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Gov. Polis recall effort does not make ballot

The Daily Brew
Welcome to the Monday, September 9 Brew. Here’s what’s in store for you as you start your day:

  1. Colorado governor recall effort does not make ballot
  2. Join us for a look at the 2020 Almanac of American Politics
  3. Two more state Supreme Court appointments, 11 total this year

Effort to recall Colorado governor does not make ballot

A recall effort targeting Colorado Gov. Jared Polis did not make the ballot after recall supporters announced September 6 that they had not collected the required number of signatures. The group leading the effort—Dismiss Polis—needed to submit 631,266 signatures for the recall election to occur. They collected about 300,000, according to spokesperson Karen Kataline.

According to the petition, Dismiss Polis targeted Polis for recall because he signed legislation related to firearms, oil and gas, the national popular vote, and sex education during the 2019 legislative session.

After the recall effort ended, Polis stated: “After all that fuss, I was pleasantly surprised that they didn’t turn in a single signature on the recall. I hope the remaining misguided efforts against others see the same results as Tom Sullivan’s did before. Recalls should not be used for partisan gamesmanship.”

From 2003 to 2018, Ballotpedia tracked 17 gubernatorial recall efforts. During that time, two recalls made the ballot and one governor was successfully recalled. Former California Gov. Gray Davis (D) was recalled in 2003 and replaced by Arnold Schwarzenegger (R). In 2012, former Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) was retained in a recall election. The only other governor to be successfully recalled was former North Dakota Gov. Lynn Frazier (R) in 1921. Four gubernatorial recall efforts are currently underway in 2019.

Three Colorado state senators—Leroy Garcia (D), Brittany Pettersen (D), and Pete Lee (D)—are also facing official recall campaigns in 2019. Two state representatives—Rochelle Galindo (D) and Tom Sullivan (D)—were previously targeted for recall earlier this year. The recall targeting Galindo ended after she resigned in May 2019; while the recall targeting Sullivan ended in June 2019 after recall supporters abandoned the effort.

Colorado became a Democratic trifecta in 2019 after Democrats flipped the state Senate in the 2018 elections. Democrats control the state House 41-24 and the state Senate 19-16. Polis succeeded John Hickenlooper (D) as governor in 2019 after winning the 2018 election with 53.4% of the vote. 


Join us for a look at the 2020 Almanac of American Politics

The 2020 Almanac of American Politics is here with detailed profiles of each governor, state, member of Congress, and congressional district. Join me and Ballotpedia staff writer David Luchs—who was on our Almanac research team—for a briefing on the Almanac at 11 a.m. Central Time September 10.

The Almanac has been described by columnist George Will as “the bible of American politics” and by anchor Judy Woodruff as “the oxygen of the political world.” It contains profiles of all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and the five insular territories, as well as the president and vice president, all 50 state governors, all 100 members of the Senate, all 441 members of the House (including the six non-voting territorial delegates), and each U.S. House district. This version includes up-to-date information reflecting the results of the 2018 midterms.

In our briefing, we’ll be discussing the Almanac’s history, the scope of its profiles, essays, and data tables, and what’s new in the 2020 edition. We’ll also explore the research process and Ballotpedia’s role in assembling the Almanac—which is a great experience for our researchers. This is the third version that Ballotpedia has worked on with Almanac authors.

If you’re interested in ordering your own Almanac, we’ll be offering a discount code for 10% off at the end of the broadcast. A recording of the webinar will be available on our website for any readers unable to view the live broadcast.

Two more state Supreme Court appointments bring this year’s total to 11

Two state Supreme Court vacancies in Arizona and Virginia respectively were filled this week, bringing the total number of state Supreme Court seats filled this year to 11. There are 344 state Supreme Court justices nationwide. Of those judgeships, 165 are elected by voters, 12 are selected by state legislatures, and 167 are appointed.

In Arizona, Gov. Doug Ducey (R) appointed Bill Montgomery (R) to the Supreme Court on September 4. Montgomery replaces former Chief Justice Scott Bales, who retired on July 31. Montgomery was Ducey’s fifth appointment to the seven-member court.

In Virginia, Teresa Chafin joined the state Supreme Court this week to fill the vacancy created by Justice Elizabeth McClanahan’s retirement on September 1. In February 2019, the Virginia General Assembly unanimously approved Chafin to succeed McClanahan. Virginia is one of two states—along with South Carolina—that selects state Supreme Court justices through legislative election. 

In 2019, there have been 18 supreme court vacancies across 12 of the 29 states where replacement justices are appointed instead of elected. Of those 18 vacancies, 12 are in states where a Republican governor appoints the replacement. Five vacancies occurred in a state where a Democratic governor appoints the replacement, and one (Virginia) occurred in a state where a Republican-controlled legislature selects the replacement.

 



Mark Sanford launched Republican primary challenge to Trump

 

 

Ballotpedia's Daily Presidential News Briefing

September 9, 2019: Mark Sanford announced Sunday that he was running for president. Tom Steyer reached the polling threshold to qualify for the October primary debates.


There are 10 new candidates running since last week, including five Republicans. In total, 850 individuals are currently filed with the FEC to run for president.

Notable Quote of the Day

“But there’s a danger in running as a continuation of a previous administration, because in the past half-century of presidential elections, the change candidate has beaten the ‘familiar’ candidate almost every time.

Incumbent presidents are largely immune from this phenomenon. They get to enjoy the constant visibility and bully pulpit of the most powerful person in the world, and only sagging economies (Jimmy Carter, George H.W. Bush) or disastrous wars (Lyndon Johnson) seem to fell them in their bids for re-election. …

But whether it’s a former vice president or the runner-up in the previous election cycle’s primary, the candidate who is perceived as running for president because it’s ‘their turn’ tends to flame out against a fresher face.”

– Anthony L. Fisher, Business Insider

Democrats

  • WMUR released videos of the 19 Democratic candidates—all but Wayne Messam—who spoke at the New Hampshire Democratic Convention over the weekend. 
  • Eight candidates participated in a political ad on gun violence produced by an advocacy organization founded by former Rep. Gabby Giffords, Giffords’ Courage to Fight Gun Violence. The ad, which is part of a six-figure digital ad buy, features Joe BidenCory BookerPete ButtigiegKamala HarrisAmy KlobucharBeto O’RourkeBernie Sanders, and Elizabeth Warren.
  • The Michael Bennet campaign is holding a national headquarters opening celebration Tuesday in Lakewood, Colorado.
  • Bennet and John Delaney spoke at the Merrimack County Democrats annual picnic Sunday in New Hampshire
  • Booker discussed nuclear energy, gun licensing, and other campaign issues during his first visit to Maine Saturday.
  • Steve Bullock spoke about the obscurity gap in an interview on Fox News Saturday.
  • Julián Castro is holding a rally Monday in Houston, Texas.
  • Tulsi Gabbard discussed her opposition to impeachment in an interview on Full Court Press with Greta Van Susteren. She said, “I think it’s important for us to think about what is in the best interest of the country and the American people, and continuing to pursue impeachment is something that I think will only further to tear our country apart.”
  • GabbardTom Steyer, and Andrew Yang attended the AAPI Democratic Presidential Forum Sunday in Costa Mesa, California.
  • Harris released her criminal justice platform, which would end federal mandatory minimum sentences, the death penalty, and solitary confinement. It would also phase out for-profit prisons and cash bail.
  • BuzzFeed interviewed Wayne Messam’s former campaign staff members about payment and organizational issues in the campaign. The Messam campaign responded that these issues were the result of unauthorized actions by a consulting firm.
  • Sanders is hosting a campaign rally Monday at Civic Center Park in Denver, Colorado.
  • Joe Sestak spoke about climate change while campaigning in New Hampshire Sunday.
  • With the release of a Nevada poll from CBS News/YouGov, Steyer reached the polling threshold to qualify for the October primary debates. He is the 11th candidate to do so.
  • Marianne Williamson will host a meditation on peace in New Hampshire Monday.

Republicans

  • Republican state parties in South CarolinaNevada, and Kansas canceled their respective primaries and caucuses.
  • At the California Republican Party fall conventionDonald Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale said the Trump family was a dynasty and they would move the GOP “into a new party – one that will adapt to changing cultures.”
  • Mark Sanford announced Sunday that he was running for president. “I think we have to have a conversation about what it means to be a Republican,” he said, referencing the federal deficit and government spending.
  • In an interview on Real Time with Bill MaherJoe Walsh discussed his previous anti-Obama comments and contrasted himself with Trump.

General Election Updates

  • Gov. Janet Mills announced Friday that she would hold a ranked-choice voting bill passed by the Maine State Legislature until January. As a result, ranked-choice voting will be used in the presidential general election in Maine but not the primary elections.

What We’re Reading

Flashback: September 9, 2015

Antivirus software creator John McAfee launched an independent presidential campaign.

 



New Jersey court rules school district cannot pay salaries of union representatives

In a unanimous decision issued Aug. 21, a New Jersey appellate court ruled the Jersey City Board of Education cannot use public funds to pay the salaries of union representatives.

Who are the parties to the suit?
Plaintiffs Moshe Rozenblit and Won Kyu Rim reside within the Jersey City school district. They were represented by the Goldwater Institute. The defendants were the Jersey City Public Schools, the Jersey City Board of Education, and the Jersey City Education Association (the union representing the district’s teachers).

What was at issue?
The plaintiffs challenged a section of the collective bargaining agreement between the Jersey City Board of Education and the Jersey City Education Association that requires the board to pay the salaries of two teachers working full-time as union representatives. The plaintiffs specifically alleged that this section of the agreement violated Article VIII, Section 3, Paragraph 3 of the state constitution: “No donation of land or appropriation of money shall be made by the State or any county or municipal corporation to or for the use of any society, association, or corporation whatever.”

Meanwhile, the defendants held that the challenged provision was valid under Section 18A:30-7 of the New Jersey Statutes, which permits local boards of education to pay salaries in cases of absence not constituting sick leave. A lower state court had upheld this provision of the collective bargaining agreement, prompting the plaintiffs to appeal.

How did the court rule?
The panel was made up of Judges Jose L. Fuentes, Francis J. Vernoia, and Scott J. Moynihan. Writing for the court, Fuentes said: “Mindful of the principles of statutory construction, we conclude that N.J.S.A. 18A:30-7 does not empower the Board in this case to continue to pay the salaries and benefits of the president of the JCEA and his or her designee, while they devote their entire work-time to the business and affairs of the union.” The court declined to address the constitutional arguments made by the plaintiffs.

What are the responses?

  • Goldwater Institute Director of National Litigation Jon Riches said, “Today is a great day for New Jersey taxpayers, because this puts an end to an egregious form of government cronyism. Today’s decision will help ensure that private unions no longer benefit from public dollars.”
  • Jersey City Board of Education President Sudhan Thomas said, “We are intrigued by the ruling which only targets teacher’s unions which constitutes the single largest group of public employees while allowing other non-school staff public employee unions to continue the current release arrangement paid for by tax dollars.”

What comes next?
According to Hudson County View, “sources close to JCEA said that the union plans to fight the appellate court decision at this time.” The case name and number are Rozenblit v. Lyles, A-1611-17T1.

The big picture

Number of relevant bills by state

We are currently tracking 102 pieces of legislation dealing with public-sector employee union policy. On the map below, a darker shade of green indicates a greater number of relevant bills. Click here for a complete list of all the bills we’re tracking.

Union Station map September 6, 2019.png

Number of relevant bills by current legislative status

Union Station status chart September 6, 2019.png

Number of relevant bills by partisan status of sponsor(s)

Union Station partisan chart September 6, 2019.png

Recent legislative actions

Below is a complete list of legislative actions taken since our last issue. Bills are listed in alphabetical order, first by state then by bill number.

  • California AB314: This bill would require employers to grant employees paid time for certain union activities.
    • Senate Appropriations Committee hearing scheduled Aug. 30.


Looking ahead to two U.S. House special elections in NC

The Daily Brew
Welcome to the Friday, September 6, Brew. Here’s what’s in store for you as you start your day:

  1. Voters to decide congressional special elections Tuesday in NC-3 and NC-9 
  2. Third Democratic primary debate takes place September 12
  3. What’s the Tea?

Voters to decide congressional special elections Tuesday in NC-3 and NC-9

Voters in two North Carolina districts—the 3rd and 9th Congressional Districts—will elect new representatives in special elections on September 10. Early voting in both districts began August 21 and was scheduled to end today—September 6—although some polling locations were forced to close due to Hurricane Dorian. Here’s a look at each race and the early voting data so far. 

North Carolina’s 9th 

State Sen. Dan Bishop (R), Dan McCready (D), Jeff Scott (L), and Allen Smith (G) are running in the special election for North Carolina’s 9th District in the south-central part of the state. The election was called after the state board of elections did not certify the results from the 2018 race following an investigation into allegations of absentee ballot fraud.

As of September 3—the 14th day of the 17-day early voting period—54,372 ballots had been accepted, including mail-in absentee and in-person early ballots. That’s roughly half the number that had been accepted on the 14th day of early voting during the November 2018 election. In 2018, a total of 156,935 absentee and early ballots were counted. 

On the campaign trail, Bishop has invoked his record in the state legislature, including helping pass a constitutional amendment requiring voter ID in 2018, lowering income taxes, and opposing sanctuary cities. McCready has campaigned on his plan to lower prescription drug prices and says he’d seek bipartisan legislation on healthcare, education, and taxes in the House. 

In 2018, Republican nominee Mark Harris led McCready—who was also the Democratic nominee in that race—by 905 votes based on the unofficial results. Three polls ahead of the special election have shown Bishop and McCready within the margin of error of each other. Donald Trump (R) won the district by 12 percentage points in the 2016 presidential election.

The special election has featured endorsements from prominent national figures and $8 million in ad spending from satellite groups—including $2.6 million by the National Republican Congressional Committee and $1.2 million by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. Trump and Vice President Mike Pence (R) have campaigned for Bishop in the state, and former Vice President Joe Biden (D) endorsed McCready.

North Carolina’s 3rd

State Rep. Greg Murphy (R), Allen Thomas (D), Tim Harris (L), and Greg Holt (Constitution Party) are running in the special election for North Carolina’s 3rd District in the northeastern part of the state. The special election was called after former incumbent Rep. Walter Jones (R) died February 10. Jones was first elected to Congress in 1994.

There were 14,349 ballots cast as of August 28, including mail-in absentee and in-person early ballots. In the November 2018 uncontested election for the same seat, 94,458? early and absentee ballots were counted. 

Murphy—who defeated Joan Perry in the July 9 Republican primary runoff—has campaigned on his support of President Trump and highlighted his work as a physician and state legislator. Thomas has emphasized economic development, small-town revitalization, and improving access to healthcare in his campaign. 

According to campaign finance reports through August 21, Murphy raised $902,000 and spent $803,000, and Thomas raised $565,000 and spent $476,000. In the 2016 presidential election, Trump won the district with 61% of the vote.

 

Third Democratic primary debate takes place September 12 

The third Democratic presidential primary debate takes place September 12 in Houston. The following 10 candidates will participate:

•    Joe Biden
•    Cory Booker
•    Pete Buttigieg
•    Julián Castro
•    Kamala Harris
•    Amy Klobuchar
•    Beto O’Rourke
•    Bernie Sanders
•    Elizabeth Warren
•    Andrew Yang

ABC News and Univision are hosting the debate at Texas Southern University. Linsey Davis, David Muir, Jorge Ramos, and George Stephanopoulos will moderate the event. Candidates will have one minute and 15 seconds to answer questions and 45 seconds for rebuttals. 

The 10 Democratic candidates who did not qualify for this debate can still qualify for the next one using the same qualifying criteria. The Democratic National Committee announced this week that the fourth primary debate will take place in Ohio on October 15 and 16.

Candidates must have received donations from at least 130,000 unique donors with a minimum of 400 unique donors per state in at least 20 states. The candidate must also receive 2% support or more in four national or early state polls—Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina, and/or Nevada. 

Tulsi Gabbard, Tom Steyer, and Marianne Williamson are the closest to qualifying for the October debate, having already passed the fundraising threshold of 130,000 unique donors. Steyer needs one more eligible poll showing 2% support, Gabbard two, and Williamson three.

The last round of debates was held on July 30 and 31 in Detroit. Since then, Mike Gravel, John Hickenlooper, Jay Inslee, Seth Moulton, and Kirsten Gillibrand have ended their campaigns for president.

What's the tea?

What’s the Tea?

As our story above noted, several counties in North Carolina canceled early voting this week for the two congressional special elections due to evacuations associated with Hurricane Dorian. This got me thinking about how our readers feel about early voting.

How do you feel about early or no-excuse absentee voting where you live?


 

 



Ballotpedia’s Weekly Presidential News Briefing: August 31-September 6, 2019

 Ballotpedia's Weekly Presidential News Briefing

Every weekday, Ballotpedia tracks the events that matter in the 2020 presidential election. 

Now, we’re bringing you the highlights from our daily briefings in a weekly format so you can stay up-to-date on the 2020 election with one weekly email.   

Here’s the latest from the campaign trail.

Candidates by the numbers

Eight new candidates filed with the FEC since last week, including two Democrats, one Libertarian, and one Green. In total, 840 individuals are currently filed with the FEC to run for president.

Notable Quote of the Week

“While the ability to generate big crowds is certainly nice — it may signal enthusiasm among highly engaged voters or produce favorable media coverage — you should ignore any candidate, surrogate or media outlet that tells you that large crowd sizes mean that the polls are underestimating a candidate’s support. It’s just spin; polls are much more accurate at forecasting elections than crowd-size estimates, which don’t tell us all that much.

For every example like 2008, when then-Sen. Barack Obama’s huge crowds seemed to reflect real enthusiasm for his campaign, there is one like 2012, when former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney won his primary despite drawing noticeably small crowds on the campaign trail. Or take what happened in 2016. Despite a lot of hay being made about crowd sizes during the 2016 campaign, that cycle also was an argument against crowd sizes being predictive. Although now-President Trump did often draw large crowds at his primary rallies, Hillary Clinton reportedly beat him out for largest crowd of the 2016 campaign, 40,000 to 30,000. And at roughly this point in the Democratic primary in 2016, Sen. Bernie Sanders was outdrawing Clinton!”

 – Nathaniel Rakich, FiveThirtyEight

Week in Review

Where Schultz and Sanford stand on 2020 runs

Howard Schultz announced Friday that he would not run for president as an independent.

“My belief in the need to reform our two-party system has not wavered, but I have concluded that an independent campaign for the White House is not how I can best serve our country at this time,” he wrote in a statement.

Schultz added that the money he planned to spend on his campaign—a figure he previously put at $100 million—would be used “to invest in people, organizations and ideas that promote honesty, civility and results in our politics, and that move the country beyond two-party gridlock.”

Mark Sanford, who was expected to announce his presidential decision around Labor Day, deferred any statement until after Hurricane Dorian has passed.

He said in an interview with Fox News, “It would be something of a David and Goliath story. I mean it’s impossible at many different levels. It’d be a very steep climb. But you know that going in.”

2020 Democrats talk climate change for 7 hours

Ten candidates participated in a climate change town hall event spanning seven hours on CNN Wednesday evening: Joe BidenCory BookerPete ButtigiegJulián CastroKamala HarrisAmy KlobucharBeto O’RourkeBernie SandersElizabeth Warren, and Andrew Yang.

Most issued new climate change proposals in advance: 

  • Booker released a $3 trillion climate change platform, which would include investments to advance environmental justice, a transition to a carbon-neutral economy by no later than 2045, the elimination of fossil fuel subsidies, and a $400 billion investment to create a clean energy workforce.
  • Buttigieg proposed three pillars in his $1.1 trillion climate change proposal: building a clean economy, investing in disaster relief and prevention, and promoting America’s international role in combating climate change.
  • Castro wrote in his “People and Planet First” environmental plan, “Together, we will direct $10 trillion in federal, state, local, and private investments over the next decade to create ten million good paying jobs, transition away from fossil fuels, build a 100 percent clean-energy economy, and lead the world in the 21st century.”
  • Harris’ $10 trillion climate plan included promoting environmental justice, ending subsidies for the fossil fuel industry, implementing a progressive fee on carbon pollution, and creating a clean energy economy by 2045.
  • Klobuchar’s climate plan included the goals of 100% net zero emissions by 2050, participating in the Paris Climate Agreement, and restoring the Clean Power Plan. 
  • Warren announced that she was endorsing and adopting Jay Inslee’s climate plan. Her climate proposal would also commit an additional $1 trillion over 10 years to subsidize the transition to a clean energy economy.

Mark your calendars for the fall debates

The third Democratic primary debate is Thursday, Sept. 12. Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren will share the debate stage for the first time, along with Cory BookerPete ButtigiegJulián CastroKamala HarrisAmy KlobucharBeto O’RourkeBernie Sanders, and Andrew Yang.

The Democratic National also announced that the fourth Democratic presidential primary debate will be held Oct. 15-16, 2019, in Ohio.

Since the criteria for the third and fourth debate are the same, the September debaters have already qualified.

Among the rest of the Democratic field, Tulsi GabbardTom Steyer, and Marianne Williamson are the  closest to qualifying, having already passed the fundraising threshold of 130,000 unique donors. Steyer needs one more eligible poll showing 2 percent support, Gabbard two, and Williamson three by Oct. 1.

Bill de Blasio said he could drop out of the presidential race if he did not qualify for the fourth debate.

AZ, KS, NV, and SC Republican primaries may be canceled

The Republican parties in ArizonaKansasNevada, and  South Carolina are expected to cancel their presidential primaries this weekend.

Pro-cancellation party members, including Donald Trump campaign officials, say that it’s not uncommon when an incumbent president is seeking reelection and that it reduces costs.

Joe Walsh responded, “It’s wrong, the RNC should be ashamed of itself, and I think it does show that Trump is afraid of a serious primary challenge because he knows his support is very soft.”

Bill Weld also criticized the planned cancellations, saying, “We don’t elect presidents by acclamation in America. Donald Trump is doing his best to make the Republican Party his own personal club. Republicans deserve better.”

Want more? Find the daily details here:

Poll Spotlight

Staff Spotlight

Each Friday, we highlight a presidential candidate’s key campaign staffer.

Erin Wilson is a Democratic staffer with extensive experience in Pennsylvania politics. Wilson graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a degree in political science and government in 2005.

Previous campaign work:

  • 2016 Hillary Clinton presidential campaign, Pennsylvania deputy state director
  • 2008 Bob Roggio (D-Penn.) U.S. House campaign, senior advisor
  • 2006 Bob Casey (D-Penn.) U.S. Senate campaign, deputy political director
  • 2004 Joe Hoeffel (D-Penn.) U.S. Senate campaign, political coordinator

Other experience:

  • 2017-2019: Office of Sen. Bob Casey, state director
  • 2014-2016: Democratic National Committee, Northeast political director
  • 2007-2014: Office of Sen. Bob Casey
    • 2011-2014: Deputy state director
    • 2009-2011: Director of outreach and special projects
    • 2007-2009: Regional representative
  • 2005-2006: Office of Gov. Rod Blagojevich (D-Ill.), assistant to the first lady
  • 2002-2004: Rock the Vote, Philadelphia street team leader

What We’re Reading

Flashback: September 3-6, 2015

  • September 3, 2015: Donald Trump signed a pledge to support the eventual Republican nominee. Jeb Bush said he would support Trump if he became the Republican nominee. 
  • September 4, 2015: Hillary Clinton apologized for her private email server use in her third nationally televised interview as a 2016 presidential candidate.
  • September 5, 2015: NBC News reported on the Draft Biden initiative’s efforts in Iowa.
  • September 6, 2015: After reaching a $1 million crowdfunding goal, Harvard Law professor Larry Lessig said that he was running for president.

Trivia

Which of the following presidential candidates did not carry any state by a margin larger than 90%?

  1. Andrew Jackson→
  2. Woodrow Wilson→
  3. Franklin D. Roosevelt→
  4. Dwight Eisenhower→


Schultz decides against independent 2020 run

 

 

Ballotpedia's Daily Presidential News BriefingSeptember 6, 2019: Howard Schultz announced Friday that he would not run for president. South Carolina, Nevada, Arizona, and Kansas are expected to cancel their presidential primaries.

Each Friday, we’ll highlight a presidential candidate’s key campaign staffer.

Daily Presidential News Briefing - Staffer Spotlight - Erin Wilson

Erin Wilson is a Democratic staffer with extensive experience in Pennsylvania politics. Wilson graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a degree in political science and government in 2005.

Previous campaign work:

  • 2016 Hillary Clinton presidential campaign, Pennsylvania deputy state director
  • 2008 Bob Roggio (D-Penn.) U.S. House campaign, senior advisor
  • 2006 Bob Casey (D-Penn.) U.S. Senate campaign, deputy political director
  • 2004 Joe Hoeffel (D-Penn.) U.S. Senate campaign, political coordinator

Other experience:

  • 2017-2019: Office of Sen. Bob Casey, state director
  • 2014-2016: Democratic National Committee, Northeast political director
  • 2007-2014: Office of Sen. Bob Casey
    • 2011-2014: Deputy state director
    • 2009-2011: Director of outreach and special projects
    • 2007-2009: Regional representative
  • 2005-2006: Office of Gov. Rod Blagojevich (D-Ill.), assistant to the first lady
  • 2002-2004: Rock the Vote, Philadelphia street team leader

??

Notable Quote of the Day

“While the ability to generate big crowds is certainly nice — it may signal enthusiasm among highly engaged voters or produce favorable media coverage — you should ignore any candidate, surrogate or media outlet that tells you that large crowd sizes mean that the polls are underestimating a candidate’s support. It’s just spin; polls are much more accurate at forecasting elections than crowd-size estimates, which don’t tell us all that much.

For every example like 2008, when then-Sen. Barack Obama’s huge crowds seemed to reflect real enthusiasm for his campaign, there is one like 2012, when former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney won his primary despite drawing noticeably small crowds on the campaign trail. Or take what happened in 2016. Despite a lot of hay being made about crowd sizes during the 2016 campaign, that cycle also was an argument against crowd sizes being predictive. Although now-President Trump did often draw large crowds at his primary rallies, Hillary Clinton reportedly beat him out for largest crowd of the 2016 campaign, 40,000 to 30,000. And at roughly this point in the Democratic primary in 2016, Sen. Bernie Sanders was outdrawing Clinton!”

 – Nathaniel Rakich, FiveThirtyEight

Democrats

  • Nineteen Democratic candidates—all but Wayne Messam—are expected to appear at the New Hampshire Democratic Convention over the weekend. 
  • The Human Rights Campaign Foundation will host a presidential town hall on CNN about LGBT issues on Oct. 10. Joe BidenPete ButtigiegJulián CastroKamala HarrisAmy Klobuchar, and Elizabeth Warren are set to attend. Other presidential candidates may join the event in the coming weeks.
  • Michael Bennet will campaign in Massachusetts Friday and New Hampshire Saturday.
  • Biden will make his first visit to Alabama as a presidential candidate on Sunday. Politico profiled his southern state strategy and the importance of South Carolina to his campaign.
  • In an interview on Tucker Carlson TonightBill de Blasio discussed his mayoral experience, automation, and gun buyback programs.
  • BuzzFeed News profiled Cory Booker in an article titled, “Will Cory Booker’s America Rise?”
  • Buttigieg spoke about Afghanistan, his Episcopalian faith, and climate change on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert Thursday night. Buttigieg made his first television ad buy of the campaign, spending $87,000 in Iowa markets.
  • John Delaney issued his digital privacy and technology platform on Thursday, which includes federal legislation modeled after the California Consumer Privacy Act, protections for consumers who opt out of data collection, and a requirement that companies obtain informed consent before recording and storing private conversations through communication devices. 
  • Tulsi Gabbard spoke at the “Politics & Eggs” series in New Hampshire on Thursday. She will remain in the state through Saturday.
  • Bernie Sanders will speak at Iowa State University Sunday as part of his college tailgate tour.
  • Joe Sestak discussed his campaign strategy in an interview on CBS News Thursday.
  • In an interview with CNBC, Tom Steyer discussed why he did not believe his wealth should disqualify him in the Democratic primary.
  • Andrew Yang said he would not run as a third-party candidate if he lost the Democratic nomination because it would increase Trump’s chances of winning.

Republicans

  • Donald Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale will headline the California Republican Convention.
  • Joe Walsh responded to reports that Republican parties in South Carolina, Nevada, Arizona, and Kansas were expected to cancel their presidential primaries. He said, “It’s wrong, the RNC should be ashamed of itself, and I think it does show that Trump is afraid of a serious primary challenge because he knows his support is very soft.”
  • Bill Weld also criticized the planned cancellations, saying, “We don’t elect presidents by acclamation in America. Donald Trump is doing his best to make the Republican Party his own personal club. Republicans deserve better.”
  • South Carolina GOP Chairman Drew McKissick defended the plan, saying, “As a general rule, when either party has an incumbent president in the White House, there’s no rationale to hold a primary.”

On the Cusp: Tracking Potential Candidates

  • Howard Schultz announced Friday that he would not run for president. “My belief in the need to reform our two-party system has not wavered, but I have concluded that an independent campaign for the White House is not how I can best serve our country at this time,” he wrote in a statement.

What We’re Reading

Flashback: September 6, 2015

After reaching a $1 million crowdfunding goal, Harvard Law professor Larry Lessig said that he was running for president.

 



De Blasio could drop out by Oct. 1 if he does not qualify for fourth debate

 

Ballotpedia's Daily Presidential News Briefing

September 5, 2019: Bill de Blasio said he could drop out of the presidential race by Oct. 1. Michael Bennet released an education plan focused on primary and secondary education.


 Daily Presidential News Briefing - Morning Consult (Early States) August 26 - September 1, 2019
Daily Presidential News Briefing - Morning Consult (National) August 26 - September 1, 2019

Notable Quotes of the Day

“Yet it’s been an uphill battle for the progressive judicial groups pressing candidates to talk about the courts. In five hours of debate between 2020 Democratic candidates in July, for example, judicial nominations weren’t brought up once. … No Democratic candidate has released a list of judges they would consider nominating to the Supreme Court the way Trump did in 2016.”

– Tessa Berenson, TIME

“They clearly need to step up. Too often the Democrats have ceded to the right the federal courts, allowing them to energize their base. Judges make decisions that affect every aspect of our life, and by ignoring this topic, they do so at their peril, because Americans do care.”

– Nan Aron, president of Alliance for Justice Action Campaign

Democrats

  • Michael Bennet issued an education policy proposal focused on primary and secondary education that would expand home visits, child nutrition programs, exposure to vocabulary, the Child Tax Credit, and universal preschool.

  • Joe Biden appeared on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert Wednesday night and will remain in New York for two fundraisers on Thursday.

  • Bill de Blasio said he could drop out of the presidential race if he did not qualify for the fourth primary debate by Oct. 1.

  • Cory Booker will campaign Friday in Portland, Maine.

  • Steve Bullock called for the creation of an Office of Rural Affairs in his rural policy proposal released Wednesday. Bullock also said he would end the trade war, launch rural opportunity zones, address infrastructure issues, and expand the Conservation Reserve Program.

  • Pete Buttigieg will attend a fundraiser Friday in Greenwich, Connecticut.

  • John Delaney tweeted a video explaining his plan to reach net-zero carbon emissions.

  • The Atlantic profiled Tulsi Gabbard in an article titled, “Tulsi Gabbard, the Mystery Candidate.”

  • Kamala Harris will campaign in New Hampshire Friday.

  • Amy Klobuchar will speak about the economy at Manchester Community College Friday as part of a presidential forum series.

  • Wayne Messam appeared in a news report about how Miramar responded to Hurricane Dorian.

  • Beto O’Rourke will campaign in Massachusetts Thursday with a stop at Tufts University.

  • Tim Ryan will speak at a town hall Friday in New Hampshire in partnership with NARAL.

  • In an appearance on The ViewBernie Sanders discussed the difference between his 2016 and 2020 presidential campaigns.

  • Tom Steyer will speak at the University of New Hampshire’s new 2020 presidential primary series on Friday.

  • In an interview on NPR Politics PodcastElizabeth Warren spoke about student loan debt, the filibuster, and gun safety legislation.

  • Marianne Williamson will campaign in New Hampshire Friday.

  • Andrew Yang appeared on CBS This Morning, where he discussed how he could appeal to Trump voters.

Republicans

  • Donald Trump campaign officials said Trump could hold rallies in Minnesota, New Mexico, Colorado, and Nevada by the end of the year.

  • New York Magazine interviewed Joe Walsh about his presidential campaign, racism, Islam, and the media.

Flashback: September 5, 2015

NBC News reported on the Draft Biden initiative’s efforts in Iowa.

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The Daily Brew: North Carolina must redraw state legislative maps

Today’s Brew highlights a North Carolina Superior Court decision rejecting the state’s legislative districts + a roundup of local election news  
 The Daily Brew

Welcome to the Thursday, September 5, Brew. Here’s what’s in store for you as you start your day:

  1. North Carolina court strikes down state’s legislative maps as partisan gerrymander
  2. Local Roundup
  3. Texas governor appoints former appeals court judge to state supreme court

North Carolina court strikes down state’s legislative maps as partisan gerrymander

You may have heard that a North Carolina court struck down the state’s legislative districts September 3 as an impermissible partisan gerrymander under the state constitution. Here’s a brief summary of the case along with the next steps. 

A group of plaintiffs—including Common Cause and the Democratic Party of North Carolina—filed suit against the state legislative district map adopted by the general assembly in 2017. This redistricting plan was a remedial map used after certain districts were deemed to be unconstitutional racial gerrymanders in 2016 by a federal district court. The lawsuit alleged that the state legislative district map infringed upon the rights to equal protection, free speech, association, and free elections guaranteed by the state constitution. 

A three-judge panel of state superior court judges–Paul Ridgeway, Joseph Crosswhite, and Alma Hinton–ruled unanimously in favor of the plaintiffs. In their ruling, the judges wrote, “[The] 2017 Enacted Maps, as drawn, do not permit voters to freely choose their representative, but rather representatives are choosing voters based upon sophisticated partisan sorting. It is not the free will of the people that is fairly ascertained through extreme partisan gerrymandering. Rather, it is the carefully crafted will of the map drawer that predominates.”

Senate Majority Leader Phil Berger (R) announced that state Republicans would not appeal the decision. In a statement, he said, “We disagree with the court’s ruling as it contradicts the Constitution and binding legal precedent, but we intend to respect the court’s decision and finally put this divisive battle behind us.”

North Carolina Superior Court justices are elected to eight-year terms. From 1998 through 2016, these elections were nonpartisan; however, they became partisan elections starting in 2018. Ridgeway, Crosswhite, and Hinton were each last elected unopposed in 2014, 2016, and 2012, respectively.

The court ordered state lawmakers to draft remedial maps by September 18 for use in the 2020 election cycle. Should lawmakers fail to adopt remedial maps, the court will appoint a referee to develop and recommend remedial maps to the court. All 50 seats in the state Senate and 120 seats in the state House are up for election in 2020. The filing deadline for state legislative seats is December 20, 2019. The primary is scheduled for March 3, 2020.

North Carolina currently has divided government. Democrat Roy Cooper was elected governor in 2016 and is running for re-election in 2020. Republicans control both chambers of the state legislature—a 29-21 majority in the state Senate and a 65-55 majority in the state House. 

The latest edition of The Ballot Bulletin—our free monthly newsletter covering federal, state, and local election policy—comes out next week. Click here to instantly subscribe and get full coverage of this story.

Learn more

        

 

Local Roundup 

At Ballotpedia, we provide election coverage of all officeholders in the nation’s 100 largest cities—including mayors, city council members, and other municipal officers like city clerk and treasurer. We also cover every election on the ballot in these cities, such as county officials, local ballot measures, and special districts. There are more than 585,000 elected officials nationwide, and most elections happen at the hyper-local level. 

Here’s a quick summary of the local news we’re covering this week:

Middleton, Idaho→

Recall efforts were unsuccessful in removing three members of the Middleton School District board of trustees in Middleton, Idaho, at elections held August 27. The recall effort against one board member did not succeed because the number of votes in favor of recall was not higher than the number of votes the board member received in her last election in 2017. The recalls against two other board members were defeated by margins of five and six votes, respectively. All three board members retained their seats. 

Charlotte, North Carolina→

Charlotte is holding partisan primaries for mayor and 10 of the 11 seats on its city council September 10. Mayor Vi Lyles is running for her second two-year term and faces four Democratic challengers. If no candidate receives more than 30% in the primary, a runoff will be held October 8. The Democratic nominee will face the sole Republican mayoral candidate—David Michael Rice—in the November 5 general election. Some Charlotte-area voters are in North Carolina’s 9th Congressional District, which is also holding a special election on September 10. 

Toledo, Ohio→

Toledo is holding nonpartisan primaries for five city council seats September 10 in districts where three or more candidates are running. There is no primary in the sixth district since there are only two candidates. The top two finishers in each race—regardless of party—will advance to the general election November 5. Two municipal court judges and the clerk of the municipal court are also up for election. The incumbents for all three positions are running for re-election and no other candidates filed to run against them.

Four of the six districts holding elections in 2019 feature incumbent council members running for re-election. The Toledo City Council has 12 members—six elected at large and one from each of six districts. The at-large council members—along with the mayor—are up for election in 2021.

Texas governor appoints former appeals court judge to state supreme court

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) appointed Jane Bland on August 26 to a seat on the Texas Supreme Court to fill the vacancy created when Jeff Brown was confirmed to a federal district judgeship in July. She previously served as a Texas appeals court judge from 2003 to 2018. Bland—who ran as a Republican— was defeated for re-election by Gordon Goodman (D) in 2018. 

The Texas Supreme Court is comprised of nine justices that serve six-year terms elected in partisan elections. If a vacancy occurs, the governor appoints a replacement until the next general election. 

If the legislature is in session when a supreme court appointment is made, the Texas Senate must confirm the appointee. Since the legislature was not in session, the Senate did not have to confirm Bland’s appointment. She must stand for re-election in 2020 to remain on the court.

Four current Texas Supreme Court justices were originally appointed by former Gov. Rick Perry (R) and three were initially appointed by Gov. Abbott. The other two justices—both Republicans—were initially chosen by voters in partisan elections.

There have been 18 state supreme court vacancies in 2019 in 12 of the 29 states where replacement justices are appointed instead of elected. Thirteen of the vacancies were caused by retirements. Two former justices took jobs in the private sector. One vacancy occurred when a justice was elevated to chief justice of the court, and two others occurred when the justices were confirmed to federal judicial positions.

Learn more→

 



2020 Dems release clean energy plans before CNN town hall

 

Ballotpedia's Daily Presidential News Briefing

September 4, 2019: Several 2020 Democrats have released climate change plans ahead of Wednesday night’s CNN town hall on climate change. The fourth Democratic primary debate is set for Oct. 15-16.

 

 

Notable Quotes of the Day

“Harris is trying to run in a lane very similar to what Rubio tried to do in 2016. They’re both new faces, running as next-generation candidates against candidates that in many ways represent the past. They came into the campaign with ideological credentials but a message that would play well in the general.”

It’s a good strategy for coming in second. If you’re acceptable to everyone you’re not necessarily loved by anyone.”

– Alex Conant, communications director for 2016 Rubio presidential campaign

“As the field is narrowing, this next debate will have fewer Democrats on the stage. Kids are back to school. Moms and dads are back from vacations. They’re starting to pay attention more here, as well. I do think there’s still time for Kamala to move forward. I think she’s a very polished politician, a good elected official, someone with a strong background, and she’ll make her case. I wouldn’t just count her out entirely yet.

 – Joe Crowley, former Democratic House Caucus chairman

Democrats

  • The fourth Democratic presidential primary debate is scheduled for Oct. 15-16, 2019, in Ohio.

  • Ten candidates will participate in a climate change town hall event spanning seven hours on CNN Wednesday evening: Joe BidenCory BookerPete ButtigiegJulián CastroKamala HarrisAmy KlobucharBeto O’RourkeBernie SandersElizabeth Warren, and Andrew Yang.

  • Michael Bennet will speak at an education town hall on Thursday in Des Moines, Iowa.

  • Bill de Blasio launched the Office for the Prevention of Hate Crimes in New York City Tuesday, naming Deborah Lauter its executive director.

  • Booker issued his $3 trillion climate change platform, which would include investments to advance environmental justice, a transition to a carbon-neutral economy by no later than 2045, the elimination of fossil fuel subsidies, and a $400 billion investment to create a clean energy workforce.

  • Steve Bullock will appear on The Daily Show Thursday night.

  • Buttigieg proposed three pillars in his $1.1 trillion climate change proposal Wednesday morning: building a clean economy, investing in disaster relief and prevention, and promoting America’s international role in combating climate change.

  • Julián Castro released his “People and Planet First” environmental plan. “Together, we will direct $10 trillion in federal, state, local, and private investments over the next decade to create ten million good paying jobs, transition away from fossil fuels, build a 100 percent clean-energy economy, and lead the world in the 21st century,” he wrote in a Medium post introducing the plan.

  • Tulsi Gabbard campaigned in Dubuque and Waterloo Tuesday. She said she would remain in the race through the Iowa caucuses.

  • Harris released her $10 trillion climate plan, which includes promoting environmental justice, ending subsidies for the fossil fuel industry, implementing a progressive fee on carbon pollution, and creating a clean energy economy by 2045.

  • Amy Klobuchar finished second in her home state’s straw poll conducted at the Minnesota State Fair with 16 percent support. Warren topped the field with 38 percent support.

  • Wayne Messam tweeted about local disaster relief efforts for the Bahamas. 

  • Tim Ryan is finishing a three-day tour of South Carolina Thursday.

  • Joe Sestak is speaking at the Iowa Caucus Consortium’s candidate forum series Wednesday, along with several other stops in the state.

  • Tom Steyer held a climate change town hall Tuesday in Oakland.

  • Warren announced Tuesday that she was endorsing and adopting Jay Inslee’s climate plan and would commit an additional $1 trillion over 10 years to subsidize the transition to a clean energy economy.

  • Marianne Williamson is speaking at the Las Vegas Enlightenment Center Wednesday.

Republicans

  • Joe Walsh discussed his presidential campaign, Trump’s potential impact on other 2020 elections, and the state of conservative media on John Ziegler’s Individual 1 podcast.

Flashback: September 4, 2019

Hillary Clinton apologized for her private email server use in her third nationally televised interview as a 2016 presidential candidate.

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Klobuchar releases climate plan

 Ballotpedia's Daily Presidential News Briefing

September 3, 2019: Amy Klobuchar released a climate plan. Seven Democratic candidates attended Labor Day picnics in Iowa and Illinois.

Eight new candidates filed with the FEC since last week, including two Democrats, one Libertarian, and one Green. In total, 840 individuals are currently filed with the FEC to run for president.

Which of the following presidential candidates did not carry any state by a margin larger than 90%?

Notable Quote of the Day

“[S]ince no incumbent president has been denied his party’s nomination for re-election since 1852, assessing the merits of a president’s primary opponent is a subjective venture. It is, however, clear that any serious candidate challenging a sitting president position themselves as ideologically more doctrinaire than the incumbent. Ronald Reagan’s strike at Gerald Ford in 1976, Ted Kennedy’s 1980 bid against Jimmy Carter, Pat Buchanan’s 1992 challenge to George H.W. Bush all followed this model. And that explains why former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld’s primary challenge has generated almost no traction, whereas former Reps. Joe Walsh and former South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford might do so.”

 – Noah Rothman, associate editor of Commentary magazine

Democrats

  • Michael BennetJoe BidenSteve BullockPete Buttigieg, and Amy Klobuchar attended the Hawkeye Area Labor Council Labor Day Picnic in Iowa. Bennet, Klobuchar, Tulsi Gabbard, and Marianne Williamson attended the Salute To Labor Chicken Fry Picnic held by the Rock Island County Democratic Party in Illinois.
  • Joe Biden said he “wasn’t trying to mislead anybody” in response to a Washington Post piece that said the details of a story he told on the campaign trail about a Navy captain who refused a Silver Star medal were not accurate. Biden said, “[T]he story was that he refused the medal because the fella he tried to save — and risked his life saving — died. That’s the beginning, middle and end. The rest of you guys can take it and do what you want with it.”
  • Michael Bennet told a crowd in Aspen, Colorado, Friday that he would remain in the race after not qualifying for the third primary debate.
  • Bill de Blasio appeared on WMUR’s “Conversation with the Candidate” series in New Hampshire.
  • Cory Booker published a piece in Time magazine titled, “A Waitress I Knew Made $2.13 an Hour. I Wish She Lived to Get a Fair Shake in This Economy,” in which he called for making it easier to join a union, reinvigorating antitrust agencies, and prioritizing long-term investments in workers over short-term returns to investors.
  • Bullock and Gabbard marched in the Dubuque, Iowa, Labor Day Parade Monday.
  • Buttigieg‘s campaign manager Mike Schmuhl said, “Labor Day for us is really going to be a turning point. … It’s when we’ll flip the switch.” Schmuhl said the campaign will have 100 staffers in Iowa by the end of September.
  • Julián Castro and Bernie Sanders attended a forum as part of the Islamic Society of North America’s annual convention in Houston, Texas, on Saturday.
  • John Delaney appeared on Hardball with Chris Matthews on MSNBC Friday, where he discussed his campaign strategy and said Iowa’s economy is being destroyed by the trade war.
  • Kamala Harris published a piece in The Denver Post titled, “Colorado teachers’ pay is unacceptably low. Here’s how I’ll fix it,” in which she proposed increasing teacher pay with a mix of federal and state funding and recruiting diverse teachers. 
  • Klobuchar released a climate plan Sunday, including the goals of 100% net zero emissions by 2050, participating in the Paris Climate Agreement, and restoring the Clean Power Plan. 
  • Wayne Messam helped fill sandbags in Miramar, Florida, ahead of Hurricane Dorian.
  • Beto O’Rourke responded to a shooting in Midland-Odessa, by saying, “We don’t know how many have been killed. We don’t know the motivation. But here’s what we do know: This is f***** up.” His campaign began selling T-Shirts featuring the final phrase, saying proceeds would go to Moms Demand Action and March for Our Lives.
  • Tim Ryan campaigned in Canfield, Ohio, on Saturday, where he told WFMJ there was “no shot” he would drop out of the race after not qualifying for the third primary debate.
  • Joe Sestak and Gabbard spoke at a Western Iowa Labor Federation picnic Sunday.
  • Tom Steyer said on MSNBC’s The Beat with Ari that he would continue running after not qualifying for the third primary debate and criticized the Democratic National Committee for rejecting Iowa’s proposed virtual caucus.
  • Politico reported that aides to three presidential candidates said they were increasing opposition research against Elizabeth Warren ahead of the third primary debate.
  • Marianne Williamson published a piece in The Washington Post titled, “America doesn’t just have a gun crisis. It has a culture crisis,” in which she says the country has a culture of violence and calls for a U.S. Department of Peace.
  • Axios published a piece saying that, while Andrew Yang ranks 6th in polling average among Democratic presidential candidates, he is 13th in cable news mentions and 14th in “articles written about.”

Republicans

  • Donald Trump‘s campaign flew planes with campaign banners over beaches and riverfronts in Detroit, Cleveland, Milwaukee, Erie, and Virginia Beach on Labor Day.
  • Joe Walsh was on WTMJ’s Wisconsin’s Weekend Morning News to discuss why he’s running in the Republican primary. He talked about things he thinks Trump has done right and wrong.
  • Bill Weld campaigned in New Hampshire, making a stop at the Rotary Club of Manchester’s Cruising Downtown classic car event Saturday.

On the Cusp: Tracking Potential Candidates

  • Mark Sanford said in an interview with Fox News about a potential Republican primary bid, “It would be something of a David and Goliath story. I mean it’s impossible at many different levels. It’d be a very steep climb. But you know that going in.” He planned to announce whether he is running around Labor Day but said Monday he would delay his decision until after Hurricane Dorian passes.

What We’re Reading

Flashback: September 3, 2015

Donald Trump signed a pledge to support the eventual Republican nominee. Jeb Bush said he would support Trump if he became the