South Dakota

For 2020, Hill’s Democrats Won’t Be So Super
Activists pushing to neutralize nominating say-so of members of Congress and other party insiders

Delegates appear on the floor of the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pa., on the final night of the Democratic National Convention in 2016. There’s growing momentum among Democrats to eliminate the formalized role of superdelegates in deciding the national ticket. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Does it make sense to tell the folks responsible for bringing the tribe back to the Promised Land that they’re losing some of their clout to help keep it there?

That’s one way of phrasing the question the Democratic National Committee has started to answer in recent days.

Noem Wins South Dakota Gubernatorial Primary
Congresswoman becomes the first woman to win GOP nomination for governor

Rep. Kristi Noem won the Republican party's gubernatorial primary in South Dakota. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Rep. Kristi Noem won the Republican primary to become her party’s nominee for governor of South Dakota.

Noem beat state Attorney General Marty Jackley by 14 points, according to results from The Associated Press. The congresswoman pulled ahead of Jackley in the polls in the final days of the primary  by presenting herself as a break from the “status quo,” the Argus Leader reported.

Meet Two Likely New Members of the 116th Congress
South Dakota’s Dusty Johnson and New Mexico’s Deb Haaland are solid favorites for the fall

Deb Haaland won the Democratic primary for New Mexico’s 1st District and is strongly favored to win in November. (D.A. Banks/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Tuesday night’s winners of two open-seat primary contests are likely heading to Congress next year, with their general election races rated safely their party’s column.

Democrat Deb Haaland in New Mexico’s 1st District and Republican Dusty Johnson in South Dakota’s district at large are in strong positions to win in November. Both seats opened up when the female incumbents opted to run for governor.

Tina Smith Maiden Speech Addresses #MeToo, Franken and the Future
Appointed Minnesota DFL senator is running to fill out predecessor’s term this fall

Sen. Tina Smith, D-Minn., appointed to fill the seat of Al Franken, is running in a special election to fill out his term. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Minnesota Sen. Tina Smith delivered her maiden speech on the floor Tuesday with a message seemingly designed to turn the page on the circumstances that brought her to Congress.

Joining the Senate in January, Smith took over the seat vacated by fellow Democrat Al Franken, who stepped aside following allegations of sexual misconduct.

Hill Frets Over Trump Pattern of Promising Big, Then Backtracking
‘In the end, it can mean absolutely nothing,’ says a Republican strategist

President Donald Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., arrive in the Capitol on May 15. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Rep. Peter T. King — in true New Yorker fashion — used his hands to hammer home his point as he walked through the Cannon Tunnel. As he talked about President Donald Trump’s style, he raised one hand, pushing higher an imaginary bar.

“He’s not afraid to take on challenges. He’s not afraid to go big,” the Republican congressman said of the president. “With him, there’s the ‘art of the deal.’ It’s give. It’s take. It’s forward. It’s backward. It’s sideways. But in the end, he typically goes forward.”

Senate Democrats Claim Small Victory on Net Neutrality
Will be taking the debate to the ballot box

Sen. Edward J. Markey has led the charge on the resolution that would effectively bring back net neutrality rules. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Senate Democrats won’t be scoring many legislative victories this year. So Wednesday’s win on a joint resolution that would upend the effort by the Federal Communications Commission to reverse Obama-era regulations on net neutrality was cause for mild celebration.

“A key question for anyone on the campaign trail in 2018 now will be: Do you support net neutrality?” Sen. Edward J. Markey of Massachusetts said at a news conference with House and Senate Democratic leaders on the effort to block the Trump administration from rolling back the regulations.

Trump Call to Curb August Recess Picks Up Steam
Republican senators seem eager to keep Democrats off campaign trail

President Donald Trump leaves the Senate Republican policy lunch in the Capitol on Tuesday afternoon. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

President Donald Trump did most of the talking Tuesday during a lunch-hour meeting with Senate Republicans, but lawmakers said he did not prod them to cancel their August recess. He did not have to. 

That’s because the idea appears to be gaining steam for a number of reasons, not the least of which is that the large number of Democratic incumbents running for re-election could find themselves off the campaign trail and in Washington at a prime time for campaigning.

Women Reaching New Levels in Political Donations
Rise parallels similar surge in female candidates for public office

Demonstrators rally outside the Capitol on March 8, 2017, in support of “A Day Without a Woman” protests across the country to coincide with International Women’s Day. There has been a surge in female donors to federal candidates this election cycle. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photos)

An unprecedented rise in female donors to political campaigns, fueled largely by opposition to President Donald Trump, continues to grow in the run-up to the 2018 elections.

The number of women donating to federal candidates has surged by 182 percent when compared with this time in the 2016 cycle, according to new data from the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics. Much of the activity has been among Democratic donors, a trend that first began to appear after the Women’s March on Washington the day after Trump’s inauguration.

Nine House Members Pushing for Gubernatorial Promotion
But for many, the road to the governor’s mansion won’t be easy

Of all the House members running for governor this year, Hawaii Rep. Colleen Hanabusa may have the best shot. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Just seven of the 50 current governors have previously served in the House, and only five of those were elected directly from the House without holding a statewide office or another job in the interim period. But a handful of lawmakers are hoping to buck the trend and push that total number closer to double digits.

Many of them have to navigate competitive primaries first, and the precedent for members getting elected governor isn’t great. But while most of them are leaving behind safe seats, there’s an upside: becoming their state’s top elected official and departing from an unpopular Congress.

W.Va. Race Offers Hope That GOP Women Will Get Help in Primaries
Small investment for West Virginia candidate seen as early encouraging sign

West Virginia state Del. Carol Miller, who is seeking the GOP nod in the 3rd District, participates in a National Day of Prayer event in Point Pleasant, W.Va., on Thursday. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

POINT PLEASANT, W.Va. — Republicans have a woman problem, and they know it.

While the party is recruiting female candidates, many say that’s not enough. The next step, operatives suggest, needs to be helping the women through GOP primaries.