CA GOV: The California Secretary of State’s office said businessman John Cox’s (R) ballot proposal “to overhaul California’s Legislature by adding thousands of elected officials … he failed to collect enough signatures. … Cox said it was ‘too early’ to draw any conclusions, adding that his team planned to go into some of the counties and review the signatures that were rejected.” (Sacramento Bee)
“The three top Republican candidates shared a debate stage for the first time Tuesday and spent more time shredding each other personally than taking stands on policy.” Former Rep. Doug Ose (R): “I haven’t spent six years in the Legislature doing nothing, and didn’t move here from Illinois without knowledge of California.” State Assemblyman Travis Allen: “I have never lost an election. … These candidates here are both three-time losers.” Cox: “We’re not going to change California with more politicians.” (San Francisco Chronicle) The Republicans for the first time also assailed Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) and former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa (D) “as immoral philanderers in a debate Tuesday, pillorying the rivals over their past affairs.” (Sacramento Bee)
GA GOV: Secretary of State Brian Kemp (R) “collected about $1.2 million this fundraising period, amassing roughly $2.9 million from 2,400 donors since he jumped in the race last year. He reported Wednesday he has $2.1 million of that cash haul on hand.” (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)
Former state Sen. Hunter Hill (R) “will report Wednesday that he raised $1.1 million this period and has amassed about $2.2 million since he jumped in the race in April. He’s got … about $1.5 million … on hand.” (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)
Former state House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams (D) advisers said they “worry that if the primary runs its full course, it will get harder for the campaign to go into a potential general election at full strength. That’s in part because of a big gamble by Abrams: running an expensive, aggressive field campaign almost from the very start.” (BuzzFeed)
ID GOV: State Rep. Paulette Jordan (D) “is giving up her seat in the Idaho Statehouse to focus on her run for governor.” (KIVI)
NY GOV: America Rising PAC “on Tuesday unveiled a Web site attacking” Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) “over the ‘pay-to-play’ allegations against Joseph Percoco, who’s accused of pocketing more than $300,000 in bribes from companies doing business with the state.” The site, thirdcuomoson.com is “in reference to Cuomo’s likening of Percoco to a brother during his 2015 eulogy for … the late Gov. Mario Cuomo (D).”
TX GOV: “Gov. Greg Abbott (R) is spending about $1 million a month on his re-election. … [N]early 96 percent of Abbott’s new contributions came from Texas. The average donation was $390, he said.” (Dallas Morning News)
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Former Trump campaign adviser Rick Gates is expected to plead guilty to a raft of new tax and fraud charges filed against him by special counsel Robert Mueller on Thursday. Gates is expected to cooperate with Mueller's investigation.
Robert Mueller announced new charges against former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort advisor Rick Gates. "The new indictment contains 32 counts, including tax charges." The pair had been indicted on 12 charges in October. Since then, Gates's attorneys have asked to be excused from the case.
The FBI has reported that it failed to respond to a warning from "a person close to" Nikolas Cruz, the teen accused of killing 17 people at Parkland High School on Thursday. "It was the second time the FBI apparently failed to follow up on Cruz." On the first occasion, it failed to properly investigate Cruz after it was reported to them that he left the following comment on a Youtube video: "Im going to be a school shooter."
Florida Governor Rick Scott called on FBI Director Christopher Wray to resign following revelations that the FBI had failed to adequately investigate multiple warnings about Parkland High School gunman Nikolas Cruz. “The FBI’s failure to take action against this killer is unacceptable,'" said Scott. '...We constantly promote ‘see something, say something,’ and a courageous person did just that to the FBI. And the FBI failed to act.'" According to an FBI statement, the FBI failed to inform local offices of information regarding "Cruz's desire to kill people, erratic behavior, disturbing social media posts, as well as the potential of him conducting a school shooting."