Campaign Quick Hits
Retirement Watch: As we mentioned last week, Iowa Sen.—and very old guy—Chuck Grassley officially declared that he would run for an eighth term. The 87-year-old tweeted: “It’s 4 a.m. in Iowa so I’m running. I do that 6 days a week. Before I start the day I want you to know what Barbara and I have decided. I’m running for re-election—a lot more to do, for Iowa. We ask and will work for your support.” Music to Mitch McConnell’s ears, who now has one less open seat to defend in 2022.
But the music kept playing for Ol’ Cocaine Mitch. The Huffington Post reported that Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski filed the necessary papers to run again in 2022 also. Trump has already endorsed a candidate to run against her in the primary: Kelly Tshibaka, the former state administration commissioner. But it’s hard to imagine Murkowski—or McConnell—is too worried at this point. In 2010, Murkowski won as a write-in candidate when she lost the GOP primary. And in her last election in 2016, despite never endorsing Trump, she won by 15 points.
Busted: According to Lachlan Markay over at Axios, “a group tied to prominent Democratic strategists is posing as a conservative outfit to try to drive a wedge between the Republican candidate for Virginia governor and his core voters.” Accountability Virginia PAC has been whacking Youngkin from the right with ads like this: “While the NRA backs Donald Trump, they REFUSED to endorse Glenn Youngkin. We can’t trust Glenn Youngkin on guns.”
There’s no public information on who is paying for the group, but Markay did some top-notch reporting to find that its “online donation page is hosted by the Democratic fundraising platform ActBlue,” its “bank account is at Amalgamated Bank, a labor union-owned financial institution popular with Democratic political groups,” it’s using “consultants at the MBA Consulting Group, which works uniformly with Democrats,” and its “ads on Snapchat were purchased by Gambit Strategies, a firm founded this year by the Biden presidential campaign’s digital director and the former head of Democratic super PAC Priorities USA.” Yeah. So this PAC quacks like a duck, has webbed feet, and was last seen taking care of some ducklings.