Welcome back to Hotline Sort. The NRCC inches past the DCCC in June fundraising, Dill gets no love from Democrats in Washington, journalists cry foul over being used in campaign ads, and both the Obama and Romney campaigns double down on their attacks. Here's today's rundown:
10) Innovations in campaigns: Rep. Russ Carnahan, D-Mo., the underdog in his primary against Rep. William Lacy Clay, D-Mo., unveiled an unconventional campaign tool - the talking direct mail piece. But instead of a song, the audio captures Clay speaking at a 2008 convention in St. Louis of the rent-to-own industry, the St. Louis Beacon reports.
9) The return of Adrian Fenty? A new Washington Post poll out this morning shows that the former Washington, D.C. mayor would romp over the current, scandal-plagued mayor, Vincent Gray, by a better than two-to-one margin in a rematch of their contentious 2010 Democratic mayoral primary. But the poll also shows that most of the likely candidates in 2014 (or a special election sooner than that) remain unknown to the District at large.
8) The New York Daily News reports that a federal grand jury is examining potential fundraising improprieties during Rep, Michael Grimm's, R-N.Y., 2010 campaign. Grimm's district leans Republican, but Democrats believe he's vulnerable on the ethics front.
7) The National Republican Congressional Committee narrowly outraised its Democratic counterpart in June, $10.7 million to $10.5 million, a total bolstered by donations from top party leaders. It also has a sizable cash-on-hand advantage at the end of the month, $41 million to $33.2 million. But the DCCC won the fundraising battle throughout the entirety of the second quarter, $23.7 million to $23.6 million - a very solid tally, given that parties in the minority usually struggle with fundraising.
6) Social conservative activist Gary Glenn announced he will drop out of the Michigan Senate primary race, and endorsed Clark Durant. Glenn's name, however, will remain on the August 7 primary ballot. Durant is looking to consolidate conservative support against former Rep. Pete Hoekstra, but Glenn was only a minor player in the race.
Hoekstra, meanwhile, raised $734,000 in the second quarter, according to the Detroit News -- about three times as much as Durant.
5) The New York Times
gives the Virginia Senate race front-page treatment
, spotlighting the attempts from both the Kaine and Allen campaigns to win over voters who back the other party's presidential nominee. There won't be many split-ticket voters in Virginia, but most strategists believe there would be more Romney voters who would vote for Tim Kaine
, rather than Obama voters supporting George Allen
4) There's no intraparty love for Maine Senate Democratic nominee Cynthia Dill
. The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee has been virtually silent on the race, quietly supporting independent Angus King
. So she wrote DSCC chair Patty Murray a letter
: "With this historic opportunity to turn Maine's red seat blue and ensure a progressive agenda this November, the DSCC must not abandon its principles and supporters." The DSCC's response: They're monitoring the race.
King is the heavy favorite in the contest. A Critical Insights Poll conducted earlier this month showed King winning 55 percent of the vote, with Dill only at 7 percent.
3) Great read from the NYT's John Harwood
, on the proliferation of campaign ads featuring journalists
. Harwood notes that while campaigns once avoided using such footage to avoid controversy and legal threats, they're now much more confident that there's nothing that reporters uncomfortable with the practice can do about it.
There's also a bonus must-watch bit of footage linked
in the story: Harwood appearing in a campaign ad for Robert F. Kennedy
during the 1968 presidential campaign.
2) Mitt Romney
's campaign is going on air with a 30-second version of the Web video that went viral Thursday
. It contrasts Obama's comments that entrepreneurs aren't entirely responsible for their own successes with the comments of small business owner Jack Gilchrist
, who argues "It's time we had somebody who believes in us, someone who believes that achievement should be rewarded, not punished." It's a powerful spot that crystallizes the Romney campaign's message this week.
Meanwhile, Priorities USA is up with a new ad, in Spanish,
attacking Romney for not releasing his tax returns.
1) And the Boston Globe
is still pushing hard
over Romney's precise role at Bain Capital since leaving his full-time job to run the Olympics.
From the paper: "Interviews with a half-dozen of Romney's former partners and associates, as well as public records, show that he was not merely an absentee owner during this period. He signed dozens of company documents, including filings with regulators on a vast array of Bain's investment entities. And he drove the complex negotiations over his own large severance package, a deal that was critical to the firm's future without him, according to his former associates.
Indeed, by remaining CEO and sole shareholder, Romney held on to his leverage in the talks that resulted in his generous 10-year retirement package, according to former associates."
Steven Shepard contributed.