CO-02: “The Bernie Sanders-inspired advocacy group Our Revolution Boulder will be sizing up the candidates vying to replace” Rep. Jared Polis (D) “in Congress at a forum next weekend” and “at least four candidates running in the 2nd Congressional District have confirmed.” (Colorado Politics)
Meanwhile businessman Peter Yu (R) entered the race for the heavily Democratic seat. “Yu grew up in Loveland, where his family owned and operated a Chinese restaurant for nearly 20 years. Yu attended Fort Lewis College in Durango, and now has a career in business. Yu says his love of what the U.S. has offered his family, who emigrated to the United States, was the inspiration for his bid for the House seat.” (Loveland Reporter-Herald)
MA-03: The Republican field for retiring Rep. Niki Tsongas’ open seat has dwindled after Groton resident Scott Gunderson (R) and Fitchburg resident Lou Marino (R) dropped out. Gunderson threw his support to businessman Rick Green (R). (Lowell Sun)
MD-06: “Two wealthy candidates running for” Rep. John Delaney’s (D) open seat —2016 MD-08 candidate David Trone (D) and 2016 nominee Amie Hoeber (R)— “have both spent millions of their own money in previous campaigns and are now competing in a crowded race that may mark their last opportunity to claim a House seat for years.” Trone’s “money alone could put Maryland’s 6th District on a list of the most expensive House contests. But this year Trone isn’t the only candidate in the race with deep pockets. Hoeber’s husband, a former communications executive, contributed $3.2 million to a super PAC that supported her campaign for the 6th District last year when she ran against Delaney.” Her campaign consultant said she will again invest personal funds in the race. (Baltimore Sun)
OK-01: Rep. Jim Bridenstine (R) “must be renominated by President Donald Trump if he wishes to be administrator of NASA after the Senate opted Thursday night not to retain his nomination. “A Senate rule states all nominations are returned to the president at the end of a year unless the Senate agrees unanimously to waive the rule. At least one senator objected to the nominations of Bridenstine.” (NewsOK)
PA-01: Former Philadelphia Traffic Court Judge Willie Singletary (D) announced a run for Rep. Bob Brady’s (D) seat. “He resigned from local office amid a sexual harassment scandal and went to prison for lying to the FBI. His office was seen as so corrupt that voters abolished it. Now he wants a fresh start — in Congress.”
“Even though I made some mistakes, I’m not a mistake,” he says in his announcement video. “A federal jury in 2014 found Singletary not guilty of the public corruption charges but convicted him of lying to federal investigators. He was sentenced to 20 months in prison and was released in November 2016.” (Philadelphia Inquirer)
TN-07: “Ten mayors across the 7th congressional district announced their endorsement of” state Sen. Mark Green (R) “for Congress. Making up the first round of mayoral endorsements are mayors of the district’s two largest counties–Williamson and Montgomery.” Green also “recently announced the endorsements of … 100 conservative leaders across Tennessee, and a 147-member finance committee,” and he also has the support of Club for Growth. Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R) is running for Senate, leaving the seat open. (Clarksville Online)
TX-26: Labor company president Veronica Birkenstock, who is making a bid for Rep. Michael Burgess’ (R-26) seat, “runs Practical Employee Solutions, which facilitates H-2B visas for temporary foreign workers. And she has one very notable client: the Trump International Beach Resort in Miami.
“Practical Employee Solutions has filed H-2B visa applications for more than 100 temporary foreign workers to fill positions as maids, waiters, pool attendants, and bartenders at the resort. President Donald Trump makes liberal use of the program for his resorts and golf clubs, including his ‘winter White House’ at Mar-a-Lago, which in July put in applications for 78 new seasonal foreign workers. … Beyond helping facilitate the temporary work supply for Trump’s resorts, Birkenstock is also a Trump campaign fundraiser who was once listed as a member of the president’s Labor Department transition team.”
Birkenstock, who is running to Burgess’s right, “has cozied up to big names in Trumpworld, aligned herself with candidates like recently defeated” former Alabama state Supreme Court Justice Roy Moore (R), “and taken a ‘drain the swamp’ approach that emphasizes the incumbent’s 15 years in Washington and Congress’ general ineffectiveness. … But she also appears to recognize that her professional record may be a potential liability in a Republican primary. Birkenstock’s campaign website has an entire page devoted to debunking “myths” about H-2B visas, which grant foreigners a temporary stay in the U.S. to work seasonal, non-agricultural jobs.”
“While it’s unclear how involved Trump himself might be in boosting Birkenstock’s campaign, other PES’ clients have provided an early financial boost. Birkenstock received double the legal maximum from Donald Semmler, a former Marriott executive whose new company, Local Hotel Adventures LLC, has enlisted PES’ services to request H-2B visas for 18 foreign workers.” (The Daily Beast)
WI-01: Former White House advisor Steve Bannon (R) “has cut ties with” 2016 challenger Paul Nehlen (R), who is running against Speaker Paul Ryan. “Although Nehlen received favorable coverage from Breitbart in the past, the candidate’s recent slew of anti-Semitic remarks were the final straw for an organization accused of emboldening white supremacy. … Breitbart published a statement condemning the candidate’s behavior online.” (New York Observer)
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"The Justice Department inspector general referred its finding that former FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe repeatedly misled investigators who were examining a media disclosure to the top federal prosecutor in D.C. to determine whether McCabe should be charged with a crime." The referral occurred "after the inspector general concluded McCabe had lied to investigators or his own boss, then-FBI Director James B. Comey, on four occasions, three of them under oath." The referral does "not necessarily mean McCabe will be charge with a crime ... although the report alleged that one of McCabe’s lies 'was done knowingly and intentionally.'"
A federal appeals court in Chicago "upheld a nationwide injunction against making federal grant funding contingent on cooperation with immigration enforcement." The three Republican appointees ruled that the Trump administration "exceeded its legal authority in trying to implement the new conditions without approval from Congress ... One judge on the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals panel, Reagan appointee Daniel Manion, said he would narrow the injunction solely to protect Chicago. However, the two other judges assigned to the case said the nationwide injunction appeared to be justified."
Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley "decided Thursday to delay markup" on a bill to protect Special Counsel Robert Mueller until next week. But he remains steadfast in his support for a committee vote, despite Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's "pledge to kill it" if it gets to the floor.
North Korea has expressed its commitment to 'complete denuclearisation' of the Korean peninsula and is not seeking conditions, South Korean President Moon Jae-in said on Thursday. ... South Korea announced on Wednesday that it is considering how to change a decades-old armistice with North Korea into a peace agreement as it prepares for the North-South summit this month." The leaders of the respective countries are also expected to connect a phone line so they can communicate directly.
"California reached an agreement with the federal government that the state’s National Guard troops will deploy to the border to focus on fighting transnational gangs as well as drug and gun smugglers, Gov. Jerry Brown said. ... Brown said Wednesday he secured federal funding for terms similar to those outlined in last week’s proposed contract: The Guard cannot handle custody duties for anyone accused of immigration violations, build border barriers or have anything to do with immigration enforcement."