outside-groups

Administration Pushes Abstinence Promotion
Latest moves alarm reproductive rights advocates

Recording artist Ciara, center, performs in honor of National Teen Pregnancy Awareness Month in New York’s Times Square in 2011. (Jason Kempin/Getty Images file photo)

Recent administrative actions signal a shift from promoting comprehensive sexual health information to abstinence-only education, which concerns reproductive rights advocates who question abstinence promotion’s efficacy at preventing teen pregnancy.

The administration already announced last year the discontinuation of a teen pregnancy prevention, or TPP, program that funded grants to communities that study ways to prevent teens from getting pregnant and run prevention programs. The Department of Health and Human Services has promoted more abstinence-only alternatives and increasingly uses the phrase “sexual risk avoidance,” another term for abstinence, in materials.

Trent Franks Still a Factor in Arizona Race to Replace Him
Republican primary to replace the former congressman is Feb. 27

Arizona Rep. Trent Franks resigned in December amid allegations of sexual harassment. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Rep. Trent Franks resigned amid allegations of sexual harassment. But that hasn’t stopped him from being a factor in the race for his seat.

Republican strategists say the former congressman is still well-liked among GOP voters in Arizona’s 8th District, which could explain why he hasn’t disappeared from the race to replace him. Franks appeared briefly in an ad for one of the candidates as voters head to the polls next Tuesday in the primary election to replace him.

314 Action Looks to Play in Democratic Primaries
Group is supporting candidates with scientific backgrounds

Marchers, including Bill Nye the Science Guy, center, lead the March for Science on Earth Day in 2017. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

314 Action, a group backing candidates with scientific backgrounds, has made new ad buys in a handful of media markets as it looks to be a player in upcoming Democratic primaries.

Along with the ad buys, 314 Action is releasing the results of a national poll conducted earlier this month that showed 72 percent of those surveyed said they were more inclined to support candidates with experience in science.

Texas Primaries: What to Watch in the First Contests of 2018
March 6 will see several competitive primary races in the Lone Star State

Gina Ortiz Jones is a Democratic candidate in Texas’ 23rd District. (Thomas McKinless/CQ Roll Call file photo)

As the saying goes, everything’s bigger in Texas. That includes congressional primaries.

The March 6 elections will be the first primary contests of 2018, and the initial tests of first-time candidates running for Congress — Democrats competing in newly targeted seats and Republicans vying to replace outgoing GOP lawmakers.

Rural Areas Feeling Left Behind in Race to Expand Broadband
Lawmakers looking at several options to close digital divide

South Dakota Sen. John Thune talks with reporters Thursday after a news conference at the GOP retreat in West Virginia. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Denny Law’s telecommunications company connects phone lines through the plains of western South Dakota and he’s all-in for ending the rural digital divide.

He said President Donald Trump’s promise to level the playing field with a “great, great broadband,” made during a Jan. 8 speech in Nashville, Tennessee, has energized local providers like himself. And, he added, John Thune, the South Dakota Republican who chairs the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee, had better take note.

New GOP Women’s Group Makes First Endorsements
Winning for Women announces staff, names Ayotte to board

Winning for Women is endorsing California Rep. Mimi Walters, left, and New York Rep. Elise Stefanik, right, among others. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Democratic women outnumber Republican women in Congress 3-to-1. But a new group supporting conservative women is hoping to change that imbalance.

Winning for Women Inc. is making its first endorsements and announcing its key staff on Thursday. The initial round of endorsements, shared first with Roll Call, includes 12 women running for Senate or re-election to the House. 

Campaigns Taking to TV During State of the Union
Congressional campaigns use Tuesday night address to communicate with voters

Former State Department official Sara Jacobs’ campaign is launching an introductory spot on CNN and MSNBC starting Tuesday night. The California Democrat is running for the seat being vacated by GOP Rep. Darrell Issa.  (Screenshot/Sara Jacobs for Congress)

It’s not just President Donald Trump whom Americans will see on TV Tuesday night.

A handful of congressional candidates hoping to take advantage of a politically captive audience are going on air, with mostly small advertising buys, before or after the State of the Union broadcast.

Republicans Prepare for Upcoming Abortion Vote
Votes not likely there in Senate, but measure could be a midterm issue

Oklahoma Sen. James Lankford is among the proponents of the legislation to ban late-term abortions. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Senate Republicans are readying for a vote next week on a late-term abortion bill. And while it’s unlikely they will have the votes to pass it, abortion opponents say the measure could play a role in the 2018 midterm elections.

The bill would ban abortions after the 20-week mark, while providing exceptions for rape, incest or the endangerment of a woman. It passed the House along party lines last year and has been waiting on a Senate vote.

American Action Network Pushing Tax Law in New Digital Ads
Republicans trying to make overhaul central message ahead of November

Minnesota Rep. Jason Lewis is among 20 Republican beneficiaries of a digital ad campaign by the American Action Network. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

With Republicans focusing on the economy as their strongest message for the midterms, an issue advocacy group with close ties to House GOP leadership is launching a million-dollar digital ad campaign to tout the Republican tax law. 

American Action Network’s latest digital push, shared first with Roll Call, will run in the districts of 20 Republican lawmakers who voted for the GOP tax plan in December, including members of leadership and others who are more vulnerable this year. 

Group Backed by Liberal George Soros Posts Uptick in Lobbying
Open Society Policy Center spent record $16.1 million in 2017

Billionaire George Soros, left, attends a House Oversight and Government Reform Committee hearing in November 2008. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The Open Society Policy Center, the lobbying arm of liberal billionaire George Soros’ philanthropic network, reported spending a record sum to influence federal issues during the first year of the Trump administration.

The group disclosed spending a total of $16.1 million on federal lobbying in 2017, with the majority of that coming in the last three months of the year, according to a report filed with Congress. The Soros group disclosed spending $10.3 million in the fourth quarter.