outside-groups

Montana Candidate Gianforte Cited for Misdemeanor Assault
Witnesses say Republican body-slammed and punched journalist

Republican congressional candidate Greg Gianforte speaks to supporters during a campaign meet and greet at Lions Park on May 23, 2017 in Great Falls, Montana. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Updated Thursday 1:08 a.m. | Greg Gianforte, the Republican nominee in Thursday’s special election in Montana, was cited for a misdemeanor assault Wednesday evening after allegedly assaulting Guardian reporter Ben Jacobs at a campaign event at Gianforte’s headquarters in Bozeman earlier that day.

On the eve of a special election in which many early votes have already been cast, it’s unclear what effect the incident could have on what has been expected to be a close race. Gianforte has been ahead by single digits in most public and private polling. But Montana’s largest newspapers pulled their endorsements of the two-time GOP candidate Wednesday night, and Democratic outside groups lost no time producing digital ads using Jacobs’ audio of the altercation. 

GOP Group Launches Health Care Ad Ahead of CBO Score
American Action Network spending additional $2 million to promote bill

California Rep. Jeff Denham is one of the 21 lawmakers whose districts are the targets of a new ad campaign by the American Action Network. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

A conservative issue advocacy organization is spending an additional $2 million on a nationwide television ad campaign to promote the Republicans’ health care plan ahead of the release of the Congressional Budget Office score, which is expected Wednesday. 

The American Action Network, which has close ties to House GOP leadership, is debuting the campaign on Tuesday morning on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” The ad will also air in 21 congressional districts.

GOP Super PAC Airs Closing Ad in Montana Special Election
Congressional Leadership Fund has invested $2.5 million in race

Democrat Rob Quist, right, is vying with Republican Greg Gianforte in the race for Montana’s at-large House seat. (Courtesy Greg for Montana, Rob Quist for Montana)

The biggest Republican outside spender in Montana’s upcoming special election is using its final television ad to underscore the narrative it has tried to paint of Democrat Rob Quist.

The TV spot, launching Friday, is part of the Congressional Leadership Fund’s $2.5 million investment in the May 25 special election for the at-large House seat, in which Quist faces Republican Greg Gianforte. The fund, backed by House GOP leadership, has released four other ads attacking the Democrat, most of which have gone after his personal financial troubles. 

FCC Eyes Repeal of Net Neutrality, Dividing Internet Industry
Proposed changes have drawn more than 1.6 million public comments

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai says net neutrality has adversely affected broadband investment after it took effect two years ago. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Ahead of a Federal Communications Commission vote Thursday to begin the process of rolling back Obama-era net neutrality regulations that treat internet traffic equally, battle lines are being drawn between internet service providers and giants like Google and Amazon.

The agency is expected to also decide Thursday on returning online privacy oversight to the Federal Trade Commission, whose rules are less onerous than the FCC’s that require internet service providers to obtain permission in advance before selling customers’ personal data to advertisers.

South Carolina GOP Runoff Heading for Recount
Ralph Norman leads Tommy Pope by 200 votes

Ralph Norman leads Tommy Pope by 200 votes in the Republican primary runoff for South Carolina’s 5th District. (Courtesy Ralph Norman for Congress Facebook page)

Updated May 17, 12:56 p.m. | The Republican primary runoff for South Carolina’s open 5th District seat is heading toward a recount.

With 100 percent of precincts reporting, former state Rep. Ralph Norman led state House Speaker Pro Tempore Tommy Pope, 50.3 to 49.7 percent, The Associated Press reported. The margin of just 200 votes is narrow enough to trigger an automatic recount, under state law.

At Center for American Progress, a Tryout for 2020 Ideas
D.C. gathering alternates between liberal goals, Trump reaction

California Sen. Kamala Harris took aim at the administration’s approach to drug policy at Tuesday’s Center for American Progress gathering. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Potential Democratic presidential candidates took center stage Tuesday for what might prove to be the kickoff of the 2020 campaign, but the popular characterization of the progressive policy confab as a “CPAC for liberals” might have missed the mark.

The Center for American Progress’ 2017 Ideas Conference looked like the kind of muted 2020 cattle call one would expect from a gathering in the ballroom of the Georgetown Four Seasons in Washington. Missing were the raucous crowds that overtake the sprawling gathering at National Harbor for the annual Conservative Political Action Conference.

Republicans' Latest Health Care Challenge: Selling Their Bill
Only one major outside GOP group defending the plan on air

New Jersey Rep. Tom MacArthur says outside groups are “intentionally confusing people” about the GOP health care bill. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

With the Republican health care plan continuing to earn negative headlines and unfavorable poll numbers, House GOP lawmakers returning to Washington this week have a public relations challenge of epic political proportions.

They succeeded — barely — at passing their health care bill. Now they need to sell it.

Ryan to Sell Tax Overhaul Benefits in Ohio
But business leaders remain wary of border adjustment tax proposal

House Speaker Paul Ryan, left, walks to the House floor in the Capitol for the vote on the Republicans’ health care legislation. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)

House Speaker Paul D. Ryan is taking his sales pitch for a tax overhaul on the road with a high-profile stop Wednesday in Ohio, where lobbying groups have mobilized against one of the Wisconsin Republican’s signature proposals.

Ryan, during an event with local manufacturers in New Albany, will argue that a mega tax bill “will create good jobs and bolster American manufacturing,” according to a notice of the event. But the speaker’s ability to ultimately seal the deal depends on how President Donald Trump comes down on the most controversial elements of the blueprint and whether he, like Ryan, will rally support for the overhaul.

Club for Growth Steps Into South Carolina GOP Primary
Group's super PAC debuts ads for Ralph Norman

Screenshot of a Club for Growth Action ad.

Ahead of Tuesday’s Republican primary runoff in South Carolina’s 5th District, the Club for Growth is endorsing former state Rep. Ralph Norman. Its affiliated super PAC will begin an ad campaign for him on Wednesday.

Norman faces off against Tommy Pope, the state House speaker pro tempore, in Tuesday’s GOP runoff. They both finished with 30 percent of the vote in the seven-candidate primary on May 2. Pope earned 118 more votes, according to The Associated Press

GOP Super PAC Goes After Ossoff’s Out-of-State Money
Congressional Leadership Fund’s latest ad is shot in San Francisco

Screenshot of the Congressional Leadership Fund ad.

The millions of dollars Democrat Jon Ossoff has raised may have given him an early advantage in the race for Georgia’s open 6th District seat, but it’s also provided a convenient attack line for Republicans. 

The Congressional Leadership Fund, the super PAC endorsed by House GOP leadership, went to San Francisco to film its first advertisement of the runoff. The TV ad, which debuts Tuesday, is part of the group’s $6.5 million independent expenditure in the district.