The NDRC will target governor races in Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, as it works to prepare for the next round of redistricting. It is also watching governor contests in Maine, New Hampshire, and South Carolina. (release)
The NDRC “has settled on a strategy to contest a combination of governorships, legislative seats and more obscure state offices to chip away at Republicans’ sweeping control of the redistricting process.” Former Attorney General Eric Holder said “that the group was chiefly determined to deny Republicans so-called trifectas in state governments—places where a single party controls the governorship and an entire legislature.”
“Holder said the group has raised more than $16 million out of a previously announced $30 million goal, but it has not disclosed how much cash it has on hand.”
“Holder said he would campaign aggressively himself in some of these races, beginning with an election for the Wisconsin Supreme Court this spring. Both he and Mr. Obama will focus heavily on mobilizing African-American voters.”
“The group’s list of high-priority states includes most of the critical states in presidential elections. [Former President] Obama, who has made redistricting a focus of his attention since leaving office, plans to visit some of those states in 2018, and Mr. Holder reviewed his strategy with the former president in Washington on Monday.” (New York Times)
Obama will campaign in those targeted states as well, Holder told reporters at the Christian Science Monitor breakfast Wednesday, calling achieving partisan parity in redistricting Obama’s “chief political activity in his post-presidency.” But Holder said neither he nor Obama will endorse in primaries.
NDRC Executive Director Kelly Ward said “millions” of its current fundraising has come from small-dollar online donors.
Holder also said the NDRC will be bringing cases on maps “in at least three Southern states” to complement the five lawsuits it has pending. (Hotline reporting)
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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."