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Shop Talk: Special Spokesmen

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Nevada GOP Chairman Mark Amodei recently added a new chief spokesman.

Shop Talk previously featured the consulting teams for the candidates running in the Sept. 13 special election in Nevada's 2nd district, but since then, the campaigns have both hired communications directors.

Peter DeMarco is serving as chief spokesman for former Nevada GOP Chairman Mark Amodei. For the past four years, DeMarco has worked in corporate communications, and before that, he spent more than five years on the staff of two Republican state Senators in Sacramento.

DeMarco got his start as a press aide to then-California Gov. Pete Wilson (R) in the early 1990s, then served as press secretary for then-Rep. Doug Ose (R-Calif.) and later did a stint as deputy national communications director for Sen. John McCain's (R-Ariz.) 2000 presidential campaign.

Nevada Treasurer Kate Marshall's (D) spokesman is James Hallinan, who is a veteran of New Mexico Democratic politics. Before striking out on his own, Hallinan was communications director for the state party and served as a deputy spokesman on former Lt. Gov. Diane Denish's gubernatorial campaign last year.

He previously served as communications director in the lieutenant governor's office and deputy press secretary to then-Albuquerque Mayor Marty Chavez (D), who is now running for New Mexico's open 1st district seat. He also did press on the final stretch of Hillary Rodham Clinton's presidential campaign in New Mexico.

No Relation to Yogi

Ami Bera, a physician who challenged Rep. Dan Lungren (R-Calif.) last year, is running again and keeping much of the same consulting team he used last cycle.

Now running in a newly drawn and more competitive district, Bera has signed on Lisa Grove for polling, Adelstein Liston for media and Marty Stone for phones. New to the team is direct-mail firm the Pivot Group, one of the offshoots from the disbanded MSHC Partners.

In an interview, Bera who ran in one of only a handful of districts Democrats hoped to pick up last year said he ran the wrong field campaign and should have focused more on decline-to-state voters. Going forward, while redistricting is making headlines now in California, Bera said the real story is the state moving to a "jungle" primary system, which will add a wrinkle to campaign strategies.

New GOP Firm in Aloha State

The Hawaii Republican Party announced last month that Executive Director Dylan Nonaka left to launch his own political and public affairs firm, the Kahua Group.

It's a full-service consulting firm offering general campaign strategy and planning, voter identification, message development, building new media and Web campaigns, graphic design, fundraising, campaign budgeting and direct-mail design and program management.

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