By Jim Ellis — Thursday, June 8, 2023
Announcements: Three Enter GOP Presidential Race — Former Vice President Mike Pence (R), ex-New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, and North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum all declared their presidential campaigns yesterday or are in the process of doing so. None of the three are regarded as top-tier contenders, but things can change in the next months as we head toward the first vote in the Iowa Caucuses on Feb. 5, 2024.
The field now grows to nine candidates, featuring former President Donald Trump, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC), ex-UN Ambassador Nikki Haley, businessman Vivek Ramaswamy, former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson, and Pence, Christie, and Burgum.
SenateNevada: Ex-Iceland Ambassador Prepares Run — The Nevada Senate race featuring incumbent Jacky Rosen (D) running for a second term should be a top-tier competitive race, but the Republican field has been slow to assemble. Businessman, disabled Afghan War veteran and 2022 Senate candidate Sam Brown is expected to run but has not yet officially entered the race. A new candidate coming on the horizon, Dr. Jeffrey Ross Gunter (R), the former US Ambassador to Iceland in the Trump Administration, is apparently now testing the political waters to enter the race.
Republicans will need a strong candidate to make this race viable. In 2022, Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto (D) barely slipped past former state Attorney General Adam Laxalt (R) with a 48.8 – 48.0 percent victory. There is no indication that Laxalt will return for another run next year.
NY-17: Rep. Lawler Ahead in Test Polling — One of the biggest 2022 congressional upsets came in upstate New York where then-state Assemblyman Mike Lawler (R-Pearl River) defeated Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee chairman Sean Patrick Maloney (D). Now, a new EMC Research poll, surveying for the End Citizens United and Let America Vote organizations (May 4-7; 300 likely NY-17 voters; live interview & online) finds Rep. Lawler clinging to a slight 50-48 percent lead over former Congressman Mondaire Jones, in what is expected to be the 2024 candidate lineup.
Jones was elected to the former 17th District in 2018 but moved to New York City to run for re-election from his Westchester County base when Rep. Maloney decided to run in the court-drawn 17th CD has not yet announced he will run but is expected to enter the race. The district leans Democratic. The FiveThirtyEight organization rates the seat D+7 with a Dave’s Redistricting App partisan lean topping 56 percent Democratic. Also in the Democratic contest is local school board trustee Liz Gereghty, the sister of Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D).
RI-1: Field Drops to 17 — State Rep. Nathan Biah (D-Providence), one of 18 Democratic candidates vying for the congressional seat from which Rhode Island Rep. David Cicilline (D-Providence) resigned, is leaving the race. Instead, he will enter the special election to replace the late state Sen. Maryellen Goodwin (D).
Candidate filing continues to progress and will end June 30 for the determinative Sept. 5 Democratic primary. The FiveThirtyEight organization rates RI-1 as D+32 with a Democratic partisan lean score of almost 65 percent Democratic according to the Dave’s Redistricting App data organization.