Hello readers, I believe it is time for a new edition of the Election News Dump! For those unfamiliar with this portion of the website, consider this where we put all the election stories that aren’t worthy of a full-length post but are still noteworthy. We mostly stick with Senate and 2016 news unless something major happens in one of the House races.
With all that being said, let’s see what’s going on today in the electoral news.
Montana: Another Noteworthy Democrat Declines Bid
After the announcement that Brian Schweitzer would not enter the Montana Senate race, we turned our attention to the rest of the Democratic bench. One of the names we dropped was that of Auditor Monica Lindeen who would be term-limited in 2016. Lindeen has decided though to announce that she will not run for the Senate seat left though I wonder if it is out of deference to Superintendent of Public Education Denise Juneau who seems to be a good bet to earn establishment support and to run.
If Juneau does say no though, expect Democrats to go all-in to try to convince Lieutenant Governor John Walsh to enter the race. If he declines, it gets ugly.
North Carolina: Kay Hagan Widens Lead
Republicans are foaming at the mouth (well that’s not a surprise) over taking back some of the Senate seats they lost in 2008, when Democrats steamrolled their way to 60 seats in the Senate. One of the seats the Republicans are targeting is the one held by Kay Hagan of North Carolina. Given how North Carolina, although trending its way to battleground status, is still fairly red; it makes sense.
Still, if they are going to take North Carolina they will need to step their game up as PPP finds Hagan with double digit leads over some of her current and potential challengers (including Reps. Renee Elmers and Virginia Foxx). What really helps Hagan’s candidacy is the extreme unpopularity of the North Carolina Republican-held state legislature, which includes announced candidate Thom Tillis (who is House Speaker).
Alaska: Begich Raises Money
Just like fellow freshman Kay Hagan, Mark Begich of Alaska will have the heat turned up on him this year as he vies for reelection. Alaska however is much more red than North Carolina which leads to Begich’s target being a bit more wider.
Still the good news for Begich is that he brought in nearly $1 million this past quarter which gives him about $2 million cash on hand. Alaska is a state without a major media market and its pretty easy to run in and Begich already has a nice war chest to work with. I tend to think out of the group of Mark Pryor, Mary Landrieu, Hagan & Begich that the latter two are the safest. Hagan has no real big challengers and Begich might squeak by if the Republicans again nominate Joe Miller.
Arkansas: Tom Cotton addresses attacks over “ambition”
Tom Cotton is probably going to run for Senate, I have nothing to prove that with other than the fact that he seems to really be prepping for it. It’ll be a risk though if Cotton decides to run. If he loses the Senate seat, he really will be out of politics as he would have to forfeit his newly-won House seat.
Pryor is probably the number one incumbent target of the GOP and if anything, Arkansas is getting more and more red by the cycle. Still, Cotton will have to be fully sure he can win this or he’ll be giving up a shot at House leadership.
Race To The White House 2016
Oh boy. Peter King, the Long Island congressman that is equally obsessed and paranoid over national security, is apparently open to the idea of making a bid for the White House. If King were interested in running (he wouldn’t have to cede his seat), it would probably be best if he retired from the House. Vanity campaigns in potentially swing district sounds like a recipe for a prime pickup opportunity.
The reason I lobbed a question mark at the end just because you never know what’s going to happen, but it seems that we have our first denial of 2016! Patrick though could be a prime VP candidate for whomever the Democrats nominate (HILLARY) for President.
Feel free to send tips in the comments section!