Blog Posts by Holly Bailey, Yahoo News

  • Meek says he won’t quit Florida’s Senate race

    meekDemocrat Kendrick Meek is strongly denying a Wall Street Journal report that he'll quit Florida's closely watched Senate race and throw his support to independent Charlie Crist.

    "All I can say is please," Meek told Miami CBS affiliate WFOR-TV on Saturday. "One columnist writes an article and folks start giving credence to what he says. The next job that I know I'm going to have is being the next United States senator from the state of Florida."

    On Friday, WSJ columnist Stephen Moore wrote that GOP leaders in Florida were "fretting that a deal might be in the works" to get Meek out of the race in order to boost Crist's chances against Republican Marco Rubio. A Mason-Dixon poll released Friday found Rubio with a 15 point lead in the race, with 42 percent support among likely voters compared to Crist's 27 percent. Meek came in at a distant third, with just 21 percent support.

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  • Ohio GOP candidate caught dressing up in Nazi garb

    iottAn Ohio GOP congressional candidate once viewed as a rising star in the party is under fire this weekend after photos surfaced of him participating in a Nazi reenactment group.

    As first reported by The Atlantic's Josh Green, Rich Iott, the GOP candidate in Ohio's 9th U.S. House district, was involved with a group called Wiking that pays tribute to the exploits of the lethal German Waffen SS unit during World War II. Iott, a tea party-backed candidate, admitted he was once a member of the group but only out of "purely historical interest" and that he wasn't trying to offend anyone.

    "They have to take it in context. There's reenactors out there who do everything. You couldn't do Civil War re-enacting if somebody didn't play the role of the Confederates," Iott told The Atlantic. "[This] is something that's definitely way in the past. ... [I hope voters] take it in context and see it for what it is, an interest in World War II history. And that's strictly all."

    But Democrats seized on the Iott photos, citing them as evidence that the GOP has embraced "fringe" candidates. Iott, who is challenging Rep. Marcy Kaptur, had been a member of over the National Republican Congressional Committee's Young Guns program, a list of the GOP's top recruits. But as TPM's Brian Beutler notices, Iott's name was removed from the list yesterday.

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  • James Jones quits as Obama’s national security adviser

    obama jones

    In a long-anticipated development, the White House announced today that Gen. James Jones, President Obama's national security adviser, will resign his post. Jones' deputy, Tom Donilon, will replace him.

    Jones is the sixth senior Obama adviser to announce his departure from the White House in recent months, though his resignation is no real surprise.

    For more than a year -- dating to back to the early months of the Obama administration -- Jones has been rumored to be on his way out of the White House. He had reportedly clashed with other Obama foreign policy advisers, including Denis McDonough and Mark Lippert (who quit the White House last fall), both of whom enjoyed a close relationship with the president dating back to the 2008 campaign. There were also rumors that Jones had been feuding with Vice President Joe Biden's staff and Defense Secretary Robert Gates.

    The White House strongly denied the stories -- and as rumors of Jones' diminishing clout continued to spread, Obama officials sought to quell them by talking up his clout within the administration.

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  • Georgia candidate paid nearly $100K to bring Palin to rally

    palinhandelKaren Handel's campaign to win the GOP gubernatorial nomination in Georgia got a big boost when she was endorsed by Sarah Palin this summer.

    But it can be expensive to be a Mama Grizzly.

    As the Atlanta Journal-Constitution's Aaron Gould Sheinin reports, Handel paid nearly $100,000 to bring Palin to an August rally ahead of a crucial runoff in the race. According to newly filed campaign reports with the state Elections Commission, Handel's campaign paid $92,000 to an Ohio-based air charter to fly Palin to the Aug. 9 rally. The campaign also paid $13,000 to rent space at a local hotel to house the event. Handel narrowly lost the GOP nomination to Nathan Deal on Aug. 10.

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  • Specter will finally campaign for ex-rival Sestak (privately)

    specter sestakNearly five months after losing Pennsylvania's Democratic primary, Arlen Specter will finally campaign for his onetime rival Joe Sestak — at least in private.

    As first reported by the Morning Call's Colby Itkowitz, the former GOP-turned-Democratic senator will appear with Sestak at a private fundraiser in Philadelphia on Monday night. It will be the first time Specter has appeared with Sestak in the race, even though the senator told reporters months ago that he would support the Pennsylvania congressman.

    But Specter hasn't gone out of his way to help his former rival. Last month, Specter had just greeted President Obama on an airport tarmac in Philadelphia when Politico's Carol E. Lee, who was the White House pool reporter that day, asked him how he felt Sestak's campaign was going. "I'm late for the squash court, so I'm going to defer that to when I can answer in one spot," Specter replied, according to the pool report. Asked if that meant he believes Sestak's campaign is going "not very well," Specter paused. "Ah, I'm late for the squash court," he replied and walked away.

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  • Feds issue more subpoenas in the Edwards investigation

    JOHNEDWARDSFederal prosecutors have issued a new round of subpoenas in the probe into whether former presidential candidate John Edwards illegally used campaign funds to cover up an affair with a staffer who later gave birth to his child, according to the Associated Press.

    For more than a year, a North Carolina grand jury has been investigating Edwards and his campaign funds. Two years ago, the former Democratic senator and vice presidential nominee admitted to an affair with Rielle Hunter, who briefly worked as a videographer for his 2008 White House bid. In January, Edwards, after many public denials, also admitted to fathering Hunter's daughter, Frances Quinn, now 2.

    While grand jury proceedings are secret, attorneys close to the case have said the investigation is looking into payments that Edwards' political action committee made to Hunter in 2006 and 2007, as well as whether campaign funds raised for his '08 bid were used to hide his affair and subsequently pay for her prenatal care.

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  • In three-way Florida race, Rubio and Crist continue to take aim at each other

    cristrubioWith a comfortable lead in the polls, Republican Marco Rubio came under attack in Wednesday night's Florida Senate debate, as his two rivals painted him as a radical conservative seriously out of step with Florida voters.

    Gov. Charlie Crist, who quit the GOP to run as an independent, and Democrat Kendrick Meek teamed up to repeatedly attack Rubio as a right-wing extremist on issues like abortion and Social Security.  "You want to take us back to the Dick Cheney days," Meek told Rubio.

    Rubio, in return, slammed Meek and Crist for supporting President Obama's stimulus plan and health care bill. He and Crist both labeled Meek as a "far left," "big government" liberal. At the same time, Rubio and Meek took every opportunity to trash Crist as a candidate who has changed his positions to suit his political needs. "Charlie Crist stands on a wet paper box as it relates to the issues," Meek declared. "When it comes to the issues, we don't know where he stands."

    While Meek offered up many of the sharpest jabs of the night, Rubio and Crist, who are closer in the polls, still trained most of their fire on each other.

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  • Whitman’s spending hits $140 million in California governor’s race

    meg whitman

    How far will Meg Whitman go to win California's governor race?

    Last month, the former eBay chief became the biggest self-funding candidate in political history, contributing $119 million of her own cash in the race. Now the GOP nominee has broken spending records again. According to a campaign finance report filed Tuesday, Whitman has now spent just over $140 million on her gubernatorial bid since she entered the race last year. That total includes her $119 million in self-funding, together with contributions from outside donors.

    Yet Whitman still ended September with less cash on hand than her Democratic rival, Jerry Brown. According to his latest finance report, Brown enters the final stretch of the campaign with nearly $23 million in the bank, compared with Whitman's $9.2 million. All told, Brown has spent roughly $11 million on the race — though that sum doesn't include millions spent on TV ads on his behalf by labor unions in the state.

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  • Todd Palin slams Joe Miller in leaked emails

    toddandsarahJoe Miller's surprise win over Lisa Murkowski in Alaska's GOP Senate primary was partly credited to the endorsement that the tea party insurgent netted from Sarah Palin. But now Miller may be on the outs with Palin -- or at least with her husband, Todd -- according to a leaked email exchange that suggests that the Palin team is already closely monitoring talk of her potential 2012 presidential run.

    A local political blog in Alaska, the Mudflats, got its hands on an angry email apparently sent from Todd Palin to Miller last month, after the GOP Senate nominee was less than enthusiastic in his appraisal of a possible Sarah Palin 2012 presidential bid.

    [Photos: More pictures of former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin]

    In a Sept. 19 interview with Fox News Sunday's Chris Wallace, Miller was asked if Palin was "qualified to be president." "That's not my role to comment on those candidates," Miller replied. That answer did not sit well with Todd Palin, who apparently fired off an email that morning to Miller and Palin advisers Tim Crawford and Thomas Van Flein.

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  • With $2 million boost from Senate GOP, Fiorina attacks Boxer in new ad

    fiorinaadSenate Republicans are chipping in $2 million to boost Carly Fiorina's bid to unseat California Sen. Barbara Boxer. The money is going into a statewide ad sponsored by Fiorina and the National Republican Senatorial Committee that depicts Boxer as a failed senator who did nothing to stop California from falling on hard times.

    The 30-second ad, which features an ominous narrator, uses black-and-white photos, not unlike images made famous during the Great Depression, to depict a state suffering from high unemployment and financial despair.

    "After 28 long years of Washington partisanship, this is Barbara Boxer's California," the narrator says, as images of a barren field and a tent city of the homeless flash on the screen. "Trillions in reckless wasteful spending, destroying small business, killing jobs, crushing hopes."

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