2017 Campaign

Curtis Wins GOP Primary for Chaffetz Seat

Provo Mayor John Curtis (R) declared victory in the Republican primary Tuesday night against his two staunchly conservative rivals in the special election to replace retired Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R), the Salt Lake Tribune reports.

“The congressional primary, unlike most races in the past year, has not been defined by the candidates’ alignment with the president. Instead, the GOP runoff has been a race to the right, an attempt to establish the most conservative credentials in a state where voters were largely unsettled by Trump’s campaign.”

McConnell Has Most to Lose In Alabama’s Special Election

“The special Senate election in Alabama is a crucial test of President Trump’s influence with Republican primary voters but Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has the most to lose there on Tuesday,” the Washington Examiner reports.

“Trump endorsed appointed Sen. Luther Strange in what is essentially a three-man contest… But it’s McConnell’s credibility on the line after his affiliated super PAC and associated nonprofit organization invested millions of dollars to boost Strange over Rep. Mo Brooks and Roy Moore, the former chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court.”

Politico: 5 things to watch in today’s Alabama’s special election.

Strange Struggling to Make Runoff

Sen. Luther Strange (R-AL) “wields an endorsement from the president of the United States, is the beneficiary of a multimillion-dollar campaign from allies of Mitch McConnell, the Senate majority leader, and has the backing of influential conservative interest groups like the National Rifle Association,” the New York Times reports.

“But Mr. Strange is wheezing into Tuesday’s Republican Senate primary here. He is grasping to secure a second-place finish and a slot in a September runoff with Roy S. Moore, the twice-deposed former State Supreme Court justice and evangelical-voter favorite who is expected to be the top vote-getter but may fall short of the majority needed to win outright.”

Roy Moore Suggests America Is Evil

When The Guardian told Alabama U.S. Senate candidate Roy Moore (R) that Ronald Reagan once called Russia “the focus of evil in the modern world,” Moore replied, “You could say that very well about America, couldn’t you?”

He added: “We promote a lot of bad things,” specifically citing same-sex marriage.

When the reporter suggested that’s an argument Vladimir Putin makes, Moore said, “Well, then maybe Putin is right. Maybe he’s more akin to me than I know.”

Low Turnout Expected for Alabama’s Special Election

Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill said he is projecting that 20% to 25% of voters will go to the polls on August 15, the AP reports.

“Merrill said a typical primary brings turnout of 30% to 32%. The closely watched race features crowded fields and heated matchups, particularly on the Republican side. However, the late summer special election comes at a time that state voters aren’t accustomed to going to the polls.”

Half of Detroit’s Mayoral Candidates Are Felons

“Half of the eight mayoral hopefuls on Detroit’s primary ballot next week have been convicted of felony crimes involving drugs, assault or weapons,” a Detroit News analysis shows.

“Three were charged with gun crimes and two for assault with intent to commit murder. Some of the offenses date back decades, the earliest to 1977. The most recent was in 2008.”

McConnell Intervenes In Alabama Special Election

Politico: “The Republican leader is aiming to thwart Rep. Mo Brooks and former state Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore in a special election in Alabama next month. Both men are campaigning against McConnell as a despised symbol of the establishment — and both would exacerbate his already stiff challenge wrangling his GOP conference. McConnell is responding in kind.”

“His super PAC is set to spend much as $8 million to boost his favored candidate, recently-appointed Republican Sen. Luther Strange. McConnell has activated his sprawling donor network and pressed the White House for more resources. And the [NRSC], the Senate GOP campaign arm which McConnell controls, has warned consultants they’ll be cut off from future work if they assist Strange’s opponents.”