By Jim Ellis — Thursday, March 30, 2023
PresidentNew Prospects: Two Schedule Trips to Primary States — A pair of new Republican potential presidential candidates appear to be exploring the national campaign hustings. Reportedly, Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC) and North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum (R) are beginning to test the political waters with appearances in the early primary states.
Should they move forward, former President Trump will likely be the big winner. The greater number of individuals who have little chance of winning the nomination but still become candidates makes it easier for Trump to score plurality victories and secure the highest number of delegates.
North Carolina: New Gubernatorial Candidate Enters — Tar Heel State Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson (R) has received the preponderance of early attention regarding the 2024 open Republican gubernatorial nomination, but another individual has jumped ahead of him to become the first official GOP candidate. State Treasurer Dale Folwell declared his gubernatorial candidacy Monday, thus setting up a tough primary battle with Robinson, who is set to soon officially announce his bid.
The lone Democrat in the race, Attorney General Josh Stein, is well on his way to becoming a consensus party candidate. Gov. Roy Cooper (D) is ineligible to seek a third term. As with all North Carolina statewide races, the 2024 battle will yield a tight final result.
Chicago: Breaking Vallas’ Way — Two positive occurrences happened Monday for Chicago mayoral candidate Paul Vallas, now just one week away from runoff election day. First, Emerson College released their new survey conducted for the WGN Television in Chicago and The Hill newspaper in Washington, DC. The study (March 23-25; 1,000 likely Chicago voters; multiple sampling techniques) posts Vallas to a 46-41 percent lead over Cook County Commissioner Brandon Johnson. The polls have see-sawed throughout the runoff period.
Secondly, Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) has announced his public support of Vallas, thus bringing him more key Illinois Democratic establishment support. The election is scheduled for April 4.
Houston: Rep. Jackson Lee (D) to Run for Mayor — As has been anticipated for several months, Texas US Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Houston) announced Monday that she will enter the 2023 open Houston mayor’s race. The congresswoman will not have to risk her US House seat to run for the post, but must resign if elected. If this occurs, a special election will then be scheduled to fill the unexpired portion of her congressional term. Already, a field of 11 individuals have announced their mayoral candidacies even though candidate filing doesn’t conclude until Aug. 21.
The major candidates, in addition to Rep. Jackson Lee who was first elected to Congress in 1994, include state Sen. John Whitmire (D-Houston), former city councilwoman and ex-US Senate candidate Amanda Edwards, Houston Metro Board member and ex-Texas Democratic Party Vice Chairman Chris Hollins, and attorney Lee Kaplan. Incumbent Mayor Sylvester Turner is ineligible to seek a third term.