Tag Archives: Peter Meijer

Former Rep. Rogers Enters Michigan Senate Race; New Candidate Announces in Texas; Alabama Redistricting Map Struck Down; Primary Results in RI-1 and UT-2

By Jim Ellis — Friday, Sept. 8, 2023

Senate

Michigan: Ex-Rep. Rogers Enters Senate Race — As expected, via a strong video announcement, former US Rep. Mike Rogers (R), who served in Congress from 2001 to 2015 and rose to chair the House Intelligence Committee, officially declared his US Senate candidacy.

“No candidate is better prepared to have an impact on day one,” Rogers said in his video announcement. “I’m ready to serve again.”

The Rogers entry gives the Republicans a top-tier candidate in a state that has trended against the GOP in the last two elections. Polling suggests the favored Democratic candidate, US Rep. Elissa Slotkin (D-Lansing), who represents the same Michigan congressional district as did Rogers, would have only a small lead to start the campaign.

Former US Rep. Peter Meijer is also a potential Republican candidate, though the Rogers entry would make him a major underdog in a statewide primary. Meijer was elected to the House in 2020 but lost his bid for renomination in 2022. Rep. Slotkin faces state Board of Education President Pamela Pugh, actor Hill Harper, and former state Rep. Leslie Love in the Democratic primary. Both Rep. Slotkin and Rogers should be viewed as heavy favorites to win their respective partisan primaries.

Texas: New Dem Candidate Announces — Republicans in the Texas legislature have been coalescing in an attempt to strip Nueces County District Attorney Mark Gonzalez (D) from his office for failing to prosecute large numbers of criminals, following the lead of several big city DA’s such as those in San Francisco, New York, and Los Angeles.

Instead of dealing with a potential legislative battle, Gonzalez abruptly resigned his post and then declared his candidacy for the US Senate. He, however, must first face US Rep. Colin Allred (D-Dallas) and state Sen. Roland Gutierrez (D-San Antonio) in the Democratic primary before getting a chance to make a statement in opposing incumbent US Sen. Ted Cruz (R). In what the Democratic leadership was hoping would become an easy primary for their favored candidate, Rep. Allred, is now evolving into something quite the opposite.

House

Alabama Redistricting: Replacement Map Struck Down — Yesterday, a federal three-judge panel in Alabama struck down the legislature and governor’s new map enacted to comply with the US Supreme Court’s June ruling that ordered a redraw for racial considerations. The argument rested upon census numbers indicating that a second majority minority seat could be drawn in the state.

The legislature’s map increased the African American population in District 2 from 30 to 39 percent, but the three-judge panel ruled the new plan did not go far enough. The judicial panel also ordered a special master to draw a new map.

Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall (R) stated immediately after the new ruling that the state will appeal the decision. Redistricting appeals automatically go to the US Supreme Court. Considering the time required for the appeal to be heard and ruled upon, there is some chance that a new map will not be in place until after the 2024 election.

RI-1: Ex-White House Aide Wins Special Dem Primary — The long-awaited special primary election to replace resigned Rep. David Cicilline (D) was conducted Tuesday, and former Biden and Obama Administration official Gabe Amo clinched the crowded Democratic primary with a 32-25-14 percent victory over former state Rep. Aaron Regunberg and state Sen. Sandra Cano (D-Pawtucket). The remaining nine candidates, including Lt. Gov. Sabina Matos, failed to even reach the 10 percent threshold.

Amo will be a lock to defeat the Republican winner, military veteran Gerry Leonard Jr. in the Nov. 7 special general election and upon election will be the first person of color to represent Rhode Island in Congress.

UT-2: Party-Endorsed Candidate Claims GOP Nomination in Special Primary — In Utah’s 2nd District, where Rep. Chris Stewart (R-Farmington) will resign his seat on Sept. 15 due to family considerations, polling suggested that former state Rep. Becky Edwards had a significant lead in a three-way contest, and early vote counting seemed to confirm this prediction.

As counting progressed, however, Republican district convention winner Celeste Maloy chipped away at Edwards’ metro-area lead once the rural counties tallies began mounting. She then won a tight, but still unofficial, Republican primary special election. In third place, also relatively close, is former Republican National Committeeman Bruce Hough.

Assuming this election is certified, and the 1,400-plus vote margin is likely enough to withstand a recount should Edwards move to have one conducted, Maloy will advance to the special general election where she will face state Sen. Kathleen Riebe (D-Cottonwood Heights). Riebe was unopposed in last night’s Democratic primary.

Now, the partisans will turn their attention to the special general election scheduled for Nov. 21. The FiveThirtyEight data organization rates the UT-2 seat as R+23, and former President Donald Trump defeated President Joe Biden here, 57-39 percent. Last November, Rep. Stewart was re-elected with a 60-34 percent vote spread. Therefore, Maloy begins the special general cycle as a heavy favorite to carry the day for the GOP.

Rosendale Leads GOP Primary Poll; Former Michigan Rep Files Senate Exploratory Committee; Another Challenger in NY-3; Afghan War Vet to Return to NC-14 Race

By Jim Ellis — Tuesday, Sept. 5, 2023

Senate

Montana Rep. Matt Rosendale (R-Glendive)

Montana: Rep. Rosendale Leads GOP Primary Poll — A J.L. Partners survey released to the Semafor online news site (Aug. 12-17; 418 likely Montana Republican primary voters; live interview) projects two-term Congressman Matt Rosendale (R-Glendive) holding a big 55-19 percent lead over aerospace company CEO and retired Navy SEAL Tim Sheehy (R).

Sheehy is the party-endorsed candidate. He has support from Sen. Steve Daines (R-MT), chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, Gov. Greg Gianforte (R-MT), and 1st District Congressman and former US Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke (R-Whitefish).

Both men fare well against Sen. Jon Tester (D). Rep. Rosendale, who lost to Sen. Tester 50-47 percent in 2018, would lead this race 46-42 percent. Sheehy would hold a similar 46-43 percent edge over the senator.

Michigan: Ex-US Rep Files Senate Exploratory Committee — Former Congressman Peter Meijer, who was elected in 2018 but failed to win renomination for a second term in the 2020 Republican primary, has filed a US Senate exploratory committee with the Federal Election Commission. Meijer, however, came far short of saying he would enter the Senate race, only that he remains in a consideration phase.

Former Congressman Mike Rogers (R) is soon expected to enter the Senate race. Michigan Board of Education member Nikki Snyder is the only Republican elected official who has joined the Senate field. Rep. Elissa Slotkin (D-Lansing) leads a host of candidates for the Democratic nomination. Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D) is retiring after serving what will be four terms at the end of this Congress.

House

NY-3: Another Republican to Challenge Rep. Santos — The Security Traders Association CEO, Jim Toes, announced that he will join the growing Republican field who are challenging beleaguered Rep. George Santos (R-Long Island) for renomination. Toes becomes the eighth announced Republican candidate, but possibly the most accomplished. A total of six Democrats have declared their candidacies.

The FiveThirtyEight data organization rates NY-3 as D+4, while Dave’s Redistricting App calculates the partisan lean at 56.4D – 42.0R. President Joe Biden carried the district 54-45 percent. This is one of several New York US House seats that will be difficult for the Republicans to protect in the 2024 election.

NC-14: 2022 Nominee Likely to Return — Afghan War veteran and 2022 Republican congressional nominee Pat Harrigan (R) is likely to return for another attempt, though the Charlotte anchored 14th District will likely be radically different after the legislature redraws the North Carolina congressional map in the next few weeks.

The redraw will play to the Republicans favor, which likely means that freshman incumbent Rep. Jeff Jackson (D-Charlotte) will run for attorney general. This would be good news for Harrigan, but his more difficult election would be in the Republican primary particularly if state House Speaker Tim Moore (R-Cleveland County) draws the seat for himself.

Slotkin Posts Larger Lead in Senate Campaign; Alabama Redistricting Map Passes; Matos Challenged in Rhode Island; Maloy Challenged in Utah

By Jim Ellis — Tuesday, July 25, 2023

Senate

Michigan Rep. Elissa Slotkin (D-Lansing)

Michigan: Slotkin Posts Larger Lead — Mitchell Research conducted a new poll of the Michigan electorate (July 11-13; 639 likely Michigan voters; SMS text) and finds Rep. Elissa Slotkin (D-Lansing) recording a 44-38 percent lead over former Rep. Mike Rogers (R) and an even larger 41-28 percent advantage over ex-US Rep. Peter Meijer (R). Both are potential Senate candidates. The accuracy level of this poll could be questioned, however. The sample number of 639 is low for a purely electronic poll, and the all-text questionnaire did not accept any respondent who failed to answer all of the survey’s 22 questions.

House

Alabama: New House Redistricting Map Passes Legislature — On Friday, the Alabama legislature passed a new congressional map as directed, but the controversy appears far from over. The US Supreme Court decision that there could be another minority seat drawn on the Alabama map was addressed in the special session that Gov. Kay Ivey (R) called to comply with the SCOTUS ruling.

Assuming the governor signs the new legislation creating the map, the Democratic plaintiffs have already said they will object to the new plan. The initial challenge to this new map will return to the three judge panel who originally declared the Alabama map unconstitutional.

It will be up to the three Republican judges to determine if this plan meets the guidelines that the SCOTUS ruling outlined. We can expect detailed and possibly contentious arguments to occur when attorneys from both sides again appear before the judicial panel. The Alabama primary is being held concurrently with Super Tuesday, March 5, 2024, so expect the new lawsuit to be quickly filed.

RI-1: Matos’ Signatures Challenged — As last week closed, controversy arose in the special election to replace resigned Rhode Island Congressman David Cicilline (D). Lt. Gov. Sabina Matos, who polling suggests has opened a large lead over the field of 21 other Democrats, now may face a challenge over whether her required 750 petition signatures are all from legally registered voters.

Matos’ campaign spokesperson said they will review the signatures to ensure that she has met the legal requirement. If the challenge proves valid and Matos is disqualified, the race becomes wide open. The Democratic primary, the winning of which is tantamount to claiming the seat, is scheduled for Sept. 5.

UT-2: Lawsuit Filed Challenging Maloy’s Legitimacy — One of the special election Republican candidates who lost the Utah Republican Party’s 2nd District endorsing convention and did not file petition signatures to continue his candidacy, has now filed a lawsuit challenging the officially endorsed candidate, Celeste Maloy who is resigning Rep. Chris Stewart’s (R-Farmington) legal counsel.

Two weeks ago, objection to Maloy’s voter registration status arose since she last cast a ballot in Utah during the 2018 election. She moved to the Washington, DC area to work for Rep. Stewart, thus explaining her absence from the state. Lt. Gov. Deidre Henderson (R), who is the state’s chief elections officer, approved her petition, thus allowing her candidacy. Now, however, former candidate Quin Denning (R) is filing an official legal challenge to her status. He is claiming that Maloy reactivated her Utah voter registration at her sister’s house three days after filing her candidacy documents.

Former state Rep. Becky Edwards and ex-Republican National Committee chairman Bruce Hough have qualified via petition for the Sept. 5 special primary election. The Democrats have nominated state Sen. Kathleen Riebe (D-Cottonwood Heights). Rep. Stewart is scheduled to resign on Sept. 15.

Trump’s Numbers Under Indictment; House Battles in CA-45, MI-3, NM-2; Morrisey to Run for WVa Governor

By Jim Ellis — Friday, April 7, 2023

President

Former President Donald Trump appears in court with members of his legal team for an arraignment on Tuesday, April 4. (Andrew Kelly/Pool/Reuters)

Under Indictment: Trump’s Numbers — Though under indictment, former President Donald Trump sees his polling numbers continue to improve, this time in three states. His lead over Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, and others, has grown according to new surveys from Massachusetts and New Hampshire, while his deficit has tightened in Florida.

Clearly, looking at his flash polling numbers and post-indictment, multi-million dollar fundraising haul, there is no question that former President Trump’s political base is rising to the occasion. The question is, as this legal process will almost assuredly drag on for the foreseeable future, will he be politically sustained for the long run?

The early states next year will be critical for Trump. The court scheduled his next appearance for Dec. 4, which is just two months before the Feb. 5 Iowa Caucuses. At that point, perception could change.

House

CA-45: New Field Forming Against Rep. Steel — Harvard-educated attorney Aditya Pai, who moved to Orange County from India as a child when eight years old, announced that he will join the growing field to challenge two-term Rep. Michelle Steel (R-Orange County) in next March’s all-party jungle primary. Already declared are Garden Grove City Councilwoman Kim Nguyen and attorney Cheyenne Hunt. Jay Chen, the Community College Trustee who held Rep. Steel to a 52-48 percent re-election win in November, is also a potential candidate.

The FiveThirtyEight data organization rates CA-45 as D+5. Dave’s Redistricting App calculates a 52.2D – 45.9R partisan lean. Rep. Steel was recently added to the Democrats’ Frontline target list. We can expect another competitive campaign here next year.

MI-3: Another Attempt — Financial Advisor Michael Markey (R) intended to run for the House two years ago, but the company he hired to gather petition signatures failed to complete the job and his candidacy was rejected. Now, with a new incumbent in the redrawn 3rd District, freshman Rep. Hillary Scholten (D-Grand Rapids), Markey returns. This time, it is likely he will better handle the campaign mechanics.

Rep. Scholten won the 3rd District after GOP incumbent Peter Meijer was defeated for renomination. For his part, Meijer may run for the Senate. The 2021 redistricting map changed the 3rd CD from one that favored Republicans when then-Rep. Meijer was first elected (R+9 according to the FiveThirtyEight data organization), to its current D+3 configuration.

NM-2: Re-Match on Tap — Former New Mexico Congresswoman Yvette Herrell (R), who lost her re-election bid by a razor-thin 50.3 – 49.7 percent margin to freshman Rep. Gabe Vasquez (D-Las Cruces) is preparing for a re-match. Herrell has already filed a 2024 committee with the Federal Election Commission and has scheduled an April 10 kick-off event for her new campaign that will feature House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA).

The 2nd will yield another competitive congressional contest and promises to be a top Republican conversion target. The district was re-drawn with a 19-point swing from the previous version giving the Democrats a small advantage.

Governor

West Virginia: AG Morrisey to Run for Governor — As has been expected at least since a mid-March National Research, Inc. Republican primary poll found him leading the open GOP field, Attorney General Patrick Morrisey announced that he will enter the 2024 gubernatorial campaign.

In 2018, Morrisey held Sen. Joe Manchin (D) to a 49.6 – 46.3 percent re-election win. He has averaged 55.5 percent of the vote in his three victories as the state’s attorney general. In the 2018 Republican Senatorial primary, Morrisey defeated five opponents with 35 percent of the vote.

Currently, there are eight candidates in the gubernatorial race including Morrisey, Secretary of State Mac Warner, State Auditor J.B. McCuskey, state Delegate Moore Capito (R-Charleston), the son of Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R), and auto dealer Chris Miller, son of US Rep. Carol Miller (R-Huntington). Gov. Jim Justice (R), who is ineligible to seek a third term, is likely to run for the Senate.

Amash Forms Exploratory Committee

By Jim Ellis

Michigan Rep. Justin Amash

May 1, 2020 — It has been speculated upon virtually since the time that Michigan Rep. Justin Amash (L-Cascade Township/Grand Rapids) left the Republican Party that he would enter the presidential race, and now he has taken the first step toward that end.

Amash made several announcements Wednesday. First, he is indeed filing an exploratory committee with the Federal Election Commission to gauge his chances of becoming Libertarian Party’s presidential nominee. Second, he informed the Clerk of the House that he is no longer an Independent, but a member of the Libertarian Party. Third, he confirmed that he will not seek re-election to his 3rd District House seat.

Let’s look at the subjects in order.

It is not surprising that Amash is taking this step. The idea of him becoming the Libertarian presidential nominee was first raised when he became an Independent US House member early last July, and the congressman never expressly ruled out that he would eventually run for president.

Some argue that Amash being on the ticket as the Libertarian nominee could take rightward leaning independent votes away from President Trump and allow former vice president Joe Biden to slip past him in crucial states like Michigan. While the scenario might have some credence in an intensely close election, it matters little that Amash’s name is the one these particular voters would be choosing.

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