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Chamber to Back Tillis in NC SEN; Koch-Tied Group Runs Ads in Colo., Ia.; MS SEN Air War Ramps Up Chamber to Back Tillis in NC SEN; Koch-Tied Group Runs Ads in Colo., I...

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Chamber to Back Tillis in NC SEN; Koch-Tied Group Runs Ads in Colo., Ia.; MS SEN Air War Ramps Up

Wake-Up Call! is Hotline's daily morning briefing on campaigns and elections. Click here to subscribe.


  • In NC SEN, the Chamber of Commerce will endorse state House Speaker Thom Tillis (R). "One source with knowledge of the situation said the Chamber also plans to air TV ads on his behalf, a big boost for a candidate who already holds a sizable fundraising advantage over his intra-party foes." (Hotline reporting)
  • Also in NC SEN, Sen. Kay Hagan (D) raised $2.8 million in the first quarter and has $8.3 million cash on hand, while Tillis raised $1.3 million and has $1.3 million cash on hand. (Roll Call) Physician Greg Brannon (R) "announced to his supporters that he raised $500,000" in the first quarter. (Raleigh News & Observer)
  • Freedom Partners, a nonprofit group "with ties to the Koch brothers, is launching a television ad buy targeting Democrats in" CO SEN and IA SEN. The ads attack Sen. Mark Udall (D-CO) and Rep. Bruce Braley (D-IA) for supporting Obamacare while accepting contributions from the health care industry. "The buy is $1.1 million split between the two states, and it will run for three weeks statewide beginning on Tuesday." (Daily Caller)
  • In CO SEN, Udall raised $2 million in the first quarter and has $5.9 million cash on hand. (AP)
  • In LA SEN, Sen. Mary Landrieu (D) raised $1.8 million in the first quarter and has $7.5 million cash on hand. (New Orleans Times-Picayune)
  • In MI SEN, former Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land (R) raised $1.5 million, including a a $100,000 personal contribution, in the first quarter. (Detroit News)
  • In MS SEN, Sen. Thad Cochran (R) released a new statewide TV ad attacking state Sen. Chris McDaniel (R) for saying in an interview he didn't know if he would have supported disaster relief following Hurricane Katrina. (Politico)
  • Two outside groups are also launching new MS SEN TV ads. Club for Growth Action is attacking Cochran for voting with Presidents Jimmy Carter, George H.W. Bush and Barack Obama throughout his career. "Thad Cohran: Five decades in Washington is enough, the narrator says to close the spot, which is backed by a "six-figure buy" and will run statewide on broadcast and cable. (release) Meanwhile, Senate Conservative Action, the super PAC arm of Senate Conservatives Fund, is running a positive ad showing footage from McDaniel's campaign announcement speech. "We will not compromise on the United States Constitution," McDaniel says in the spot, which is backed by a $340,000 buy. (release)
  • In NH SEN, former Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown (R) "will formally launch his candidacy ... on Thursday" and former Gov. John Sununu (R) "says he'll be there to introduce him." (New Hampshire Journal)
  • In the OK SEN Special, Rep. James Lankford (R) raised "more than" $800,000 in the first quarter and has "more than" $ 1 million cash on hand. Former state House Speaker T.W. Shannon (R) "said his campaign had surpassed $800,000 in 60 days" in an email to supporters on Monday. (Tulsa World)
  • In OR SEN, physician Monica Wehby (R) raised $590,000 in first quarter. (Portland Oregonian)
  • In SC SEN, pastor Det Bowers (R) raised "over $417,000 in the two months since he made a late entry into the ... primary in February." (CNN)
  • In the FL-19 Special, state Sen. Lizbeth Benacquisto (R) launched a new TV ad in which she says she "won't back down" in the face of "false, negative ads" her "opponents and liberal interests" are running against her. "The entire remaining Benacquisto television budget of “nearly six-figures” will go toward the ad." (Roll Call) Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee (R) also endorsed Benacquisto. (release)
  • In MI-03, businessman Brian Ellis (R) is launching a new TV ad attacking Rep. Justin Amash (R) for voting against a balanced budget amendment and banning gender selection abortions. (Hotline reporting)
  • In MI-08, retiring Rep. Mike Rogers (R) endorsed former state Senate Majority Leader Mike Bishop (R). (Roll Call)
  • In NC-07, New Hanover County Commissioner Woody White (R) launched a new biographical TV ad on Monday. (Roll Call) Huckabee also endorsed White. (Raleigh News & Observer)
  • In NM-02, attorney Rocky Lara (D) raised "more than" $300,000 in the first quarter and has "more than" $440,000 cash on hand. (release)
  • In WV-03, House Majority PAC (D) launched a new TV ad attacking state Sen. Evan Jenkins (R) for trying "to delay a water safety bill" designed to prevent chemical spills. The spot, which is backed by a $65,000 buy, goes on to attempt to tie Jenkins to the Koch brothers. (Hotline reporting)
  • In FL GOV, Gov. Rick Scott (R) is launching a new TV ad attacking former Gov. Charlie Crist (D) over Obamacare. "Scott's independent re-election campaign committee, Let's Get To Work, ... has made a $2 million TV time purchase to air" the spot. (Orlando Sentinel)
  • In GA GOV, Gov. Nathan Deal (R) raised $84,000 "in the 11 days after the [legislative] session ended" and has $3.9 million cash on hand. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)
  • In PA GOV, Treasurer Rob McCord (D) released a new TV ad highlighting that he has fought Gov. Tom Corbett (R) on issues like privatizing the lottery and natural gas. (


Hotline editors weigh in on the stories that drive the day


• The Chamber of Commerce's expected endorsement of North Carolina Senate candidate Thom Tillis is the latest sign that the party's establishment has strongly coalesced around the front-runner for the party's May primary. With another round of TV ad buys on his behalf, expect Tillis to become not only a favorite to finish first in the primary, but clear the 40% threshold necessary to avoid a costly and time-consuming run-off. -- Alex Roarty

• Why is avoiding that runoff so important? Both Tillis and Hagan released updated financial information Monday, showing Tillis with more than $1 million in the bank and Hagan with over $8 million saved. Hagan's campaign has been battered, but it has a big cash reserve, and the longer Tillis has to keep sparring within the GOP, the more he'll have to rely on outside help to define himself. -- Scott Bland  

• Republican operatives say Rep. Vance McAllister, who was reportedly caught on tape kissing a staffer, may have attracted at least four Republican challengers, including his chief of staff, looking to either replace him if he resigns or take advantage of his bad publicity and beat him in a primary. But not all scandals are created equal: According to a Quinnipiac poll fortuitously released today, voters say they are less concerned about lawmakers' infidelity than they are about perceived abuses of power. Apparently McAllister can take solace in the fact that he's not in the same boat as, say, Chris Christie. -- Jack Fitzpatrick


    "An Exeter (UK) cinema was forced to close due to flooding -- on the same day 'Noah' opened on the big-screen nationwide." (Exeter Express & Echo)



  • Rep. Vance McAllister (R-LA), "who campaigned for office last fall as a devout Christian and devoted husband and father, was caught in video surveillance two days before Christmas passionately embracing and kissing one of his congressional aides." In a statement issued Monday, McAllister said: "There's no doubt I've fallen short and I'm asking for forgiveness. ... "From day one, I've always tried to be an honest man. I ran for [C]ongress to make a difference and not to just be another politician. I don't want to make a political statement on this, I would just simply like to say that I'm very sorry for what I've done." (Ouachita Citizen)
  • On Monday night, "McAllister said he plans to stand for re-election next fall 'unless there is an outcry for me not to serve, and so far there has been an outpouring of support, not for my actions, but for me to continue to represent the people.'" (Monroe News Star)
  • "Maryland's minimum wage will rise to $10.10 by July 2018 under a bill granted final passage by state lawmakers Monday. The measure goes to" Gov. Martin O'Malley (D) "for his promised signature. ... Maryland became the second state this year pass a hike to $10.10, the mark set by Democrats across the country seeking to address income inequality. Connecticut approved that increase in March." (Baltimore Sun)
  • "Possession of small amounts of marijuana will no longer be a crime in Maryland under a law passed Monday and sent to ... O'Malley for his expected signature." (Baltimore Sun)
  • "More than two decades after leaving Marquette University without finishing up his degree," Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) "wants to earn his diploma. A spokeswoman said the governor wants to finish his college degree through the University of Wisconsin-System's innovative online course offerings. For now, however, Walker is still waiting for the right degree program to be added to the lineup of the still fledgling program." (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)
  • Scott Brown "was so busy picking a new state that he forgot to pick a party. Whoever filled out Brown's formal statement of organization for his campaign exploratory committee left blank the small gray box asking for the candidate's party affiliation." (Washington Post)
  • Longshot MT SEN candidate Champ Edmunds (R) "hasn't raised much campaign cash so far -- but on Sunday, he found $12,000 cash in an abandoned backpack, outside his Missoula church." Edmunds: "That's what I thought it was: Somebody left some money for my campaign. And the other deacon (at the church) said, 'Hey, what are you talking about? That money was left for the church!" (Helena Independent Record)
  • Ohio state Sen. Nina Turner (D), "who is running against" Secretary of State Jon Husted (R) "this fall, sent an email from her campaign last week encouraging supporters to register and vote early in the upcoming May 6 primary. To return a completed absentee ballot, the email tells supporters they can 'can drop it off at your local polling place or mail it in to your local Board of Elections.' However, the first part is incorrect. Absentee ballots may only be returned to county boards of elections, not to the local schools, churches and public buildings that constitute most 'local polling' locations on Election Day." (Columbus Dispatch)
  • Bill Clinton and George W. Bush watched the NCAA men's basketball championship game together in Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones's box at AT&T Stadium. (Dallas Morning News)


Jeb Bush's border problem has Stephen Colbert saying goodbye


  • The House and Senate both return at 10 a.m.
  • Attorney General Eric Holder testifies at a House Judiciary Committee hearing on Justice Department oversight. (Rayburn House Office Building, 10 a.m.)
  • President Obama delivers remarks at an event marking "Equal Pay Day" where he will announce new executive actions to strengthen enforcement of equal pay laws for women. (White House, 11:45 a.m.)
  • Secretary of State John Kerry delivers remarks at the annual meeting of the President's Interagency Task Force to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons. (White House, 4 p.m.)
  • Vice President Biden meets with Prime Minister Milo Djukanovic of Montenegro. (White House, 4 p.m.)
  • Have an event for us to highlight? Email us!


  • Every U.S senator from Kansas has been a member of the Republican Party since World War II.
  • The winner is Mark Henson, and here's his NCAA Tournament-themed Swizzle Challenge: "Ten years ago, for the first time in history, the UConn men's and women's NCAA basketball teams won the Big Dance, a feat the women's team hopes to repeat tonight after the men's team defeated Kentucky. What team did the UConn women beat in the 2004 championship, and which member of Congress represents the district where the school is located?" The 3rd correct e-mailer gets to submit the next question.



"I think I'd have the same attitude ... did I not sleep with a community college professor every night. ... Oh, the same one, the same one." -- Biden, speaking at an American Association of Community Colleges convention in Washington (CNN)


"I asked Jill to marry me five times. Literally, five times." -- Biden (CNN)

Adam Wollner, Editor


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