independents

Corporate PACs in Spotlight as Candidates Reject Their Money
So far, 85 primary winners are rejecting money from corporations

The candidates pledging not to accept corporate PAC money have mostly been Democrats. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Corporate PACs have been thrust into the political spotlight as more Democratic candidates make rejecting corporate money a central theme of their campaigns. Seven of those congressional hopefuls won their primaries Tuesday.

Those results bring the total number of primary winners who are not accepting corporate PAC contributions to 85, according to the group End Citizens United, which supports an overhaul of the campaign finance system. These candidates are instead relying on donations from individuals and other groups.

Curbelo Ahead in DCCC Poll of Florida’s 26th District
Survey was conducted before Mucarsel-Powell went on TV

Florida Rep. Carlos Curbelo led his Democratic opponent in a poll commissioned by the independent expenditure arm of the DCCC. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A Democratic poll of Florida’s 26th District put GOP Rep. Carlos Curbelo ahead of Democrat Debbie Mucarsel-Powell by 7 points. 

The poll, conducted for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s independent expenditure arm, had Curbelo at 48 percent and Mucarsel-Powell at 41 percent.

Hagedorn Wins GOP Nomination for Toss-Up Minnesota Race
This is Hagedorn’s fourth bid for 1st District and third as the nominee

Jim Hagedorn won the GOP nomination for Minnesota’s 1st District on Tuesday and will face Democrat Dan Feehan in November. (Thomas McKinless/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Jim Hagedorn has won the Republican nomination for Minnesota’s 1st District, hoping the third time is the charm to win the highly competitive seat. 

With 88 percent of precincts reporting, Hagedorn led state Sen. Carla Nelson 60 percent to 33 percent, when The Associated Press called the race. 

Cost Isn’t Everything. Pentagon Should Judge Contractors on Cybersecurity, Report Says
Security would be ‘fourth pillar’ in weapons purchase decisions

Aerial view of the Pentagon building photographed on Sept. 24, 2017. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The Pentagon should take into account the cybersecurity capabilities of defense contractors in addition to cost and performance measures when awarding contracts, a U.S. government-funded think tank recommended in a report published Monday.

Through its buying process, the Pentagon “can influence and shape the conduct of its suppliers,” the Mitre Corp. said in a report titled “Deliver Uncompromised: A Strategy for Supply Chain Security and Resilience in Response to the Changing Character of War.”

Poll: Near Tie Between MacArthur and Democratic Challenger Kim in New Jersey
Monmouth poll shows the two within a point of each other in 3rd District

Rep. Tom MacArthur, R-N.J., is in a tough re-election race against former Obama administration official Andy Kim. (Sarah Silbiger/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A new poll in New Jersey’s 3rd District shows Republican Rep. Tom MacArthur in a near-tie with Democratic challenger Andy Kim.

The Monmouth University survey found MacArthur, a two-term congressman, leading Kim, who served in national security and counterterrorism roles in the Obama administration, 41 percent to 40 percent among all potential voters. Fifteen percent of respondents were undecided. Under a likely voter model based on historical midterms, the result was essentially unchanged, with Kim up a point, 45 percent to 44 percent. 

Kavanaugh Feared Looking ‘Silly’ on Flip-Flop on Presidential Records
Documents show Supreme Court nominee fretted about position switch while working in White House

Aides attend a news conference with Republican members of the Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman in Dirksen Building on August 2, 2018, with boxes representing roughly 1 million pages of documents to be submitted to the committee on Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Long before the current Senate fight over access to presidential records as part of his Supreme Court nomination, Brett Kavanaugh sent an email to his co-workers in the White House counsel’s office about a soon-to-be-published article on access to presidential records that “makes me look very silly.”

Kavanaugh let the office know that Washington Post columnist Al Kamen planned to write a blurb to highlight how he had switched legal positions — now that he was a lawyer in the George W. Bush administration — when it comes to how much power former presidents and their families had to block the release of presidential records.

In Minnesota’s 1st District, a Test Between New and Old GOP Candidates
Jim Hagedorn is running for the nomination for the fourth time

Jim Hagedorn, who’s been endorsed by the Minnesota GOP, is facing a primary in the 1st District on Tuesday. (Thomas McKinless/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Jim Hagedorn has done this before — three times, in fact.

The Minnesota Republican has never won any of those congressional races in the 1st District, but he’s trying again this year. Hagedorn came within a point of defeating Democratic-Farmer-Labor Rep. Tim Walz in 2016, and now that it’s an open seat — Walz is running for governor — Hagedorn sees another opening.

Parsing Ohio’s 12th: Neither Party Should Rush to Conclusions Just Yet
A lot more can still happen three months out from November

If Republican Troy Balderson holds on in Ohio’s 12th District, it would look more like a sequel to the special election in Pennsylvania’s 18th District, perhaps with a happier ending but hardly the stuff of a “red wave,” Winston writes. (Scott Olson/Getty Images)

In 1982, as a young opposition researcher at the National Republican Congressional Committee, one of “my candidates” was an equally young John Kasich running in Ohio’s 12th District.

He was the only GOP challenger to win in that first off-year election of the Reagan presidency, and Republicans have held the seat ever since. With my background in the district, I had more than a passing interest in the outcome of Tuesday’s special election there.

Pot Business Expected to Boom, Lighting Up Pressure on Lawmakers
More that a dozen states expected to expand legalization by 2025, report says

Secret Service block pro-marijuana protesters from carrying their 51-foot inflated marijuana joint down Pennsylvania Avenue in front of the White House in 2016. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

With marijuana legalization measures expected to pass in 13 more states by 2025, the legal pot market would reach more than $30 billion, according to an industry report released Thursday. 

The trend is bound to increase pressure on lawmakers to stake positions on one of the country’s most rapidly evolving social issues — the legalization of pot and cannabis — according to the report from New Frontier Data, a nonpartisan market research firm. 

Trump’s Culture War Is Entering Its Scorched-Earth Phase
Will weary voters resist his tactics in the midterms?

LeBron James, shown here in 2016, was the target of a Trump Twitter attack last week. Slamming one of Ohio’s heroes right before a special election in the state may not have been the savviest move on the part of the president, Curtis writes. (Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images)

OPINION — President Donald Trump is crediting his raucous Ohio rally for propelling Troy Balderson over Democratic challenger Danny O’Connor in a U.S. congressional special election that is officially still too close to call. But what if his fiery rhetoric and the image of a sea of angry faces, attacks on the media and signs supporting the murky QAnon conspiracy actually derailed what should have been an easy Republican victory?

Republican candidates have signaled they will ride the Trump train, with their fearless leader promising to stoke the outrage all the way to the November midterms to persuade the base to show up. The Republican Party is Trump’s party now, so those wanting to win or keep office may not have a choice.