The DCCC added 11 districts to their target list, bringing the total to 91 seats. Districts left open by Reps. Pat Tiberi (OH-12), Lou Barletta (PA-11), Charlie Dent (PA-15) and Lamar Smith (TX-21) were among the news additions. National Democrats also set their sights on Rep. Paul Ryan (WI-01), Mia Love (UT-04), Pete King (NY-02), Trey Hollingsworth (IN-09), Tom McClintock (CA-04), Cathy McMorris Rodgers (WA-05) and Glenn Grothman (WI-06).
The committee also released an internal generic ballot poll (Oct. 3-10; 2000 RVs) showing Democrats leading 48 percent to the GOP’s 37 percent and head-to-heads that show incumbents losing to challengers.
Rep. Barbara Comstock (R-VA 10) trails a generic Democrat by 9 points, 39 percent to 48 percent.
Rep. Claudia Tenney (R-NY 22) is behind state Assemblyman Anthony Brindisi (D) by 2 points, 43 percent to 45 percent.
Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA 49) lags behing a generic Democrat by 10 points, 41 percent to 51 percent.
Rep. Rod Blum (R-IA 01) loses to state Rep. Abby Finkenauer (D) by 2 points, 41 percent to 43 percent. (release)
TAX REFORM. “The Senate bill differs significantly from the House version approved by the Ways and Means committee on Thursday … The Senate completely eliminates the valuable tax break, which allows taxpayers to deduct state and local income, sales and property taxes. The House bill would still allow individuals to deduct property taxes up to $10,000. Some House Republicans have already rejected that limitation as too strict and the Senate’s complete elimination could further spook those members, whose political future could be imperiled if they pass a plan that actually increases their constituents’ tax bills.”
Rep. Leonard Lance (R-NJ 07): “Every state should be a winner in tax reform, and in my opinion, that would not be the case if the Senate view were to prevail. I’m not voting for the $10,000, so I’m certainly not voting for zero.” (New York Times)
BELLWHETHER COUNTY. From Dave Wasserman of the Cook Political Report: “In a nation increasingly composed of landslide counties — places that voted for one side or the other by at least 20 percentage points — Howard County, Iowa (population 9,332), stands out as the only one of America’s 3,141counties that voted by more than 20 percentage points for Obama in 2012 and Trump in 2016. Democrats can’t credibly blame Howard County’s enormous 41-point swing in just four years on a last-minute letter to Congress, voter ID laws or Russia-sponsored Facebook ads. … Contrary to the “Trump Country” stereotype, Howard County isn’t drowning in manufacturing job losses, high unemployment or an opioid crisis. … The main gripe? Stagnant wages — and a gnawing feeling that people have been working harder and for longer hours while other parts of the country reaped much bigger rewards during the recovery from the Great Recession.” (FiveThirtyEight)
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"Former veteran Senate Intelligence Committee staffer James Wolfe pleaded guilty on Monday to one count of making false statements to federal agents." Wolfe was indicted "earlier this year on three counts of making false statements to the FBI, which questioned him about his contacts with reporters ... According to the indictment, in October 2017 Wolfe gave a reporter ... information about an unidentified man who had been served with a subpoena to appear before the Senate Intelligence Committee. The reporter published stories about the subpoena and the man's upcoming testimony in a closed committee hearing."
"The federal deficit widened last year amid higher government spending—including rising interest costs on the debt and increased funding for the military—and flat revenues following last year’s tax cut. The government ran a $779 billion deficit in the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30, the Treasury Department said Monday. That is the largest annual deficit in six years and 17% higher than the $666 billion deficit in fiscal 2017. As a share of gross domestic product, the deficit totaled 3.9%, up from 3.5% a year earlier and the third consecutive increase."
"Saudi Arabia has given Turkey permission to search its Istanbul consulate Monday afternoon, a Turkish diplomatic source told CNN. Saudi officials first granted permission for the consulate to be searched last week, but later asked for a delay and no search has yet taken place. Turkish officials also want to search the nearby consul general's residence, and have repeatedly accused the Saudis of failing to cooperate with their investigation."