When it comes to fundraising, the NRSCs appeal is more deliberate. Particularly because the business community has set its sights on derailing passage of the Employee Free Choice Act, or card check, the NRSC is purposely pointing out that the only chance of preventing the bill from reaching Obamas desk for his signature is a GOP Senate filibuster.
The legislation, which would eliminate secret-ballot elections to determine whether a companys employees should unionize, passed the House on a virtual party-line vote in the 110th Congress but died at the hands of a Republican-led filibuster in the Senate.
Its no crafty sales pitch. Its true. [House Republicans] are down  seats, said one GOP operative partial to Cornyns strategy.
Republican House sympathizers, however, question the effectiveness of Cornyns rhetoric, noting that the NRSC employed a similar approach last cycle and still lost at least eight seats. They also note that Senate Republicans will have a hard time mounting a filibuster in the 111th Congress given that they have the bare minimum of Members required to sustain one.
The NRCC appeared unfazed by the tactics being employed by Cornyn and the NRSC.
There is nothing wrong with a little friendly competition. Chairman Sessions understands the leadership role that Sen. Cornyn has been tasked with and he looks forward to working with him, NRCC spokesman Ken Spain said. We are confident that the committee will be successful in our fundraising and recruitment efforts.
Given the tight restrictions on how much individual donors and political action committees can contribute, a certain amount of competition between the House, Senate and national party campaign committees within each party is to be expected. Federal Election Commission regulations dictate that individuals give no more than $69,900 combined to national party committees during the 2010 cycle.
For the House and Senate campaign committees, that competition typically extends to recruiting, as the NRSC and DSCC often try to poach House Members they feel would make strong Senate candidates.
Even with the high level of cooperation that existed during the 2006 cycle between then-DSCC Chairman Charles Schumer (N.Y.) and then-DCCC Chairman Rahm Emanuel (Ill.), who is now Obamas chief of staff, a degree of tension between the two committees remained.
If youre a Democrat in the House, you dont want anyone from the Senate plucking your Members away and creating a competitive seat youll have to defend, said one Washington, D.C.-based Democratic operative who previously worked for one of the Congressional campaign committees.
Theres a healthy rivalry that the committees have to work to keep in check.
Among the ways the DCCC and DSCC cooperated the past two cycles was on field operations, ensuring that the two campaign arms did not duplicate efforts and waste resources. During the 2006 cycle in particular, Schumer and Emanuel conducted joint news conferences.
Both Cornyn and Sessions have expressed a desire to work together whenever possible this cycle, hoping to reclaim control of the House and Senate or at least rebuild a minority that was further depleted in 2008.
According to one senior Republican Senate aide, Cornyn would be better served from a public relations standpoint to highlight where the two GOP campaign committee chiefs are cooperating, rather than where they are competing. However, this GOP aide conceded that Cornyn may have success using this tactic to recruit and raise money.
Rep. Bill Cassidy has his blood drawn by Alesha Barbour during a free hepatitis screening in the Rayburn House Office Building hosted by the Congressional Viral Hepatitis Caucus to recognize "National Viral Hepatitis Testing Day."
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