Republican Senate candidate Ed Gillespie, who helped co-found the American Crossroads super PAC with GOP strategist Karl Rove, won’t be relying on Rove’s group as his chief outside booster in his Virginia campaign.
He’s getting a super PAC of his own.
Allies of Gillespie, the former Republican National Committee chairman, have created the We Can Do Better PAC, National Journal has learned. A fact sheet distributed to donors lists veteran Republican strategist Paul Bennecke, a former political director of the Republican Governors Association, as the senior adviser to the super PAC.
Bennecke is familiar with Virginia’s political landscape. He ran a super PAC that spent about $5 million in a failed bid to return Republican George Allen to the Senate in 2012. Reached by phone, Bennecke declined to comment.
Senate candidates in 2014 across the nation are getting personalized super PACs ““ which can collect money in unlimited chunks. But the creation of a pro-Gillespie super PAC is particularly intriguing, considering his crucial role in the creation of American Crossroads, one of the biggest players in the 2012 elections.
Republican donors complained about American Crossroads and its nonprofit arm, Crossroads GPS, for spending hundreds of millions of dollars in 2012, only to lose most of the races in which they campaigned. In 2014, the Republican super PAC world has increasingly splintered, as state-specific entities have sprung up promising donors more targeted spending.
Gillespie is challenging incumbent Democratic Sen. Mark Warner this year. Filings show the We Can Do Better PAC was registered with the Federal Elections Commission by attorney Michael Adams one week after Gillespie entered the race in January.
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Foreign Policy takes a look at the future of mining the estimated "100,000 near-Earth objects—including asteroids and comets—in the neighborhood of our planet. Some of these NEOs, as they’re called, are small. Others are substantial and potentially packed full of water and various important minerals, such as nickel, cobalt, and iron. One day, advocates believe, those objects will be tapped by variations on the equipment used in the coal mines of Kentucky or in the diamond mines of Africa. And for immense gain: According to industry experts, the contents of a single asteroid could be worth trillions of dollars." But the technology to get us there is only the first step. Experts say "a multinational body might emerge" to manage rights to NEOs, as well as a body of law, including an international court.
Not to be outdone by Jeffrey Goldberg's recent piece in The Atlantic about President Obama's foreign policy, the New York Times Magazine checks in with a longread on the president's economic legacy. In it, Obama is cognizant that the economic reality--73 straight months of growth--isn't matched by public perceptions. Some of that, he says, is due to a constant drumbeat from the right that "that denies any progress." But he also accepts some blame himself. “I mean, the truth of the matter is that if we had been able to more effectively communicate all the steps we had taken to the swing voter,” he said, “then we might have maintained a majority in the House or the Senate.”
Ronald Reagan's children and political allies took to the media and Twitter this week to chide funnyman Will Ferrell for his plans to play a dementia-addled Reagan in his second term in a new comedy entitled Reagan. In an open letter, Reagan's daughter Patti Davis tells Ferrell, who's also a producer on the movie, “Perhaps for your comedy you would like to visit some dementia facilities. I have—I didn’t find anything comedic there, and my hope would be that if you’re a decent human being, you wouldn’t either.” Michael Reagan, the president's son, tweeted, "What an Outrag....Alzheimers is not joke...It kills..You should be ashamed all of you." And former Rep. Joe Walsh called it an example of "Hollywood taking a shot at conservatives again."
In a sign that she’s ready to put a longer-than-expected primary battle behind her, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (D) is no longer going on the air in upcoming primary states. “Team Clinton hasn’t spent a single cent in … California, Indiana, Kentucky, Oregon and West Virginia, while” Sen. Bernie Sanders’ (I-VT) “campaign has spent a little more than $1 million in those same states.” Meanwhile, Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Sanders’ "lone backer in the Senate, said the candidate should end his presidential campaign if he’s losing to Hillary Clinton after the primary season concludes in June, breaking sharply with the candidate who is vowing to take his insurgent bid to the party convention in Philadelphia.”