SC House Special Heads for Photo Finish; King Passes on IA SEN Bid; Parnell Will Run for Reelection

National Journal

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  • Pres. Obama told reporters in Costa Rica on Friday "he did not foresee a situation in which 'American boots on the ground in Syria would not only be good for America but also would be good for Syria,' adding that he had consulted with leaders in the Mideast who agree (New York Times).
  • SC-01 Special: In the final full day of campaigning before Tuesday's special election, Stephen Colbert sister Elizabeth Colbert Busch (D) "will appear with" Rep. Jim Clyburn (D) in Charleston, while ex-Gov. Mark Sanford (R) "will campaign" in Beaufort and Charleston Cos. (Hilton Head Island Packet). The Charleston Post and Courier endorsed Colbert Busch in Sunday's editions.
  • NJ GOV '13: State Sen. Barbara Buono's (D) "campaign war chest is so skimpy she may not generate enough contributions to secure all of her public matching funds for the primary or general election" (Newark Star-Ledger).
  • IA SEN: Rep. Steve King (R) announced in a tweet Friday night that he won't run. GOPers have said they expect a contested primary without King, with ex-U.S. Atty Matt Whitaker, Sec/State Matt Schultz, and state Sens. Joni Ernst and Brad Zaun as possibilities (Hotline reporting).
  • MN SEN: Lazard Middle Market co-CEO Mike McFadden (R) "appears poised to enter the race" against Sen. Al Franken (D) (Politico).
  • SC SEN: At this weekend's state GOP convo, "a few hundred delegates attempted to seat a ... chairman who would help them remove" Sen. Lindsey Graham (R) from the party (Washington Post).
  • SD SEN: Ex-Gov. Mike Rounds (R) was endorsed by ex-AR Gov. Mike Huckabee (R) on Friday, which "could help him in a potentially competitive" GOP primary (Roll Call).
  • IL-13: '12 nominee/'04/'06/'10 IL-15 nominee David Gill (D) was appointed by Gov. Pat Quinn (D) as the asst. dir. of the state Dept. of Public Health, "likely" taking Gill "out of the running" and helping to "clear the path" for Madison Co. Chief Judge Ann Callis (D) (Roll Call).
  • NY-13: Rep. Charles Rangel (D) "said it is too soon to discuss whether he'll seek reelection in 2014 — 'even with my wife'" (New York Daily News).
  • AK GOV: Gov. Sean Parnell (R) "announced Friday evening in Fairbanks" that he will run for reelection, passing on a SEN bid (Fairbanks Daily News-Miner).
  • MN GOV: Hennepin Co. Commis. Jeff Johnson (R) announced Sunday "he wants to replace" Gov. Mark Dayton (D) (Minneapolis Star Tribune).
  • WH '16: SC "got a taste of two very different political acts Friday night," as VP Biden addressed the state's J-J dinner, while Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), "wooed" GOPers at the Silver Elephant Dinner "with his talk of repealing" the health care law and "protecting constitutional rights" (ABC News). Meanwhile, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) "persuaded" FL state lawmakers Friday "to make a last-minute change eliminating" the state's early WH '16 primary (Miami Herald).


  • VA GOV '13: A new Washington Post poll of RVs, conducted 4/29-5/2, shows AG Ken Cuccinelli (R) leading '09 candidate/ex-DNC Chair Terry McAuliffe (D), 46-41%. Among LVs, Cuccinelli leads McAuliffe, 51-41% (release).


Hotline editors weigh in on the stories that drive the day

• Gabriel Gomez has gotten a fair share of press as "the next Scott Brown," but before he has a chance to claim the title, it could get stolen by another candidate: Colbert Busch. Bear with us: SC-01 is R+11; Massachusetts is D+10. And like Brown in '09-'10, Colbert Busch is running her upstart campaign in equal parts against the flaws of DC and the myriad flaws of her opponent.

• Rounds is looking less and less likely to draw a serious challenge from the right. This weekend, he nabbed an endorsement from Huckabee, which could help assuage wary tea partiers. And the Tea Party Express, calling him the "frontrunner," said it was considering a primary endorsement (though they talked to other potential candidates as well). Rounds may still face a primary challenger, but unless it's Kristi Noem -- and evidence is mounting that it won't be -- he appears to be in the clear.

• Scott Brown is starting to sound more and more like a NH SEN candidate. During his latest speech in the Granite State on Saturday, Brown went beyond simply playing coy about his level of interest in running for the Senate in the Granite State to directly criticizing Jeanne Shaheen for her health care vote.



  • Ex-U.S. Embassy Tripoli dep. chief of mission Greg Hicks "is expected to offer testimony at odds with what some American officials were saying" after the Sept. '12 attacks in Benghazi, "according to excerpts of an interview" with investigators (CBS News).
  • "I will refrain from using the term in the future because it's so charged" -- NC state Dem chair Randy Voller, who reportedly told the Dem Women of Guilford Co.'s spring banquet Thursday that "the GOP that's leading us - we don't know where they're taking us, but they're raping us along the way." (WRAL-TV).
  • "Lexington County" -- SC state Dem chair Dick Harpootlian, asked what he meant when he told the J-J dinner that the party's GOV nominee in '14 "would 'send [Gov.] Nikki Haley back to wherever the hell she came from'" (Politico).
  • "It was a little on the down low" -- Playwright Jessica Provenz, who, "a secret meeting arranged by a mutual friend," partnered with ex-Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-NY) on a 21-page policy book ahead of a possible Weiner NYC mayoral run (New York Daily News).
  • "He probably did it without thinking. Some people put the spider outside, but spiders are often scary to people, and that can prevent them from pondering their worth" -- PETA pres. Ingrid Newkirk, after NJ Gov. Chris Christie (R) "posted a video showing him smashing a spider on his desk in front of a group of visiting school children (Talking Points Memo).
  • Ex-Sen. Mike Gravel (D-AK) says the WH "has helped keep the truth about the 'extraterrestrial influence that is investigating our planet' from the public" (ABC News).
  • "It's glorious! ... I mean, if I could think of a better word, it's, you know, it's nice" -- FLOTUS Michelle Obama, on not facing another election as a family (CBS News).
  • The RGA "will name" Romney WH '12 comm. dir. Gail Gitcho as its comm. dir. today, "signing a veteran aide for a busy cycle" (Washington Post).
  • Rush Limbaugh's contract with WABC-AM and Cumulus Radio "expires at the end of the year," and a move "would very likely take him" to the Clear Channel-owned WOR-AM (New York Daily News).
  • The Washington Post's "Sunday and daily print circulation fell" by 7.7% and 7.2%, respectively, "when compared to" the first quarter of '12, according to filings with the SEC (Washington City Paper).


  • Ex-Rep. Kika de la Garza (D-TX) chaired the Ag. Cmte and is the only chair with a watercolor portrait hanging in the House.
  • The winner is Tres Bailey, and here's his Swizzle Challenge: "Cinco de Mayo -– not to be confused with Mexico's Independence Day -- commemorates the Mexican army's unlikely defeat of the much larger French army in the Battle of Puebla. Who led the French army, and when is Mexico's Independence Day?" The 3rd correct e-mailer gets to submit the next question.



"Watch out, I don't want you to get run over. Actually I kind of do, but that's a different story" -- Sanford to NBC News' Ali Weinberg, as "a car whizzed by" during an interview in Summerville, SC, on Saturday (NBC News)


"I should be able to run over as many kids as I want!" -- Mr. Burns ("The Simpsons")