Markey Goes Negative; Handel Jumps Into GA SEN; Weiner Caught On Tape (Filming Campaign Video)

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  • Outgoing IRS commis. Steven Miller will make "his first public appearance since controversy erupted last week over how the agency mishandled applications for tax-exempt status for conservative advocacy groups" at a House Ways and Means Cmte hearing Friday morning (Los Angeles Times).
  • The House on Thursday "voted again to repeal" Pres. Obama's health-care law, "marking the 37th time that the GOP-led House has tried to undo all or part of the legislation" (Washington Post).
  • L.A. Mayor '13: Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa (D) "on Thursday waded into the heated contest to choose his successor, calling for two ads aimed at Latino voters that attack" Councilor Eric Garcetti (D) and Cont. Wendy Greuel (D) "to be taken off the airwaves" (Los Angeles Times).
  • MA SEN Special: Rep. Edward Markey (D) on Thursday "launched the first negative TV ad" of campaign, "attacking" ex-Navy SEAL Gabriel Gomez (R) "on gun control" (Boston Globe). Gomez will launch his first ad Friday, emphasizing his military background (Hotline reporting).
  • VA GOV '13: AG Ken Cuccinelli (R) "unveiled his energy platform" Thursday in Bristol, emphasizing "[c]oal, a rollback on environmental regulations and access to offshore oil" (Bristol Herald Courier).
  • Boston Mayor '13: "A small coalition of progressive lawmakers and political activists with ties to" Mayor Tom Menino (D) "is rallying around the fledgling mayoral campaign" of ex-state Rep. Charlotte Golar Richie (D), "presenting the possibility that she could overcome entrenched racial and ethnic boundaries" (Boston Globe).
  • NYC Mayor '13: Ex-Rep. Anthony Weiner (D) "was spotted shooting a campaign-style video on the stoop of his childhood home in Brooklyn Thursday as he weighs whether to run" (WNBC-TV).
  • GA SEN: Ex-Sec/State Karen Handel (R) announced her candidacy on Friday, joining three sitting House members in the race. Handel: "Primaries are meant to be tough" (WSB-TV).
  • SD SEN: An aide to Rep. Kristi Noem (R) said "that the prospect" of a Dem primary "had 'piqued'" Noem's "interest in the race, as it 'could potentially make our path to a run ... easier.'" Noem said "she's had 'some conversations' with groups about running for the seat," but "she doesn't expect to make a decision for 'several months'" (The Hill).
  • GA-10: Businessman Mike Collins (R), son of ex-Rep. Mac Collins (R), "announced Thursday that he wants to follow his father's footsteps" and run for the House (Athens Banner-Herald).
  • OH-06: State Sen. Lou Gentile (D) "has quickly emerged" as the party's "leading candidate" to take on Rep. Bill Johnson (R) (Youngstown Vindicator).
  • TX: AG Greg Abbott (R) told the state House GOP caucus earlier this week "that he expects" Gov. Rick Perry (R) "will call a special session very shortly after the regular one ends on May 27" on redistricting. Interim maps for cong. and state legislative districts "were used" last year "after federal courts said the maps drawn" by the GOP-controlled legislature "showed signs of intentional discrimination against minorities" (Dallas Morning News).


Hotline editors weigh in on the stories that drive the day

• Now that the two top Dem candidates are out, Noem sounds newly interested in an SD SEN bid. Remember, ex-Gov. Mike Rounds hasn't been on a ballot since 2006, and some in South Dakota GOP circles believe Noem would put together a superior campaign team.

• Mounting a Senate bid puts Karen Handel in an awkward position: potentially running against her mentor's cousin. Republicans say David Perdue's exploratory committee is likely to turn into a full-blown campaign. In such a crowded field, Handel can likely count on others to attack Perdue. But should he perform well, Handel will have to ask herself whether it's worth burning bridges, particularly with the possibility of Johnny Isakson retiring in '16 and another open GOV race in '18.

• Reps. Jim Matheson and Mike McIntyre were the only two Democrats to vote for Thursday's Obamacare repeal bill, but don't think that means Republicans can't hit them on the issue: As this NRCC ad from 2012 demonstrates, the GOP uses funding votes to establish that connection. Matheson and McIntyre kept Republicans from adding to their oppo books yesterday, but there's still material there on health care.

• The press has been tough on Weiner since he launched his trial balloon last month, but just hours after she was spotted apparently taking part in filming a Weiner campaign video alongside her husband, the knives came out for Huma Abedin, as well.



  • The FBI is "looking at whether someone set out to smear" Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) "while he was running for reelection last year and then ascending to his new post" as chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Cmte, "according to four people briefed on the inquiry" (Washington Post).
  • Hill GOPers "claimed they found proof" the Obama admin. "watered down" post-Bengahzi talking points in WH "emails that they leaked to reporters last week," but it "turns out some of the quotes were wrong" (CBS News).
  • Sources close to professional wrestler Glenn Jacobs (R), "who goes by the name 'Kane'" in the WWE, is 'open to the possibility of considering a primary campaign'" against Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) (Reason).
  • Ex-Sen. John Edwards (D-NC) "has reactivated his license to practice law and is setting out on the speaking circuit," set "to appear June 6 at a private retreat" in Orlando, FL, "for lawyer clients of the marketing firm PMP" (AP).
  • Senate Min. Leader Mitch McConnell's office "objected" to the placement of a Politico video featuring McConnell CoS Josh Holmes on a webpage "designed to solicit advertisers" for the site, leading to the video being taken down (Roll Call).
  • "Eighteen full-time employees and 12 part-time employees were laid off" Wednesday when the Washington Post "shut down" its Gazette offices in Frederick, MD (Frederick News-Post).
  • Fox News said Thursday it has hired ex-Rep. Allen West (R-FL) "as a contributor, offering political commentary across various daytime and primetime programs" (Tampa Bay Times).
  • "The editor of the online news site Gawker claims to have viewed a video in which Toronto Mayor Rob Ford appears to smoke crack cocaine," but the video's "authenticity has not been tested" (Toronto Globe and Mail).
  • "I can assure people that the kangaroo is fine. It was last seen hopping off into the distance quite comfortably" -- Australian politician Shane Rattenbury, who said a kangaroo "knocked him to the concrete sidewalk" on Thursday, "the claws of its powerful hind legs drawing blood with two scratches to his left leg" (AP).


  • The 1996 X-Files episode "Jose Chung's from Outer Space" featured Charles Nelson Reiley as an author, and Jesse Ventura and Alex Trebek as "Men in Black," one of whom Agent Mulder describes as looking like Trebek.
  • The winner was Heidi Ross, though she did not submit a new question. Here's a bonus question: "Two appointed sens. (Brian Schatz and Tim Scott) have already announced their intentions to run for election in '14. The last time three appointed sens. were up for election was 1970, when three GOP appointees ran, though only one was victorious. Name the winner, and the two losers." The 3rd correct e-mailer gets to submit the next question.



"Me llamo Gabriel Gomez, y yo soy un político. For those of you who don't speak Spanish, my name's Gabriel Gomez" -- Gomez, in his new statewide TV ad (YouTube).


"Yo soy El Niño! For those of you who don't habla Español, El Niño is Spanish for ... the niño" -- Chris Farley ("Saturday Night Live").

Reid Wilson, Editor-in-Chief

Steven Shepard, Executive Editor