With Zach Montellaro and Elena Schneider
The following newsletter is an abridged version of Campaign Pro’s Morning Score. For an earlier morning read on exponentially more races — and for a more comprehensive aggregation of the day’s most important campaign news — sign up for Campaign Pro today. (http://www.politicopro.com/proinfo)
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DATA BREACH — “Senate GOP campaign arm stole donor data from House Republicans,” by POLITICO’s Kevin Robillard and Elena Schneider: “Staffers for Senate Republicans’ campaign arm seized information on more than 200,000 donors from the House GOP campaign committee over several months this year by breaking into its computer system, three sources with knowledge of the breach told POLITICO. … Multiple NRSC staffers, who previously worked for the NRCC, used old database login information to gain access to House Republicans’ donor lists this year.
“The donor list that was breached is among the NRCC’s most valuable assets, containing not only basic contact information like email addresses and phone numbers but personal information that could be used to entice donors to fork over cash — information on top issues and key states of interest to different people, the names of family members, and summaries of past donation history. The list has helped the NRCC raise over $77 million this year to defend the House in 2018.” Full story here.
PARTY’S OVER — “Paul Ryan Cancels Fund-Raiser for Lee Zeldin Over Tax Bill Vote,” The New York Times reports: “House Speaker Paul D. Ryan scratched plans for a fund-raiser on Wednesday that was to benefit the re-election campaign of Representative Lee M. Zeldin, after Mr. Zeldin, a Republican from Long Island, voted against the sweeping tax overhaul that cleared the House earlier this month. Several people familiar with the planning for the fund-raiser said the cancellation was designed to punish Mr. Zeldin, who not only voted against the bill but was outspoken about one aspect: the elimination of the federal deduction for state and local taxes, which particularly impacts high-tax states like New York. … The fund-raising lunch event still occurred on Wednesday, but the proceeds now went to Mr. Ryan’s political operation and the National Republican Congressional Committee, rather than Mr. Zeldin’s campaign.” Full story here.
PRIMARY ADDITION — Blankenship says he’s jumping into West Virginia Senate race: Former energy executive Don Blankenship, who served a one-year prison sentence for “conspiring to willfully violate mine safety standards,” said he’s filing papers to run for Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin’s seat, reports WCHS. Republican Attorney General Patrick Morrisey and Rep. Evan Jenkins are already competing in the GOP primary.
Days until the 2018 election: 340
FIRST IN SCORE — Diane Black digital ad highlights tax reform support: Tennessee gubernatorial candidate Rep. Diane Black is airing a new digital ad touting her support for Trump’s tax plan. The ad starts with a clip of Trump saying, “I called Diane Black and you came through, Diane.” The rest of the minute-long ad is a montage of Black praising the tax reform plan on television. Watch the ad here.
— Meanwhile in Nashville … Jeb Bush is headlining a fundraiser for Black opponent Randy Boyd today, per the Tennessean’s Joel Ebert.
MAYBE, MAYBE NOT — “Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner reconsiders: She may challenge John Katko for Congress,” by Syracuse.com’s Mark Weiner: “Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner says she’s reconsidering whether to run for Congress next year and challenge Rep. John Katko, a month after she had ruled out the possibility. Miner said she changed her mind after Katko voted for a Republican overhaul of the tax code that she fears will disproportionately harm working poor and middle-class residents of Syracuse and Central New York.” Full story.
GETTING THE NOD — NewDem PAC adds candidates to ‘watch list’: The NewDem PAC added 10 candidates to its ‘watch list’ on Thursday: Ann Kirkpatrick (AZ-02), Greg Stanton (AZ-09), Jason Crow (CO-06), Lauren Baer (FL-18), Dean Phillips (MN-03), Susie Lee (NV-03), Max Rose (NY-11), Dan McCready (NC-09), Ben McAdams (UT-04) and Dan Kohl (WI-06).
TRUMP BUMP — “Trump appears to back Hawley in Missouri Senate race,” by Robillard: “President Donald Trump appeared to endorse Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley in the state’s GOP Senate primary. … ‘He’ll be a great senator,’ Trump said during a rally for tax reform in St. Charles, Mo., adding later: ‘You have my word that I’m going to come here and campaign for you.’” Full story here.
ICYMI — “Judge allows DNC to depose Spicer on election night activities,” by POLITICO New Jersey’s Matt Friedman: “A federal judge said Wednesday that he’ll allow the Democratic National Committee to depose Sean Spicer, the former Republican National Committee communications director and White House spokesman, on whether he violated a 35-year-old consent decree barring the RNC from engaging in ballot security or voter suppression efforts. But the judge, Michael Vazquez, denied a DNC request for an evidentiary hearing on whether the RNC violated the consent decree.
“Vazquez said that despite comments from high-ranking Trump campaign officials about poll watching efforts in the lead-up to the 2016 election, the DNC had presented no evidence that the RNC participated in them. ‘As far as what’s before this court, you’ve presented me with no evidence of actual voter suppression efforts on the day of the election, much less tying it to the RNC,’ Vazquez told DNC attorneys.” Full story here.
QUOTE OF THE DAY: “I think that her comments on Sunday set women back and — quite frankly, our party back — decades,” Democratic Rep. Kathleen Rice said of House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi’s response to the sexual assault allegations made earlier this week against Rep. John Conyers.