endorsement-watch

Keith Ellison Will Not Challenge Smith for Franken’s Seat in 2018
Says he supports appointed replacement Tina Smith

Rep. Keith Ellison, D-Minn., will not challenge newly appointed interim Sen. Tina Smith in 2018. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Rep. Keith Ellison will not run in Minnesota’s special election for Senate to replace Sen. Al Franken in 2018, the six-term Democratic lawmaker signaled Wednesday.

Minnesota Lt. Gov. Tina Smith has been pegged to replace Franken through January 2019. Smith, a Democrat, said she plans to run in the November 2018 special election.

Roy Who? Trump, GOP Quickly Pivot From Alabama to Taxes
Democrats characterize Alabama result as repudiation of president

Republican Roy Moore rides his horse across a field on his way to vote at the Gallant Volunteer Fire Department in Gallant, Ala., on Tuesday. Moore lost to Democrat Doug Jones in Tuesday’s Senate special election in Alabama. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

Donald Trump and Republican lawmakers tried Wednesday to pin blame for Roy Moore’s special Alabama Senate race loss on the controversial former judge, but Democrats contend the president owns the bruising defeat after his full-throated endorsement. 

At the White House, the message was all about a GOP tax overhaul bill following Democrat Doug Jones’ stunning upset win in a state that had not put a member of that party in the Senate since 1992. On Capitol Hill, Republican members admitted relief that Moore would not be bringing his sexual misconduct allegations to Washington — and they asserted neither Trump nor the GOP were damaged by the Alabama race, despite the embrace of Moore by Trump and the Republican National Committee.

Trump: ‘I Was Right!’ on Alabama Senate Election
Despite endorsement for Roy Moore, Trump distances himself from apparent loser

Judge Roy Moore ties his horse to a fence as he arrives Tuesday to vote at the Gallant Volunteer Fire Department in Gallant, Ala. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

President Donald Trump on Wednesday sought to distance himself from the apparent loser in the Alabama special Senate race, Roy Moore, tweeting that he “was right” that the former judge would be unable to win a general election.

Though Moore is refusing to concede the race, it appears Democrat Doug Jones will be the next junior senator from Alabama. And, according to the president, he suspected that would happen all along — even though he got personally involved in the race on Moore’s behalf in recent weeks.

Obama Tells Alabama Voters to Reject Roy Moore in Robocall
‘You can’t sit it out,’ Obama says in backing Democratic candidate Doug Jones

Former President Barack Obama, shown here speaking at the North American Climate Summit in Chicago last week, is telling voters in the Alabama special election for Senate “You can’t sit it out.” (Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Former President Barack Obama threw his weight behind Alabama Senate candidate Doug Jones in a robocall recorded in recent days, CNN reported Monday.

Obama recorded his message at the same time President Donald Trump stepped up his campaigning for GOP candidate Roy Moore.

‘Get Out And Vote For Roy Moore,’ Trump Says
President talks tax cuts, economy — and Hillary — during Pensacola rally

President Donald Trump and the first lady Melania Trump at the annual National Christmas Tree lighting ceremony at the White House Ellipse on Nov. 30. On Friday night, he gave a verbal endorsement to Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore. (Photo by Astrid Riecken/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump on Friday flew 800 miles aboard Air Force One to the doorstep of the hotly contested Alabama Senate race, but addressed it directly for just over three minutes.

In a way, however, by using his remarks in Pensacola, Florida, to discuss his agenda and issues that matter to conservative voters just over the border in Alabama, the president sent a message: A vote for GOP candidate Roy Moore is vote for what he calls his “make America great again” agenda.

Trump: ‘VOTE ROY MOORE!’
President goes all-in on alleged child predator ahead of evening rally

Republican Senate candidate Roy Moore, right, is welcomed to the stage on Dec. 5 by Steve Bannon, a former White House chief strategist. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump on Friday issued an emphatic endorsement of accused child predator Roy Moore, diving back into a special Alabama Senate race just a few days before voters there head to the polls.

“VOTE ROY MOORE!” the president tweeted eight hours before a much-anticipated campaign rally in nearby Pensacola, Florida, which bleeds into the southern Alabama television market.

LePage Calls ‘Fake News’ on Report Trump Wants Him to Challenge King
Report didn’t adequately list his accomplishments as Maine’s governor, LePage political adviser says

Maine Gov. Paul LePage greets the crowd before then-Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks in Portland in August 2016. (Sarah Rice/Getty Images file photo)

Maine Gov. Paul LePage did not take kindly to a report that President Donald Trump wants him to challenge Maine Sen. Angus King, branding the story as “fake news.”

LePage, a businessman-turned-Republican politician, called the report “vile,” according to a tweet by a WCSH-TV reporter. 

GOP Senator: ‘Somebody’s Going to File an Ethics Complaint’ Against Moore
Leading in polls, Moore faces uncertain future even if he wins Tuesday’s election

Sen. John Kennedy, R-La., said Wednesday he would welcome the opportunity to investigate the allegations against Roy Moore if he wins the Alabama Senate special election. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

If Republican candidate Roy Moore wins the Alabama Senate special election on Tuesday, one of his new colleagues will file an ethics complaint against him when he is seated, a GOP senator predicted.

“Somebody’s going to file an ethics complaint against him, that’s just a fact,” Louisiana Sen. John Kennedy told CNN on Wednesday. “Then there’s going to be a full-fledged investigation. People are going to be talked to under oath, we’ll get the facts, and then the Senate will get to vote.”

Former Hillary Clinton Aide Blasts Gillibrand Over Bill Clinton Comments
Former president should have resigned over Lewinsky episode, NY senator said

New York Sen. Kristin Gillibrand said Thursday she thought it would have been "appropriate" for President Bill Clinton to step down after the Monica Lewinsky scandal. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A former Hillary Clinton State Department aide had harsh words for Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, who said Thursday that President Bill Clinton should have resigned after an inappropriate sexual relationship with White House intern Monica Lewinsky.

Philippe Reines, Hillary Clinton’s deputy assistant secretary of state for strategic communications, called Gillibrand a “hypocrite” for the comments.

Texas Democrats on Pelosi’s Help: Meh
Senate and House hopefuls unite in calls for new party leadership

Support from House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., is an afterthought for the Democratic hopefuls in Texas' 23rd District. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

When it comes to support from their party’s House leader, Texas Democratic hopefuls can take it or leave it.

In Texas’ 23rd District, all four Democrats running against Republican Rep. Will Hurd were at best lukewarm in their enthusiasm for a potential endorsement from House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi — with some suggesting they would not welcome the California Democrat’s help.