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The House on Wednesday passed legislation to create "a new set of rates for federal student loans ... by an overwhelming bipartisan margin." The bill now goes to Pres. Obama for his signature (New York Times).
"Five hours after the vote opened, the Senate ended" a GOP filbuster against ATF Dir.-designate B. Todd Jones, then quickly confirmed him, in "a rare congressional victory for gun-control forces. ... For most of Wednesday afternoon, the Senate idled in neutral," waiting for Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND) "to fly back from her home state, where aides said she had taken ill" (AP).
DSCC Chair Michael Bennet said Wednesday the cmte "already is gearing up" to help KY Sec/State Alison Lundergan Grimes (D) in KY SEN before the Dem primary. Bennet: "We are certainly not going to wait until next May" (Louisville Courier-Journal).
Bennet on Wednesday also "said the DSCC is still recruiting" in SD SEN (Washington Post).
WY SEN candidate Liz Cheney (R) "and her husband were more than two months late paying property taxes" on a $1.6M home "they bought last year in the tony community of Jackson Hole," according to Teton Co. records (AP).
VA GOV candidate/AG Ken Cuccinelli (R) "said he has no plans to repay the more than" $18K in gifts "he received" from Star Scientific CEO Jonnie Williams Sr.. Meanwhile, Gov. Bob McDonnell's daughter has repaid the $15K wedding gift Williams gave her (Richmond Times-Dispatch).
A PAC "featuring at least three former aides to" ex-NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani (R) "has formed to promote the candidacy" of NYC mayoral candidate/ex-MTA Chair Joe Lhota (R). Giuliani is "not going to be involved," and the amount the PAC plans "to spend remains unclear" (Crain's New York Business).
CA Gov. Jerry Brown (D) raised $2.8M in the first half of '13 and has "more than" $10M CoH. "The records show the notoriously thrifty Brown does not have any political consultants on payroll" (Los Angeles Times).
OH Gov. John Kasich (R) "raised nearly" $2.6M "through the first six months" and has "more than" $4.4M CoH. Cuyahoga Co. Exec. Ed FitzGerald (D) "raised about" $600K, but that "includes donations that were received after the ... reporting period had closed" on 6/30 "but were reported voluntarily." FitzGerald has $544K CoH (Cleveland Plain Dealer).
OK Gov. Mary Fallin (R) raised $548K in the second quarter and has $971K CoH (Oklahoman).
RI Gov. Lincoln Chafee (D) raised nearly $70K in the second quarter and had $377K CoH. Gen. Treas. Gina Raimondo (D) raised nearly $400K and had $2.06M CoH. Providence Mayor Angel Taveras (D), who disclosed his fundraising "last week," raised "roughly" $158K and had "about" $690K CoH (WPRI-TV).
Ex-KS Ag. Sec. Josh Svaty (D) "says he's not thinking about running" for KS GOV next year (AP).
MN State Sen. Julianne Ortman (R) will announce a bid against Sen. Al Franken (D) at Saturday campaign event. She's being advised by ex-Michele Bachmann CoS/strategist Andy Parrish (Minneapolis Star-Tribune).
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) gave $30K to Senate Conservatives Action, a super PAC affiliated with the Senate Conservatives Fund and ex-Sen. Jim DeMint, on March 28, "ahead of a push to court conservative support of his contentious immigration reform proposal" (Center for Public Integrity)
According to a new Monmouth Univ. poll of nat'l adults, conducted 7/25-30, 42% approve of the job Obama is doing as POTUS, while 51% disapprove (release).
Hotline editors weigh in on the stories that drive the day
• Rubio's donation to DeMint's super PAC raises the distinct possibility that a WH'16 front-runner just helped fund ads that will run against the leader of his Senate conference. The Senate Conservatives Fund has said it's interested in Mitch McConnell's challenger, Matt Bevin. That'll cause a little discomfort during the weekly Senate GOP lunch.
• Retirement watch? ID Gov. Butch Otter (R) brought in only $85K last quarter, and Chafee, who faces a tough Dem primary, brought in just $70K. There's some buzz around Rep. Raul Labrador (R) in ID.
• Rep. Paul Broun is used to running a shoestring campaign, but after such a poor showing last quarter, Broun seems to be borrowing ideas from one of his conservative heroes. Yesterday, Broun sent out an email to supporters claiming he needed to raise as much money as possible before a non-existent end-of-July deadline. That's a play right out of Ron Paul's book.
• Brown isn't the only one raking in the cash in CA: AG Kamala Harris (D) brought in over $1.7M in the first half of 2013, and her report includes some major names in Dem politics, like Jeffrey Katzenberg. Brown, Boxer, and Feinstein block her way for the moment, but Harris is prepped to move when the opportunity comes. For all the Dem worry over the lack of a minority candidate bench, Harris's name should be first on the list.
HAIR OF THE DOG
FRESH BREWED BUZZ
FL Gov. Rick Scott (R) "on Wednesday demanded an apology from longtime civil rights activist Jesse Jackson for comparing the state's struggle with the Trayvon Martin case to the civil rights clashes with police" during the '60s in Selma, AL (AP).
Obama on Wednesday "came roaring to the defense" of ex-Treas. Sec. Larry Summers, "a sign Summers is still much in the mix to be the next" Fed chair "despite an active campaign against him by" fellow Dems (New York Post).
"If there is any liability at all, the city will almost certainly be liable for 'failing to prevent harassment' under (the law)" -- San Diego Mayor Bob Filner (D) atty Harvey Berger, in a letter to the city atty dated Monday in which Berger argues that the city didn't offer "sexual harassment training to the mayor," which violated the law (CNN).
TX Gov. Rick Perry, LA Gov. Bobby Jindal and WI Gov. Scott Walker will headline an Aug. 26 fundraiser for SC Gov. Nikki Haley in Greenville, along with a host of top GOP donors, including "strategist and winemaker" Jim Dyke (CNN).
"The fact of the matter is as long as I was learning information and listening to both sides of the argument then it was productive for me" -- Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R), who changed her vote to end debate on the Jones ATF nod, which allowed cloture to be invoked when Heitkamp arrived in the chamber (Los Angeles Times).
"As much as the Republican Senate campaign committee is going to suggest Barack Obama is on the ballot in 2014, he's not on the ballot" -- Bennet (National Journal Daily).
"I think with Gov. [Chris] Christie it's gotten a little too personal, so I'm ready to kiss and make up" -- Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), who also invited Christie out of a beer on Capitol Hill (Fox News).
"I'm running for re-election in New Jersey. I don't really have time for that at the moment" -- Christie, not exactly accepting Paul's offer (Asbury Park Press). DE Gov. Jack Markell (D) has offered to host the GOP beer summit at a DE tavern -- "middleground betw Trenton & DC" (Twitter).
"Obviously, as Republicans we'd like to see that happen. Not a lot of people are rushing to go sign up to get their heads beat in" -- OK GOP Chair Dave Weston, on the possibility that Dems might not find a candidate to run against Fallin next year (Oklahoman).
"Liberal Group Trolls [Rep. Steve King] After He Tries To Fundraise Off Their Video" (Business Insider).
"I'm going to trust everyone with this little tidbit, because I think it might brighten a few days and if anyone saw an intern wandering around with only one shoe on this morning, they have a right to know why" -- The first sentence of "an email circulated internally by an intern wrangler" for an unnamed House GOPer, describing the drunken exploits of an intern who said he was in love with Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) (Roll Call).
Wake-Up Call! will be taking 3-day weekends during the month of August. We'll be back here on Monday.
Theodore Roosevelt's daughter, Alice, married Rep. Nicholas Longworth (R-OH).
The winner was Zachary Stokes, but he didn't submit a new question, so here's a bonus Swizzle Challenge: "McDonnell is limping to the end of his one term. Who is the longest-serving VA gov. to begin his tenure via popular election?" The 3rd correct e-mailer gets to submit the next question.
NJ'S EARLY BIRD SPECIALS
"There are some bells you can't unring" -- Cuccinelli.
"It really had nothing to do with Senator Paul, but Senator Paul wanted to make it about Senator Paul so that’s fine" -- Christie, ringing away.
Reid Wilson, Editor-in-Chief
Steven Shepard, Executive Editor