By Jim Ellis — Thursday, April 13, 2023
SenateFlorida: Sen. Scott Draws Millionaire GOP Opponent — As has been expected for weeks, independent businessman Keith Gross announced his US Senate candidacy against Sen. Rick Scott (R). Gross, a multi-millionaire, will challenge Sen. Scott in the Republican primary. He is clearly running as a conservative, based upon the rhetoric in his announcement video, but it will not be easy getting to the right of Sen. Scott.
Though Gross is capable of self-financing his campaign, resources will not be an issue for Sen. Scott. Then, as Florida’s governor, Scott, not counting money raised, spent $64 million of his own money for the 2018 Senate campaign. The primary challenge could, however, spur a potentially stronger Democratic opponent to come forth, thinking the nomination battle might weaken the incumbent. Therefore, this August 2024 Republican primary will draw national attention.
Ohio: Bernie Moreno Again — In 2022, wealthy Ohio businessman Bernie Moreno (R) entered the open US Senate race but dropped out before the May primary when it became clear he could not win the race. With state Sen. Matt Dolan (R-Chagrin Falls) as the only 2024 announced candidate to challenge Sen. Sherrod Brown (D), and the lone returning 2022 contender, Moreno has again chosen to throw his hat into the ring.
Others are expected to join the race, which will more than likely mean another crowded multi-candidate field, just as we saw a year ago when author and now Sen. J.D. Vance (R) rose to claim the nomination in May and eventually the seat in November. The Ohio race is one of the Republicans’ top national conversion targets.
MD-6: Republican Returning for Another Try — US Air Force veteran Mariela Roca, who finished third in a six-way 2022 Republican congressional primary, announced that she will again run in her western Maryland district next year. The 6th District, which the court-drawn plan made more Republican by removing a huge section of Montgomery County, appeared headed for a close finish between Rep. David Trone (D-Potomac) and state Delegate Neil Parrott (R-Frederick). After the late votes were recorded, however, Rep. Trone recorded a substantial 55-45 percent victory, a margin of almost 25,000 votes.
In an open seat situation, however, this could become a highly competitive district. Sen. Ben Cardin (D) — who will be 81 years old before the next election — says he will decide shortly if he will seek a fourth term. This, after serving 20 years in the US House and another 20 years in the Maryland House of Delegates.
Should Sen. Cardin opt to retire, Rep. Trone would be a prime prospect to jump into an open Senate race. If these events occur, then the 6th District is sure to feature competitive Democratic and Republican primaries, and a tight general election.
Democratic National Committee: Chooses Chicago — For the 12th time, the Democratic National Committee has selected Chicago to host its national convention. The 2024 gathering will be the 50th such national conclave. A total of 18 cities have held the 50 Democratic conventions, with Chicago doing so most often. Eight others have hosted more than one: Baltimore (9), New York (5), St. Louis (4), and Philadelphia (3), with two each for Cincinnati, Denver, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. Late last year, the Republicans chose Milwaukee as the site of their 2024 national convention.