Nation: GOP Candidates Dine With the Party Faithful

Posted June 10, 2009 at 6:25pm

Several Republican candidates attended the Republican Senate-House dinner Monday, when the National Republican Senatorial Committee and the National Republican Congressional Committee jointly raised $14.45 million at their biggest fundraiser of the year.

Montgomery City Councilwoman Martha Roby (R), who recently filed to run against freshman Rep. Bobby Bright (D-Ala.), attended alongside Manchester Mayor Frank Guinta (R), who has filed to run against Rep. Carol Shea-Porter (D-N.H.), according to event organizers.

Corning Mayor Tom Reed (R), who is considering challenging Rep. Eric Massa (D-N.Y.), came to the fundraiser as well, as did Rep. Debbie Halvorson’s (D-Ill.) first GOP challenger of the cycle, Air Force Capt. Adam Kinzinger (R).

Former Rep. Rob Portman (Ohio), the likely GOP nominee for Senate in the Buckeye State in 2010, also attended the dinner, according to another event organizer.

House Administration OKs Absentee Ballot Bill

The House Administration Committee passed a bill Wednesday that would require states to allow all voters to cast ballots by mail in federal elections, despite Republicans’ objection to what they called an “unfunded mandate.—

Rep. Susan Davis (D-Calif.), the bill’s sponsor, called it a solution to the “glaring inequity— in states that do not allow no-excuse absentee voting. But the committee’s Republicans argued that the issue hadn’t been thoroughly evaluated.

“I believe logic and common sense tells us that it’s easier to vote fraudulently when the voter doesn’t have to show up to vote,— Rep. Gregg Harper (R-Miss.) said.

The bill was reported out of the committee with an amendment from Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) that would require states to keep a voter’s signature on file and use it to validate mail ballots.

The committee also passed several other election-related bills, including one to reimburse states that establish a program to track absentee ballots and another to prohibit states’ chief election officials from actively participating in electoral campaigns.

A bill from McCarthy amending the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act also passed. It would require the Federal Voting Assistance Program to collect and track the absentee ballots of military voters serving overseas.