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April 16, 2014

Posts in "Texas"

January 23, 2014

Ratings Change: Texas’ 23rd District

Republicans have a former congressman running to take back Texas’ 23rd District after just two years, but GOP enthusiasm about defeating Rep. Pete Gallego appears to be waning.

The Democrat defeated GOP Rep. Francisco “Quico” Canseco, 50 percent to 46 percent, in 2012 in a redrawn district in southwest Texas. At the same time, Mitt Romney won the 23rd District, 51 percent to 48 percent, over President Barack Obama. Obama won it narrowly, 50 percent to 49 percent, in 2008. Full story

December 17, 2013

How the Calendar Will Influence GOP Senate Primaries

cornyn 201 0924131 445x314 How the Calendar Will Influence GOP Senate Primaries

Cornyn’s primary is first on the 2014 calendar. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Stories about Republican primaries are all the rage, and we’re still nearly three months from the first actual election. But in all of the analysis of vulnerable senators, voting scorecards and outside groups, it’s important to remember the calendar and how primary results could affect subsequent races.

It’s possible that a snowball effect could work for or against tea-party-aligned groups next year, depending on the outcomes.

The first Senate primary contest will be March 4 in Texas. Rep. Steve Stockman’s last-minute challenge to GOP Sen. John Cornyn got plenty of media attention. But unless Stockman can find a pot of gold (worth at least $10 million or so) at the end of a rainbow, Cornyn will cruise to victory. Full story

December 4, 2013

The $2 Billion Campaign Against John Cornyn (Updated)

Updated 4:38 p.m. | Democrat David Alameel announced recently his challenge to Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, and the wealthy dentist said money won’t be a problem. I’m not so sure.

“I’ll just do whatever it takes,” he told the Dallas Morning News. “Money is not an issue for me.”

The source of Alameel’s confidence is unclear. There are expensive Senate races, and then there is Texas — in a league of its own. Full story

By Nathan L. Gonzales Posted at 11:28 a.m.
Senate, Texas

November 25, 2013

If Linda Lingle Could, Why Can’t Wendy Davis?

112513wendydavis 445x306 If Linda Lingle Could, Why Can’t Wendy Davis?

Davis is running for governor of Texas in 2014. (Win McNamee/Getty Images)

As longtime readers of this column know, voters in one-party states sometimes elect the nominee of the “wrong” party as governor. Today’s question is whether state Sen. Wendy Davis, a Democrat, has a fighting chance to win next year’s gubernatorial election in Texas, which remains a rock-solid Republican state.

Davis was elected to the Fort Worth City Council in 1999 and was re-elected four times. She defeated an incumbent Republican state senator in 2008, and four years later she squeezed out re-election, 51.1 percent to 48.9 percent, against a Republican member of the state House who challenged her in what the Star-Telegram termed a “brawl.”  

In June, Davis filibustered Senate Bill 5, which would have banned abortions after 20 weeks and imposed new regulations on doctors and clinics performing abortions in Texas. The Fort Worth Democrat was successful in blocking a vote at the end of the special session, but Gov. Rick Perry called a second special session and the bill passed. It was signed into law on July 18. Full story

October 11, 2013

Is Cruz Causing a Democratic Wave? Maybe, but Don’t Jump the Gun

cruz101113 445x296 Is Cruz Causing a Democratic Wave? Maybe, but Dont Jump the Gun

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Last week I observed that I hadn’t yet seen “compelling evidence” that a Democratic political wave could be developing. I can no longer say that after seeing the recently released NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll.

That highly regarded poll showed Republican numbers have taken a considerable hit because of the shutdown and the media coverage around it. The GOP’s 24 percent positive/53 percent negative image obviously is a red flag, especially compared with image numbers for the Democratic Party (39 percent positive/40 percent negative) and President Barack Obama (47 percent positive/41 percent negative).

The NBC/WSJ poll’s version of the generic ballot, which asks respondents about their “preference for the outcome of next year’s congressional elections,” shows a substantial shift from an insignificant 3-point Democratic edge (46 percent to 43 percent) to an 8-point Democratic advantage (47 percent to 39 percent).

Respondents split evenly in June on the role of the government, with 48 percent saying that government “should do more to solve problems” and 48 percent saying that government “is doing too many things.”  That has also changed, with 52 percent now saying that government should do more and only 44 percent saying that it is doing too much.

I haven’t mentioned the poll’s shutdown “blame” question because I have serious concerns about its wording. Full story

September 24, 2013

Republicans Win Belated Legal Battles, but Elections Can’t Be Undone

You can’t rewrite history, but Republicans probably wish you could.

While two high-profile former GOP officeholders — Texas Rep. Tom DeLay and the late Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens — have now had their convictions overturned or dismissed, Republicans are still dealing with the political consequences.

It’s easy to forget the electoral impact of DeLay’s and Stevens’ legal problems at the time.

DeLay, the former House majority leader, stepped down from his post in fall 2005 when a grand jury convicted him of campaign finance violations. He eventually resigned from office in June 2006 and was later convicted in fall 2010. Full story

September 20, 2013

House Strategists Continue Search for 2014 Candidates

My colleague Kyle Trygstad nearly declared the end to the Senate recruitment season recently, but House strategists on both sides of the aisle still have their work cut out for them.

With a little more than a year before Election Day, Republican and Democratic operatives are searching for quality candidates in more than a handful of districts. Both sides want as many offensive opportunities as possible to keep the other side pinned down in their own territory.

Down 17 seats, Democrats need more GOP takeover opportunities to make up for any losses and so they don’t have to win all of the competitive seats to get back to the majority next November. Full story

July 13, 2013

Top 5 Races to Watch in the Southwest

The battle for the Southwest boils down to two states: Arizona and Texas. And unless Republicans redraw the congressional map in the Lone State State once again — highly unlikely —  there are not many competitive races.

Here are the top five races to watch in the Southwest:

Arizona’s 2nd District. Rep. Ron Barber, a Democrat, won re-election to a full term last fall. But his close race against retired combat pilot Martha McSally wasn’t easy, and she has already filed paperwork for a rematch. Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call rating: Pure Tossup.  Get the full Rothenberg Political Report analysis here ($). Full story

July 8, 2013

Texas Governor: Perry Out, but …

GOP Convention 872 083012 445x295 Texas Governor: Perry Out, but ...

Abbott is the new front-runner for governor of Texas. (Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s decision not to seek another term does not change the partisan outlook for the 2014 Texas gubernatorial race.

State Attorney General Greg Abbott becomes the clear favorite for the GOP nomination and for election as the Lone Star State’s next governor. Here is an interesting article about Abbott and how the fact that he was partially paralyzed at age 26 has affected his life and career.

The Texas contest remains Safe Republican in the Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call ratings.

June 12, 2013

The Barn Jacket as a Secret Campaign Weapon

Election Day is still more than a year away, but Illinois Republican Bruce Rauner is already deploying a popular campaign weapon: the barn jacket.

Rauner released two television ads on Tuesday in his bid to become the next governor in the Prairie State. In “Back to Work,” the wealthy venture capitalist dons a barn jacket and declares, “I’m a citizen, not a politician.”

Full story

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