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SSP Daily Digest: 9/1 (Afternoon Edition)

by: Crisitunity

Wed Sep 01, 2010 at 3:00 PM EDT

DE-Sen: Wow, the mounting establishment/teabagger war in the GOP Delaware primary is actually getting physically violent. A Christine O'Donnell supporter got into a scuffle with a tracker from the state GOP party who was videotaping O'Donnell at a candidate forum

IL-Sen: The Constitution Party is still trying to get back on the ballot in Illinois, maybe most notably in the close Senate race where Randy Stufflebeam would be their candidate. They're going to court to get back on the ballot after the state Board of Elections kicked them off for not having enough valid signatures.

NV-Sen: School's out for the summer/ school's out... forever! The latest daily nugget of crazy from Sharron Angle is her recounting last week of her struggles back in the state legislature in 2003 against a supplemental budget bill that would have paid for emergency funding to make sure that the state's public schools could actually open at the start of the school year. Meanwhile, Harry Reid is continuing his apparently successful advertising strategy of letting Angle say the usual things she says, and just turning them straight into his own ads against her, as with his newest ad launched this week.

NY-Sen-B, NY-Gov: Despite the utter lack of drama in the big races in the Empire State, Quinnipiac just keeps polling it. (I guess that's OK; we'll take good news where we can get it.) In the governor's race, Andrew Cuomo beats Rick Lazio 57-25 and Carl Paladino 60-23. (Unfortunately, there aren't GOP primary numbers, as it'd be interesting to see, as other pollsters have seen, whether Paladino might actually be able to overtake the insufficiently-crazy Lazio for the nomination.) In the Senate race, Kirsten Gillibrand beats Bruce Blakeman 44-26, David Malpass 45-24, and Joe DioGuardi 43-28.

CO-Gov: If either Dan Maes or Tom Tancredo is going to drop out and stop their tragic pas de deux, it'd better be soon. Friday, it turns out, is the last day before the November ballot printing is finalized. Meanwhile, here's the kind of headline you don't want to see when you're already fighting public perception that you're a bit of a paranoid wackjob who thinks that bicycles are a United Nations plot:

GOP gubernatorial candidate Maes backs off claims of undercover police work

KY-Gov: The establishment slate for Kentucky Republicans for the off-year gubernatorial race (only a year from now!) seems like it's officially coalesced. David Williams, the state Senate president, will run for Governor, and Agriculture Commissioner Richie Farmer (who'd been a rumored governor candidate himself) will run for Lt. Governor. They'll still have to get past businessman Phil Moffet, running under the teabagger banner, in the GOP primary before facing Steve Beshear, who'll be seeking re-election. A recent poll had Farmer and Beshear neck-and-neck, but there hasn't been any Beshear/Williams polling yet.

MA-09: Mac d'Allesandro's against Stephen Lynch in the Dem primary in the 9th is raising some decent cash in the late innings. Since July 1st, the SEIU, MoveOn, and Act Blue have raised $178K for d'Allesandro.

PA-06: DNC DGA head Tim Kaine heads to Philly to fundraise on Manan Trivedi's behalf, as part of a tour on behalf of Asian-American Dem candidates. Trivedi's also had help on the stump this week from Bob Casey and Debbie Wasserman Schultz.

RGA: Good thing the RGA already has an unprecedented amount of money squirreled away... because they're going to have to give a decent chunk of it to Chris Bell, the ex-Rep. who was the 2006 Dem gubernatorial candidate in Texas. A Travis County judge ordered the RGA to pay Chris Bell a cosmic $2 million because of campaign finance violations in the '06 election (where the RGA gave an undisclosed $1 million to Texans for Rick Perry).

WATN?: This isn't really FL-Sen anymore, but Jeff Greene is insisting on staying in the limelight even as his vomit-covered yacht sails into the sunset. In fact, the phrase "vomit-covered yacht" is really what's at stake here; he says he's following through with a libel suit against the St. Petersburg Times and Miami Herald over their reporting of his many foibles. Good luck proving actual malice!

Maps: They're rapidly scrolling their way down the front page, so if you haven't had a chance to check out jeffmd's maps of Alaskan elections past, do it now. Begich/Stevens, Murkowski/Miller, and Young/Parnell all played out in similar ways, geographically, so if you're wondering what Scott McAdam's path to a win might look like, check it out.

Ads:
NH-Sen: We told you a few days ago that Ovide Lamontagne was finally going on the air; his first ad is a talk-to-the-camera introductory spot.
PA-Sen: The DSCC is out with another ad, attacking Pat Toomey on the derivatives trading issue.
WI-Sen: Russ Feingold's new ad is testimonials from a variety of (as C. Montgomery Burns would say) Joe Lunchpails and Sally Housecoats.
IN-02: Jackie Walorski is out with an introductory bio spot.
NE-02: Tom White is also out with an introductory bio spot, carefully steering clear of anything Democratic-sounding.
NJ-03: John Adler may actually win the advertising day today, with a negative spot that slams Jon Runyan for his tax break for his "farm" (a.k.a. McMansion plus one donkey).
NV-03: Dina Titus hits Joe Heck for comments that "it's not Congress's role to create jobs." (This comes on top of the AFSCME's huge buy of anti-Heck ads.)

Rasmussen:
LA-Sen: Charlie Melancon (D) 33%, David Vitter (R-inc) 54%
OH-Gov: Ted Strickland (D-inc) 39%, John Kasich (R) 47%
PA-Gov: Dan Onorato (D) 37%, Tom Corbett (R) 50%  

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SSP Daily Digest: 8/27 (Evening Edition)

by: Crisitunity

Fri Aug 27, 2010 at 8:19 PM EDT

FL-Sen: Well, so much for the secret ballot. The Palm Beach Post deduced that Jeff Greene voted for himself... inasmuch as his vote was the only vote for himself in his entire precinct. It was a 2-to-1 vote (literally... Kendrick Meek got 2). Even his wife didn't vote for him, although that's because she isn't registered to vote in the county. (Marco Rubio got 26 votes in the same precinct.) Meanwhile, Charlie Crist seems to have lost some of his footing after a convincing Meek victory in the Dem primary; he flip-flopped on health care reform in the space of one day, saying in a TV interview that he would have voted for health care reform, then, after the Rubio camp started flagging that, saying later in the day that he actually wouldn't have voted for it. I get that he wants to appeal to both Dems and moderate GOPers, but he has to be less transparent than that.

IL-Sen: Bad news for Alexi Giannoulias: the Constitution Party slate just got struck from the ballot, so Randy Stufflebeam won't be there to siphon right-wing votes from Mark Kirk. Libertarian candidate Mark Labno will be on the ballot, though, as a Kirk alternative (as will Green LeAlan Jones).

IN-Sen: This is sort of pushing the outer limit of when it's a good idea to release an internal, but it looks like the Brad Ellsworth camp needed to let people know that he's still in this race. His own poll, via Garin Hart Yang, finds him trailing Dan Coats 49-38. The race is closer among those who actually know Ellsworth, but his six-week-long ad buy is about to end, so his name rec problems may persist.

KY-Sen: Jack Conway is joining Elaine Marshall on the Alan Simpson-pile-on, seconding calls for the firing of Simpson from the Social Security commission in the wake of his "milk cow" comments. Meanwhile, Rand Paul has apparently brushed up on his elementary math skills recently, as he's now backtracking on previous pledges to erase the nation's federal budget deficit in one year.

MO-Sen, MO-04: Although this poll from Missouri State University (on behalf of TV station KY3) looks good for Robin Carnahan, it's got some methodological issues that we just aren't comfortable with. It was taken over the period of Aug. 7-22, is of registered (not likely) voters, and it also wound up with a sample that was 63% female, although they say they weighted for various demographic factors. At any rate, it shows the race a dead heat, with Roy Blunt leading Robin Carnahan 49-48. It also took looks at three House races in the Show Me State, although with MoEs in the 7% ballpark. In the 4th, Ike Skelton has a 47-35 lead over Vicki Hartzler. Two GOP-held seats look to be pretty uneventful: in the open 7th, Billy Long leads Scott Eckersley 51-23, and in the 8th, Jo Ann Emerson leads fundraising maven Tommy Sowers 64-17.

WI-Sen: Seems like it was just this morning we were discussing the second instance of Ron Johnson's flagrant hypocrisy when it comes to railing against government involvement in the market, except when it comes to government aid for his own business... and now we're up to a third instance before the day's even out. On Wednesday it came out that in 1985 he'd gotten $2.5 million in government loans to expand his plastics business, and now it's come out that in 1983, two years earlier, he'd gotten a separate $1.5 million loan for a $4 mil total.

NM-Gov: The DGA is out with a new ad against Susana Martinez in the gubernatorial race, hitting her for $350K in bonuses handed out in her prosecutor's office. NWOTSOTB, but we're told it's a statewide saturation buy.

VT-Gov: The final count from the SoS office in the Dem gubernatorial primary seemed to get finished ahead of schedule, as numbers today gave Peter Shumlin a 197-vote win over Doug Racine. Racine said that he would go ahead and request a recount; state law provides for a taxpayer-funded recount for a candidate trailing by less than 2% (seems like a pretty generous recount policy compared with most states). In keeping with the primary's very civil tone, both candidates continued to praise each other and say they understood the recount choices.

CO-07: Republican pollster Magellan (which put out an internal for Scott Tipton in CO-03 last week) is out with a poll in the 7th as well now, although this appears to be on their own, not as an internal for Ryan Frazier. At any rate, their poll gives a 40-39 lead to Republican Frazier, over incumbent Dem Ed Perlmutter. (10% opt for "some other candidate.")

MS-04: Thanks to Haley Barbour, the previously low-dollar campaign of state Rep. Steven Palazzo just kicked into higher gear (or into gear, period). Barbour held a fundraiser for Palazzo that raised $177K, which will help his uphill campaign against Democratic Rep. Gene Taylor.

SC-05: Another POS poll in the 5th on behalf of GOP state Sen. Mick Mulvaney has him making up ground on Rep. John Spratt; the two are now tied at 46-46. Spratt led by 2 in a previous POS poll in May. Spratt retorted to CQ that in his own polling he was ahead with "breathing room," but declined to provide specific numbers.

Ads: Other ads for your consideration today include not one but two new ads from Roy Barnes, going negative against Nathan Deal (on the ethics issue, but also general Washington-bashing). In OH-Gov, Ted Strickland is also out with a double-shot of ads, hitting John Kasich for his free-trading past. Chet Edwards is out with an anti-Bill Flores ad in TX-17 accusing Flores of lying about having voted for GOPer Rob Curnock in 2008 (he didn't vote at all that day), while the Club for Growth is out with a PA-Sen ad that calls Joe Sestak "liberal" several hundred times in the space of 30 seconds.

Rasmussen:
AZ-Sen: Rodney Glassman (D) 31%, John McCain (R-inc) 53%
FL-Gov: Alex Sink (D) 36%, Rick Scott (R) 41%, Bud Chiles (I) 8%
NM-Gov: Diane Denish (D) 43%, Susana Martinez (R) 48%
SC-Gov: Vincent Sheheen (D) 36%, Nikki Haley (R) 52%
WI-Gov: Tom Barrett (D) 44%, Scott Walker (R) 47%
WI-Gov: Tom Barrett (D) 44%, Mark Neumann (R) 48%

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FL-Sen: PPP Sees Rubio Moving Into Lead

by: Crisitunity

Tue Aug 24, 2010 at 2:26 PM EDT

Public Policy Polling (8/21-22, likely voters, 7/16-18 in parens):

Kendrick Meek (D): 17 (17)
Marco Rubio (R): 40 (29)
Charlie Crist (I): 32 (35)
Alex Snitker (L): 3 (4)
Undecided: 8 (15)

Jeff Greene (D): 13 (13)
Marco Rubio (R): 37 (29)
Charlie Crist (I): 36 (38)
Alex Snitker (L): 4 (3)
Undecided: 10 (16)
(MoE: ±4.1%)

PPP's newest look at the Florida Senate race is a complete turnaround from one month ago. Charlie Crist and Marco Rubio aren't that differently situated, in terms of their popularity: Crist's approval is 42/44, while Rubio is at 40/37. However, a few things have changed that have caused their positions to dramatically flip since a month ago, though: the Republicans are even more tightly united around Rubio, taking moderate GOPers away from Crist. Also, the share of unaffiliateds (theoretically Crist's strongest constituency, since he's one of them now) has dropped since July, from 20% to only 14% of the sample.

It's a sample that went for John McCain over Barack Obama 48-45 in 2008 (instead of the actual Obama 51-48), and the Republican part of the sample may be even more extra-conservative than usual (remember that PPP was the only pollster yesterday to give Rick Scott, who seems to be the "conservative" candidate in the Gov primary, a lead). While I agree with PPP (and pretty much everyone else) that Crist's chances improve significantly with Jeff Greene as the Dem nominee rather than Kendrick Meek, it's interesting to note that Meek hasn't really increased his share in the general... the flip between Rubio and Crist seems based partly on composition differences between the two samples, and, even more notably, on undecideds moving to Rubio.

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AK, AZ, FL, OK, and VT Primary Preview

by: Crisitunity

Tue Aug 24, 2010 at 12:49 PM EDT

AK-Gov (R/D): Anything other than slam-dunk wins tonight for incumbent Gov. Sean Parnell and ex-state House Minority Leader Ethan Berkowitz would have to be considered a surprise. Parnell has led his two highest-profile challengers, ex-state House Speaker Ralph Samuels and attorney and ex-Valdez Mayor Bill Walker by huge margins, as has Berkowitz against state Sen. Hollis "October Surprise" French. (JL)

AK-Sen (R): Could Lisa Murkowski bite it in a intra-party challenge from little-known attorney Joe Miller? In Miller's corner are the Palins, Mike Huckabee, and a half-million from the Tea Party Express. In her corner, Murkowski has the backing of about 1.9 million dead presidents, and a 62-30 lead over Miller in a late July Ivan Moore poll. Of course, that was before the TPX started unloading, but the odds are always long for Some Dudes... (JL)

AZ-Sen (R): This looked like it was going to be one of the all-time great Republican primary slugfests when it first appeared on the horizon: Mr. Maverick himself, John McCain, versus fiery conservative ex-Rep.-turned-radio-talk-show-host J.D. Hayworth. Some of the initial polling, in fact, was fairly close, before the novelty wore off... but then the novelty wore off, and we were left with three basic realities: a) John McCain had a ton more money than Hayworth and was willing to use it, b) John McCain had absolutely no shame about taking all that Maverick stuff, throwing it in the trash can along with many of his previous policy positions, and remaking himself as a right-wing ideologue in order to survive his primary, and c) J.D. Hayworth is a complete and total clown. The turning point seemed to be the revelation in June that Hayworth had shilled for a Matthew Lesko-style free-government-money infomercial, which destroyed any remaining credibility he may have still had. Polling from July gave McCain leads ranging from 20 to over 40 points. (C)

AZ-Sen (D): At this point, the Democratic Senate primary in Arizona looks a good bit more unpredictable than the Republican one. The seeming frontrunner is former Tucson vice-mayor Rodney Glassman, a former Raul Grijalva aide and a young up-and-comer with some family money as well. Glassman seemed to have the field to himself after the NRSC's desired candidate, wealthy businesswoman Nan Stockholm Walden, begged off... but once the specter of a race against J.D. Hayworth instead of John McCain appeared, some other late entrants arrived, most notably civil rights activist Randy Parraz and former state Rep. Cathy Eden. What little polling we've seen of this race (a Rasmussen poll from July and a Parraz internal) has given Glassman the lead, but he didn't rise above 20% in either poll. More-frequent polling of the general election has actually given Glassman a good chance against Hayworth... but unfortunately, a McCain match is looking much likelier. (C)

AZ-01 (R): Eight Republicans have jumped into the race for the right to challenge freshman Dem Ann Kirkpatrick. Notably, rogue dentist Paul Gosar has spent the most, but the field also includes former State Senate majority leader Rusty Bowers and 2008 nominee Sydney Hay (whose abysmal campaign netted her a 56-40 defeat). Gosar seems to have most of the establishment support, including endorsements from the Grizzly Momma and (even though the district doesn't enter it) Maricopa County Sheriff and xenophobe extraordinaire Joe Arpaio. Gosar's internal polling has him in the lead, ahead of Hay by a 30-10 margin. Primary voters would be doing themselves a favor by not nominating Hay; we'll see if Gosar can live up to his polling. (JMD)

AZ-03 (R): Crowded GOP primaries seem to be the norm in Arizona, with a 10-man field for the open seat of retiring GOPer John Shadegg. Several qualify beyond Some Dude status, including former northern Phoenix State Rep. Sam Crump, former State Senator Pamela Gorman (who represented the same district as Crump), former northern Phoenix/Scottsdale State Senator Jim Waring, attorney Paulina Morris, Paradise Valley Mayor Vernon Parker, and Parker's predecessor as Mayor, Ed Winkler. The two largest warchests, however, belong to Ben "Son of Potatoe" Quayle and self-funding businessman Steve Moak. Moak and Quayle have gone hard after each other, with recent revelations about Quayle's history with what eventually became TheDirty.com taking their toll and Quayle's responses being, perhaps hereditarily, ineffectual. Moak seems ready to occupy the vacuum that Quayle's implosion has left, but the sheer number of credible candidates leaves room for surprise. (JMD)

AZ-05 (R): Two-term Dem Harry Mitchell will face one of five GOPers, a field that includes a rematch between 2008 candidates David Schweikert and Susan Bitter Smith. Schweikert prevailed then by a 1,000-vote margin out of 48,000 cast and went on to a 53-44 loss to Mitchell. Complicating this rematch are other credible candidates in doctor Chris Salvino and self-funded businessman Jim Ward, both of whom have outraised and outspent Bitter Smith. Schweikert seems to have assumed frontrunner status, going as far as cancelling his last-minute ad buy...before opting in for one again. Will Schweikert's hubris come to haunt him today? (JMD)

AZ-08 (R): In a common pattern that we've seen this cycle, the primary for the right to challenge sophomore Dem Gabby Giffords has a clear establishment v. outsider rift. However, there is only one teabagger here, Jesse Kelly, who squares off against the "establishment's" former Tucson-area State Senator, Jonathan Paton. Perhaps owing to the fact that there's only one teabaggish-type here, Kelly seems to be favored against Paton, posting a hefty 36-17 lead in recent polling. However, this poll was taken before third wheel Brian Miller headed for the exit, endorsing Paton on his way out. Given Miller's low share of support and Kelly's sole claim to the Holy Teabag, we might finally see the upset of an NRCC golden child here. (JMD)

FL-Gov (R): All good things must indeed come to an end - and I am going to be very sad when this primary is over. Until mid-April of this year, Bill McCollum, the colorless, unlikeable, ambiguously hairpieced state AG and former House impeachment manager, at least had one thing to keep his sorry ass happy at night: He was guaranteed to be the Republican nominee for governor of Florida. Then, a funny thing happened: Zillionaire asshole Rick Scott decided he wanted the nod more - a whole lot more. In fact, about $40 million more, which is what he and allied groups (aka his wife's checkbook) have spent on the race. McCollum and his allies (if you can imagine such a thing), undoubtedly stunned to have to start spending so early, have fired back, but they've only mustered some $14 million. (Check out this great graphic of both camps' spending.)

Anyhow, this race has gone more negative than googolplex divided by minus one. There isn't much consensus among pollsters on how much damage has been done to both candidates (some show McCollum with worse favorables, others show Scott deep in the doghouse), but I'm going to guess the answer is "a lot." There's also some divergence over who the frontrunner actually is. For a while there, Billy Mac's toplines utterly bombed - you can almost see him in his kitchen, sobbing into his cornflakes, as your eyes traverse that mid-July nosedive. But the problem with zillionaire assholes is that it's very hard for them to stop being zillionaire assholes, and they've also probably done quite a few somethings to deserve that reputation in the first place. McCollum's hit Scott hard over his ultra-shady past in the healthcare business, and while we can't say for sure, it seems to have turned the race around. Most recent polls have show McCollum taking back the lead, with PPP's seven-point Scott lead the main outlier.

It's hard to know whom to root for, though. Do we take Scott, with his deeply tarnished background but willingness to spend every last dime, or McCollum, with his coffers depleted but less scandal-plagued and still the establishment favorite? I think we have to be happy no matter what happens. And either way, I can hear the sound of that cat fud tin popping open: McCollum's already saying it would be "very difficult" for him to endorse Scott should he lose. Let's only hope Scott is willing to return the favor! Anyhow, this one was definitely a primary for the ages. God bless you, Florida Republicans. (D)

FL-Sen (D): Forget the actual Democratic candidates in this race -- the real star of the summer-long Florida Democratic primary saga was not a person, but an inanimate object: Summerwind, the notorious party yacht belonging to billionaire scuzzball Jeff Greene (also known as the Levi Johnston of boats). If there was one factor that helped turn this race upside-down, it was the steady barrage of drug-fueled, vomit-caked, and used condom-strewn stories of Jeff Greene's adventures on the high seas. Those stories, along with a barrage of hits against Greene's shady practices as a derivatives pioneer, have completely stunted Greene's momentum and returned the lead to congressman Kendrick Meek. A Meek primary win undoubtedly complicates things for Charlie Crist, who has to hope that he can marginalize the Democratic nominee in order to drink their milkshake steal their votes in November, but three-way races are notoriously difficult to forecast. (Oh, and as a footnote, technically, ex-Miami Mayor Maurice Ferre is still in this race, but his campaign has been totally eclipsed by the Jeff Greene freakshow.) (JL)

FL-02 (D/R): Despite that Rep. Allen Boyd is a pretty entrenched Blue Dog facing a potentially hard race in November in this GOP-leaning Panhandle district, the real race to watch tonight is the Democratic primary. Boyd faces a challenge from the left from term-limited state Senate majority leader Al Lawson. Lawson isn't a raging liberal himself (and, unlike many Dem primary challenges this year, Boyd deprived him of a key piece of ammo by voting "yes" on the second round of health care reform), but he's hoping that the fact that the district's Democratic electorate, which is substantially African-American, can keep him competitive with the much-better-funded Boyd. Lawson posted a small lead in an internal poll way back in Nov. 2009, but we haven't heard any polling details about the primary since then. The likeliest GOP nominee is funeral home owner Steve Southerland, whose fundraising has been adequate enough for the NRCC's Young Guns program and who even put out an internal also showing him leading Boyd. However, there are four other even-less-known GOPers standing in Southerland's way in the primary (with David Scholl the best fundraiser of the bunch, although even he hasn't broken into the six digits). (C)

FL-05 (R): I don't know about you, but I've got a bad case of Cat Scratch Fever, and there's only one cure... a primary victory tonight by the Rock 'n' Roll Sheriff, the Hernando County Madman, the Ten Terrible Fingers of Local Law Enforcement: Richard Nugent. Current Republican Rep. Ginny Brown-Waite, facing only an uneventful challenge from teabagger Jason Sager (whose impetus for getting into the race was Brown-Waite's support for Dede Scozzafava!), unexpectedly bailed out on filing day, letting her designated successor Nugent pick up the flag and sneak into office without a top-drawer Republican opponent, of which there are potentially many in this red district. Nugent still has to get past Sager, though; we'll have to see if Sager is beneficiary of people's discontent over the "selection process." (C)

FL-08 (R): Rep. Alan Grayson should be a tempting target, given his shoot-from-the-hip style and his freshman-in-a-swing-district status, but his huge stash of netroots cash seemed an active deterrent as the NRCC tried vainly to find a top-tier recruit. Eventually, they settled on businessman Bruce O'Donoghue, who had some self-funding potential, as their go-to guy. Unfortunately, one of the other guys they'd been unenthusiastically flirting with, social conservative state Rep. Kurt Kelly, decided he was going to get in anyway, and that was compounded by the fact that attorney/talk radio host Todd Long, who nearly beat then-Rep. Ric Keller in the '08 GOP primary, wasn't going away. Finally, the guy they wanted all along but who initially blew them off, state Sen. Daniel Webster, decided he wanted to run after all, but came back much too belatedly to clear the field or even get much of a fundraising foothold. Webster does have some key backers (Mike Huckabee, Jeb Bush), but with not so much as a leaked internal of the primary from any of the players, there's no clue as to whether he'll emerge from tonight's primary. (C)

FL-17 (D): This nine-way primary to succeed Kendrick Meek has largely been off the  national radar - and that's too bad, because it probably represented a good chance for progressive groups to get involved, seeing as it's an 87% Obama district. In any event, the race features several elected officials, a local community figure, and one wealthy self-funder with a proverbial "colorful past," Rudy Moise. The only recent poll of the race was taken on behalf of a group supporting activist Marleine Bastien, which had her at 22, while state Sen. Frederica Wilson was at 21. Moise was back at 10, and Miami Gardens Mayor Shirley Gibson was at 9. No one (apart from Moise) has raised much, with state Rep. Yolly Robertson leading the pack at $336K. The Miami Herald has a helpful run-down on each of the candidates in this wide-open race. (D)

FL-24 (R): National Republicans have run through a succession of favored candidates in this primary, starting with former Winter Park Commissioner Karen Diebel. Diebel turned out to be crazy (in a call to 911 a few years ago, she said political opponents placed a snake in her pool - and were spying on her home and hacking her computer), so attention turned to state Rep. Sandy Adams. Adams, however, turned out to be a sucky fundraiser, so the GOP recruited Ruth's Chris Steakhouse chief Craig Miller, a first-time candidate. Miller has self-funded less than you might have expected (only about $350K), which might explain his last-minute mailer attacking Diebel's sanity over the Snakes In A Pool incident. If Miller hasn't in fact sealed the deal, then race could be very much up in the air, especially since we haven't seen any recent polling. (D)

FL-25 (R): State Rep. David Rivera, despite a week of horrible press, is still the favorite for the Republican nomination to succeed district-hopping GOP Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart, but it will still be interesting to see if any of the ugly headlines will make a dent at the ballot box. First, we learned that Rivera once ran a truck off the road back in 2002 because it was carrying flyers printed for his opponent, in the hopes of preventing it from reaching the post office on time. Next, Rivera's Republican opponents have resurrected allegations that Rivera was involved in a domestic violence dispute. Damaging as stories like those may be, Rivera enjoys a huge fundraising lead over attorney Mariana "Marili" Cancio and Marine Corps veteran and public-relations consultant Paul Crespo. The real fireworks will have to wait for November, where the GOP nominee will face Tea Partier Roly Arrojo, Whig nominee (!!) Craig Porter, and '08 candidate Joe Garcia, who is the heavy favorite to beat union leader Luis Meurice for the Democratic nod tonight. (JL)

OK-02 (R): The last we checked in on this race, underfunded GOPers Charles Thompson and Daniel Edmonds received 34% and 28% respectively, setting the stage for a runoff. Both candidates seem to have improved their financial position, with Edmonds now able to claim $1,300 in his campaign account and Thompson up to a whopping $13k! Given this, whoever stumbles out of the runoff tomorrow will end up quite the underdog to incumbent (and oft-frustrating) Dem Dan Boren. (JMD)

OK-05 (R): In the first round, Christian camp director Jim Lankford edged out establishment pick former State Rep. Kevin Calvey, 34-32, a development that left some at NRCC headquarters scratching their heads. Third-place finisher State Rep. Mike Thompson, who earned 18%, has endorsed Lankford and not his former colleague. This just might give Lankford's more grassroots-oriented campaign the extra push it needs to overcome Calvey's financial advantage; since we last checked in, Calvey's plunked out $780k's to Lankfords $415k. While November in this district won't likely be exciting, true SwingNuts would never give up a chance to see egg on the NRCC's face. (JMD)

VT-Gov (D): Democrats have a challenge ahead of them in knocking off reasonably well-liked Republican Brian Dubie in November, but they have a giant, five-way primary to get through first. The players include former Lt. Gov. Doug Racine, Secretary of State Deb Markowitz, state Sens. Peter Shumlin and Susan Bartlett, and ex-state Rep. Matt Dunne. Markowitz and Shumlin have had the strongest fundraising, while Bartlett has raised the least of the major players. Without any public polling of the Democratic primary -- or even a leaked internal -- it's impossible to say what will happen here. (JL)

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FL-Gov, FL-Sen: Countdown to the Primary

by: Crisitunity

Mon Aug 23, 2010 at 1:09 PM EDT

Public Policy Polling (8/21-22, likely voters, 7/16-18 in parens):

Rick Scott (R): 47 (43)
Bill McCollum (R): 40 (29)
Undecided: 13 (28)
(MoE: ±5.6%)

Kendrick Meek (D): 51 (28)
Jeff Greene (D): 27 (25)
Glenn Burkett (D): 5 (6)
Maurice Ferre (D): 4 (4)
Undecided: 13 (37)
(MoE: ±5.4%)

With the Sunshine State's primaries tomorrow, three major pollsters have rolled out last-minute predictions today. For the Democratic Senate race, everyone's in agreement, except for maybe the magnitude of the victory. However, for the Republican gubernatorial primary, there are some divergent results, and PPP seems to be the odd man out this time. Contrary to the general trend of this race lately (I don't know if there's ever been a clearer illustration of "peaking too early" than this graph of Pollster trendlines), they give Rick Scott a 7-point lead over Bill McCollum. It's still an improvement for McCollum over their July numbers, where he trailed by 14.

PPP's GOP sample gives McCollum favorables of 38/45, while Scott's actually above water at 46/33. Did they manage to find a group of voters who somehow have avoided the last few months' worth of attack ads about Scott's gigantic Medicare fraud?

Quinnipiac (8/21-22, likely voters, 8/11-16 in parens):

Bill McCollum (R): 39 (44)
Rick Scott (R): 35 (35)
Undecided: 22 (19)
(MoE: ±3.5%)

Kendrick Meek (D): 39 (35)
Jeff Greene (D): 29 (28)
Maurice Ferre (D): 3 (6)
Undecided: 28 (29)
(MoE: ±3.6%)

Quinnipiac finds a small lead for McCollum (smaller than they did a week earlier, showing that McCollum's late surge seems to have maxed out); their pool of GOP voters gives 39/37 faves to McCollum and 31/40 to Scott. Interestingly, they also find a much smaller lead for Meek than did PPP, and freakishly high undecideds (28%) for an election that's, y'know, tomorrow, indicating how little motivation the Dem primary seems to have generated.

Mason-Dixon for Miami Herald (pdf) (8/17-19, likely voters, 8/9-11 in parens):

Bill McCollum(R): 45 (34)
Rick Scott (R): 36 (30)
Mike McAlister (R): 4 (3)
Undecided: 15 (33)
(MoE: ±4.5%)

Kendrick Meek (D): 42 (40)
Jeff Greene (D): 30 (26)
Maurice Ferre (D): 4 (5)
Glenn Burkett (D): 1 (NA)
Undecided: 23 (28)
(MoE: ±4.5%)

Mason-Dixon's numbers are a few days older than PPP's and Quinnipiac's; they're pretty closely in line with Quinnipiac, although they see the biggest lead of all three for McCollum over Scott (and more momentum, compared with last week). They give McCollum 43/32 favorables, compared with 33/40 for Scott. Could this truly be the end of the line for shameless bald supervillain Scott? (The Lex Luthor comparisons have written themselves this cycle -- but to me Scott's always been the Bizarro World version of Peter Garrett, the very liberal, very earnest, very tall, very bald Australian Labor Environment Minister... who those of you who were listening to music in the 80s probably remember better as the singer for Midnight Oil.)

UPDATE: Was it worth it? Pre-primary campaign finance reports came out, and between Scott and McCollum, $70 million was spent on the GOP gubernatorial primary: $49.9 million from Scott, $21 million for McCollum (although the majority of the money spent on McCollum's behalf was from allied outside groups). No worries: even after that spending, Scott still has a net worth of $218 million.

Discuss :: (16 Comments)

FL-Gov, FL-Sen: Single-Digit Sink, Crist Advantages in General

by: Crisitunity

Thu Aug 19, 2010 at 2:07 PM EDT

Quinnipiac (8/11-16, Florida voters, 7/22-27 in parentheses):

Alex Sink (D): 31 (26)
Bill McCollum (R): 29 (27)
Bud Chiles (I): 12 (14)
Undecided: 21 (27)

Alex Sink (D): 33 (27)
Rick Scott (R): 29 (29)
Bud Chiles (I): 12 (14)
Undecided: 20 (26)
(MoE: ±3%)

All manner of other pollsters have given Alex Sink small leads in the gubernatorial race over the last month, thanks to the bizarre no-holds-barred civil war on the GOP side. Believe it or not, this is the first time that Quinnipiac has joined the rest in giving Sink the lead, despite that they've been one of the Crist-friendliest pollsters this year. Sink's winning mostly just by standing around, smiling, and staying mud-free; she's at 30/15 favorables, compared with 33/43 for McCollum and 28/40 for Scott among the general population.

Jeff Greene (D): 15 (17)
Marco Rubio (R): 32 (32)
Charlie Crist (I): 40 (37)
Undecided: 10 (12)

Kendrick Meek (D): 16 (13)
Marco Rubio (R): 32 (33)
Charlie Crist (I): 39 (39)
Undecided: 10 (14)
(MoE: ±3%)

With the gubernatorial race having gotten so explosive, it's actually gotten easy to forget about the Senate race (which for a brief while was the absolute marquee Senate race). Things have been decidedly low-key lately between Crist and Rubio, while Meek and Greene pound each other in the Dem primary, all to little effect in the general. Crist actually gains a little ground in this sample, more pronouncedly with Jeff Greene as the Dem candidate (although they don't find as wide a disparity in how Crist performs against Greene as against Meek as, say, Mason-Dixon did). With Crist having had the chance to dominate the airwaves acting gubernatorial during the oil spill, he's actually pulled his favorables back above the 50% mark, at 53/33, while Rubio's at 35/28. (Meek is at 24/25, while Greene is pretty much in ruins, at 18/31.)

With the likelihood (seeming apparent to all but Rasmussen) that Crist goes to Washington, questions are getting louder about what he'll do when he gets there. Matt Yglesias raises an interesting (if terrifying) specter of a scenario for 2011, wherein Crist still wouldn't have to pick sides: 49 Democrats (or 48 + Sanders, I presume), 49 Republicans, and then Charlie Crist and Joe Lieberman in the middle, forming their own caucus (the CfL/FLfC Party?) and wielding all the control over organizing the Senate.

Discuss :: (39 Comments)

FL-Sen, FL-Gov: Last Stand of the Shady Billionaires

by: Crisitunity

Wed Aug 18, 2010 at 1:52 PM EDT

Quinnipiac (8/11-16, likely primary voters, 7/22-27 in parentheses):

Bill McCollum (R): 44 (32)
Rick Scott (R): 35 (43)
Undecided: 19 (23)
(MoE: ±3.5%)

Kendrick Meek (D): 35 (23)
Jeff Greene (D): 28 (33)
Maurice Ferre (D): 6 (4)
Undecided: 29 (35)
(MoE: ±3.4%)

A month ago, it was looking like the massively-self-funded vanity campaigns of Rick Scott (in the GOP gubernatorial primary) and Jeff Greene (in the Democratic Senate primary) were actually going to succeed, having bamboozled an adequate number of voters after swamping the airwaves with TV spots. With voters finally seeming to take notice of Scott's massive Medicare fraud and Greene's hard-partying ways (stuff that was always out there, but seemed to take a long time to break through the clutter), their implosion seems to be happening -- belatedly, but rapidly, all the same.

McCollum's turnaround is particularly surprising, as he's actually venturing back into positive favorable territory (at least among the Republican primary electorate) after having temporarily gotten turned radioactive: he's at 45/30, compared with 34/33 for Scott. (Quinnipiac should ask McCollum supporters how they feel about Scott, and vice versa... I think there might be some mutual exclusivity to those two sets of numbers.) McCollum's also surviving despite that, by a 42-35 margin, GOP voters prefer someone who's an "outsider" to someone with "experience."

There is one other poll, out, though, that gives a small lead to Scott: it's the GOP side of that Susquehanna poll for Sunshine State News (they released Dem Senate numbers yesterday). It's a small lead, though; Scott's up 44-42 (although he was up by 16 in the previous Sunshine State News poll in July). The same sample also took a look at the Democratic primary in the Attorney General's race, where state sen. Dan Gelber leads fellow state Sen. Dave Aronberg, 38-27.

McCollum's also getting some outside help from another new Florida resident: Mike Huckabee is giving his endorsement to McCollum, and will appear with him this weekend. The McCollum camp is also launching a new ad, focusing on Scott's legal woes and featuring new footage of him running away from cameras, and even turning the C and O in his name into handcuffs for emphasis.

Realizing he's up against the wall, Scott is pouring another $4 million of his own money into the race. (Somewhere, Meg Whitman was heard scoffing at the foibles of the little people who can only self-finance in the seven-digit range.) Scott's newest ad references Jim Greer, the disgraced former state party chair, and tries to tie him to McCollum. That seems like it was a bridge too far for even the RGA, which condemned Scott over the ad and danced up to the very edge, in their statement, of almost (but not quite) endorsing McCollum. Also, Scott is going back to the well on the Rentboy scandal, trying to tie McCollum to George Rekers again with a new mailer. Whew! Remember back when we thought the Florida Senate race was going to be the slimy one?

Discuss :: (20 Comments)

SSP Daily Digest: 8/17 (Morning Edition)

by: DavidNYC

Tue Aug 17, 2010 at 8:13 AM EDT

  • AZ-Sen: Here's an internal poll from a few days ago that we missed: Randy Parraz, running in the Dem primary, commissioned a one-day robopoll by a firm called Winning Connections. It found Rodney Glassman in the lead with 20, Parraz at 17, John Dougherty at 11, and Cathy Eden at 8. Forty-four percent are undecided. Glassman went up on the air with his first ad last week, touting his endorsement from the Arizona Republic and his military credentials. Parraz is also now on the air, with ads in both English and Spanish, talking about his fight against SB 1070 and the notorious Sherriff Joe Arpaio. NWOTSOTB for either campaign.
  • Meanwhile, John McCain has some boring new 60-second positive spot out - like he really needs to introduce himself to Arizona voters? As CQ says, "the tone and content of this spot send the message that McCain is a politician who doesn't have to look over his shoulder to see if anybody's gaining on him." NWOTSOTB.

  • FL-Sen: Nancy Pelosi's recorded a robocall for Kendrick Meek (not a surprise), and for Jeff Greene, it's Star Jones to the rescue. Yeah, I'm scratching my head about that one, too.
  • KY-Sen: Countless law enforcement officials (police and prosecutors alike) are hammering Rand Paul for his claim that drugs are not "a real pressing issue" in Kentucky. Apparently, things in the real world are a little different than in retard libertarian fantasy land, where Paul is married to Ayn Rand and their son Alan Greenspan just received 500 shares of Taggart Transcontinental stock for his bar mitzvah. Anyhow, at least in part because of all this, the statewide Fraternal Order of Police just endorsed Conway, who promises to hit Rand hard.
  • NV-Sen: Harry Reid has a new ad out (NWOTSOTB) hitting Angle for her support of SSP - the bad kind of SSP, of course (Social Security privatization). Sad to see Reid acting like such a pathetic coward on the issue of the Cordoba House, though - not that I really expect better from him, though.
  • CO-Gov: Hahah! This is going to be a laugh riot. Republican gubernatorial nominee (weird to type out, as Colorado Pols notes) Dan Maes has to pick a... lol... running mate by tomorrow evening. This could produce the funniest ticket matchup since H. Ross Perot tapped Admiral Stockdale twenty years ago. Anyhow, Colorado Pols has some good suggestions for Maes, including one state senator who is opposed to telecommuting (I fucking wish I were kidding) - perfect, because Maes is freaked out by bicycle commuters.
  • FL-Gov: Freakazoid Lex Luthor clone Rick Scott has emerged from his Fortress of Squalitude with a new 30-second spot designed to heal divisions in this country and promote greater tolerance and understanding. Oh, please don't tell me you believed that for a second, did you? Scott's ad, cutely titled "Obama's Mosque," is a scum-drenched attempt to fearmonger his way to victory in the gubernatorial primary.
  • Meanwhile, Alex Sink is reportedly set to tap former prosecutor and state Sen. Rod Smith as her running mate. Smith himself unsuccessfully sought the Dem gube nod in 2006. Click the link for more background on him and how the pick went down.

  • MN-Gov: The Alliance for a Better Minnesota, a Dem-backed group, is hammering GOP nominee Tom Emmer for all the votes he's missed in the state legislature. There's some serious muscle behind this ad, too - it's a half-million dollar buy for the next two weeks. (Props to the Star Tribune's Baird Helgeson for reporting that info.)
  • AZ-05: I'm a huge Deadwood fan, and one of my favorite all-time lines is of course uttered by Al Swearengen, who says: "Announcing your plans is a good way to hear God laugh." Cue this story:
  • Former Maricopa County Treasurer David Schweikert is essentially declaring victory in the District 5 GOP primary, and said he is cutting his advertising budget for the final two weeks of the campaign because he is so confident in victory that he wants to save his money for the general election match-up with incumbent Democratic Rep. Harry Mitchell. His main opponents, businessman Jim Ward and former Scottsdale City Councilwoman Susan Bitter Smith, say the race is still up for grabs.

  • CO-04: Though outside groups have been up on the airwaves for a while, Rep. Betsy Markey is now out with her first ad of her own, an anti-TARP spot which calls bailouts "offensive." NWOTSOTB.
  • GA-02: Republican Mike Keown is touting an internal poll from Public Opinion Strategies which purports to show Rep. Sanford Bishop up just 50-44.
  • NJ-03: This is the sort of grumpy whining you expect from newcomer pols who don't understand that politics - still - ain't beanbag. Still, it's a little surprising to see former NFL players act like such weenies. Anyhow, John Runyan is moaning because he's sure that Dem Rep. John Adler is responsible for indie teabagger Peter DeStefano's candidacy. Runyan's team couldn't knock DeStefano off the ballot on account of his petitions, so now they are "considering a lawsuit alleging that those who signed may not have known that DeStefano was unaffiliated with a formal tea-party group." Uh, is that even a cognizable legal argument? Good luck with that.
  • NY-14: I guess Reshma Saujani missed the day they taught "Not Fucking Up" at First-Time Candidate School. Saujani put out a statement decrying Carolyn Maloney's supposed "silence" on the Cordoba House. Yeah, you saw this one coming: Maloney put out a statement in support of the project almost two weeks ago. Better luck next time!
  • NY-State Sen: Good news: A poll from a group called the New Roosevelt Initiative (taken by Red Horse Strategies) shows scumbag state senator Pedro Espada - you know, the guy who led the ill-fated coup last year to hand control back to the Republicans - tied with progressive activist Gustavo Rivera at 32% apiece in the Democratic primary. Unfortunately, as Albany Project writer Roatti notes, there's a third candidate in the race, Daniel Padernacht, who may be unintentionally offering Espada a lifeline by splitting the anti-incumbent vote.
  • DCCC: We mentioned this fundraiser a little while back (see Amazing Daily Digest, Issue #88!), but now we have the goods: President Obama raised a cool million for the D-Trip at a star-studded Hollywood fundraiser, featuring the likes of Steven Spielberg and Barbara Streisand.
  • Polltopia: Blargh. PPP has switched to a full-bore likely voter model, and the results ain't pretty for Team Blue. Go read Tom's post for the full details.
  • Discuss :: (87 Comments)

    SSP Daily Digest: 8/16 (Afternoon Edition)

    by: Crisitunity

    Mon Aug 16, 2010 at 3:13 PM EDT

    CO-Sen: Ken Buck twisted himself into a knot that's unlikely to satisfy anyone. After it came out that, about a year ago, he'd announced his support for the repeal of the 17th Amendment (which allows for direct election of Senators, and should alarm any non-teabagger), on Friday he clarified that, no, he's changed his mind and supports the 17th now (which should piss off any teabagger). While several House GOP candidates have touted the idea, Buck is the first Senate candidate to discuss why it's a good idea for people to vote for him so he can go to Washington and take away their right to vote... for him.

    FL-Sen: There's one more Florida poll to add to the growing pile; it's only of the Democratic Senate primary, though, and it's from Republican pollster Susquehanna on behalf of online media outlet Sunshine State News. They join in the chorus seeing Kendrick Meek pulling away from Jeff Greene, 45-30.

    PA-Sen: Joe Sestak's getting some support from an unexpected place: Michael Bloomberg, the loudly post-partisan New York mayor. Bloomberg, who'll stump on Sestak's behalf in Pennsylvania tomorrow, seems to like Sestak's efforts on better lending for small businesses. Another bright spot for Sestak: Green Party candidate Mel Packer is dropping out of the Senate race, not seeming able to withstand the pending court challenge to his petitions from the Sestak camp.

    AL-Gov: With friends like Artur Davis, who needs enemies? The ostensibly Democratic Rep., who seems to have gotten consumed with bile after his surprising yet thorough loss to Ron Sparks in the Democratic gubernatorial primary, published an op-ed in the Montgomery Advertiser yesterday titled "A lack of vision" that said that Sparks is "no champion of real change." The key quote: "In a break with tradition, I did not attend that [unity] event and will not be campaigning for the Democratic gubernatorial nominee." But really: read the whole thing, especially if you still had any shreds of respect left for Davis.

    CA-Gov: You know that saying about how if you want to experience the sense of yachting, just go stand in the shower with your clothes on and keep continuously flushing money down the toilet? I wonder if Meg Whitman is starting to get that sense about her own campaign and its nine figures worth of out-of-pocket sunk costs. She just wrote herself another $13 million check, saying that she had to throw down more because of the nerve of those unions and their insistence on using independent expenditures.

    IA-Gov: You might remember the gadflyish Jonathan Narcisse, a former Des Moines school board member and alternative newspaper publisher who'd made some motions about challenging Chet Culver in the Dem primary. Well, now he's back, and he's planning to mount an independent bid instead. He claims to have enough signatures to qualify, and despite his ostensibly left-of-center orientation claims to be getting a lot of interest from disgruntled Bob Vander Plaats supporters looking for an option to Terry Branstad.

    LA-Gov: In case there was any doubt, Bobby Jindal confirmed that he'll be running for re-election for Governor in 2011. That makes a 2012 presidential run seem less likely, given the quick turnaround, but he's young enough that he needn't hurry.

    MS-01: Travis Childers is out with his second ad in as many weeks, this one a negative spot against Alan Nunnelee (although self-narrated by Childers, rather than using the usual grainy black-and-white photos and angry-sounding voice of doom like most negative ads). Childers hits Nunnelee for raising various taxes while in the state legislature.

    NH-01: Frank Guinta, the presumed frontrunner in the GOP primary for the right to face Rep. Carol Shea-Porter, has some good news and bad news. The good news: he seems to have discovered an extra bank account in his name that had somewhere between $250K and $500K in it, which hadn't been on previous disclosure forms because of "an inadvertent oversight." The bad news: now he has to explain where all that money came from, which isn't exactly clear, as Guinta has partially self-funded his run but also done a lot of outside fundraising. This looks serious enough that ex-Rep. Jeb Bradley is calling for Guinta to drop out if he can't provide a credible explanation (although it should be noted that, although Bradley hasn't officially endorsed, he was already informally backing GOP primary rival Sean Mahoney).

    NY-06, NY-13: The New York AFL-CIO endorsed all but four New York House incumbents over the weekend: the two Republicans, naturally, but also Reps. Mike McMahon and... Greg Meeks? Turns out they've had a beef with Meeks (who's a bit of a mismatch with his dark-blue district) for a while, going back to his CAFTA vote. So this means they did endorse Mike Arcuri in NY-24, despite his HCR vote and subsequent antipathy from the Working Families Party.

    Ohio: We Ask America, an auto-dialing pollster with Republican connections that occasionally pops up with flurries of polls, rolled out three polls of different House races in Ohio last week. They add one more poll to the heap of doom for Rep. Steve Driehaus in OH-01, finding him losing to ex-Rep. Steve Chabot 51-39. They also find Paula Brooks unlikely to prevail in her right-candidate-wrong-year challenge to GOP Rep. Pat Tiberi in OH-12; she trails 51-34. Perhaps most interesting is OH-15, which I believe is the first poll released of this race, which many Dems have mentally written off already. While they have freshman Rep. Mary Jo Kilroy trailing, it's not that bad, in comeback-able range with a 46-41 lead for GOP rematch candidate Steve Stivers.

    Stumping: Barack Obama is making a three-state road swing over the next few days, appearing on behalf of three vulnerable Democratic Senate incumbents: Russ Feingold in Wisconsin, Barbara Boxer in California, and Patty Murray in Washington. Meanwhile, Bill Clinton is making three appearances around Florida today on behalf of Hillary-endorsing Kendrick Meek in his Senate primary.

    Rasmussen:
    CT-Gov: Dan Malloy (D) 48%, Tom Foley (R) 33%
    GA-Sen: Michael Thurmond (D) 41%, Johnny Isakson (R-inc) 55%
    ME-Gov: Libby Mitchell (D) 30%, Paul LePage (R) 38%, Eliot Cutler (I) 16%
    ND-Sen: Tracy Potter (D) 25%, John Hoeven (R) 69%
    ND-AL: Earl Pomeroy (D-inc) 44%, Rick Berg (R) 53%

    Discuss :: (163 Comments)

    SSP Daily Digest: 8/16 (Morning Edition)

    by: DavidNYC

    Mon Aug 16, 2010 at 8:04 AM EDT

  • FL-Sen: As any attentive swingnut will now tell you, when you hear "Jeff Greene" and "Cuba" in the same sentence, you're gonna think of the booze cruise he took their on his vomit-caked yacht a few years back. Well, Greene is (desperately?) trying to change the subject, saying that he now is open to lifting the Cuban embargo. Less than two weeks ago, though, he declared his firm support for it. Perhaps running to the right on Cuba is no longer the automatic option in Democratic primaries in Florida?
  • LA-Sen: Charlie Melancon has a new ad up just lacerating David Vitter for his record on women's issues. I highly suggest you check it out - I think it's very well done. NWOTSOTB, but Josh Kraushaar says the ad "is airing on broadcast and cable television throughout the state."
  • MA-Sen: In a long profile with the Boston Globe, Vicki Kennedy (Ted's widow) says she won't challenge Scott Brown in 2012.
  • MO-Sen: Robin Carnahan is up with her first ad of the cycle, a negative spot hitting Roy Blunt for his support of the bailout. NWOTSOTB, but the ad (which you can view here) "is running statewide."
  • SC-Sen: Looks like we're stuck with the recently-indicted Alvin Greene as our candidate. In fact, say local election officials, "even if he were to be convicted before the election, the law appears to read that he could still serve and be on the ballot." Memo to all state Democratic parties everywhere: Fix your bylaws!
  • FL-Gov: Dem Alex Sink is up with her first ad, ribbing her Republican rivals for their negative campaigning against each other. The Orlando Sentinel says that Sink "has bought $950,000 in TV from now through the Aug. 24 primary," but I'm not sure if all of that is devoted to this one ad.

  • GA-Gov: It's a continuing theme this digest: Roy Barnes is also up with his first ad of the general election, hitting Nathan Deal for his ethical issues. (Recall that Deal resigned from Congress earlier this year to avoid an Ethics Committee investigation.) NWOTSOTB.
  • TN-Gov: One more: Republican Bill Haslam is on the air with his first ad of the general election campaign, a super-cheesy one-minute spot in which (among other things) he name-checks his opponent's dad, former Gov. Ned McWherter. NWOTSOTB.
  • WI-Gov: Obama alert! The POTUS will stop in Milwaukee on Monday to do a fundraiser for Dem gubernatorial candidate Tom Barrett. Nice to see that a guy like Barrett, running in a swing state which probably doesn't feel too warmly toward Obama these days, isn't afraid to appear with the president.
  • AZ-03: Ben Quayle seems to be acting like one of those defendants whose attorneys are begging him to stop talking to the papers, but who just can't shut up. He put out a statement berating his opponents and the media for linking him to the sickeningly odious "Dirty Scottsdale" website (now thedirty.com - not linking them)... which of course can only have the effect of keeping this story alive even longer. Wonder where he gets these genius genes from....
  • AZ-08: Air Force vet Brian Miller, citing a lack of money, announced he was dropping out of the Republican primary and endorsing former state Sen. Jonathan Paton, rather than fellow veteran Jesse Kelly.
  • CA-52: Uh, wow. Just read the link.
  • CO-04: The conservative 501(c)4 group "Americans for Prosperity" is launching a $330K ad buy against Dem Rep. Betsy Markey. You can view the ad (which does not strike me as having the highest of production values) here.
  • IL-10: Both Dan Seals and his Republican opponent, Bob Dold!, are up on cable with their first ads of the general election. NWOTSOTB (either of them).
  • MA-10: Republican Jeff Perry's resume takes another hit - literally. Turns out he'd been touting a "degree" he earned from a school called Columbia State University... which was, in fact, a notorious diploma mill until it was shut down by the authorities. Cape Cod Today was first on the story, and now it's being picked up in other media outlets as well.
  • MI-01: Major bummer: State Sen. Jason Allen, who trails physician Dan Benishek by just fifteen votes following a re-canvass, won't seek a recount. Still, I think Dems probably got our preferred candidate here.
  • NY-19: Rep. John Hall is trying to knock his Republican opponent, Nan Hayworth, off the Independence Party line, saying that her petitions contain too many invalid signatures.
  • NY-24: GOPer Richard Hanna is up with his first ad of the election campaign, a positive bio spot. NWOTSOTB.
  • PA-06, PA-07: Howard Dean is coming to suburban Philly next month to do a joint fundraiser for two Dems, Manan Trivedi and Bryan Lentz.
  • SD-AL: Rep. Stephanie Herseth Sandlin has a new ad up ("running statewide," but NWOTSOTB) which features her two-year-old son pooping. Not kidding. Supposedly this is some kind of analogy to Congress (which likes to "eat, and eat, and eat") that I am truly not getting.
  • Discuss :: (71 Comments)
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