In stark contrast to the current crop of House freshmen, which we reported on extensively earlier this year, the soon-to-be newly sworn in members of the 113th Congress is considerably more balanced politically; however, analysts warn that it will likely be the most divided class yet.
Of the 89 new House members taking their oaths of office for the first time in January, 2011, after an election marked by a Tea Party tide, just nine were Democrats. So far this year (a few races remain to be called), there are 74 first-timers slated to take office next year, 44 Democrats ...Continue reading
House freshmen faring well as incumbents
A vast majority of the freshmen swept into office two years ago on an anti-incumbency tide managed to survive their first reelection as incumbents, and while some appear to have been helped by last-minute infusions of cash from outside spenders, in many cases, independent expenditures don't appear to have made much of a difference.Continue reading
Mayor Mike Bloomberg’s superstorm of 11th hour political donations
With New York City struggling to recover from Hurricane Sandy, Mayor Michael Bloomberg is set to begin airing political ads for his favorite candidates around the country through his newly-created super PAC.Continue reading
FreedomWorks makes rare TV buy against Duckworth
Newly flush with more than $5 million in cash from a mystery donor, FreedomWorks, the libertarian super PAC that touts its grassroots focus, has just made a $1.5 million television ad buy in a competitive Illinois House race.
The ad, which has not aired yet, appears to be a Hail Mary pass to help Rep. Joe Walsh, a freshman Republican who is at risk of losing his job to Democratic challenger Tammy Duckworth. Duckworth, an Iraq war veteran, was up 10 points in a recent poll.
It's an unusual move because FreedomWorks generally steers clear of television ads ...Continue reading
Two Midwestern states targets of gun violence and the NRA
Two states struggling with gun violence this fall, Wisconsin and Michigan, also have been targeted for campaign expenditures by the National Rifle Association.
The big gun rights group appears to have its biggest political footprint in Wisconsin, where a gunman on Sunday shot seven women -- three fatally -- before killing himself in state's second mass shooting this year. Of the $5.9 millon the NRA Political Victory Fund, has spent so far to defeat President Barack Obama, at least some has gone to Wisconsin. While the Federal Election Commission does not require independent expenditure groups to identify ...Continue reading
Pro-Romney super PAC: $100 million and counting
Restore Our Future has hit a fundraising milestone: The super PAC supporting Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney has clocked $100 million in contributions since it was organized just two years ago this month.
That puts the pro-Romney super PAC far ahead of the rest of the PAC pack when it comes to fundraising, Sunlight's Follow the Unlimited Money tracker shows, though just how wide a lead it enjoys won't be possible to determine until the rest of the campaign committees file their latest reports with the Federal Election Commission. Committees that report monthly to the FEC -- a group ...Continue reading
Republicans in tight House races on top in the money game
Republicans vying for House seats have the money edge in tossup races as the campaign enters its home stretch. The latest campaign finance reports filed with the Federal Election Commission show that GOP candidates have at least $5.65 million more than the Democrats in 23 tossup races as identified by the nonpartisan Cook Political Report. Republicans in the group had about $17.64 million cash on hand, compared to the Democrats' $12 million.
The report, which covers the third ...
Who let the dog out? Frosh Republican Allen West’s tweet sics would-be pooch adoptees on the Marines
A tweet from Rep. Allen West, R-Fla., calling for volunteers to adopt IED-sniffing dogs has contributed to a situation that Marines might describe as a 'snafu.'
On West's Facebook page, a post stated that the Marine Corps has 400 decommissioned dogs in need of 'forever homes.' West (or a staffer) promoted the page on Twitter and deleted it two hours later. The deletion was captured by Sunlight Foundation's Politwoops, a site that records and posts deleted tweets from politicians. The Facebook post has since been removed.
Information about the dogs was based on a military listserv email sent ...Continue reading
Americans for Tax Reform drops $2 million in one day
Dark money group Americans for Tax Reform just dropped close to $2 million to influence competitive House races.
Victories for the 501(c)4 non-profit lobbying organization, founded by conservative lobbyist Grover Norquist in 1985, would undoubtedly complicate efforts to reach a deal to avert the so-called "fiscal cliff" because the group "opposes all tax increases as a matter of principle." ATR's central tenet -- the Taxpayer Protection Pledge, which requires lawmakers to "solemnly bind themselves to oppose any and all tax increases," enjoys the backing most Republicans in Congress and all but one of this year's GOP presidential ...Continue reading
Solid blue states attracting a lot of political green
Republican groups are pumping millions into states usually thought of as Democratic strongholds, seeking to tip competitive House races into their favor. The result? Three big Democratic states -- California, New York and Illinois--are the top targets for outside spending in congressional races, according to the Sunlight Foundation's Follow the Unlimited Money.
The 2010 U.S. Census triggered redistricting across the country, creating once-a-decade opportunities in some districts. So while President Barack Obama and his Republican rival, Mitt Romney, are ignoring three of the nation's most populous states -- neither candidate has placed an ad there at least since Aug ...Continue reading