Georgia Republicans are trying to bring down Herschel Walker despite Trump’s support

Politico’s Natalie Allison reports that a pair of super PACs supporting two other candidates “plan to dump millions of dollars in ads attacking Walker.” These organizations are Georgia First PAC, which supports bank executive Latham Saddler, and Defend Georgia, which lobbies for state agriculture commissioner Gary Black.

Walker hasn’t had to deal with any serious negative meter blitz until now, but his main enemies have enough to attack him. Walker has been the subject of a long line of critical stories about his past, including his business failures and allegations that he threatened to kill his ex-wife in 2005. CNN added to the pile on Friday by reporting that Walker gave speeches for years. He graduated from the University of Georgia in the top 1% of his class, though he admitted last year that he never actually graduated had done at school.

Black himself recently warned a party convention that if Walker won the GOP nomination, Democrats would “spend $140 million on top of domestic violence and threatened police shootings.” Georgia First PAC has also signaled plans to pursue the former soccer player on the issue: Allison reports that a December poll the group paid for found Walker’s support among primary voters dropped to just 34% is after voters slammed his “history of alleged domestic violence” and his allegedly outspoken views on immigration.

However, Walker’s many opponents have work to do in the coming weeks if they are to prevent him from getting the majority of the votes he needs to avoid a July runoff. Two polls in early March for Fox 5 Atlanta and Fox News showed Walker receiving 63% and 66%, respectively, while all of his opponents stayed in the single digits.

redistribution

MS redistribution: Both houses of the Republican-led Mississippi legislature have approved new legislative plans, and because they were passed by a joint resolution rather than as traditional legislation, they are now law without intervention from Republican Gov. Tate Reeves.

NY redistribution: A Thursday ruling by a state judge invalidating New York’s new Legislative and Congressional maps has been automatically stayed due to an appeal by Democrats in the Legislature. The state election commission says candidates currently collecting signatures to run in the June 28 primary still have to submit their petitions by the original April 7 deadline.

1Q fundraising:

The first quarter of fundraising for the year, covering the period January 1 to March 31, has concluded and federal candidates have until April 15 to submit campaign financial reports to the FEC. But as usual, campaigns are strong Hauls lick early numbers we’ve collected below.

  • FL-22: Jared Moskowitz (D): $400,000 raised (in 25 days), another $250,000 self-financed, $650,000 in cash on hand
  • WED-11: Haley Stevens (D-inc): $1 million raised, $2.6 million in treasury; Andy Levin (D-inc): $750,000 raised
  • NC-04: Nida Allam (D): $370,000 raised

senate

NH-Sen, NH-Reg: Saint Anselm College releases a new poll testing Democratic Senator Maggie Hassan against three of her avowed Republican enemies. The results are below, with numbers from the school’s January survey in parentheses:

  • 44-39 vs. 2020 candidate Donald Bolduc (43-36)
  • 43-36 vs. Senate President Chuck Morse (41-27)
  • 44-34 vs former Londonderry city manager Kevin Smith (42-24)

Bitcoin millionaire Bruce Fenton, who announced on Wednesday, was not tested.

Saint Anselm also looks at the gubernatorial race, showing incumbent Republican Chris Sununu defeating state senator Tom Sherman 51-24; Sherman, the only notable Democratic nominee, also entered the race last month and was not previously questioned.

governors

TX reg: Texas Lyceum shows Republican incumbent Greg Abbott by a surprisingly small 42-40 lead over Democrat Beto O’Rourke, with another 7% opting for an unnamed “someone else.” However, the pollster warns that “the pool of registered voters who achieve this result [is] more diverse than the likely electorate.”

House

California: The office of California’s Secretary of State on Thursday released an official list of candidates for the top 2 primary elections scheduled for June 7, and there are a few updates to keep in mind regarding the congressional election.

The most notable development is taking place in the new and sure-blue 8th Circuit in the east suburbs of Oakland, where Democratic Rep. John Garamendi is seeking re-election in an 80% new seat. Richmond City Councilman Demnlus Johnson announced an intra-party challenge earlier this year, but while he only held a campaign rally on Thursday, the state does not list him as a contender. Three other Democrats are running, but there’s no indication that any of them are serious opponents of Garamendi.

Over in the open 3rd district anchored in Sacramento’s eastern suburbs, the math got a little better for Democrat Kermit Jones’ prospects of getting past the first two primary elections in a district Trump would have taken 50-48 . While it emerged after the filing was complete that Jones would be up against two little-known Democrats, only one of them, small business owner David Peterson, will be on the ballot. The two Republicans remain Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones and Rep. Kevin Kiley.

After all, in the open 13th district in the middle Central Valley, only two Democrats and three Republicans will run for a seat that Biden would have carried 54-43. The missing Republican is Congressional Assistant Elizabeth Heng, though she is running in Tuesday’s special election to succeed former Rep. Devin Nunes in the old 22nd district, a lawn that doesn’t overlap at all with this new constituency. The Democrat who won’t be on the ballot, meanwhile, is Angelina Sigala, who ran a lengthy intra-party bid against Rep. Josh Harder before the reallocation changed the map.

The two Democrats running here are Rep. Adam Gray and financial adviser Phil Arballo, while the Republican trio consists of businessman David Giglio, agricultural entrepreneur John Duarte and some dude Diego Martinez.

NE-01, TX-34: Thursday was the last day in the House for two congressmen who just resigned for very different reasons: Nebraska Republican Jeff Fortenberry, who was convicted last month of concealing illegal campaign funds and lying to federal investigators, and Democrat Filemon Vela from Texas, who is leaving before the end of his term to take a job at lobbying and legal giant Akin Gump.

Special elections are held in both seats using maps that have been in place for the last ten years. Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts has already set the contest for June 28 for the 1st District, which backed Trump 56-41; Eric Ostermeier of the University of Minnesota says this will be the first house special in Cornhusker State since 1951. Party leaders, not primary voters, will select their candidates by April 22, although there should be little suspense over who they will vote for: Republican state Sen. Mike Flood is the overwhelming favorite, starting the May 10 primary for the full two-year period Winning term after Fortenberry ended his campaign, while Democratic State Sen. Patty Pansing Brooks also faces little opposition.

The rules work very differently in Texas, where there is an all-party primary for the special election, followed by a runoff if no one wins the majority on the first ballot. Gov. Greg Abbott has not yet said if he will schedule the special for that 52-48 Biden seat before November.

The new departures bring the total number of vacancies in the House of Representatives to five, following the recent deaths of two Republicans: Don Young, Alaska’s sole representative, and Jim Hagedorn, who served in Minnesota’s 1st Circuit. Previously, California Rep. Devin Nunes, representing the 22nd District, left to run Donald Trump’s new social media venture (an endeavor that, of course, turned disastrous). Each of these counties will host special elections this spring.

OR-06: The Protect Our Future super PAC dropped another $1 million to help economic development adviser Carrick Flynn in the May 17 Democratic primary for that new seat, bringing his total investment here to $4.8 million brings.

Attorneys General

AZ AG: Former state Rep. Diego Rodriguez ended his campaign for the Democratic nomination on Friday, a move that left former Arizona Corporation commission chairman Kris Mayes as Team Blue’s only candidate for that open GOP seat before the filing deadline on Monday leaves.