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Biden raises more than $15M in Q3, down from $22M in Q2

Ballotpedia's Daily Presidential News Briefing

October 4, 2019: Joe Biden raised $15.2 million in the third quarter of 2019. CNN will not air two ads submitted by the Donald Trump campaign.

Ballotpedia's Daily Presidential News Briefing - Staffer SpotlightBallotpedia's Daily Presidential News Briefing - Staffer Spotlight - Randy Jones

Randy Jones is a Democratic staffer with experience campaigning in West Virginia. Before joining the Yang campaign, Jones worked with the People’s House Project, which describes itself as “dedicated to recruiting and supporting working-class candidates who are at home in the places Progressives need to reclaim.” Jones graduated from West Virginia University with a degree in political science and government in 2015.

Previous campaign work:

  • 2018 Richard Ojeda (D-W.V.) U.S. House campaign, political director and campaign manager
  • 2010 Mike Oliverio (D-W.V.) U.S. House campaign, Eastern District assistant director

Other experience:

  • 2019: People’s House Project, political director
  • 2017: Virtual Global, Inc., strategic partnership manager
  • 2011-2016: Strategic Health Resources, LLC, senior government relations associate
  • 2015: AmeriCorps, West Virginia University Center for Service & Learning

What he says about Yang:
“Clearly the candidate, the teams message and our strategy are working very well and we are proud of it.”

Notable Quote of the Day

“This isn’t just about Biden’s age—it’s about ours, and the tension between a vast cohort of Baby Boomers who have trained themselves to believe they’re only as old as they feel and a couple of impatient generations lined up behind them, wondering when they’re going to get a chance to take over. And yet it’s about far more than simply a number next to a name. Our sense of who is old in this primary has become entwined with our appetite for bold and new ideas. All three of the top-polling Democrats, after all, are in their 70s, but it’s Biden, the centrist who advocates for a return to a pre-Trump time, who is getting dinged the most for his advanced age—not Elizabeth Warren, who wants ‘big, structural change’ and turned 70 in June. Up until this week when he had to have two heart stents implanted, neither was Bernie Sanders, who continues to call for his ‘revolution’ and is in fact the oldest of the lot.”

– Michael Kruse, Politico senior staff writer



  • In an interview on Foresight 2020Mark Sanford discussed his presidential campaign Thursday. 

  • CNN rejected two of three ads submitted by the Donald Trump campaign, citing fact issues and disparagement of CNN employees. The one ad it accepted, “Changing Things,” was released Thursday. 

  • Joe Walsh sent an open letter to U.S. House Republicans Thursday calling on them to support the impeachment inquiry.

Flashback: October 4, 2015

Donald Trump discussed his tax proposal, gun regulation, and government cuts in an interview on ABC’s The Week.

Jim Strickland wins re-election as mayor of Memphis

Incumbent Jim Strickland defeated former Mayor Willie Herenton, Shelby County Commissioner Tamara Sawyer, and nine other candidates to win election to a second four-year term as mayor of Memphis, Tennessee, October 3. As of 9:00 p.m. Central Time, Strickland had received 63% of the vote to Herenton’s 29% and Sawyer’s 6% with 52% of precincts reporting.
Strickland was first elected in 2015, defeating incumbent A.C. Wharton with 41.3% of the vote. He said he was running to continue his first term policies, which he said included expanding the city’s police force and school system while maintaining a balanced budget and avoiding tax increases.
Herenton, who was first elected mayor in 1991 and won re-election to four subsequent terms before resigning in 2009, said that his plan to combat poverty had fallen off track after he left office. He said that he would prioritize reducing poverty using his experience from his previous term as mayor.
Sawyer was first elected to the county commission in 2018. She said that in recent years city leaders had emphasized the needs of businesses over residents and had not addressed Memphis’ long-term challenges. Sawyer pointed to her city council campaign as well as her experience with a movement calling for the removal of statues associated with the Confederacy as evidence that she could make policy.
Although the election was officially nonpartisan, Strickland, Herenton, and Sawyer are all members of the Democratic Party.

Trump has appointed third-most federal judges through October 1 of a president’s third year

Donald Trump has appointed and the Senate confirmed 152 Article III federal judges through October 1, 2019, his third year in office. This is the third-most Article III judicial appointments through this point in a presidency of all presidents dating back to Theodore Roosevelt. Only Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, with 166 and 160 judicial appointments, respectively, had more.
The average number of federal judges appointed by a president through October 1 of their third year in office is 86.5.
The median number of Supreme Court justices appointed is two. William Taft’s (R) five appointments were the most among this set. Presidents Franklin Roosevelt (D), Jimmy Carter (D), and George W. Bush (R) did not appoint any justices through October 1 of their third years in office. Trump has appointed 2 justices so far.
The median number of United States Court of Appeals appointees is 18. Trump appointed the most with 43, and Presidents Theodore Roosevelt (R) and Woodrow Wilson (D) appointed the fewest with five each. Trump’s 43 appointments make up 24 percent of the total 179 judgeships across the courts of appeal.
The median number of United States District Court appointees is 58. Clinton appointed the most with 135, and T. Roosevelt appointed the fewest with 10. Trump has appointed 105 district court judges so far. Those appointments make up 16 percent of the 677 judgeships across the district courts.
Article III federal judges are appointed for life terms by the president of the United States and confirmed by the U.S. Senate per Article III of the United States Constitution. Article III judges include judges on the: Supreme Court of the United States, U.S. courts of appeal, U.S. district courts, and the Court of International Trade.

With fewer uncontested state legislative races in Louisiana this year, will more races proceed to a general election?

All 39 seats in the Louisiana State Senate and all 105 seats in the Louisiana House of Representatives are up for election in 2019, the first elections since 2015. Each year, due to the state’s unique election system, some races are decided in the primary election and never proceed to a general election.
All candidates compete in one primary election, which a candidate may win outright by receiving a majority of the votes cast. If no candidate wins the primary outright, the top two finishers advance to a general election to decide the winner.
In the Senate, 14 elections were decided in the primary in 2015 and 15 were decided in the primary in 2011. In both years, four races were decided in a general election.
In the House in 2015, 37 races were decided in the primary election and 15 in the general election. In 2011, 41 races were decided in the primary election and 21 in the general election.
This year, there are fewer uncontested races (11 Senate and 39 House) than in the last two election cycles. In 2015, 21 Senate and 53 House races had only one candidate. In 2011, 20 Senate and 43 House races had only one candidate.
Republicans currently hold a 25-14 majority in the Senate and a 60-39 majority in the House (there are 5 independents and a vacancy). Democrat John Bel Edwards is the current governor, so the state has divided government rather than a state government trifecta.
The state legislative elections coincide with the gubernatorial election, with primary elections taking place on October 12 and general elections taking place on November 16.
Additional reading:

San Francisco vaping ordinance loses primary sponsor

Welcome to the Thursday, October 3, Brew. Here’s what’s in store for you as you start your day:

  1. Juul ends support for San Francisco measure authorizing sale of electronic cigarettes
  2. Local Roundup
  3. Quiz: What Supreme Court justice wrote the most opinions in the 2018-2019 term?

Juul ends support for San Francisco measure authorizing sale of electronic cigarettes

Regular Ballotpedia readers know that a successful campaign to qualify a ballot measure to appear before voters involves time, effort, and money. It’s uncommon for proponents of a measure that’s already on the ballot to end their support of such an effort just prior to an election. That’s what makes this story so interesting.

The newly appointed CEO of Juul Labs—K.C. Crosthwaite—announced September 30 that the company was pulling its financial backing of the campaign supporting San Francisco Proposition C. The measure would authorize and regulate the sale of electronic cigarettes and other nicotine vapor products in the city, including provisions regarding the advertisement of such products and the restrictions of sales to minors.

So far, Juul Labs has contributed $11.6 million in loans to the effort. Juul had been the only donor to the Yes on C campaign. Following Juul’s announcement, Yes on C announced it was suspending its campaign and released the following statement: “We understand JUUL’s leadership has decided to cease support for the campaign as part of a larger review of the company’s policies. Based on that news, we have made the decision not to continue on with the campaign. … We will be winding down all campaign activities over the course of this week.”

Proposition C was designed to overturn a 2019 ordinance that prohibits the sale of e-cigarettes in San Francisco that have not been reviewed by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). A related ordinance prohibits manufacturing, distributing, and selling e-cigarettes on city-owned property. To date, no vaping product has undergone a complete review by the FDA. Both ordinances will take effect in early 2020.

Proposition C was placed on the ballot after a successful initiative petition campaign that submitted 20,302 signatures in July. The measure will still appear on San Francisco’s November 5 ballot. Local citizen initiatives cannot be withdrawn later than 88 days prior to the election.

San Francisco voters will also decide five other ballot measures November 5, including:

  • a $600 million bond issue to fund affordable housing;
  • a charter amendment to change the city’s Aging and Adult Services commission;
  • a tax on ride-share companies designed to fund public transportation services and pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure;
  • reductions to zoning and approval requirements for affordable housing and educator housing projects; and,
  • limits on campaign contributions and requirements for campaign advertisements for city elections.

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. We also cover every election on the ballot in these cities, such as county officials and local ballot measures.

Here’s our weekly summary of the local news we’re covering. Email me to suggest some interesting local election coverage in your area—I’d love to hear about it!

Memphis, Tennessee

Incumbent Jim Strickland, former Mayor Willie Herenton, County Commissioner Tamara Sawyer, and nine other candidates are running for mayor in a nonpartisan election held today—October 3. Strickland unseated incumbent A.C. Wharton in 2015. Herenton was elected as Memphis’ mayor in 1991 and served until resigning during his fifth term in 2009. Sawyer has served on the county commission since 2018.

Memphis mayoral elections do not allow for runoffs, meaning that whichever candidate receives the most votes will win outright. Although the election is officially nonpartisan, Herenton, Sawyer, and Strickland are all members of the Democratic Party. Memphis is also holding elections for the open-seat position of city clerk and all 13 seats on its city council. Nine council incumbents are running for re-election and none of them are unopposed.

Raleigh, North Carolina

The city of Raleigh is holding general elections for mayor and all seven seats on the city council on October 8. Six candidates are running to replace Nancy McFarlane—first elected in 2011—who announced in March that she would not seek re-election.

In the city council races, six of seven incumbents are running for re-election. If no candidate receives a majority of the vote in any race, the second-place finisher can request a runoff, which would be held November 5. Raleigh’s mayor and city council members serve two-year terms.

Quiz: What Supreme Court justice wrote the most opinions in the 2018-2019 term?

As I’ve highlighted here in the Brew, the new Supreme Court term begins Monday—on October 7. As that date gets closer and closer, I’ve passed the time by reviewing facts from the last term.

After each case is decided, one judge from the majority writes the majority opinion and one from the minority authors the dissenting opinion. Any justices can also issue a concurring opinion on any case to further explain the reasoning behind their decision—whether he or she was in either the majority or minority.

Which Supreme Court justice authored the most opinions during the 2018-19 term?

A. Samuel Alito
B. Stephen Breyer
C. Ruth Bader Ginsburg
D. Clarence Thomas


Yang raises $10M in Q3, tripling Q2 total

Ballotpedia's Daily Presidential News Briefing

October 3, 2019: Andrew Yang raised $10 million in the third quarter of 2019. Bernie Sanders canceled campaign events this week after undergoing a heart procedure for a blocked artery.

Presidential poll highlights, 2019-2020 (September 25-29, 2019)
Presidential poll highlights, 2019-2020 (September 22-26, 2019)        

Notable Quote of the Day

“Why have four of the last five incumbent presidents won reelection? There are a lot of reasons, but a big one is that the structure of the primary calendar, the rules for campaign spending, and party unified behind the president give the party in power an enormous structural advantage. In 1996 and 2012, incumbent presidents had enormous resources to run ads in swing states defining the Republican nominee, when the GOP nominee had used all his money to win the primary and did not have any cash to return fire. The Clinton and Obama campaigns, along with help from their friends the media, defined the image of Bob Dole and Mitt Romney before the contest really started. In 2004, the Bush campaign ran similar advertising against John Kerry in swing states.”

– Jim Geraghty, National Review


  • Joe Biden issued his gun violence prevention plan Wednesday, calling for universal background checks, banning what he calls assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, repealing liability protections for gun manufacturers, and incentivizing the implementation of red flag flaws.
  • Cory Booker released a plan Thursday to reduce childhood poverty through a child tax credit that would provide $250 or $300—depending on the age of the children—to families. His plan would also increase the maximum Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefit by 30 percent.
  • Steve Bullock delivered a presentation on opioid abuse reduction in Montana Wednesday.
  • Pete Buttigieg will be open a campaign office Thursday in South Bend, Indiana. 
  • In his labor policy plan released Wednesday, Julián Castro focused on promoting the right to organize and protecting domestic and farm workers.
  • Kamala Harris posted more than 420 Facebook ads on impeachment in the final week of September, representing roughly three-fourths of impeachment-related ads released by 2020 Democrats, according to a Reuters analysis.
  • Amy Klobuchar will campaign in Iowa Thursday and Friday, marking her 20th trip to the state.
  • Beto O’Rourke will hold a town hall in Los Angeles Saturday.
  • Tim Ryan visited with striking GM workers in Indiana and attended an education conference Wednesday.
  • Bernie Sanders canceled campaign events this week and suspended his first television ad launch in Iowa after undergoing a heart procedure for a blocked artery Wednesday. 
  • Tom Steyer released a new campaign ad Wednesday on digital platforms about the impeachment inquiry. It will also air on cable television next week.
  • Elizabeth Warren is holding a town hall in San Diego Thursday.
  • Marianne Williamson is attending a fundraiser Thursday in Montclair, New Jersey.
  • Andrew Yang raised $10 million in the third quarter of 2019, more than tripling his fundraising total from the second quarter.


  • As part of a previously announced $8 million ad buy, Donald Trump is airing a new ad that calls the impeachment inquiry a coup.

What We’re Reading

Flashback: October 3, 2015

The National Education Association, which has 3 million members, endorsed Hillary Clinton.

12 Democrats expected to qualify for record-breaking October presidential debate

Tuesday was the final day for candidates to qualify for the fourth Democratic presidential primary debate on Oct. 15, 2019. They needed to reach the polling threshold of 2 percent support or more in four national or early state polls and the fundraising threshold of 130,000 unique contributors.
Twelve candidates were expected to make the stage:
• Joe Biden
• Cory Booker
• Pete Buttigieg
• Julián Castro
• Tulsi Gabbard
• Kamala Harris
• Amy Klobuchar
• Beto O’Rourke
• Bernie Sanders
• Tom Steyer
• Elizabeth Warren
• Andrew Yang
While the first two Democratic debates were held over two nights so that no more than 10 candidates were on stage at one time, the Democratic National Committee announced Friday that the October debate will take place on one day. With 12 candidates expected to qualify, it will be the most candidates on stage in a single presidential primary debate. Republicans held the previous record with 11 candidates on stage during the September 2015 debate.
Otterbein University in Westerville, Ohio, will host the event. Erin Burnett, Anderson Cooper, and Marc Lacey are set to moderate.

San Francisco Proposition C campaign loses support from Juul Labs

On September 30, the newly appointed CEO of Juul Labs, K.C. Crosthwaite, announced that the company was pulling its financial backing of the support campaign for San Francisco Proposition C, a citizen initiative to authorize and regulate the sale of electronic cigarettes. In the announcement, Crosthwaite stated, “We must strive to work with regulators, policymakers and other stakeholders, and earn the trust of the societies in which we operate. That includes inviting an open dialogue, listening to others and being responsive to their concerns.”
Juul Labs was the primary sponsor for Coalition for Reasonable Vaping Regulation, which led the Yes on C: Stop Youth Vaping campaign. Juul contributed over $11.5 million in loans to the campaign.
Following Juul’s announcement, Yes on C announced suspending its campaign and released the following statement: “We understand JUUL’s leadership has decided to cease support for the campaign as part of a larger review of the company’s policies. Based on that news, we have made the decision not to continue on with the campaign. … We will be winding down all campaign activities over the course of this week.”
No on C, San Francisco Kids vs. Big Tobacco is leading the opposition campaign. The director of No on C, Larry Tramutola, responded to the news in a statement saying that they will not believe the news until Yes on C has returned unused funds to Juul and halted all campaign activities.
Proposition C proposes to overturn the 2019 city ban that prohibits the sale of e-cigarettes that have not been reviewed by the Food and Drug Administration. No e-cigarette manufacturers have completed the FDA review to date. It also proposes to enact additional age verification requirements; enact rules governing the advertisement of vapor products with regard to minors; and require additional licensing and permitting for businesses selling vapor products.
The initiative will still appear on the November 5 ballot in San Francisco. Local citizen initiatives cannot be withdrawn later than 88 days prior to the election.

Second recall petition targeting California Gov. Gavin Newsom approved for circulation

A second recall petition was approved for circulation against Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) on September 27 by the California Secretary of State. The petition is being led by La Jolla physician James Veltmeyer (R). Supporters of the recall have until March 5, 2020, to collect 1,495,709 signatures to force a recall election. Veltmeyer ran unsuccessfully for the U.S. House in 2016 and 2018.
Veltmeyer’s recall petition criticizes Newsom on tax increases, the rate of homelessness in major California cities, sanctuary city policies, and his support for providing healthcare to immigrants living in the country without documentation.
In early September, the first recall petition was approved against Gov. Newsom. That recall is being led by Erin Cruz (R). She ran unsuccessfully for the U.S. Senate in 2018 for Dianne Feinstein’s (D) seat. She is also currently a declared candidate for California’s 36th Congressional District in 2020. Supporters of the Cruz recall have until February 13, 2020, to turn in the necessary amount of signatures.
Cruz’s recall petition alleges that Newsom mismanaged the state and caused poor school performance, deteriorating infrastructure, high costs for gas and utilities, and increased homelessness and debt. Her recall petition also criticizes Newsom’s support of certain policies, which includes Medicare for All and laws that aid immigrants living in the country without documentation.
In response to the recall efforts, Newsom filed a statement with the secretary of state in August 2019. In his statement, Newsom said that the “…recall effort will cost California taxpayers $81 million dollars! It is being pushed by political extremists supporting President Trump’s hateful attacks on California.” For more on Newsom’s response to the recall effort, click here
California became a Democratic trifecta in 2011. Democrats control the state House by a 61-18 margin with one vacancy and the state Senate by a 29-11 margin. Newsom succeeded Jerry Brown (D) as governor in 2019. He won the 2018 election with 61.9% of the vote. A state government trifecta exists when one political party simultaneously holds the governor’s office and both state legislative chambers.
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 ever be successfully recalled was former North Dakota Gov. Lynn Frazier (R) in 1921. Four gubernatorial recall efforts are currently underway in 2019.

Connecticut and Maryland increase minimum age to buy tobacco to 21

On Tuesday, laws went into effect in Connecticut and Maryland increasing the minimum age to buy tobacco products in each state from 18 to 21. They are among 15 states to increase their age restriction to 21 since June 2015, when Hawaii became the first state to do in the 21st century.
New Jersey imposed the first tobacco age restriction, 16 years old, in 1883. By 1920, 14 states had a minimum tobacco age of 21. However, in the 1920s and 1930s, many lowered their age restrictions from 21 to 18 or 19. In 2000, three states (Alabama, Alaska, and Utah) had a tobacco age of 19 and the remaining 47 had a tobacco age of 18.
The 15 states where the minimum age to purchase or use tobacco is now 21 comprise 42% of the U.S. population. Three states have a tobacco age limit of 19 and the remaining 32 have a tobacco age limit of 18.
On November 13, New York will be the next state to increase its tobacco age restriction from 18 to 21.
Connecticut’s tobacco increase was signed by Democratic Gov. Ned Lamont. Maryland’s was signed by Republican Gov. Larry Hogan.
Since June 2015, nine Democratic governors and eight Republican governors have signed increases in their states’ tobacco restrictions into law. The tobacco age restriction increases in both states were passed by a majority-Democratic state legislature, meaning that Connecticut’s was passed under a Democratic trifecta and Maryland’s was passed under divided government. Eight states have increased their tobacco age under a Democratic trifecta, four under a Republican trifecta, and six under divided government.