While Kleefisch and her allies have spent the past few days arguing that Michels “pushed for years to raise our gas tax,” this is the first spot to argue that the Trump-backed Michels aligned himself with unions and against the Walker-Kleefisch administration. However, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s Katelyn Ferral notes that Michels’ construction company did indeed oppose the 2015 “right to work” bill that Walker signed. Ferral adds that some of Michels’ employees were part of the demonstrations against the law, and that one even got time off from work in order to protest.
Michels’ campaign now insists he supports Walker’s stance, and that “he never specifically encouraged or granted time off for Michels employees to protest for or against anything, including right-to-work.” Kleefisch’s team, though, was hardly appeased, saying in response, “Republican voters have a choice: Do we want a governor like Rebecca who stands up to the liberal protesters — or Tim Michels who gave his employees time off to join the protests against conservative reform? ” A recent Marquette Law School poll showed Michels with a tiny 27-26 edge over Kleefisch in the race to take on Democratic incumbent Tony Evers, so it’s unlikely she’s going to let this matter rest over the next month.
Michels got some more welcome news on Friday when former Gov. Tommy Thompson, who mulled a comeback bid earlier this year, endorsed him. Thompson, unlike Trump, had a reputation for working with Democrats during his record-setting tenure from 1987 to 2001, but he argued that their mutual support for Michels shows the candidate can appeal to different factions in the GOP.
PS Now that Thompson and Walker have each come down on opposite sides, the only surviving GOP governor who has not yet made an endorsement is Scott McCallum, who took over after Thompson left to join George W. Bush’s cabinet. McCallum, though, hasn’t been on the ballot since he lost his 2002 campaign for a full term to Democrat Jim Doyle, a campaign where Thompson’s brother, Ed Thompson, grabbed a crucial 10% as the Libertarian nominee.
- OH-Sen: Tim Ryan (D): $ 9.1 million raised, $ 3.6 million cash-on-hand
- UT-Sen: Evan McMullin (I): $ 1.4 million raised
- MD-01: Andy Harris (R-inc): $ 232,000 raised (April 1- June 29), $ 1.8 million cash-on-hand; Heather Mizeur (D): $ 245,000 raised (April 1- June 29), $ 1.1 million cash-on-hand
- NH-01: Chris Pappas (D-inc): $ 670,000 raised, $ 2.2 million cash-on-hand
- NY-11: Nicole Malliotakis (R-inc): $ 709,000 raised, $ 2.6 million cash-on-hand
- TN-05: Heidi Campbell (D): $ 298,000 raised; Kurt Winstead (R): $ 580,000 raised (has self-funded in the past)
● AZ-Sen: The GOP firm OH Predictive Insights finds former Thiel Capital chief operating officer Blake Masters beating wealthy businessman Jim Lamon 25-18 in the Aug. 2 Republican primary, with Attorney General Mark Brnovich lagging with 14%. This is quite the turnaround from April when Brnovich outpaced Lamon 21-16 as Masters took just 9%, but Masters may be benefiting from getting Trump’s endorsement last month. A recent survey from the Democratic pollster Public Policy Polling put Masters’ advantage over Brnovich at 29-15.
● GA-Sen, GA-Gov: The Democratic firm Data for Progress shows Herschel Walker beating Democratic Sen. Raphael Warnock as 49-47 as his fellow Republican, Gov. Brian Kemp, outpaces Democrat Stacey Abrams 53-44; the firm did not mention a client.
Abrams, though, won’t have to worry much about money as she wages her second campaign against Kemp. The Democrat announced Friday that her campaign raised $ 9.8 million from May 1 to June 30 while her allied leadership committee, which is not subject to contribution limits, hauled in another $ 12.3 million. The two bodies, which are allowed to coordinate, ended last month with a combined $ 18.5 million on-hand, which is more than twice the $ 7 million that Kemp’s side had available.
● MO-Sen: Show Me Values, which has now spent $ 2.1 million against disgraced former Gov. Eric Greitens in the Aug. 2 GOP primary, is airing a commercial that consists entirely of a narrator reading his ex-wife’s affidavit alleging that he abused one of their children. The narrator quotes Sheena Greitens saying that the candidate was responsible for “cuffing our then three-year-old son across the face… yanking him around by his hair… a swollen face, bleeding gums, and [a] loose tooth. “
● OH-Sen: Democrat Tim Ryan has unveiled an internal from Impact Research that shows him leading Republican JD Vance 48-46.
● PA-Sen: John Fetterman is trolling Republican Mehmet Oz on the airwaves and in the skies: The Democrat’s campaign went up with a new TV ad trashing Oz for his non-existent ties to Pennsylvania and followed that up by flying a banner reading “HEY DR. OZ, WELCOME HOME TO NJ! ❤️ JOHN” over South Jersey beaches over the weekend. The message flew from Cape May to Brigantine, a section of the Jersey Shore popular with many Pennsylvanians.
Oz probably wouldn’t know: He actually lives in North Jersey—in a palatial home overlooking the Manhattan skyline—And was busted by Fetterman’s team this week for recording a campaign video in the library of that very same mansion. How’d they figure it out? People magazine helpfully profiled the house in 2020, complete with a six-minute video revealing distinctive decorative elements—like, say, this candlestick—Also found peeking out from behind Oz in his new recording.
But while Fetterman takes to the air, literally and figuratively, Oz, strangely, is nowhere to be found — in any state. Politico’s Holly Otterbein reports that Oz hasn’t run any spots on television since the May 21 primary, a date now seven weeks distant. Various unnamed Republicans — and a couple on the record — are unhappy with Oz’s apparent complacence, with some complaining that the wealthy celebrity should be spending more of his own money to go after Fetterman. Oz’s campaign would not say when it’ll go back up on TV and offered no real explanation for the absence, except to argue that Republicans in other key Senate races have also not run ads since winning their primaries.
● HI-Gov: Rep. Kai Kahele got some much-needed good news in late June when he earned the support of the United Public Workers union, which the Honolulu Star-Advertiser says represents 11,000 people in the state, for the Aug. 13 Democratic primary. But Lt. Gov. Josh Green, who has enjoyed a huge advantage in polling, fundraising, and endorsements, around that same time earned the backing of the state AFL-CIO, whose affiliates represent 68,000 workers.
● KY-Gov: Rep. James Comer definitively took himself out of contention for next year Republican primary by telling WHOP News there was “zero chance” he would run.
● MD-Gov: Author Wes Moore has released a new commercial for the July 19 Democratic primary narrated by none other than Oprah Winfrey, who declares that he’s the “different type of leader” the moment demands. “Wes watched his father die at age three,” Winfrey tells the audience, “but instead of letting that defeat him, he found a way to thrive” as a Rhodes Scholar, Army captain, and “CEO of one of the nation’s largest anti -poverty organizations. “
● NM-Gov: Republican Mark Ronchetti enjoyed a big fundraising bump after winning the June 7 primary, but he still faces a large financial disadvantage against Democratic Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham. Ronchetti outraised Lujan Grisham $ 1.2 million to $ 755,000 from June 1 to July 2, while the governor maintained a $ 2.7 million to $ 1.4 million cash-on-hand lead.
● HI-01, HI-02: MRG Research, polling on behalf of Civil Beat and Hawaii News Now, gives us our first look at the Aug. 13 Democratic primaries for each House seat. In the 1st District, which includes most of O’ahu, Blue Dog Rep. Ed Case enjoys a huge 65-8 lead over Sergio Alcubilla, an attorney who recently earned endorsements from the state AFL-CIO and several other unions.
Over in the open 2nd, which is home to the balance of O’ahu and the rest of the state’s islands, former state Sen. Jill Tokuda outpaces state Rep. Patrick Branco 31-6.
● MD-04: The hawkish pro-Israel group AIPAC has now deployed a total of $ 4 million to attack former Rep. Donna Edwards or promote former Prince George’s County State’s Attorney Glenn Ivey ahead of the July 19 Democratic primary, which represents the vast majority of the outside spending here.
Edwards’ supporters at J Street, a progressive pro-Israel organization that often finds itself at odds with AIPAC, is trying to help her by launching what appears to be the first negative ad of the contest against Ivey as part of its $ 660,000 TV and digital. campaign. The narrator opens by declaring that Ivey “left public office to lobby for big business” and “gave thousands to a corporate PAC that funded Republicans like Mike Pence.” The spot then tries to turn AIPAC into a liability for Ivey by arguing that “his biggest supporter is a super PAC backed by two Republican billionaires” before promoting Edwards as a “true Democrat.”
● MO-07: The Club for Growth is getting involved in what’s been a pretty quiet Aug. 2 Republican primary by airing a commercial accusing former state Sen. Jay Wasson of contributing thousands to Mitt Romney’s 2012 campaign but never giving “Trump a dime.” The Club does not mention whether Wasson funded Romney’s primary campaign or general election bid against Barack Obama, nor does it mention its endorsed candidate, state Sen. Eric Burlison.
● MD-AG: VoteVets is airing a spot ahead of the July 19 Democratic primary faulting former Judge Katie Curran O’Malley over her own recent ad questioning Rep. Anthony Brown’s legal experience. VoteVets is a longtime ally of Brown, who served in Iraq as an Army Reserve lawyer.
● San Francisco, CA District AttorneyMayor London Breed announced Thursday that she was appointing former prosecutor Brooke Jenkins, who left the district attorney’s office to help lead the successful recall campaign against incumbent Chesa Boudin, to become the new district attorney. Jenkins, who identifies as Black and Latina and will be the first Latina to hold this office, will run in the November 2022 special election, and the winner will be up again for a full four-year term in 2023; Both contests will be conducted using instant-runoff voting.
It remains to be seen if Jenkins, who immediately sought to set a different tone from Boudin by declaring, “We are a city of second chances, but the truth is we have to draw a line with people who choose hate, violence and a life of crime, “will face any serious opposition. We may not have heard the last of Boudin, though, as he did not rule out running in either contest late last month. Boudin, who won in 2019 as a criminal justice reformer, was ousted in June by a tough 55-45 margin, though late-counted ballots narrowed his deficit from the 60-40 spread we saw the day after the election.
Dollar amounts reflect the reported size of ad buys and may be larger.