Conservative Intelligence Briefing Coverage of Conservative Political Candidates and Campaigns. Wed, 16 Apr 2014 21:42:00 +0000 en-US hourly 1 #MTSen: Daines continues non-stop assault of the positive ads Wed, 16 Apr 2014 21:41:36 +0000 David Freddoso CaptureRepublican Steve Daines, a businessman and Montana’s freshman at-large congressman, is working pretty hard in the state’s open-seat Senate race to define himself early in a positive light.

Here he is talking about his work to fight “fringe environmentalists” in yet another positive spot that’s cut to TV length. The spot touts his rating as the “most effective” freshman in Congress, citing The claim is apparently based on his successful shepherding of three bills through committee, more than any other House freshman.

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#KYSen: Erickson gives a very harsh assessment of Bevin’s chances Wed, 16 Apr 2014 21:10:57 +0000 David Freddoso CaptureErick Erickson, perhaps as good a weather vane for attitudes of the online Tea Party Right as anyone, has a post up today on the three Tea Party Senate candidates who are running against GOP incumbents. His outlook is not optimistic. He doesn’t close the door on anything, but it seems like he only gives Chris McDaniel in Mississippi much of a shot of winning. 

What’s more, he seems to think Milton Wolf’s longshot campaign in Kansas holds forth more promise at this point than Matt Bevin’s in Kentucky — and there are actually quite a few reasons to agree. 

Erickson reserves his harshest assessment for Bevin, whose campaign against Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has consumed millions in conservative donations. He doesn’t explicitly give up on Bevin, but between the lines the suggestions seems to be, give to McDaniel instead.

Matt Bevin fell early to a barrage of negative attacks defining him before he could define himself. He is far down with a month to go. While he benefits from a wave of conservative grassroots support, including my own here at RedState, he has much ground to make up and little time to do it. Short of a non-stop very positive media campaign re-defining himself, Bevin is not going to win.

The voters in Kentucky may not care for Mitch McConnell. Conservative activists around the country may not care for McConnell. But Bevin has failed thus far to present a compelling, positive narrative of himself and why he should be the guy to replace Mitch McConnell. With early voting approaching, he has less than one month to do that.

This isn’t really a shocking assessment, except that it comes from Erickson, who certainly cannot be accused of excessive sympathy for McConnell.

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#KSSen: Sebelius hopes to ride a wave of Obamacare popularity into the U.S. Senate (LOL) Wed, 16 Apr 2014 17:14:01 +0000 David Freddoso CaptureThe New York Times:

WASHINGTON — In her darkest hour last fall, Kathleen Sebelius suffered one of the deepest cuts from an old family friend who accused her of “gross incompetence” over the rollout of the Affordable Care Act and demanded that she resign as secretary of health and human services. Now she is weighing revenge.

Ms. Sebelius is considering entreaties from Democrats who want her to run against that old friend, Senator Pat Roberts, Republican of Kansas.

Just a note: PPP actually polled a Sebelius run for Senate in late February. The formerly popular governor registered a 55 percent disapproval rating in Kansas, no doubt thanks to the bang-up job she did with Obamacare. She trailed Sen. Pat Roberts, 52 to 38 percent, and his GOP primary challenger, Milton Wolf, 46 to 39 percent.

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Obama is a drag on Dems in Minnesota, too Wed, 16 Apr 2014 15:33:32 +0000 David Freddoso CaptureKSTP, an ABC affiliate in Saint Paul, reported the other day on a poll that shows President Obama pulling his entire party down with his 36 percent approval rating in Minnesota.

Republicans would like to claim this shows Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., at least slightly vulnerable. To tell the truth, these numbers don’t look that bad for Franken — 46 percent approval and 42 percent disapproval, which is decent. But they do suggest that a few Franken missteps or a few million spent might be enough to make it a real race — and yet another critical seat that Democrats will have to defend.

Speaking of which, that photo at right was from a video  found by Breitbart’s Charlie Spiering — a very classy shot of the senator clowning around before a political fundraiser in Arizona, finding his well-endowed inner woman, evidently.

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Susan B. Anthony List pledges $50k to #FL19 ground game in next Tuesday’s election Wed, 16 Apr 2014 14:39:01 +0000 David Freddoso CaptureSusan B. Anthony List — a pro-life PAC dedicated especially to electing women who oppose abortion to Congress and defeating women who support it — just announced today that it will be putting a $50,000 get-out-the-vote effort behind Florida State Sen. Lizbeth Benacquisto, R, in the special election to replace Rep. Trey Radel, R.

Note that SBA List was also involved in getting out the vote for Ken Cuccinelli last November, in a race that ended much closer than expected. Primary Election Day is April 22 — Republicans are heavily favored to keep the seat, whether the nominee is Benacquisto, businessman Curt Clawson, or doctor Paige Kreegel.

From the SBA press release:

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today the Susan B. Anthony List (SBA List) announced a $50,000 GOTV effort in support of State Senator Lizbeth Benacquisto. In the final week of the primary election, the group will reach 45,000 identified pro-life voters with a targeted voter mail and automated call campaign. The calls will go out from Governor Mike Huckabee (R-AR), SBA List President Marjorie Dannenfelser, and Concerned Women for America Political Action Committee’s Penny Nance

“The voters of Florida’s nineteenth district are looking for an articulate and accomplished pro-life leader. State Senator Benacquisto has a record of fighting for the unborn and for women,” said Susan B. Anthony List President Marjorie Dannenfelser.

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#ARSen: You know it’s Harry Reid’s SuperPAC because it can’t stop lying Tue, 15 Apr 2014 19:46:47 +0000 David Freddoso Democrats’ claims that Tom Cotton made a fortune working for health insurance companies have been thoroughly disproven — the Washington Post gave the claim four Pinnocchios and called it “as phony as a three-dollar bill.”

But the new ad below, by Harry Reid’s SuperPAC, tries once again to make it look like Cotton worked for health insurers — going so far as to show the words “health” and “insurance” close to one another in this image — note the word “health on the right, which was actually separated by several words from the word “insurance” in Cotton’s bio.


In fact, the experience on “insurance” referred to here had to do with Cotton’s work on a federal government program that provided insurance for home lenders. Cotton didn’t do any work for insurance companies or health insurers.

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#ID02: Mitt Romney appears in new campaign ad for GOP incumbent Tue, 15 Apr 2014 18:21:55 +0000 David Freddoso Next month’s GOP primary between Rep. Mike Simpson and attorney Bryan Smith is one of the more interesting House races this year, pitting the Club for Growth against the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the NRA.

Before you scoff at how much a Mitt Romney endorsement can mean for any establishment candidate in 2014, bear in mind that Idaho’s second district is heavily Mormon — and that in fact, both of the candidates in the GOP House primary are Mormon as well.

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#TXGov: Republicans have successfully defined Wendy Davis early Tue, 15 Apr 2014 16:18:24 +0000 David Freddoso davisPPP just released a new poll of Texas that should add a bit of context to Democrats’ triumphalist rhetoric about turning the state Blue. The only thing to change in the last five months is Wendy Davis’ disapproval rating — it has risen even faster than her approval rating has fallen:

In the Governor’s race Greg Abbott’s at 51% to 37% for Wendy Davis. Those numbers are largely unchanged from our last poll of the state in early November when Abbott had a 50/35 advantage. Davis had a 39/29 favorability rating right after her famous filibuster last June, but since then voters in the state have mostly moved toward having negative opinions about her and now she’s at a 33/47 spread.

Republicans lead in all tested statewide races, and voters who self-describe as “conservative” comprise 52 percent of the Lone Star State’s electorate. See the full poll here. Davis’ campaign has suffered under a barrage of negative coverage.

She has gone from the champion of a controversial abortion-related cause to someone who backs away from controversy (and abortion), and to make matters worse, her inspirational life story had a few holes poked in it a few months ago.

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#LASen: Landrieu ad contains footage from faked congressional hearing Tue, 15 Apr 2014 15:51:58 +0000 David Freddoso

Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., has a new ad that tries to establish her independence from the Obama administration. But as the Weekly Standard notes today, someone thought it would be a good idea to put fake footage of her speaking at a re-enacted hearing:

Most of the clips the ad features are from her appearances on local and cable TV news. But watch the clips of Landrieu around the video’s halfway point. They feature the senator speaking in what looks like a congressional hearing, excoriating a faceless witness. “They have to sit here and listen to the federal government say, ‘We can’t share a penny with you’? I will not rest until this injustice is fixed,” Landrieu says. “Do you think there are a bunch of fairy godmothers out there who just wave a magic wand?”

As Michael Warren notes at the link, in the real life hearing being reenacted here, Landrieu actually flubbed that line about fairy godmothers. Mind you, campaigns have been attacked for much less — some just for hiring actors. 

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How to prevent anyone from knowing Obamacare’s effects Tue, 15 Apr 2014 14:43:29 +0000 David Freddoso We’ve already seen how flexible Obamacare’s statute can become for a determined president. Here, from the New York Times, is how the feds can eliminate any real way of measuring its results:

WASHINGTON — The Census Bureau, the authoritative source of health insurance data for more than three decades, is changing its annual survey so thoroughly that it will be difficult to measure the effects of President Obama’s health care law in the next report, due this fall, census officials said.

The changes are intended to improve the accuracy of the survey, being conducted this month in interviews with tens of thousands of households around the country. But the new questions are so different that the findings will not be comparable, the officials said.

An internal Census Bureau document said that the new questionnaire included a “total revision to health insurance questions” and, in a test last year, produced lower estimates of the uninsured. Thus, officials said, it will be difficult to say how much of any change is attributable to the Affordable Care Act and how much to the use of a new survey instrument.

This pretty much guarantees that the law will still have defenders, even after it’s clear that we’ve spent a trillion dollars mostly to shift people from one insurance plan to another and to prompt already-eligible people to sign up for Medicaid.

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