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• IN-Sen: While it would have been fun, this is actually good news for those hoping to see Dick Lugar get teabagged to death. Aaron Blake says that ex-Rep. and current Club for Growth head honcho Chris Chocola will not run for Senate in Indiana. Maybe he’ll go after Dan Coats in 2016… after all, “The Count” is only 49.
• IN-Gov: I’m pretty unimpressed with the production values of this ad from Jim Wallace, the businessman who is challenging Rep. Mike Pence for the GOP gubernatorial nod. Bad shirt that gives off a moiré pattern, squinting into the sun, a jarring chair-swivel to start, and a weird full-second pause in his dialog while he’s walking down the street at about the 19 second mark. Also, he says he “approves this message.” Is that even required for ads in Indiana? Anyhow, Dave Catanese calls it a “small buy.”
• MI-Gov: PPP has some new numbers on GOP Gov. Rick Snyder, but things haven’t really changed much since their last MI poll in March.
• NC-Gov: While there had been some speculation a while back that Bev Perdue could be replaced with a more popular candidate, North Carolina’s governor says she will seek a second term. Of course (of course), it’s not a formal announcement. That has to come later. (Groan.)
• CA-09: Rep. Jerry McNerney says he’s going to seek re-election in the district now numbered as the 9th CD. (After treating us to Canadian-style riding names for the last few months, the redistricting commission has finally started using actual numbers, as expected.)
• CA-??: The Hotline’s Jessica Taylor says that Norma Macias, a member of the El Monte City Council and a cousin of Reps. Linda and Loretta Sanchez, plans to run for Congress in the San Gabriel Valley. It’s not clear which district she means, but our best guess is the new 32nd, rather than the 27th, which looks like it will be Rep. Judy Chu’s district.
• FL-22: This has to be pretty much exactly what Allen West was hoping for — or at least, his campaign manager. After West said he supported John Boehner’s debt ceiling plan, a coalition of teabagger groups (including the Tea Party Express) have now declared West a target over his apostasy, along with three other congressmen. Through the looking glass, huh? The teabagger poster child is now an enemy of the teabaggers. I still think West will have a hell of a time trying to paint himself as even slightly moderate, but I guess this is a start.
Amusingly, West responded to the declaration of war by these various teabagger orgs by calling it “schizophrenia.” Too bad he has far too much money and celebrity to be seriously challenged by a TRUE teabagger (I’m kind of lol’ing at the idea) in a primary.
• HI-01: Quarter-term ex-Rep. Charles Djou, who won a special last year but got washed out in November despite 2010′s red wave, says he’s thinking about seeking his old seat again, whether or not Dem Colleen Hanabusa runs for Senate. He’s also waiting on ex-Gov. Linda Lingle to decide whether she’ll seek the open Senate seat herself, but says he’s “moving in the direction” of running for the House. Either way, I can’t see him having a lot of success.
• IL-08/IL-14: A great point, from the attorneys for GOP Rep. Joe Walsh’s ex-wife: While Walsh was racking up $ 100,000 in unpaid child support dues, he managed to loan his campaign over $ 35,000 last year. (Check out his final 2010 FEC report here.) What’s more, he’s even managed to pay about half of that chunk back to himself. Scuzzball.
• NV-02: The NRCC is doing one of those classic “trying to use a politician’s own words against `em” ads with Kate Marshall, but I dunno. I’m not too impressed with this one. What do you think?
• TX-14, TX-36 (?), TX-Sen: Interesting. Dem ex-Rep. Nick Lampson previously said he’s looking at a run in Ron Paul’s open seat, the 14th, but now in a new interview, he tells Roll Call he’s also considering another district; he wouldn’t say which one, but the most plausible candidate is the adjacent (and new) 36th CD. He also demurred when asked if he might run for the state’s open Senate seat.
• TX-25, TX-35: I don’t usually devote a lot of time to intermediate rulings in legal cases — life’s just too short. But this one is unusually interesting. As you probably know, a huge number of redistricting lawsuits have been filed in Texas (I believe over a dozen at last count). Many of them are getting consolidated before a three-judge panel in San Antonio, and a recent suit originally filed in Austin by plaintiffs sympathetic to Rep. Lloyd Doggett was the latest to join that dogpile. But it’s an odd decision, since many of the other plaintiffs represent Latino groups whose interests aren’t really aligned with Doggett’s, as you can see if you click the link and read some of the hostile quotes from Rep. Trey Martinez Fischer.
Indeed, one judge dissented from the transfer order, specifically citing Austin’s unique political culture and the different issues raised by the Doggett-related suit. (Read the dissent here.) So this change of venue probably adversely affects Doggett, and likely slows things down, since he’ll now be part of one massive case rather than on his own. (The dissent, by the way, comes courtesy Michael Li’s very in-depth Texas Redistricting blog, which you should be reading if you like following this stuff at a very high level of detail.)
• TX-33, TX-25: More musical chairs for Michael Williams, perhaps. The former state railroad commissioner started off the cycle running for Senate, but after failing to get much traction, he dropped down to the brand-new 33rd Congressional District. However, a few days after doing so, another Senate also-ran, the unrelated Roger Williams, also decided to switch to the TX-33 race. So now Michael Williams is looking at a possible run in the open 25th CD (which Dem Rep. Lloyd Doggett is leaving behind to seek re-election in the new 35th instead). Two other state Reps. we’ve mentioned before have been considering the 25th as well: Jason Isaac and Sid Miller. Isaac is actually encouraging Williams to run, but Miller (who calls Williams a friend) isn’t quite so ready to step aside, since he thinks “my colleagues drew it for me to run in.”
• Debt Ceiling: A progressive super-team consisting of Americans United for Change, SEIU, AFSCME and the National Education Association are targeting eight members of Congress with a six figure ad buy over the possibility that GOP intransigence over the debt ceiling will lead to default. You can see their spot against Sen. Dean Heller here. The ad could use some slightly tighter editing, but I appreciate the cynical twist on the “call so-and-so and tell him to…” theme: “If the check you or your family depends on doesn’t arrive, thank Senator Heller.” Click the first link for the full target list.
• ID Redistricting: The Idaho legislature is accepting redistricting plans for both Congress and the legislature from the public. While their preferred method of submission is via Maptitude (they have a special version just for Idaho), you can email their technical staff (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you’d like to send in maps in a different format (such as DRA).
• SC Redistricting: No surprise: Gov. Nikki Haley says she’ll sign the redistricting plans recently passed by her Republican colleagues in the legislature. Maybe I just haven’t been keeping tabs, but has any other governor conducted a special signing ceremony for redistricting maps, as Haley is planning to do — in Myrtle Beach, near the Hard Rock Café, no less? SPRING BREAK!!! (Though, as some folks pointed out, this part of the state is where legislators drew a new congressional district.)
• WV Redistricting: Dem Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin just called a special session of the legislature to deal with redistricting (and a few other matters), set to start Aug. 1. State Senate President John Unger wants to get something done quickly, before the special gubernatorial election on Oct. 4. It’s not entirely clear when the victor of that election will get sworn in as governor, but presumably Dems want to hedge and get things done early in case Republican Bill Maloney pulls off an upset.