By Jim Ellis — Tuesday, March 21, 2023
SenateWisconsin: Former Lieutenant Governor Potential Senate Candidate — We reported late last week that business owner Scott Mayer is considering competing for the Wisconsin US Senate nomination in a race that has not yet begun. Now we see reports surfacing that former Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch (R) is “leaving the door open” to considering a bid against Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D).
Kleefisch, who served as lieutenant governor under then-Gov. Scott Walker (R) from 2011 to 2019, but who lost the 2022 GOP nomination for governor to businessman Tim Michels — who would then lose the general election to Gov. Tony Evers (D) — is currently leading the 1848 Project organization, a Wisconsin-based conservative action group.
TX-18: Mayor’s Option Still Open — Texas US Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Houston) is not commenting about further reports suggesting she will enter the open mayor’s race later this year. At the same time, she is not denying interest in doing so, and reports suggest that the congresswoman is telling close supporters that she is actively considering the race. The candidate filing period does not conclude until August, so quite a bit of time remains for her to enter the citywide campaign. Mayor Sylvester Turner (D) is ineligible to seek a third term, and is reportedly considering challenging Sen. Ted Cruz (R) next year.
GovernorMississippi: Reeves Rebounds — Mason-Dixon Polling & Strategy conducted a new Mississippi governor’s poll for the Magnolia Tribune (March 6-9; 625 registered Mississippi voters; live interview) and sees Gov. Tate Reeves (R) rebounding from a January Tulchin Research survey. The Mason-Dixon ballot test posts Gov. Reeves to a seven-point lead over Mississippi Public Service Commissioner Brandon Presley (D), 46-39 percent. The Tulchin poll staked Presley to an early 47-43 percent advantage.
In the M-D poll, the governor has leads throughout the state with the exception of the state’s 2nd Congressional District (Rep. Bennie Thompson-D), that occupies most of the Mississippi Delta area. In that region, Presley pulls a 15-percentage point lead. Gov. Reeves is strongest — a pair of 15-point spreads — in the Tennessee border region and on the Gulf Coast. With party nominations secure for both Gov. Reeves and Presley, the two are already waging a general election battle that will be settled on Nov. 7.
West Virginia: AG Morrisey Leads in New Poll — West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey (R), who lost to Sen. Joe Manchin in a close 49-46 percent result in 2018, claims to be deciding among seeking a re-match in the Senate race, or running for the open governor or 2nd Congressional District positions, or simply seeking re-election.
A newly released National Research poll that was conducted in late February for the Black Bear PAC (Feb. 23-28; 600 likely West Virginia Republican primary voters) projects Morrisey to be holding a 28-15-11-6 percent advantage in an open governor’s primary against state Delegate Moore Capito (R-Charleston), the son of Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R); Secretary of State Mac Warner (R); and businessman Chris Miller, son of Rep. Carol Miller (R-Huntington).
Though Morrisey has yet to commit to a race, this poll suggests his gubernatorial prospects are positive. Incumbent Gov. Jim Justice (R) is ineligible to seek a third term, and is likely to challenge Sen. Manchin.