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K Street’s CGCN Group picks up big names from Definers
Matt Rhodes and Antonia Ferrier join growing GOP lobbying firm

CGCN has cultivated a reputation as a scrappy, profitable K Street player with big-name clients. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The CGCN Group, a K Street shop known for its deep Republican connections, is scooping up Matt Rhoades and Antonia Ferrier from the communications and opposition research firm Definers Public Affairs.

Rhoades, who managed the 2012 Mitt Romney presidential campaign, will serve as co-CEO, along with GOP lobbyist Sam Geduldig, of CGCN. Ferrier is a former Republican congressional aide, most recently working for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

North Carolina Senate candidate targets Trump rally attendees with digital ad
Cal Cunningham criticizes incumbent Tillis in military communities over Trump’s shifting Pentagon funds from NC bases

Democrat Cal Cunningham, who's challenging GOP Sen. Thom Tillis, is launching a digital ad that's intended to reach attendees at Monday evening's rally with President Donald Trump in North Carolina. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

President Donald Trump is coming to North Carolina on Monday, and Democrats are looking to take advantage of his visit.

Democratic Senate candidate Cal Cunningham, who is challenging Sen. Thom Tillis, is releasing a digital ad Monday afternoon that’s geographically targeted to the location of Trump’s rally in Fayetteville, where the president is coming to boost GOP state Sen. Dan Bishop ahead of Tuesday’s redo election in the 9th District

Google agrees to record fine for violating children’s privacy
Regulators say Google-owned YouTube violated the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act by gathering data on users under the age of 13

Democratic Sen. Edward J. Markey, a frequent critic of Google and YouTube, called fines against the tech giants announced Wednesday “let Google off the hook with a drop-in-tbe bucket fine.” (Caroline Brehman/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Google agreed to pay a $170 million fine and overhaul privacy policies on YouTube after regulators said the company illegally gathered data on underage users and allowed advertisers to use the information to target children with advertisements, regulators announced Wednesday.

The settlement, reached with New York State Attorney General Letitia James and the Federal Trade Commission, is the largest ever resulting from a violation of the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act, known as COPPA. New York will receive $34 million of the settlement, and the remainder will go to the federal government.

Progressive group spending $100,000 to pressure McConnell, vulnerable GOP senators on election security
Facebook ads, billboard in majority leader’s hometown and call-in campaign among tactics

Progressive activists are pressuring Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., to pass $600 million in election security funding with a billboard in downtown Louisville, Ky., from Sept. 1 through Sept. 9. (Courtesy Stand Up America)

A national progressive group is spending over $100,000 on a campaign to pressure Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and other Republican senators to pass a bill to provide $600 million in election security funding.

The group, Stand Up America, has rented a billboard alongside the Kennedy Bridge near McConnell’s office in downtown Louisville, Ky., from Sept. 1 through Sept. 9 that includes an image of McConnell’s face and the message, “Tell Mitch McConnell: Stop blocking election security funding.”

Democrats use Trump’s tariffs against House Republicans in new ads
DCCC launches back-to-school themed ads against 11 GOP lawmakers

Minnesota Rep. Jim Hagedorn is among 11 House Republican targets of new digital ads by the DCCC. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

In a sign that Democrats are broadening their 2020 messaging, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee on Thursday is rolling out digital ads attacking House Republicans over President Donald Trump’s trade policies. 

The ads, obtained first by CQ Roll Call, are timed to back-to-school shopping. The animated ads running on Facebook highlight products whose rising costs could affect consumers in 11 districts across the country, all but one of which Trump carried in 2016. 

Former GOP Rep. Valadao launches comeback bid in California
Republican lost to Democrat TJ Cox in one of the closest elections of 2018

Former California Rep. David Valadao is running for the House again after narrowly losing in 2018. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

California Republican David Valadao is looking for a congressional comeback against Democratic Rep. TJ Cox, who narrowly ousted him in last year’s midterms.

Valadao was one of seven GOP lawmakers in the Golden State who lost reelection in 2018. His race in the Central Valley-based 21st District was one of the closest in the country, with Cox winning by 862 votes, or less than 1 percentage point.

Republican congressional candidate denies tweet calling Rep. Ilhan Omar ‘illegal’
Maryland state Sen. Johnny Ray Salling deleted tweet after inquiry from newspaper

Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., responds to reporters’ questions after a vote in the Capitol in July. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

A Maryland state senator and congressional candidate has denied writing a tweet posted to his account that referred to Rep. Ilhan Omar as “illegal.”

Republican Johnny Ray Salling, who announced last week that he will challenge Maryland Democrat Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger in 2020, said in a statement Monday that the tweet “was not from me.”

Richard Neal Facebook page mixes campaign, congressional business

The Facebook page of Rep. Richard Neal, D-Mass., aired campaign ads for the congressman, a potential violation of House Ethics rules. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Updated August 28, 2:22 p.m. | House Ways and Means Chairman Richard E. Neal used his government-funded official Facebook page to air campaign advertisements, Facebook Ad Library shows, potentially running afoul of House Ethics rules that prohibit campaign business on House official resources.

In Neal’s official Facebook page disclaimer, up to $100 were spent on the ads in 2018 paid for by “Richard Neal for Congress Committee, Treasurer Michael F. Hall,” suggesting Neal’s campaign funds paid for the ad to air through the House office’s Facebook page.

FEC documents: Rep. Joe Kennedy III may be serious about challenge to Sen. Ed Markey
Markey enjoys the support of both the party establishment and influential progressives with the Sunrise Movement.

Rep. Joe Kennedy, D-Mass., declared his vision to be “moral capitalism” in a high-profile speech last year. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Massachusetts Rep. Joe Kennedy III wrote today that he hasn’t made up his mind about running for the Senate in 2020, but he has filed documents with campaign finance regulators indicating that he is serious about a possible bid. 

Kennedy filed a statement of candidacy with the Federal Election Commission on Monday, which could set up a Democratic primary race against Sen. Ed Markey. But, also Monday, Kennedy posted a statement to Facebook saying he had not reached a decision about the race yet. 

GOP Rep. Sean Duffy resigning on Sept. 23
Wisconsin congressman announced child his family is expecting has a heart condition

Rep. Sean Duffy, R-Wis., announced Monday he s resigning from Congress in September. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Wisconsin GOP Rep. Sean Duffy announced Monday that he is resigning from Congress on Sept. 23, after news that the child his family is expecting will have a heart condition.

“Recently, we’ve learned that our baby, due in late October, will need even more love, time, and attention due to complications, including a heart condition,” Duffy wrote in a Facebook post. The child will be Duffy’s ninth.