JOBLESS CLAIMS CONTINUE TO CLIMB, BUT MITCH MCCONNELL AND SENATE REPUBLICANS HAVE ABANDONED URGENTLY NEEDED PANDEMIC RELIEF. In the time since Mitch McConnell and Senate Republicans let emergency unemployment aid expire in July, they have taken a month-long vacation, pushed a stunt bill that even President Trump said didn’t meet Americans’ needs, and now are turning their backs on the millions of Americans who desperately need help by agreeing to abandon efforts to pass a new relief package. Now reports suggest that Republicans’ decision to delay relief could be “dangerous” for the economy as “many furloughs are turning into permanent job losses, and major companies…are initiating new rounds of layoffs.” New jobless claims were “worse than expected” this past week amid an ongoing slowdown in hiring. And while millions of Americans are on the edge of a “financial precipice” as they’re left to deal with the worst economic crisis in more than a generation without Washington’s help, Mitch McConnell and his caucus have decided to ignore Americans’ wishes and focus on rushing to fill a lifetime Supreme Court vacancy. New York Times: Anxious for a Lifeline, the U.S. Economy Is Left to Sink or Swim
“REPUBLICANS SEE ‘GRIM’ SENATE MAP” AND SCRAMBLE TO REWRITE THEIR RECORDS ENABLING TRUMP’S FAILED PANDEMIC RESPONSE. A new Associated Press report looks at the growing “GOP anxiety” of losing their Senate majority as vulnerable Republican incumbents make a last-minute scramble to “distance themselves from President Donald Trump” after months of fawningly praising his disastrous pandemic response that has resulted in more than 210,000 American deaths. While vulnerable Senate Republicans are now attempting to put space between themselves and Trump just weeks before the election, the truth is that they’ve spent the entire pandemic dutifully praising Trump’s mismanagement of the crisis, arguing that he did a “tremendous job,” and proclaiming “there is no daylight” between themselves and the White House’s coronavirus response. Voters won’t buy this last minute desperate attempt from Republican incumbents to save their flailing campaigns. AP: Republicans see ‘grim’ Senate map and edge away from Trump
RATINGS CHANGE: THREE MORE RACES SHIFT IN DEMS’ FAVOR. Nonpartisan elections analyst Sabato’s Crystal Ball shifted three more Senate races in Democrats’ favor this morning, reflecting the growing momentum that Democrats across the map have heading into the final weeks of the election. The race ratings changes in Georgia special election, Kansas, and Mississippi are all seats that the GOP never anticipated being competitive at the beginning of the cycle, demonstrating the strength of Democratic candidates who have put Republicans on defense and expanded the map. Sabato’s Crystal Ball: With Just Weeks to Go, Trump is Not Making up Ground
AL GROSS RAISES AN EYE-POPPING $9 MILLION IN #AKSEN. Continuing the trend of strong Senate challengers raising whopping Q3 hauls, Dr. Al Gross announced raking in $9 million in Q3 – more than incumbent Senator Dan Sullivan has raised in the entire cycle. The eye-popping haul is just the latest sign of Gross’ growing momentum. Just last week nonpartisan election analyst Sabato’s Crystal Ball shifted the Alaska Senate’s race in Gross’ direction, writing that “Senate Republicans seem to be worried about” the “increasingly competitive race” in Alaska. Anchorage Daily News: Al Gross reports raising $9 million since July 1 in his race to unseat Sen. Dan Sullivan
GREENFIELD ANNOUNCES RECORD-SHATTERING $28.7 MILLION RAISED IN Q3. Theresa Greenfield announced a historic $28.7 million Q3 haul today. The record-breaking haul is more than double what incumbent Senator Joni Ernst raised in the entire 2014 cycle. In a sign of Greenfield’s grassroots strength, her Q3 total includes contributions from all 99 Iowa counties, and 95% of the campaign’s contributions were $100 or less. Iowa Starting Line: Greenfield Shatters Fundraising Records With $28.7M Haul
NEW POLL: GREENFIELD IS UP IN #IASEN. In further bad news for the increasingly vulnerable Senator Joni Ernst, a new Quinnipiac poll yesterday showed Greenfield Ernst by five points. Greenfield leads the vulnerable incumbent by seven points among Independents and while “likely voters have a favorable view of Greenfield,” they “have a slightly negative view of Ernst.”
NEW #SCSEN POLL RESULTS FINDS HARRISON LEADING GRAHAM BY 1 POINT. Polling results released today by the DSCC confirm South Carolina is a toss-up race that Democrats can win, with Jaime Harrison leading incumbent Senator Lindsey Graham by 1 point. Like all other recent public and private polls, this survey shows the race for the U.S. Senate seat from South Carolina is a virtual tie where Harrison holds significant advantages over Graham — including a double-digit lead with independents. This latest poll comes a day after nonpartisan elections analyst Cook Political Report shifted the South Carolina Senate race to Toss Up and, just last week, Mitch McConnell’s super PAC was forced to start dumping $10 million into South Carolina to prop up the increasingly vulnerable incumbent. Even Graham sees the writing on the wall––the vulnerable incumbent has become an almost constant fixture on Fox News “begging for money” with desperate pleas for help.
ARIZONA DAILY STAR EDITORIAL BOARD ENDORSES MARK KELLY. The Arizona Daily Star Editorial Board in Tucson endorsed Mark Kelly for U.S. Senate in Arizona, writing that “Kelly is the best choice to serve Arizona in this election.” The Editorial Board contrasts Kelly, who “knows the stakes of having affordable, accessible medical care,” with incumbent Senator Martha McSally’s “refrain that she wants to eliminate the Affordable Care Act.” The Star notes McSally’s “continued embrace of Trump doesn’t fit in a state more inclined toward independent thinkers” and finds it “frustrating” that she relies on “rehearsed talking points and refusing to answer specific questions” to obscure her unpopular positions and toxic record. Arizona Daily Star: 2020 Star Opinion: Mark Kelly for U.S. Senate
TILLIS TOOK OFF MASK AT WHITE HOUSE SUPERSPREADER EVENT. Vulnerable incumbent Thom Tillis admitted yesterday that “he made a mistake by taking off his face mask indoors last month at a White House event.” While Tillis has claimed to be a proponent of wearing masks in public, “photos showed him without one at [the White House’s] indoor reception” for President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee. This is the second time Tillis has been forced to apologize for ignoring CDC guidance. Tillis continues to make it painfully obvious that he is too weak and too spineless to stand up to his party leaders in Washington to protect public health. AP: Tillis: I made a mistake taking off mask inside White House
AUDIO REVEALED: GARDNER’S CLIMATE “CONSPIRATORIAL THINKING.” A shocking 2017 recording obtained by HuffPost reveals that Senator Cory Gardner repeatedly refused to say if humans cause climate change and “lean[ed] into conspiratorial thinking that efforts to curb carbon emissions are part of a larger plan to ‘control the economy’” in a previously unpublished interview with his hometown newspaper. And when further pressed, Gardner says talking about climate change is a “loaded political debate” and “squirms” instead of giving a straight answer. Gardner’s office even tried to intimidate the paper into holding the interview, which was not previously published. The vulnerable incumbent’s stance was “out of sync with scientific reality and the political consensus among Centennial State voters.” The bombshell report comes out as Gardner is desperately trying to greenwash his abysmal environmental record. HuffPost: Sen. Cory Gardner’s Climate Conspiracy Theory Revealed In 2017 Recording
REPORT: DAINES BACKED POLICIES THAT BENEFITED HIMSELF, LONGTIME BUSINESS PARTNER. New reporting from Salon reveals that Senator Steve Daines “repeatedly backed policies that benefited both him and his longtime business partner Rep. Greg Gianforte.” Daines’ vote on the 2017 Republican tax bill was “contingent on increasing a tax deduction for ‘pass-through’ entities,” which appeared to save Daines “thousands in taxes.” Daines has also repeatedly sponsored and voted for legislation expected to benefit his close friend Gianforte. Gianforte was one of Daines’ “earliest financial backers” and has continued to max out donations and fundraise for Daines’ campaigns. It’s just another example of Daines prioritizing the interests of himself and his big money donors instead of Montanans. Salon: Steve Daines backed policies that benefited himself and GOP pal Greg Gianforte
JAMES’ AD RATED “FALSE” BY DETROIT FREE PRESS/POLITIFACT. A fact check by the Detroit Free Press/PolitiFact of a TV ad from failed politician John James attacking Senator Gary Peters over his response to the coronavirus pandemic found that the ad was “False.” The nonpartisan fact checkers say James’ claims are “not accurate” and in fact, Senator Peters’ early assessment of the coronavirus pandemic “squared with what public health experts were saying” and the incumbent Senator “took a series of actions to press administration officials on their preparations to deal with a potential outbreak.” Detroit Free Press/PolitiFact: Fact check: John James campaign ad on Gary Peters’ COVID record misleading
DEM AD WATCH
LA – Mayor Adrian Perkins’ first TV ad highlights Perkins’ remarkable story, from his humble beginnings raised by a single mother in a tough neighborhood in Shreveport to his service to this nation and in his community as Mayor. Watch.
NH – Senator Jeanne Shaheen released a new ad sharing her record working to revitalize Main Streets across New Hampshire, investing in infrastructure and strengthening the local economy. Watch.
IN THE STATES
AZ – Arizona Republic: Aidy Bryant is singing Arizona jingles for Mark Kelly on Instagram and it’s hilarious
GA – Atlanta Journal-Constitution: Warnock moves from pulpit to top rungs in crowded Senate race
GA – Savannah Morning News: Raphael Warnock, son of Savannah and U.S. Senate hopeful, brings his message home
GA – Atlanta Journal-Constitution: Atlanta Mayor Bottoms endorses Warnock, Ossoff in U.S. Senate races
ME – Maine Beacon: Collins hasn’t been following Maine’s COVID recommendations
ME – American Independent: Guess what Susan Collins is concerned about this time
NH – Keene Sentinel: An interview with Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, running for re-election