Entries in Re-Election (9)


Michele Bachmann Won't Seek Fifth Term in House

Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Michele Bachmann, a Minnesota Republican and Tea Party supporter, will not seek re-election to the House of Representatives in 2014, the congresswoman announced in a video posted to YouTube.

In the video, Bachmann, a four-term member of the House of Representatives, said that the decision not to run for re-election had nothing to do with the recent investigation of her campaign finances during the 2013 Presidential campaign.

"Looking forward after the completion of my term -- my future is full, limitless and my passions for American remains," Bachmann said, before adding that she would consider a number of future opportunities that might allow her to help "save and protect our great nation for future generations."

Specifically, Bachmann explained that she believes "eight years is long enough for an individual to serve as representative for a specific congressional district."

What is clear is that Bachmann's decision not to run is not related to an inability to raise campaign funds. Her campaign fund had nearly $2 million as of this March, according to Federal Election Commission filings. By comparison, her would-be challenger, Democrat Jim Graves, has just $36,000 cash on hand at this point.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Christie Hauls In More Than $2 Million Since Announcing Re-Election Effort

BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/GettyImages(TRENTON, N.J.) -- New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who blasted members of his own party Wednesday for abandoning a $60 billion relief bill for superstorm Sandy victims, had a fruitful fundraising period, raising more than $2.1 million since he announced his re-election effort Nov. 26.

The campaign pulled in the cash in 36 days and without a single fundraising event. Mike Duhaime, the spokesman for the campaign, wouldn’t comment on specific breakdowns of the haul, but said it was “a lot of different people, both small donors and large all over the country,” including “all 21 counties in New Jersey.”

“The vast, vast majority came from within New Jersey, but there were [donors] from around the country,” Duhaime said. “We feel great about it, but it was pretty much organic. Some came from the Web, some from word of mouth.”

Duhaime added that the campaign sent out a small amount of direct mail to donors who gave to Christie during his 2009 campaign. It’s notable that the funds came in during the holiday season and when the state is still reeling from Sandy, which slammed into New Jersey Oct. 29.

The specific breakdown of the funds will be revealed when the next Federal Election Commission reports are filed Jan. 15.

By way of comparison, Christie’s entire 2009 campaign spent $12 million, although it’s important to note that he now enjoys the power of incumbency and a political machine in place since 2009.

This campaign has not only had no fundraisers but has only had one specific campaign event. Christie received the endorsement of the Laborers International Union of North America last month. The 20,000-member group backed Democrat Jon Corzine in the 2009 campaign.

Unlike other states, New Jersey does not keep an open account for the governor’s campaign, Duhaime says, so as soon as Christie officially “filled out the paperwork and announced 'I’m going to run,' dozens of people wanted to help.”

As for Christie’s bashing Wednesday of House Speaker John Boehner and House Republicans for pulling a vote on Sandy funding at the last minute, Duhaime says money is “coming in every day at this point,” but there’s no breakdown since the governor described the House’s adjourning without voting on the relief package as “disappointing and disgusting.”

Christie, 50, who is considered a possible 2016 Republican presidential candidate, said there was “only one group to blame, the Republican Party and Speaker Boehner.”

Spokesman Duhaime said, “Good governing is good politics and yesterday you saw a display of what a great governor is. If that makes more people want him to stay governor that is a very good thing, but that’s just him doing his job.”

During the 2008 campaign, Christie was a fundraising machine for both GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney and the Republican Party, traveling across the country to try to haul in cash for their effort. It’s something another Northeastern Republican, Rep. Peter King of New York, mentioned Wednesday in his own disgust about the lack of a vote on the bill.

“I’m just saying, these people have no problem finding New York – these Republicans – when they’re trying to raise money,” King said on CNN.  “They raise millions of dollars in New York City and New Jersey, they send Gov. Christie around the country raising millions of dollars for them.

“I’m saying, anyone from New York and New Jersey who contributes one penny to the Republican Congressional Campaign Committee should have their head examined. I would not give one penny to these people based on what they did to us last night.”

Only one Democrat has announced a challenge to Christie: State Sen. Barbara Buono, who has been in state government for 20 years. There had been speculation that Newark Mayor Cory Booker would jump into the race, but he announced a run for U.S. Senate instead.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Exit Polls: Obama's Winning Coalition of Women and Nonwhites

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- A coalition of women and nonwhites helped re-elect President Obama to a second term Tuesday night.

Obama has always performed better with women than with men, and with nonwhites than with whites.  But on Tuesday night, those numbers were so much in his favor that they built Obama a powerful firewall against a dropoff in support from white men and independent voters.

Nonwhite voters turned out to vote in higher numbers than ever.  They made up 21 percent of all voters.  In 1996, they were just 10 percent.

That new bloc was evident in Florida, the perennial swing state that was thought to be in Mitt Romney's corner.  Hispanics came out in force for Obama, in greater numbers than in 2008 when Obama beat John McCain among Hispanics in Florida 57 to 42 percent.  On Tuesday, he beat Romney among Hispanics 60 to 39 percent.

And as the country tinted blue for the second presidential election in a row, it also got a little less white.

White voters made up only 72 percent of the electorate in this election, according to exit polls.  That's still a majority, but it's the lowest in exit polls dating from 1976.

Romney won the white vote handily, 58 to 40 percent, the biggest lead for a Republican since 1988.

Romney's most reliant bloc the whole campaign was white men.  He led by 25 points with them on Tuesday.  But in 1976, white men were 46 percent of voters.  Today, they're at a new low, 34 percent.

If white women had stayed in Romney's camp, those swing states -- Ohio, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and New Hampshire -- might have moved into his column.  Instead, Obama led among women by 12 points, nearly identical to his lead among women four years ago.

In Florida, Obama led Romney by just two points among independents, according to the exit polls.  In 2008, that number was seven.

In Ohio, Romney leads Obama by 10 points among independents -- a significant number considering that in 2008 Obama had an 8 point lead over McCain in Ohio among the same nonaligned voters.  But women came to Obama's rescue, keeping him competitive.  Exit polls showed Obama with a 12 point lead among women, more than his 8 point lead in 2008.

In Wisconsin, a state that Romney needed badly, Obama's one-time strength among independents appeared to be neutralized.  He won independents there by 19 points in 2008, but preliminary polls now show that Romney fought to a draw with them.  However, Obama prevailed among young voters, and other voters there said they favored the auto bailout by 51 to 40 percent, an issue that the president held over Romney in the Midwest.

Obama lost just a few independents in Iowa, but more than made up for it by winning over women, who picked the president over Romney by a double-digit margin.

In Virginia, Romney won independents by 53 to 41 percent.  Four years ago, Obama and McCain tied among independents in the commonwealth.

Just like white men, independents make up less of the electorate than they did four years ago.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


At High-Priced Fundraiser, Obama Plans to Lay Out ‘Specific Agenda’ for 2nd Term

JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/GettyImages(NEW YORK) -- President Obama Monday night hinted that his re-election campaign will transition to a more positive and forward-looking message by the end of next month and into the fall.

Obama told a group of high-dollar donors at a New York City fundraiser that he intends to spend, “a lot of time talking about the specific agenda that I intend to pursue in the second term.”

Obama has faced criticism from some members of his party and key constituencies for not laying out clearly enough what his priorities will be if he’s re-elected. He has also taken heat for running a predominantly negative, anti-Romney TV ad campaign in battleground states -- something his critics say is because Obama can't run on his accomplishments in office, what with the economy he promised to turn around still gasping.

“This phase of the campaign I think you’re seeing a lot of negative ads and a lot of contrast ads, although when people start saying how terrible it is I just have to remind them  to take a look at what Jefferson and Adams had to say about each other, and democracy has always been pretty rough and pretty messy,” Obama said.

“There is going to be, though, as the summer winds down and we get into the fall, the need for voters in these swing states to know not just what they’re voting against but also what they’re voting for,” he said. “And so we’ll be spending a lot of time talking about the specific agenda that I intend to pursue in the second term, which I think will make sure that this economy is going full guns.

“So the upshot is if the election were held today, I think it would be close, but I think we’d win.  And we now have 99 days left.  If I can say that every single day for the next 99 days, then we will be able to embark on the next phase of this journey.”

Obama spoke before 60 supporters who paid $40,000 apiece to mingle with the president inside the NoMad Hotel in Manhattan. The event was expected to raise more than $2.4 million for the 2012 campaign, according to figures provided by the Obama campaign.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Obama Approval in Swing States Took Hit in 2011

SAUL LOEB/AFP/G​etty Images(WASHINGTON) -- No matter how much President Obama’s team of re-election strategists tries to spin it, voters across the country soured on Obama in 2011, compounding a decline in his job approval ratings that have him deeply under water in his bid for a second term.

A new Gallup survey of Obama’s average approval rating in each state through 2011 found the president sustained year-over-year declines in all but three, with an average overall approval of just 44 percent.

Perhaps most troublesome to Obama’s re-election campaign were the declines sustained in 12 general election battlegrounds.

Support for Obama eroded across the board, with fewer voters than in 2010 approving of his performance on average in Nevada (-5.7 points), Colorado (-4.8 points), Ohio (-5.3 points), Pennsylvania (-1.3), Florida (-2.2) and New Hampshire (-2.6 points), among others.

Only 41.3 percent of voters in Nevada approved of Obama last year, while 40.4 percent approved in Colorado, 42.7 percent approved in Ohio, 45 percent approved in Pennsylvania, 43.6 percent approved in Florida and just 38.7 percent approved in New Hampshire. The poll’s margin of error is plus or minus one percentage point.

“His approval rating is a key indicator of his electoral vote chances, but it alone will not dictate his success in a given state’s vote,” wrote Gallup’s Jeffrey Jones in a blog post on the survey.

“The electorate in each state represents a smaller share of the population than the larger pool of all state residents on which his approval rating is based, so turnout among his supporters and opponents will be important,” he said. “Also, state residents’ electoral choice will be shaped in part by the choice voters have between Obama and his Republican opponent, and potential third-party candidates.”

The president stayed above the 50-percent mark in 10 states plus the District of Columbia, according to Gallup.

Obama remained most popular in the District, where he averaged 81.1 percent approval last year, followed by his native Hawaii, where 56.1 percent of voters said they approved of the president’s job.

The mid-Atlantic and New England states of Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, Vermont, Delaware, and New Jersey – traditionally Democratic strongholds — had above-average approval ratings for Obama.

The president’s approval rating fared worse last year in the conservative western states of Utah (28.6 percent), Idaho (29.3 percent), and Oklahoma (30.3 percent).

He only gained ground with voters in three states — Wyoming, Connecticut and Maine.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Romney Camp Calls Obama Re-Election Strategy 'Disgraceful'

Darren McCollester/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- The Romney campaign issued a fiery response to a Politico article published Tuesday morning that reported President Barack Obama’s re-election campaign will work to “destroy” Romney in “a ferocious personal assault” on Romney’s “character and business background.”

“It is disgraceful that President Obama’s campaign has launched his re-election with the stated goal to ‘kill’ his opponent with an onslaught of negative and personal attacks,” said Romney’s campaign manager Matt Rhoades in a written statement.

“President Obama will say and do desperate things to hold onto power because he knows he has failed. Neither despicable threats, nor President Obama’s billion dollar negative campaign, will put Americans back to work, save their homes, or restore their hopes. On November 6, 2012, this will change,” Rhoades said.

The Politico article quotes “aides and advisors” to President Obama who say their strategy is “grounded in the early state expectation that the former Massachusetts governor is the likely GOP nominee.”

“The onslaught would have two aspects,” reports Politico. “The first is personal: Obama’s re-elect will portray the public Romney as inauthentic, unprincipled and, in a word used repeatedly by Obama’s advisers in about a dozen interviews, ‘weird.’”

And one source described by Politico as a “prominent Democratic strategist aligned with the White House,” says in the article, “Unless things change and Obama can run on accomplishments, he will have to kill Romney.”

In addition to Rhoades' statement, Romney’s senior campaign advisor Eric Ferhnstrom tweeted a link to the Politico article with the comment, “Obama sees Romney as biggest threat, goes from 'hope and change’ to ‘kill and destroy.’”

Romney has refrained from engaging his GOP counterparts in negative campaigning so far, instead focusing all of his web videos and slams at President Obama.  In the past few days alone, Romney has remarked that Obama is “out of his depth when it comes to understanding how the private economy works” and, in commenting on the S&P downgrade said, “The president’s failure to put the nation’s fiscal and economic house in order has caused a massive loss of coincidence that resulted in an embarrassing downgrade.”

“In the Carter era, it was called ‘malaise,’” said Romney in the statement. “Under President Obama, it’s called meltdown.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


President Obama Revs Up Hometown Faithful

SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images(CHICAGO) -- President Obama returned home to Chicago Thursday night for a trio of fundraisers to kick-start his 2012 victory fund and lay out an early version of his re-election campaign theme, which contrasts his vision for America with that of Republicans.

“This is not my campaign.  This is your campaign,” the president told the enthusiastic crowd of about 2,300 at Chicago’s famous Navy Pier.

He reminded them to be excited about the future and invoked that familiar mantra -- “those three simple words we believe in as a people: ‘Yes we can.’”

Speaking just a few blocks from Grant Park, where he celebrated his victory on Election Night in 2008, and a few blocks from his re-election campaign headquarters, Obama said he wanted his base of operations back in Chicago because “you guys are the ones that got me started.”

The president ticked off a laundry list of legislative accomplishments from the first two years of his administration: passing health care reform, repealing "Don't Ask Don't Tell," and enhancing the nation’s security through agreements with key allies.

But while he noted that it was through compromise that lawmakers in Washington were able to reach an agreement to avoid a government shutdown, he mostly refrained from diving into the partisan battle raging back in Washington over the deficit and government spending.

Instead, Obama emphasized that Democrats and Republicans need to “build on compromise” but said he would not compromise on the vision he has for the country.

Off camera at the two earlier fundraisers, however, Obama delivered the political red meat.

“The speech I gave yesterday was not a partisan shot at the other side,” Obama said to supporters at N9NE Restaurant in Chicago.  “It was an attempt to clarify the choice that we have as a country right now.”

At the next event, the president reiterated what he told ABC News' George Stephanopoulos in Washington on Thursday -- that his speech Wednesday on the deficit and the budget plan Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) offered was not a “critique,” but was rather a “description.”

“Under their vision, we can’t invest in roads and bridges and broadband and high-speed rail.  I mean, we would be a nation of potholes,” the president said of the investment called for in the Republican budget plan.  “And our airports would be worse than places that we thought -- that we used to call the Third World, but who are now investing in infrastructure.”

Obama largely repeated the themes he laid out in his speech at George Washington University Wednesday and said the American people will have a clear choice over the course of this campaign.

“We can get our fiscal house in order, but we can do it in a way that is consistent with our values and who we are as a people.  Or we can decide to shrink our vision of what America is,” he said.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


It's Official: President Obama Running for Re-Election

SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- In a video message emailed to his list of 14 million supporters, President Obama announced Monday morning he's running for re-election and will file paperwork with the Federal Election Commission.

"Today, we are filing papers to launch our 2012 campaign," Obama told his supporters in the email.

The April 4 date has been picked for awhile, though always with the caveat that world events could push the date.

Amidst reports the announcement could come this week, Republicans have criticized the timing.

"I find it kind of ironic that the week we're trying to engage the president, the Democrats and the country with an honest debate about our budget, with real solutions to fix this country's problems and prevent a debt crisis, the president is launching his re-election campaign," Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wisc., told Fox News Sunday.

Yet, the president said he is launching the campaign now "because the politics we believe in does not start with expensive TV ads or extravaganzas, but with you -- with people organizing block-by-block, talking to neighbors, co-workers, and friends.  And that kind of campaign takes time to build."

"So even though I'm focused on the job you elected me to do, and the race may not reach full speed for a year or more, the work of laying the foundation for our campaign must start today," Obama added.

Obama will face a changed political map in 2012 from his election four years before.  Indiana seems a real reach now, and states such as Pennsylvania, Ohio, Colorado, Florida, Virginia, and North Carolina will be difficult.

Democrats say that demographic shifts strengthened their position in states they picked up in 2008 such as Nevada, Colorado, Iowa and New Mexico.  Without Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., on the ticket, Arizona will be in play.

Democratic officials also argue that recent events such as budget fights in states like Wisconsin have galvanized the Democratic base -- union members, women, and African-Americans.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


The Obama Re-Election Effort Begins

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- White House officials tell ABC News that President Obama is closing the political office of the White House as he re-tools and prepares for the 2012 re-election campaign.

These changes include:

* Having his 2012 re-election HQ in Chicago (a search for office space in downtown Chi-town has begun)
* Filing papers with the Federal Election Commission to formally declare his candidacy in March or so
* Assigning soon-to-be-leaving White House deputy chief of staff Jim Messina to be campaign manager
* Appointing as deputy campaign managers current White House social secretary Julianna Smoot (finance director of the 2008 campaign), and executive director of the Democratic National Committee Jennifer O’Malley Dillon who focused on battleground states in 2008. Smoot will focus on finances while Dillon focuses on field operations
* Moving current White House political director Patrick Gaspard to run the DNC (Tim Kaine will remain chairman) with the DNC assuming the role of the White House political office

Messina, in addition to looking for office space, has started talking to fundraisers and lining up consultants; outgoing White House senior adviser David Axelrod and outgoing press secretary Robert Gibbs will serve as two of those consultants.

White House senior adviser David Plouffe will be the key liaison between the campaign and the White House.

“There’s not going to be two dueling power centers,” Plouffe told the New York Times, which first reported the news. “The philosophy of this campaign will not be that the White House is somehow running the campaign. The people running the campaign are in charge of the campaign. That’s the way the president wants it. We’ll do it in a coordinated way, but they’re running this thing.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio