Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Campaign Updates (7/8/09)


The Franken-Coleman race is finally over and Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) was sworn in yesterday. Below is the oath he took.


News today is that Attorney General Lisa Madigan (D-IL) will not be running for Senate against Richard Burris (or for governor against Pat Quinn) who has bad Blagojevich ties that could hurt him in 2010.

Chris Cillizza at the Washington Post makes some predictions as to who will seek the seat now:

"With Madigan out of the Senate race, expect businessman Chris Kennedy to quickly announce his candidacy, joining state Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias in the Democratic primary. Madigan's no-go decision also makes it far more likely that Rep. Mark Kirk, by far Republicans strongest candidate, will make the race."

Madigan’s decision is expected to be made public later today.


Conservative Republican Senate candidate Marco Rubio has simply not raised a lot of money lately. Last quarter he raised about a tenth of what moderate primary opponent Charlie Crist expects to raise.

Meanwhile, Rep. Kendrick Meek (D-FL) raised a good $1.2 million for his Senate bid. As he told supporters “No other non-incumbent Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate today is raising the funds necessary to grow the movement that we are building together.” Of course, he still fell far short of Crist, who believes he raised about $3 million for the quarter.

New Jersey

The predictably ugly gubernatorial race is heating up. Seriously-at-risk incumbent Gov. Jon Corzine (D-NJ) released this ad against GOP opponent Chris Christie recently.

This comes after two fairly effective ads from the Republican Governors Association launched against Corzine last month.

New Hampshire

Attorney General Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) is resigning to pursue a run for Senate to replace the retiring Judd Gregg (and, yes, Democrats are now comparing her to Palin for it).

This will be a closely watched race, no doubt, because of the prospects Democrats have of eliminating the GOP from New England, at least in Congressional races.

State Rep. Jim Splaine (D-Portsmouth) lays out a good analysis of Ayotte’s chances of winning - both the pros and cons for her candidacy.


Big news from the Commonwealth today (and bad news for Democrats) - Republican Bob McDonnell has expanded his lead over Democrat Creigh Deeds to 49% - 43%. It appears that the post-primary hype for Deeds has slowed down.

Among independents, McDonnell leads 54% - 33%, a serious disadvantage for the Deeds campaign. Luckily the vast majority of Democrats have thrown their support for Deeds now in the general election - but the harsh and ugly three-way gubernatorial Democratic primary may have been a turn-off to independents.

Additionally, Republicans lead Democrats in all three statewide races this year.

Interest Groups Playing Nice?

It’s not everyday you see an interest group making an issue ad that’s supportive of a politician - typically they end with something along the lines of “call _____ and tell him/her to stop being such a jerk.”

But Americans United for Change is airing an unusually friendly ad for House members that supported the recent climate bill, asking voters to thank them for their decision.

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