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As a new poll gives Jon Ossoff a runoff lead, the GOP drops another $1.1 million on ads (March 24, 2017, 02:45 PM)

Goal Thermometer

On behalf of Fox 5 Atlanta, the independent pollster Opinion Savvy gives Democrat Jon Ossoff two good pieces of news in Georgia?s 6th Congressional District. The poll shows Ossoff easily advancing past the April 18 top two primary, but more importantly, Ossoff is competitive against each Republican they tested him against June 20; in fact, Ossoff posts small leads in three of the four matchups.

We?ll take a look first at the April primary, which pits all the candidates on one ballot:

Investigative documentary maker Jon Ossoff (D): 40

Ex-Secretary of State Karen Handel (R): 20

Businessman Bob Gray (R):10

State Sen. Judson Hill (R): 10

Ex-state Sen. Dan Moody (R): 8

None of the other 13 (!) candidates take more than 2 percent of the vote. Now, here is how Ossoff performs against four different Republicans in hypothetical June matchups:

42-41 vs.Ex-Secretary of State Karen Handel

44-42 vs.businessman Bob Gray

44-45 vs.state Sen. Judson Hill

46-44 vs.ex-state Sen. Dan Moody

This is the first poll of the June general election we?ve seen. The survey does have one pessimistic note for Team Blue, though: While Trump won this traditionally suburban Atlanta seat just 48-47, the poll gives him a 53-46 approval rating, which indicates that the undecideds like him. However, the GOP is taking this race seriously, and Paul Ryan?s allied super PAC, the Congressional Leadership Fund, just dropped an additional $1.1 million in ads on Ossoff, taking their total investment here to $2.2 million.

We have a chance to deal Donald Trump and Paul Ryan a shocking loss. Please chip in $3 today to help Jon Ossoff fight back.


Trump narrowly won North Carolina, but the GOP's legislative gerrymanders gave them huge majorities (March 24, 2017, 12:46 PM)

Daily Kos Elections?project to calculate the 2016 presidential results for every state legislative seat in the nation hits North Carolina, one of the worst gerrymanders anywhere.You can find ourmaster list of states here, which we'll be updating as we add new states; you can also find all our datafrom 2016 and past cycles here.

Democrats lost control of both chambers of the legislature in 2010, and the new GOP majorities quickly did all they could to make sure Team Blue never returned to power. Last year, a federal court ruled that the Republicans illegally packed African American voters into several seats in order to strengthen Republicans elsewhere, and they ordered the state to redrawseveral legislative districts and hold new elections in 2017. However, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a stay, and they have not yet announced if orwhen they?ll take up the case.

For now, it?s unclear if the GOP?s map will remain intact, or if there will be a new one in place this fall or next year. North Carolina does not allow its governor to veto redistricting whatsoever, so if the GOP legislature has to come up with new districts, there isn?t anything Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper can do to stop them from devising the strongest gerrymander they think the court will tolerate.

The GOP currently holds a 35-15 Senate majority and a 74-46 edge in the House. The GOP can override Cooper?s vetoes with three-fifths of the vote in each chamber, so Democrats need to net six Senate seats or three House districts to take away Team Red?s supermajority. The North Carolina GOP legislature is one of the most reactionary in the nation, and Democrats would be delighted if they can stop them from passing more bills like the notorious anti-LGBT HB2. However, that won?t be easy. While Donald Trump defeated Hillary Clinton in North Carolina by a close 50.5-46.8 margin, he won 31 of the 50 Senate seats and 76 of the 120 House seats. All the districts in both chambers are up every two years.

If Democrats can win all the Clinton seats in the Senate and take just two Trump districts, they?dbe able to strip the GOP of their supermajority there. However, four Republicans represent Clinton turf, while no Democrats hold Trump seats.The bluest GOP-held seat is SD-15, a Raleigh seat that swung from 53-46 Romney all the way to 52-44 Clinton, but where GOP state Sen. John Alexander won a second term 50-46.


Daily Kos Elections Live Digest: 3/24 (March 24, 2017, 09:00 AM)

Welcome to the Daily Kos Elections Live Digest, your liveblog of all of today's campaign news.

Please note: This is a 2016 and 2020 Democratic presidential primary-free zone


Morning Digest: Ken Salazar won't run for governor of Colorado, but Ed Perlmutter reportedly will (March 24, 2017, 08:00 AM)

Leading Off

? CO-Gov: Ex-Sen. Ken Salazar announced on Thursday that he would not seek the Democratic nomination for this open seat next year. If Salazar had gotten in, the former secretary of the interior would likely have scared off many other Democratic candidates. However, the longtime political insider could have been vulnerable in a primary, so it's unlikely he would have cleared the field.

Right now, the only two declared Democratic contenders are ex-state Sen. Mike Johnston and businessman Noel Ginsburg, but that may change very soon. Rep. Ed Perlmutter has been talking about getting in, and ColoradoPolitics reports that he's planning to announce he's running for governor as early as the end of the month, and that Salazar will likely back him. Perlmutter did not announce anything on Thursday, but he says the "chances are very good" he'll run. If Perlmutter launches a statewide campaign, it will open up his suburban Denver House seat, which Clinton carried 51-39.

Two other Colorado Democrats, ex-state Treasurer Cary Kennedy and Rep. Jared Polis, also started talking about running after Salazar's announcement. Kennedy, who completed a stint as Denver's chief financial officer and deputy mayor last year, has been mentioned as a possible Democratic candidate for a while, but she'd been quiet about her plans. But on Thursday, shortly after Salazar's announcement, Kennedy confirmed she was interested, and she says she'll decide in April. Kennedy was elected state treasurer in 2006 and narrowly lost four years later to Republican Walker Stapleton, who is also a potential gubernatorial candidate.

Polis is also not saying no, but he seems to be in less of a hurry to decide. Polis told the Denver Post on Thursday that he hasn't "ruled anything out and I'm not going to be rushed into a premature decision by today's news." Polis' Boulder-area seat backed Clinton 56-35, and it should be safe without him. Polis, who would be the first openly gay man elected governor of any state, is one of the wealthiest members of Congress, and he can certainly do plenty of self-funding if he wanted to.

ColoradoPolitics also reports that Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies Executive Director Joe Neguse, whose name we hadn't heard in connection to this race, is rumored to be considering; Neguse lost the 2014 general election for secretary of state 47-45. Neguse was reportedly encouraged to run after a different Salazar, state Rep. and prominent Bernie Sanders backer Joe Salazar, announced he wouldn't run. State Sen. Michael Merrifield and state Rep. Steve Lebsock also talked about running over the last few months.


Voter suppression and anti-union laws work in tandem when the GOP takes over a state's government (March 23, 2017, 10:00 AM)

Following the 2016 elections, Republicans gained complete control over the state governments of Iowa, Kentucky, Missouri, and New Hampshire. They have swiftly used their newfound power to attempt anti-union legislation in all four states, while Republicans have plotted a slew of new measures intended to make voting more difficult. These aren?t isolated incidents, nor are the two sets of policies unrelated. As Demos? Sean McElwee details in an extensive recent report, voter suppression, anti-union laws, and gerrymandering arepart of a coordinated multi-stateeffort to eviscerate the Democratic Party?s organizational strength.

Since their 2010 midterm wave election, Republicans gained power in a multitude of states across America. Since that election determined control over redistricting, Republicans were able toimplement ruthless gerrymanders that locked Democrats out of power in both Congress and myriad state legislatures. The GOP additionally passed new restrictions on voting itself. Several battleground states in the crucial Midwest also enacted laws that will likely undermineunion power by limiting their bargaining rights or their ability to secure dues-paying members.

Taken together, these measures are a nationally plannedattack on the Democratic Party?s capacity to organize opposition to Republicans. The GOP intends to make voting more difficult for Democratic-leaning demographics, to have Democratic votes matter less than Republican ones, and to prevent a key progressive constituency from being able to mobilize workers to turn out and vote according to their class interests.


Daily Kos Elections Live Digest: 3/23 (March 23, 2017, 09:00 AM)

Welcome to the Daily Kos Elections Live Digest, your liveblog of all of today's campaign news.

Please note: This is a 2016 and 2020 Democratic presidential primary-free zone

Thursday, Mar 23, 2017 3:08:38 PM +00:00 Jeff Singer

AL-Gov: There are plenty of Republicans eyeing this seat next year, but not surprisingly, only a few Democrats have talked about running in this very red state. However, it sounds like one of the people we speculated would run as a Republican is actually a Democrat. Mark Johnston, who recently finished a 26 year stint as the executive director of Camp McDowell, a large camp affiliated with the Episcopal Diocese of Alabama, has expressed interest in running for governor, though he didn?t say what party he?d run with. However, the Daily Mountain Eagle identifies Johnston as a Democrat, and in a recent interview with Bham Now, Johnston sure doesn?t sound like a Republican.

While Johnston did not say what his party affiliation was, he notably referred to the Republicans in the third person, declaring that if he becomes governor, he ?will work with Republicans because I want to.? Bham Now also identified Johnston as ?a leader in Alabama?s conservation and nature education communities for decades,? which is also not exactly something you can say about many Republicans. (Hat-tip terjeanderson).

A few other candidates have made noises about running as Democrats. State House Minority Leader Craig Ford expressed interest back in October, while ex-state Supreme Court Justice Sue Bell Cobb and 2014 nominee and ex-Rep. Parker Griffith, a Democrat-turned Republican-turned independent-turned Democrat, have also talked about getting in. Plenty of Democrats would love for Tuscaloosa Mayor Walt Maddox to run, but he?s given no indication that he?s interested. It?s going to be incredibly tough for any Democrat to win next year, but it?s possible Team Blue will have an opening if they can run as an antidote to state GOP corruption.

Thursday, Mar 23, 2017 3:23:47 PM +00:00 Jeff Singer

CO-Gov: This week, ex-Sen. Ken Salazar announced that he would not seek the Democratic nomination for this open seat next year. If Salazar had gotten in, the former secretary of the interior would likely have scared off many other Democratic candidates. However, the longtime political insider could have been vulnerable in a primary, so it?s unlikely he would have cleared the field.

Right now, the only two declared Democratic contenders are ex-state Sen. Mike Johnston and businessman Noel Ginsburg, but that may change soon. Rep. Ed Perlmutter has been considering getting in, and his own decision was reportedly dependent, at least in part, on what Salazar did. Now that Salazar had made his plans clear, we may see some movement from Perlmutter sooner rather than later. Former state Treasurer Cary Kennedy, who completed a stint as Denver?s chief financial officer and deputy mayor last year, didn?t rule out a bid in early 2016, and she?s reportedly still considering. State Sen. Michael Merrifield and state Rep. Steve Lebsock have talked about running. We may also see some more Democratic candidates come out of the woodwork now that Salazar is out.

Thursday, Mar 23, 2017 3:44:02 PM +00:00 Jeff Singer

GA-Gov: House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams is reportedly planning to run for the Democratic nomination next year, and 2014 nominee and ex-state Sen. Jason Carter has expressed interest in another bid. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that state Rep. Stacey Evans is ?seriously? considering, though Evans has yet to say anything publicly. Evans, who is known for trying to restore funding cuts to the HOPE scholarship program, is a Carter ally, and the two are unlikely to run against each other. Ex-Gov. Roy Barnes, who says he?ll back Carter if he runs again, is also close to Evans.


Morning Digest: Washington Democrats might retake the state Senate as soon as this November (March 23, 2017, 08:00 AM)

Leading Off

? Pres-by-LD: Our project to calculate the 2016 presidential results for every state legislative seat in the nation hits Washington, where one rogue Democrat gives the GOP control of the state Senate and where Democrats have a bare state House majority. You can find our master list of states here, which we'll be updating as we add new states; you can also find all our data from 2016 and past cycles here.

Each of the Evergreen State's 49 legislative districts has two state representatives and one state senator. The two House members are each elected every two years: Candidates must choose whether to run for the position one or position two seat (also known as the A or B seat). The two House seats, as well as the Senate seat, have identical boundaries. Senators are elected to four-year terms, with half the chamber up every two years. Candidates run on one ballot in the August primary and the top two vote-getters, regardless of party, advance to the general election in each race.

Hillary Clinton carried Washington 54-38, a similar margin as Barack Obama's 56-41 win four years before, and she took 30 of the 34 legislative seats that Obama won; Trump carried all of the Romney districts. Washington's legislative and congressional lines were drawn up by a bipartisan commission, and they don't seem to have favored either party. One way to illustrate this is to sort each seat by Trump's margin of victory over Clinton and see how the seat in the middle?known as the median seat?voted. This district backed Clinton 53-39, just a little to the right of her statewide performance.

But despite Clinton's clear win, Democrats have only a nominal 25-24 majority in the Senate. But state Sen. Tim Sheldon, who has repeatedly been elected as a Democrat, is allied with the GOP, and his vote allows Team Red to run the chamber. The state House has a tiny 50-48 Democratic majority but since there are no defectors, Democrat Frank Chopp sits in the speaker's chair.

We'll start with a look at the state Senate. Seven Republicans hold Clinton seats, while only one mainstream Democrat represents Trump territory. That Democrat is Dean Takko, whose southwestern LD-19 swung from 54-44 Obama all the way to 51-42 Trump. Takko had served as a state representative and was appointed to the Senate in 2015 after the incumbent took another job. Takko won the 2016 election 55-45, and the seat won't be up again until 2020.


Despite Clinton's easy win in Washington, a rogue Democrat keeps the GOP in power in the Senate (March 22, 2017, 02:32 PM)

Daily Kos Election?s project to calculate the 2016 presidential results for every state legislative seat in the nation hits the state of Washington, where one rogue Democrat gives the GOP control of the state Senate and where Democrats have a bare state House majority. You can find our master list of states here, which we'll be updating as we add new states; you can also find all our data from 2016 and past cycles here.

Each of the Evergreen State?s 49 legislative districts has two state representatives and one state senator. The two House members are each elected every two years: Candidates must choose whether to run for the position one or position two seat (also known as the A or B seat). The two House seats, as well as the Senate seat, have identical boundaries. Senators are elected to four-year terms, with half the chamber up every two years. Candidates run on one ballot in the August primary and the top two vote-getters, regardless of party, advance to the general election in each race.

Hillary Clinton carried Washington 54-38, a similar margin as Barack Obama?s 56-41 win four years before, and she took 30 of the 34 legislative seats that Obama won; Trump carried all of the Romney districts. Washington?s legislative and congressional lines were drawn up by a bipartisan commission, and they don?t seem to have favored either party. One way to illustrate this is to sort each seat in each chamber by Trump's margin of victory over Clinton and see how the seat in the middle?known as the median seat?voted. This district backed Clinton 53-39, just a little to the right of her statewide performance. But despite Clinton?s clear win, Democrats have only a nominal 25-24 majority in the Senate. But state Sen. Tim Sheldon, who has repeatedly been elected as a Democrat, is allied with the GOP, and his vote allows Team Red to run the chamber. The state House has a tiny 50-48 Democratic majority but since there are no defectors, Democrat Frank Chopp sits in the speaker?s chair.


Daily Kos Elections Live Digest: 3/22 (March 22, 2017, 09:00 AM)

Welcome to the Daily Kos Elections Live Digest, your liveblog of all of today's campaign news.

Please note: This is a 2016 and 2020 Democratic presidential primary-free zone


Morning Digest: The one-and-only Sharron Angle launches longshot primary against Rep. Mark Amodei (March 22, 2017, 08:00 AM)

Leading Off

? NV-02: On Tuesday, tea partying ex-Nevada Assemblywoman Sharron Angle, who is best known for losing the legendary 2010 U.S. Senate race to Democrat Harry Reid, announced that she would challenge GOP Rep. Mark Amodei in the primary for the 2nd Congressional District. Trump carried this northern Nevada seat 52-40, but Angle could give Team Blue an opening if she upsets Amodei. However, Angle lost last year's Senate primary to party favorite Joe Heck by a brutal 65-23 margin, so that's a massive if.

Angle is running as a Trump ally but Amodei served as Trump's state chairman, so she'll likely have a tough time portraying the incumbent as insufficiently pro-Donald. Amodei is considering leaving this seat behind to run for state attorney general and Angle would almost certainly have a better shot in a crowded open seat race, but she doesn't seem to have many allies left even in Nevada's far-right political community.

Still, even if this bid goes as badly for Angle as her last campaign did, we'll always have our many memories of the former assemblywoman. Angle ran for the last version of this House district in 2006 and almost took the GOP nod, losing the open seat race to now-Sen. Dean Heller just 36-35. Angle rose to national prominence four years later when she rallied support from influential tea party groups to win the primary to face then-Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, who appeared to be one of the most vulnerable Senate Democrats in the nation.

However, Angle's career soon took off in the wrong direction. Angle made a ton of avoidable mistakes during her Senate campaign, including (but not limited to) telling several Hispanic students that "some of you look a little more Asian to me;" suggesting that Sharia law rather than the U.S. Constitution applied in the cities of Dearborn, Michigan, and Frankford, Texas (a place that hasn't existed in decades); and falsely saying that terrorists had come to the U.S. through Canada. Angle lost 50-45 but a few months later, she flirted with running for president. Angle soon faded into obscurity and tried to revive her political career last year when she launched her Senate bid at the last minute. But Angle raised almost no money and attracted no major outside help, and she got flattened by Joe Heck.


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