Conservative Intelligence Briefing Coverage of Conservative Political Candidates and Campaigns. Fri, 29 Aug 2014 21:41:59 +0000 en-US hourly 1 ‘Air Mary’ Claims Parents’ Home As Her Own Fri, 29 Aug 2014 21:22:32 +0000 Conservative Intel Already embroiled in controversy over having been caught billing taxpayers with chartered plane flights to various campaign fundraising events around the country, embattled incumbent Senator Mary Landrieu (D-LA) has a new battle to fight.

When she’s not campaigning for her political life, Landrieu is living large with her husband in their $2.5 million mansion in Washington, D.C. over-looking the Potomac. The trouble is she apparently has no home anywhere else, including in the state which she represents.

On her statement of candidacy, Landrieu listed her DC mansion as her home. But then it was discovered that she listed her parents’ New Orleans home as her residence on her ballot qualification filing in Louisiana.

Other candidates have faced criticism for similar revelations, reports The Washington Times:

Former senator Richard G. Lugar (R-Ind.) lost reelection in 2012 after reports that he stayed in hotels when he returned to Indiana, while Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) is drawing flack this year for not having a home of his own in Kansas and listing a donor’s house as his voting address.

Inflamed by the revelation, Republicans are threatening legal action due to the potential violation of residency requirements for candidacy.

Though Landrieu claims to ‘live there’ when she’s not representing her state in DC, neighbors claim otherwise. “I don’t think she lives there. She might come visit, but come on now — she lives in D.C. I don’t think I’ve ever seen her,” one of them commented.

If Republicans make further issue of the residency controversy, even if only in asking the question, it could further threaten control of the Senate for Democrats.

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Shaheen Attack Ad on Brown Backfires Fri, 29 Aug 2014 20:58:21 +0000 Conservative Intel Perhaps no better sign is evidence of the closing gap in the polls between incumbent Democrat Senator Jeanne Shaheen and former Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown than the desperation of late from the Shaheen campaign.

With recent polls showing the pair within the margin of error from each other, Shaheen’s campaign lashed out in an ad design to paint Brown as pro-Big Oil.

The ad’s voice-over warns, “Big Oil gave Scott Brown thousands of dollars within days of his votes [on the petroleum industry]”.

But now the ad has backfired on Shaheen, according to Newsmax and The Weekly Standard. She has opened herself up to criticism of hypocrisy after it was revealed in her financial disclosure that her husband owns $100,000 of investment in a fund whose portfolio includes some key oil and gas stocks including Chevron.

Should Brown ultimately prevail — and should the GOP take control of the Senate — Shaheen may have only herself to blame.

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Romney Tops in Iowa Fri, 29 Aug 2014 16:38:08 +0000 Conservative Intel Still in great demand, Mitt Romney continues his travels around the country campaigning for various and sundry Republican candidates in this deciding anti-Obama political environment.

At every stop he is asked about running for president a third time, and in every case he has emphatically denied any plans to do so. Yet with each insistence of a no-go, it seems voters want him all the more to run again.
In a Suffolk University poll released Wednesday on potential presidential nominees, Romney tops all others by a large margin. With 35%, Iowans prefer Romney as the GOP nominee in 2016 to 9% for Huckabee, who came in a distant second with all others trailing behind him.

Romney may simply be playing coy on a 2016 bid. In a recent radio interview, he demurred, “Someone else has a better chance than I do. You know, circumstances can change, but I’m just not going to let my head go there.”

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Would Hillary Be An Obama Third Term? Fri, 29 Aug 2014 14:30:15 +0000 Conservative Intel Would a Hillary presidency be a veritable Obama third term? Howard Kurtz thinks so. Citing the routine turnover in presidential cycles between Republicans and Democrats, he says Americans have shown a history of switching parties every so often, especially in uncertain times.

In the last 100 years voters have given a party 12 years of control in the White House only twice, both in the elections of FDR and George H.W. Bush. And with the on-going Obama malaise, the speculation is that voters will be less inclined to give the presidency to a Democrat, especially one perceived to be similar to Obama.

Kurtz quotes NY Times’ John Harwood to support his position:

“For all the strengths she would bring to a 2016 race, Mrs. Clinton would face a significant historical obstacle. American voters have demonstrated their reluctance to award the same political party a third consecutive term in the White House.”

Harwood’s argument for the best-case scenario for a Hillary candidacy is for Republicans to win the Senate in November so that they can be labeled as the problem in Washington.

Jeff Greenfield, political analyst and Fox News contributor, disagrees. Citing several presidential elections that came down to razor-thin margins, he says the election could go either way. Yet Politico’s Roger Simon supports Kurtz: “[Hillary] has some of the same flaws as Obama. She can project a chilly public personality, a remoteness, a reserve and a detachment from ordinary people.”

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Obama’s Action on Immigration May Decide Midterms Thu, 28 Aug 2014 18:12:08 +0000 Conservative Intel Having already threatened to take executive action on immigration this summer, President Obama is poised to make a move before the midterm elections, reports The Washington Times.

Should such executive actions include naturalizing the millions of illegal immigrants presently residing in the United States, some believe Republican control of the Senate will be virtually certain.

Few issues unite voters like immigration and the prospect of handing out amnesty wherein an overwhelming majority are opposed to the idea. With the recent uproar over children being bused into the U.S. through Mexico, voter sentiment on the issue has only been heightened.

In a number of the key toss-up states where immigrant populations are low and anti-amnesty sentiments are high, the issue could very well play the spoiler for incumbent Democrat senators.

In Alaska, Sen. Mark Begich has his finger to the wind and is refusing to fall in line with his president, “To me, securing our borders has to be the priority, and that should be the president’s focus.”

But in New Hampshire, Jeanne Shaheen and in North Carolina Kay Hagan are sticking to their guns on comprehensive immigration reform. Should either of them get tagged with an eventual Obama executive decision, the races in those states could be over already.

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NYT Snubs Cuomo Thu, 28 Aug 2014 14:31:04 +0000 Conservative Intel A major setback was dealt for NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo in his bid to secure his party’s nomination in his re-election campaign. The New York Times, Newsmax reports, has refused to issue an endorsement of the sitting governor citing serial ethical lapses.

Explaining its decision, the NYT editorial board wrote:

New York had had enough corruption, he said, and he was going to put a stop to it. “Job 1 is going to be to clean up Albany,” he said, “and make the government work for the people.” . . . He failed to perform Job 1. The state government remains as subservient to big money as ever, and Mr. Cuomo resisted and even shut down opportunities to fix it. Because he broke his most important promise, we have decided not to make an endorsement for the Democratic primary on Sept. 9.

Although the board chose not to endorse his competitor in the primary, Zephyr Teachout, the lack of support for Cuomo comes as many believe he may be gearing up his campaign apparatus to swing directly from the Nov. 4th election into a national effort for the presidency.

Speculation continues over whether and which national figure may ultimately choose to open up an official effort to take on an expected Hillary Clinton juggernaut for the White House in 2016.

Included with Cuomo among the likely prospects are CA Gov. Jerry Brown, Vice President Joe Biden, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, and VT Congressman Bernie Sanders.

With recent trips through Iowa and the Midwest touting her Chicago roots, many consider a Hillary candidacy to be a done deal. Her standing in recent polls present a formidable challenge with her numbers showing her competitive or even beating a number of potential Republican nominees.

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Ducey Wins GOP Gov. Nomination in AZ Wed, 27 Aug 2014 21:05:24 +0000 Conservative Intel Arizona Treasurer, and former CEO of Cold Stone Creamery, Doug Ducey won a plurality of the primary votes cast yesterday to secure the GOP nomination in his race to succeed Janet Brewer in the sunbelt.

With 37% of the vote according to Real Clear Politics, Ducey easily surpassed his opponents and will now go on to face Democrat Fred DuVal on November 4th.

Ducey commented in his victory speech, “We are halfway home and now the real race begins.  I’ve run hard in this primary, against able and worthy opponents. I will keep running hard as your nominee.”

The victory for Ducey came in spite of an endorsement by Gov. Brewer for his opponent Mesa Mayor Scott Smith.

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Cameron: Bump for GOP Wed, 27 Aug 2014 18:21:51 +0000 Conservative Intel Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is publicly defiant in the face of predictions that he and his colleagues will lose control of the Senate to Republicans on November 4th. Explaining his doubt, Reid detailed, “They’d have to pick up six seats, it’d be very, very hard for them to do that.”

Fox News‘ Carl Cameron disagrees. He reports that veteran Democrat strategist Joe Trippi doesn’t share Reid’s optimism:

“We all thought four were in the bag [for Republicans]. But right now, it’s looking like the bottom end of that scale isn’t four anymore, it’s five or six. And that means the entire Senate majority is on the bubble.”

The most recent polls, which do not factor in any post-Labor Day numbers yet, show several states already in the bag for the GOP. Democrats already admit the GOP should pick up seats in South Dakota, Montana, and West Virginia where the Republican candidate in each has opened up a double-digit lead.

With only three more net gains needed for GOP control, several states are poised to fill those slots.

Congressman Tom Cotton has gained a slight edge over two-term Democrat Gov. Mark Pryor in Arkansas. Congressman Bill Cassady is starting to edge scandal-marred Democrat Sen. Mary Landrieu in Louisiana. Joni Ernst is in a virtual tie with Democrat Congressman Bruce Braley in Iowa. The Republican candidates in Colorado, New Hampshire and Alaska have pulled to within the margin of error with their Democrat counterparts.

Assuming the GOP can hold onto their seats in Georgia and Kentucky, only three of the above toss-ups are needed to push the party over the line for control of the Senate.

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Sabato: No Bump for GOP Wed, 27 Aug 2014 18:12:08 +0000 Conservative Intel Writing for Politico Magazine, seasoned University of Virginia Politics professor Larry Sabato posed an important question for the Republican Party as we head into Labor Day week and over the final stretch of the midterm election cycle: where’s the bump?

Sabato points out that everything that could be going in the GOP’s favor is going in the party’s favor. Yet, he claims, there’s no discernible bump in the polls which might be expected given the anti-Obama context in which voters find themselves. He reports:

“Nonetheless, the midterms are far from over. In every single one of the Crystal Ball’s toss-up states, (Alaska, Arkansas, Iowa, Louisiana and North Carolina), the Republican Senate candidate has not yet opened up a real polling lead in any of them. Democratic nominees have been running hard and staying slightly ahead, or close to, their Republican foes.”

Democrats already concede that the GOP will pickup 3-4 seats, but promise that the 6 net seats needed to take over the Senate won’t happen. Meanwhile they’re pushing hard to take two GOP seats in GA and KY, one of which is held by Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.

But many analysts disagree with Sabato’s gloomy outlook for the GOP. First, voters traditionally do not plug back into the political scene until summer vacations are over and school is back in full swing, which has only happened in the last week. The week after Labor Day is the unofficial beginning of the end of the cycle in which voters give their attention to what’s going on in the world.

Second, Sabato seems to be discounting the role that voter turnout will play in the ultimate results. With Republican voter engagement at a high rate and Democrat engage at a comparative low, this portends a pro-GOP outlook that could be all the bump Republicans need even if polls remain dead-locked as they are presently.

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Weekend At Bernie’s Wed, 27 Aug 2014 16:39:14 +0000 Conservative Intel Hillary may have a new threat in 2016, and it’s not coming from an expected corner of the Democrat tent.

Sen. Bernie Sanders, the only openly avowed Socialist in Congress, has made comments specifically targeted at the possibility of a White House run in 2016.

The Vermont Senator has commented that there needs to be Liberal Democrat in the 2016 primary, according to The Hill:

“I’ll be going to New Hampshire, and I’ll be going to Iowa. That’s part of my trying to ascertain the kind of support that exists for a presidential run… The future of our party is the Warren wing, which is fighting to break up the big banks, expand Social Security and fighting economic inequality,”

Also, he told Time in a March interview that he didn’t think Hillary Clinton was right for the Democrat party:

“If you talk about the need for a political revolution in America, I think it’s fair to say that Secretary Clinton probably will not be one of the more active people.”

Few sane analysts would expect much support for a relatively unknown member of Congress – and a Socialist to boot – but the possibility that Sanders could run as an Independent poses a threat to any Democrat presidential nominee by pulling off just enough hard-left votes to throw an election to the Republican.

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