affordability at Missouri University on Monday. Kander listened to students speak about how the burden of student loans is affecting their lives and spoke about his ideas for making college more affordable.
NEVADA — A new poll of Latino voters in Nevada indicates big problems for Congressman Joe Heck. 58% of those polled said they would vote for Catherine Cortez Masto, compared to just 22% for Congressman Heck. 70% of respondents said they were less likely to vote for Congressman Heck after knowing he said he’d support Donald Trump for president. This indicates large problems for Congressman Heck in Nevada, where Latinos make up 27% of the population.
MORE NEVADA — Catherine Cortez Masto held a round table with young people to discuss how to make college more affordable. Cortez Masto wants to cap interest rates on student loans and as Senator will work on college affordability, which stands in stark contrast to Congressman Joe Heck, who has voted against Pell Grants and not worked to address college affordability during his time in Congress.
ARIZONA – EJ Montini penned an article in the Arizona Republic, calling out John McCain’s “lame” excuse for skipping the GOP convention. Montini says that McCain’s convention no-show will have nothing to do with his reelection and everything to do with whichever toxic candidate Republicans’ nominate. Sorry Senator McCain, but you’ve already pledged to support whoever the nominee is – and skipping the convention won’t erase that.
TWEET OF THE WEEK – This week’s Tweet of the Week goes to CAP’s Neera Tanden, for highlighting what Tuesday night meant for vulnerable Senate Republicans: “@neeratanden: Great night for Trump. Bad night for Toomey … and Ayotte and Johnson and Kirk and even McCain.”
BONUS TWEET OF THE WEEK – We had to give another Tweet of the Week to Stu Rothenberg for highlighting what a difficult position Senator Pat Toomey is in following Katie McGinty’s victory on Tuesday night: @StuPolitics: A very tough race for Toomey. Probably an underdog, considering everything. twitter.com/dkelections/st…”
Enjoy the Weekend!