Attorney David Trott announced his primary challenge to Rep. Kerry Bentivolio, R-Mich., last week, and now he’s assembled a top team to help him oust the vulnerable freshman.
Stu Sandler confirmed to CQ Roll Call that he will serve as the deep-pocketed attorney’s general consultant. Sandler has worked for several statewide candidates and organizations in Michigan.
Megan Piwowar confirmed she will be Trott’s campaign manager. She formerly served as the communications director for a GOP Senate campaign in Pennsylvania.
The Ohio-based firm The Strategy Group for Media will do Trott’s media, and Adam Geller will be his pollster, Sandler confirmed. A Bentivolio spokesman did not return an email request for information about his campaign team.
Bentivolio won his party’s nomination last year after re-election petitions for then-Rep. Thaddeus McCotter showed egregious signature errors. McCotter resigned, and Bentivolio — the other Republican on the ballot — won the nomination and his first term in Congress.
But the former reindeer rancher and veteran has struggled with fundraising. Bentivolio has raised only about $142,000 for his re-election during the first six months of this year. He also showed six figures in debt at the end of the last financial reporting period in June.
Some Republicans thought DeMaio, a former San Diego councilman, would drop his House bid against vulnerable freshman Rep. Scott Peters, D-Calif., and instead run for San Diego mayor. Last year, DeMaio narrowly lost that office to Bob Filner, who recently resigned after several women accused him of sexual harassment.
This cycle, DeMaio marks one of the House GOP’s top recruits in a competitive race. His campaign team includes:
•Pollster: Dave Sackett of the Tarrance Group
•Television and digital consultant: Brian Donahue of CRAFT Media
•Communications director: Dave McCulloch of Circle24 Strategies Inc.
•Finance director: Magie Brennan
•D.C. PAC fundraiser: Sheryl Jahns of the Townsend Group
•Treasurer: Paul Kilgore of Professional Data Services
•Strategic adviser: Richard Grenell of Capitol Media Partners
A campaign spokesman added that the campaign will hire a manager in early 2014.