By Jim Ellis — Wednesday, Sept. 13, 2023
PresidentNo Labels Party: Sen. Cassidy Says He’ll Talk — From Sunday’s NBC interview, Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-LA) admitted that he would “talk” to the No Labels Party leaders if they approached him about becoming their presidential nominee. Sen. Cassidy also explained it would depend upon who the major parties nominate, but he intimated if we are going to see a Biden-Trump re-match he would be more inclined to run as a third-party candidate.
Sen. Cassidy is the type of candidate the No Labels Party would like to recruit. It is clear their main goal is to deny former President Donald Trump re-election, so they will be looking for a candidate who has some ability to attract suburban Republican voters away from Trump. The No Labels Party will decide who to nominate, if anyone, at their national conclave scheduled for April 14-15, 2024.
California: Gov. Newsom Clarifies Potential Appointment — Some Democrats are still urging Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D), who is suffering from failing health, to resign her seat so that Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) can appoint a more able individual. Gov. Newsom now says that he will only appoint someone who will serve as a caretaker if the vacancy were to occur.
The governor said it would be unfair to give an advantage to any of the candidates currently running for the Senate if he were to appoint one of the contenders. Early rumors suggested he was leaning towards appointing US congresswoman and 2024 Senate candidate Barbara Lee (D-Oakland). She hails from Newsom’s northern California political base, but his latest statement suggests he would now go in a different direction.
Texas: Another Cruz Challenger Emerges — Back in May when Texas Rep. Colin Allred (D-Dallas) announced his Senate campaign it looked as if the Democratic leadership had the candidate they wanted to challenge Sen. Ted Cruz (R). Two months later, state Sen. Roland Gutierrez (D-San Antonio) announced his candidacy, and then resigned Nueces County District Attorney Mark Gonzalez followed. Another candidate has now joined them — Dallas state Rep. Carl Sherman Sr. (D), a former local mayor and pastor.
While Rep. Allred still may top what is now becoming a crowded field, he will undoubtedly be forced to drain his campaign treasury just to win the nomination; he had raised over $6 million before the June 30 campaign finance quarterly report. Sen. Cruz will then be able to build an uncontested campaign treasury, and force all four Democratic candidates far to the left on key issues such as the Biden energy policy and the Texas-Mexico border.
NM-3: Ex-State Rep to Challenge Rep. Leger Fernandez — Former state Rep. Sharon Clahchischilliage (R), a member of the Navajo Nation who served three terms in the legislature before being defeated for re-election in 2018, announced that she will challenge two-term Rep. Teresa Leger Fernandez (D-Santa Fe) next year. The FiveThirtyEight data organization rates New Mexico’s 3rd District as D+5, meaning we could see a competitive general election develop. In 2022, Rep. Leger Fernandez was re-elected with 58 percent of the vote, but against a Republican candidate who spent only $301,000 on her campaign.
NY-4: Democrat Withdraws — Sarah Hughes (D), who was a member of the 2002 US Olympic figure skating team and had formed a congressional exploratory committee earlier in the year to challenge Rep. Anthony D’Esposito (R-Island Park), announced Monday that she will not pursue her candidacy. The top Democrats appear to be state Sen. Kevin Thomas (D-Nassau) and ex-Hempstead town supervisor and 2022 nominee Laura Gillen (D). In the face of such competition, Hughes’ chances of winning the Democratic primary were poor; hence, the decision to end her political quest.
New York’s 4th District, at D+10 according to the FiveThirtyEight data organization, is likely to become the Democrats’ top conversion opportunity in the country.