gubernatorial

The $100 Jacket Politicians Use to Pretend To Be Normal People

The barn jacket has become the go-to fashion accessory for candidates trying to appeal to the common folk. (Screengrab: David Trone for Congress)

David Trone has never run for office before, but he’s wearing the standard issue uniform of a politician in his first television ads: the barn jacket.  

The wealthy Maryland Democrat thrust himself into the 8th District primary with close to a $1 million ad buy in the expensive Washington, D.C., media market. In the ad, entitled “Bet the Farm,” the owner of the Total Wine & More chain of stores dons a barn jacket to take viewers on a tour of the family farm where he grew up.  

Beshear Looks Back, Forward on Kentucky's Political Landscape

Beshear talks to reporters in 2014 after attending a caucus meeting with Nancy Pelosi and Rep. Joseph Crowley to tout his state's health care reform success. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images File Photo)

In 2014, Steve Beshear sat in the first lady’s box during the State of the Union as President Barack Obama applauded the Democratic governor’s work on health care in Kentucky. Just two years later, Beshear is out of office and feuding with his Republican successor, who vowed to undo his work.  

"And if you want to know the real impact this law is having, just talk to Gov. Steve Beshear of Kentucky, who's here tonight," said Obama, referencing the Affordable Care Act. "Kentucky's not the most liberal part of the country. That's not where I got my highest vote totals. But he is like a man possessed when it comes to covering his commonwealth's families."  

What Does It Take To Crack the Inner Circle of Political Consultants?

Edwards' "prostitutes over patriots" ad is credited with helping him beat Vitter (YouTube)

Democrat John Bel Edwards’ “prostitutes over patriots” ad will be remembered as one of the most-hard hitting television spots in campaign history. But did it catch the attention of national Democratic strategists?  

Political consulting is a competitive sport with millions of dollars at stake. There is plenty of jockeying to be on top strategists’ unofficial list of approved consultants in order to be recommended to candidates and be in line for independent expenditure work.  

Outsider Bevin Hires Insider Chief of Staff

Establishment Republicans gave Bevin's chief of staff choice high marks. (AP Photo/Timothy D. Easley)

Maybe Republican Matt Bevin isn’t going to burn down Frankfort after all.  

The Kentucky Republican rocked the GOP establishment by challenging Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell in last year’s primary and irked some party strategists this year by running his gubernatorial campaign strictly on his own terms.  

Is Vitter on the Verge of Losing Everything?

(Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Louisiana isn’t anywhere close to belonging on a list of swing states, yet Republican David Vitter is at risk of losing not only his gubernatorial race this month, but also his Senate seat next year.  

The Pelican State’s senior senator has struggled to unify the Republican vote after finishing second in the Oct. 24 jungle primary with just 23 percent. He trails Democrat John Bel Edwards in multiple public polls heading into the Nov. 21 runoff. Vitter’s numbers have dipped to a point where, should he lose, some Republicans will want him to drop his bid for re-election to the Senate in 2016 because they are concerned he could put the seat at risk of a Democratic takeover. Republicans are already defending senators in blue and purple states, and GOP strategists don’t want to have to spend money in a state where President Barack Obama received 41 percent in 2012.  

What Does Bevin’s Victory Mean for Vitter?

   

Matt Bevin’s victory in the Kentucky governor’s race is yet another sobering reminder that polling is a risky business. And for some Republicans, Kentucky could be a glimmer of hope for GOP Sen. David Vitter’s gubernatorial bid in Louisiana.  

Vitter’s Primary Performance Prompts Rating Change in Louisiana

Vitter's personal history makes it complicated for Republicans to stick their necks out for him. (Al Drago/CQ Roll Call)

Louisiana has transitioned to a Republican state, but GOP Sen. David Vitter will test the political gravity of the Pelican State in next month’s gubernatorial runoff.  

Vitter was regarded as the front-runner to replace presidential candidate/current Gov. Bobby Jindal for much of the cycle, but the senator’s consistently poor performance in the polls and his showing in Saturday’s all-party primary has some Republicans very concerned that Vitter could let the governorship slip into Democratic hands.  

Kentucky Governor Race Tilts Toward Democrats

Bevin, shown here during his 2014 Senate campaign, has underwhelmed some Republican strategists in his run for governor. (File Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

With just weeks to go before the Nov. 3 election, Democratic state Attorney General Jack Conway has a narrow advantage over Republican Matt Bevin in the Kentucky governor race.  

The race certainly isn’t over, and public polling has the two candidates virtually running even. But Bevin’s personal ratings have declined in the face of Democratic attacks, while Conway’s image has consistently been in better shape.  

Hassan’s Decision Changes Outlook in 2 New Hampshire Races

Hassan's entry had been expected for months. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

After months of speculation, Democratic Gov. Maggie Hassan announced her bid Monday to challenge GOP Sen. Kelly Ayotte in New Hampshire, setting up what should be one of the most competitive Senate races in the country.  

Hassan’s decision is yet another victory for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, which continues to succeed in fights with the other Democratic campaign committees for top recruits. But it won’t be an easy race.  

Louisiana Governor’s Race Less Certain for David Vitter

A couple recent polls show Vitter struggling to consolidate support against a Democrat in a runoff. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

For months, GOP Sen. David Vitter has been the front-runner in this year’s race to succeed term-limited governor/Republican presidential candidate Bobby Jindal.  

But even though Louisiana has completed its transformation to a Republican state, Vitter’s election is not a foregone conclusion.