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February 14, 2016

Posts in "House"

February 9, 2016

The $100 Jacket Politicians Use to Pretend To Be Normal People


barn jacket

The barn jacket has become the go-to fashion accessory for candidates trying to appeal to the common folk. (Screengrab: David Trone for Congress)

David Trone has never run for office before, but he’s wearing the standard issue uniform of a politician in his first television ads: the barn jacket.

The wealthy Maryland Democrat thrust himself into the 8th District primary with close to a $1 million ad buy in the expensive Washington, D.C., media market. In the ad, entitled “Bet the Farm,” the owner of the Total Wine & More chain of stores dons a barn jacket to take viewers on a tour of the family farm where he grew up.

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February 1, 2016

Ribble Retirement Creates Vulnerable GOP Open Seat


UNITED STATES - MARCH 24: Reps. David Schweikert, R-Ariz., left, and Reid Ribble, R-Wisc., leave a meeting of the House Republican Conference in the Capitol, March 24, 2015. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

With Ribble, right, out of the picture, there will be renewed Democratic interest in his seat. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Three-term Wisconsin Rep. Reid Ribble’s retirement leaves Republicans with yet another competitive open seat to defend.

Based on the 2008 presidential results, the 8th District looks like a great Democratic takeover opportunity. President Barack Obama carried the northeastern Wisconsin district, which includes Green Bay and Appleton, by 9 points and Democratic Rep. Steve Kagen was re-elected that same year by a similar margin.

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January 27, 2016

Ratings Changes in 5 House Races


While voters in Iowa and New Hampshire are poised to kick off the presidential primaries, the national House landscape continues to take shape.

You can read updated analysis on 102 districts across the country in the Jan. 25 issue of The Rothenberg & Gonzales Political Report, but here is a quick list of ratings changes for five seats, in coordination with Roll Call.
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January 14, 2016

Rigell Retirement Shifts Seat Out of Safe for GOP


UNITED STATES - APRIL 4: Rep. Scott Rigell, R-Va., arrives at the Capitol for the last vote of the week on Friday, April 4, 2014. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Rigell’s retirement will likely cause Democrats to take a look at the seat he is vacating. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Republican Rep. Scott Rigell is retiring from Virginia’s 2nd District, leaving a competitive open seat for his party to defend. The news, first reported by the Virginian-Pilot, was a surprise to some people who have worked closely with the congressman in the past.

The Virginia Beach-based district is competitive. President Barack Obama won it 50 percent to 49 percent in 2012 and 51 percent to 48 percent in 2008 and Democrat Terry McAuliffe narrowly won the 2nd, 47 percent to 46 percent, in the 2013 gubernatorial election against conservative Republican Ken Cuccinelli, under the current lines. But a court-ordered map would improve the GOP performance of the seat by a couple of points.

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January 11, 2016

NRCC Names Furst Johnson IE Director


07/12/05.U.S. BORDER SECURITY--Rep. Katherine Harris, R-Fla.,testifies before Senate Foreign Relations on border security. Other witnesses were Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, D-Mass., and Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz. McCain has been working on a bill with Kennedy that would offer limited guest worker visas. He said Arlen Specter, R-Pa., chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, is ready to hold hearings on both proposals. Cornyn and Sen. Jon Kyl, R-Ariz., have filed an amendment providing a comprehensive set of immigration changes. The amendment would give the federal government more power to remove illegal aliens from the country quickly and allow the government to revoke visas for suspicious immigrants. Among other provisions, the amendment also would require the Homeland Security Department to issue documents to aliens that can be verified through fingerprints or other means. Harris is sponsoring border security legislation in the House..CONGRESSIONAL QUARTERLY PHOTO BY SCOTT J. FERRELL

Furst Johnson was communications director for former Rep. Katherine Harris’ 2004 campaign. (Scott J. Ferrell/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

National Republican Congressional Committee Deputy Executive Director and General Counsel Jessica Furst Johnson will be the committee’s Independent Expenditure Director for the 2016 cycle.

“Jessica was instrumental in helping us win our historic Republican majority in 2014 and we are excited she will lead our IE unit in 2016,” said NRCC Executive Director Rob Simms in a release first obtained by Roll Call.

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January 6, 2016

Steve Israel Retirement Sets Up GOP Takeover Opportunity


UNITED STATES - JULY 15: Rep. Steve Israel, D-N.Y., leaves a meeting with House Democrats in the Capitol Visitor Center that featured a visit by Vice President Joe Biden, July 15, 2015. Biden was on the Hill to brief members on the nuclear deal with Iran. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Democrats can’t take the race to fill Israel’s seat for granted. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Former Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee Chairman Steve Israel spent years defending competitive open seats, but now his retirement leaves one behind.

Israel announced Tuesday that he would not seek re-election in November after 16 years in the House. His retirement wasn’t a complete surprise, considering there isn’t an empty rung on the Democratic leadership ladder. But the congressman’s exit is notable considering his past leadership roles.

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January 4, 2016

Top Races in 2016: The West


UNITED STATES - DECEMBER 8: Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) holds his news conference with Senate Democratic leadership following the Democrats' lunch in the Capitol on Tuesday, Dec. 8, 2015. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

The race to replace Reid will be one of the most competitive of the cycle. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

This is the eighth in a series looking at the most competitive House and Senate races in 2016. The West region covers Alaska, California, Hawaii, Nevada, Oregon and Washington.

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Top Races in 2016: The Southwest


PHOENIX, AZ - FEBRUARY 28:  Election day volunteer Vicki Groff places a sign to direct voters to a polling station at Kenilworth School February 28, 2012 in Phoenix, Arizona. Voters in this state participate in choosing who will be the Republican candidate to contest President Barack Obama in the general election.  (Photo by Jonathan Gibby/Getty Images)

Two House races in Arizona are among the most-watched around the country. (Jonathan Gibby/Getty Images File Photo)

This is the sixth in a series of looks at the most competitive House and Senate races in 2016. The Southwest region covers Arizona, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas.

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By Nathan L. Gonzales Posted at 11:53 a.m.
Arizona, House, Texas

Top Races in 2016: Mountain Region


DENVER, COLORADO - NOVEMBER 4: Elections judge Tim Drago of Denver, Colorado collects a ballot from a passing motorist at the Denver Elections Division Building on November 4, 2014. It was the final day that voters could cast and drop off a ballot in a mainly mail-in ballot election year in Colorado. (Photo by Marc Piscotty/Getty Images)

Elections judge Tim Drago collects a ballot from a passing motorist at the Denver Elections Division Building in Denver on Election Day 2014. (Marc Piscotty/Getty Images File Photo)

This is the seventh in a series looking at the most competitive House and Senate races in 2016. The Mountain Region covers Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Utah and Wyoming.

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January 1, 2016

Top Races in 2016: The Plains States


WEST DES MOINES, IA - NOVEMBER 04:  Supporters celebrate after hearing that Republican candidate Joni Ernst won the U.S. Senate race on election night at the Marriott Hotel November 4, 2014 in West Des Moines, Iowa. Ernst and her opponent Democrat Rep. Bruce Braley (D-IA) were locked in a months-long campaign battle that had them tied in the polls going into election day.  (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Supporters of Joni Ernst celebrate on Election Night 2014 after hearing that their candidate had won. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images File Photo)

This is the fifth in a series of regional looks at the most competitive House and Senate races in 2016. The Plains Region covers Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota and South Dakota.

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December 31, 2015

Top Races in 2016: The Midwest


MILWAUKEE, WI - NOVEMBER 4:  Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker casts his ballot on election day at Jefferson Elementary School, November, 4, 2014 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Walker is running in a tight race against opponent Democratic candidate for Governor Mary Burke. (Photo by Darren Hauck/Getty Images)

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker votes in Milwaukee on Election Day 2014. (Darren Hauck/Getty Images File Photo)

This is the fourth in a series of eight regional looks at the most competitive House and Senate races for 2016. The Midwest Region covers Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin.

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December 30, 2015

Top Races in 2016: The South


ST. PETERSBURG, FL - NOVEMBER 6:  Volunteer David Bowser peeks outside the Pinellas County Democratic Party headquarters November 6, 2012 in St. Petersburg, Florida. Bowser showed up to provide rides to polls for those in need. The swing state of Florida is a hotly-contested battleground that offers 29 electoral votes. (Photo by Edward Linsmier/Getty Images)

Volunteer David Bowser peeks outside the Pinellas County Democratic Party headquarters in St. Petersburg on Election Day 2012. (Edward Linsmier/Getty Images File Photo)

Editor’s note: This is the third in a series of looks at the most competitive House and Senate races in the 2016 election cycle.

The South region includes: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia.

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December 29, 2015

Top Races in 2016: Mid-Atlantic States


PHILADELPHIA, PA - NOVEMEBER 6:   A cardboard sign points to a polling place on November 6, 2012 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. U.S. citizens go to the polls today to vote in the election between Democratic President Barack Obama and Republican nominee former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney. (Photo by Jessica Kourkounis/Getty Images)

A cardboard sign points to a polling place in Philadelphia on Nov. 6, 2012. (Jessica Kourkounis/Getty Images File Photo)

This is the second in a series of regional looks at the most competitive House and Senate races to watch in 2016.

The Mid-Atlantic region includes Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and West Virginia.

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December 28, 2015

Top Races in 2016: New England


WILTON, NH - JANUARY 09: A voter leaves Town Hall on January 10, 2012 in Wilton, New Hampshire. Voters in the Granite State are heading to the poll in the nation's first primary election to pick their choice for the U.S. presidential candidates.   (Photo by Matthew Cavanaugh/Getty Images)

A voter leaves Town Hall in Wilton, N.H., on January 10, 2012 after voting in the state’s primary. (Matthew Cavanaugh/Getty Images File Photo)

Editor’s note: This is the first in a series of regional looks at the most competitive House and Senate races to watch in 2016.

The New England region includes Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont.

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December 20, 2015

Democrats Moving on from Top Recruit in Competitive District


UNITED STATES - FEBRUARY 4: Rep. Ryan Costello, R-Pa., listens during the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee and Senate Environment and Public Works Committee joint hearing on "Impacts of the Proposed Waters of the United States Rule on State and Local Governments" on Wednesday, Feb. 4, 2015. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Costello is potentially vulnerable in his first re-election race, which will take place in a presidential year in a competitive district. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Democrats have had their eyes on Pennsylvania’s 6th District for over a decade, but haven’t been able to crack the code to win the seat.

They thought that had a top-tier recruit in Mike Parrish, a businessman, military veteran, and former Republican. But nearly halfway through the cycle, Parrish’s campaign has floundered and Democratic strategists are moving on and searching for another candidate.

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