Bridget Bowman

Corporate PACs in Spotlight as Candidates Reject Their Money
So far, 85 primary winners are rejecting money from corporations

Corporate PACs have been thrust into the political spotlight as more Democratic candidates make rejecting corporate money a central theme of their campaigns. Seven of those congressional hopefuls won their primaries Tuesday.

Those results bring the total number of primary winners who are not accepting corporate PAC contributions to 85, according to the group End Citizens United, which supports an overhaul of the campaign finance system. These candidates are instead relying on donations from individuals and other groups.

Rodney Davis’ Field Director Charged With Assault After Crashing Opponent’s Event
Staffer reportedly harassed Davis’ opponent Betsy Dirksen Londrigan

GOP Rep. Rodney Davis’ campaign field director was arrested and charged with aggravated assault Wednesday night after an altercation involving Davis’ Democratic opponent, Betsy Dirksen Londrigan. 

The Illinois Republican’s field director Levi Lovell was arrested at Londrigan’s campaign event at a local bar, according to WCIA Chicago reporter Mark Maxwell. Lovell reportedly shouted at Londrigan, a businesswoman and former aide to Democratic Sen. Richard J. Durbin, and then punched someone at the event. Springfield Police confirmed to Roll Call that Lovell was booked into the Sangamon County Detention Facility.

Report: Former Rohrabacher Opponent Target of Cyberattack
California Democrat Hans Keirstead’s campaign was the target of a phishing attack

Former Democratic House candidate Hans Keirstead was the target of a successful cyberattack during his campaign in California’s 48th District against pro-Russia GOP Rep. Dana Rohrabacher

Rolling Stone reported that in August 2017, Keirstead fell for a phishing email that asked him to enter his password for his work email address, which he also used for his campaign. The campaign also reported efforts in December to hack into the campaign’s website and “hosting service,” and an effort in January to hack into the campaign’s Twitter account. Only the phishing attack in August was successful.

Money Isn't Everything, Women Candidates Win Big, and Other Takeaways from Tuesday's Primaries
 

Senior political reporters Simone Pathé and Bridget Bowman recap Tuesday's primary elections and what the results could mean for the general election....
5 Takeaways From the Minnesota, Wisconsin and Connecticut Primaries
Democrats celebrate likely firsts while GOP women have a mixed night

Tuesday’s primary action in the Upper Midwest and New England set the fall matchups in a handful of key House races and one competitive Senate contest. 

Here are five key takeaways from those results:

John Katko Highlights Synthetic Drug Issue in New TV Ad
New York Republican is up for re-election in a district that backed Clinton

New York Rep. John Katko is often listed among the Republican incumbents who could withstand a blue wave because he connects with his district and localizes his campaigns. And his new television ad is the latest example of that strategy.

Katko is launching an ad titled “Makes Things Happen,” featuring Teresa Woolson, whose 19-year-old son died after using synthetic marijuana. Woolson launched a foundation in her son’s honor and was Katko’s guest to the State of the Union this year.

Leah Vukmir Wins Wisconsin GOP Primary to Take On Tammy Baldwin
Baldwin is one of 10 Senate Democrats running in a state Trump won in 2016

State Sen. Leah Vukmir won Tuesday’s Republican Senate primary in Wisconsin, notching a victory for the state GOP. Vukmir’s win sets up another opportunity for Wisconsin Republicans to take down one of the last remaining high-profile Democrats in the state.

Vukmir led Marine veteran and businessman Kevin Nicholson 54 percent to 40 percent, when The Associated Press called the race with 56 percent of precincts reporting. She will now take on vulnerable incumbent Tammy Baldwin, who ran unopposed in the Democratic primary.

Randy Bryce, a.k.a. ‘Iron Stache,’ Wins Democratic Primary for Paul Ryan’s Seat
Wisconsin Democrat will face Republican Bryan Steil in November

Wisconsin Democrat Randy Bryce, who rose to fame with a viral web video last year, won the party nomination Tuesday night in the 1st District race to succeed retiring Speaker Paul D. Ryan.

The union ironworker will now have to determine whether his hard-scrabble profile that brought him national recognition and a fundraising boom will help him win what has been a reliable Republican seat — or whether the GOP will adeptly use his legal troubles against him, and energize the conservative base in the southeastern Wisconsin district.

Kim Schrier Secures Democratic Nod in Hotly Contested Washington Race
8th District, a longtime Republican bastion, is a top target for Democrats

Democratic pediatrician Kim Schrier secured the second-place spot to take on Republican Dino Rossi in Washington’s 8th District, which could be one of the most competitive races in the country. 

Schrier declared victory Wednesday morning, more than a week after the primary in Washington. The combination of a crowded Democratic field and mail-in ballots left the race in limbo as ballots were still being counted a week after the election. 

What to Watch in Tuesday’s Primaries
GOP picks nominee in top Senate race; 2 Toss-up House races will be set

From New England to the upper Midwest, four states are hosting primaries Tuesday.

The most interesting contests are in Wisconsin and Minnesota, which both hold primaries for Senate and for several competitive House seats. And in two safe Democratic districts — one in Minnesota and one in Connecticut — primaries will likely pick new members of Congress.

Democratic Poll Shows Close Race for Pete Sessions’ Seat in Texas
GOP congressman faces Democrat Colin Allred in Dallas-area district

Texas Rep. Pete Sessions’ re-election race is looking increasingly competitive, with Democrat Colin Allred polling close to the longtime Republican lawmaker, according to a new internal Democratic survey.

The Dallas-area 32nd District is traditionally GOP territory. But this year’s race is considered competitive, in part because the 32nd is one of three Republican-held districts in the Lone Star State that Hillary Clinton carried in 2016. Inside Elections with Nathan L. Gonzales rates the race a Toss-up

Fame and Campaign Fortune Haven’t Saved ‘Iron Stache’ From a Heated Primary
Randy Bryce faces fellow Democrat Cathy Myers in Wisconsin’s 1st District on Tuesday

When Randy Bryce came on to the political scene, he became a Democratic fundraising juggernaut. But the Wisconsin Democrat, who is known by his Twitter moniker “Iron Stache,” hasn’t locked down his primary race in the 1st District, despite a national profile and buckets of money being poured into his campaign.

Bryce faces a potentially competitive contest against Janesville school board member Cathy Myers in Tuesday’s primary. 

Democratic Poll: GOP Rep. Mimi Walters in Competitive Race
Democrat Katie Porter’s poll shows her in a tight contest in California’s 45 district

A poll from California Republican Rep. Mimi Walters’ Democratic opponent Katie Porter found a competitive race in the 45th District in Southern California. 

The 45th is a Democratic target this cycle, one of seven GOP-held House seats in the Golden State that Hillary Clinton carried in 2016.

Collins’ Exit Sends New York Republicans Scrambling to Find Replacement
GOP candidates coming out of the woodwork to express interest in seat, sources say

Rep. Chris Collins’ decision to suspend his re-election campaign following his recent indictment on insider trading charges has upended the race for his Western New York seat, and Republicans in the area are scrambling to determine their next steps.

Two GOP county chairmen said Saturday they expected Collins’ name to be removed from the 27th District ballot. The Republican chairs for the eight counties in the district are expected to meet early next week, potentially on Tuesday, to pick a new nominee.

Chris Collins Suspends Campaign Just Days After Criminal Indictment
New York Republican faces charges related to insider trading

New York Republican Rep. Chris Collins, who was arrested and indicted on charges related to securities fraud earlier this week, has suspended his re-election campaign.

“Democrats are laser focused on taking back the House, electing Nancy Pelosi Speaker and then launching impeachment proceedings against President Trump,” Collins said in a statement Saturday. “They would like nothing more than to elect an ‘Impeach Trump’ Democrat in this District, which is something that neither our country or my party can afford.”

At the Races: Blizzard of Charges Hits Chris Collins
Our weekly newsletter on congressional campaigns

Welcome to At the Races! You can keep track of House and Senate races with this weekly newsletter by subscribing here. We want to hear what you think. Email us at attheraces@cqrollcall.com with your questions, tips or candidate sightings. — Simone Pathé and Bridget Bowman

Report: Chris Collins Will Still Run for Re-election
New York Republican faces charges of insider trading and lying to the FBI

GOP Rep. Chris Collins will still run for re-election, according to a report from the Buffalo News.  

The Buffalo News reported that Collins wrote in an email to supporters that he would still seek re-election in the 27th District despite being indicted Wednesday on charges relating to insider trading and lying to the FBI. 

Rating Change: Chris Collins’ Arrest Puts Seat in Play
Inside Elections is shifting the rating from Solid to Likely Republican

If Rep. Chris Collins continues to run for re-election, he would do so while facing charges of insider trading and lying to the F.B.I. But just because a member of Congress is indicted, doesn’t mean they can’t win.

GOP Rep. Michael Grimm of New York and Democratic Rep. William J. Jefferson of Louisiana are two recent examples of incumbents who won re-election in the face of significant legal problems.

McCaskill: Supreme Court Vote ‘Not a Political Winner’
McCaskill’s opponent is expected to make the Supreme Court vacancy an issue in the race

The current Supreme Court vacancy is expected to be a central topic in the Missouri Senate race — at least if the GOP nominee has anything to say about it.

Attorney General Josh Hawley, who won the GOP primary as expected Tuesday, has already been using the high court vacancy to make his case against Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill. But McCaskill said Wednesday that some Missourians will be upset no matter how she votes on President Donald Trump’s nominee, Brett Kavanaugh.

Democratic Group Launches Wildfire Ads Against California Congressman
Red to Blue CA is targeting GOP Rep. Tom McClintock in NorCal district

A Democratic outside group is launching a new ad campaign against California Republican Rep. Tom McClintock, accusing him of voting against wildfire assistance last year. The launch comes as the largest wildfire in the state’s history rages in northern California.

Red to Blue CA is coming out with mailers and a digital ad on Facebook linking the congressman from the largely rural 4th District to the wildfire. The group cites his December 2017 vote against an emergency spending bill that offered additional funds to communities recovering from hurricanes and wildfires. The measure did pass the House.