CBS News Poll: “Republican primary voters say they’re far more concerned that Donald Trump’s indictment is politically motivated than his alleged conduct being a national security risk – and there’s no evidence it’s hurt his status as the clear front-runner for the 2024 nomination, at least not yet. He remains well ahead of rivals in both consideration and vote choice.”
“In fact, most Republican primary voters would not generally consider him keeping the alleged documents with nuclear systems or military plans to be a national security risk, in and of itself.”
“A plurality of Americans think that former President Donald Trump should have been indicted by a federal grand jury on charges related to his handling of classified documents, yet a near equal number say the charges are politically motivated,” according to a new ABC News/Ipsos poll.
“Nearly half — 48% — of Americans think Trump should have been charged in this case, whereas 35% think he should not have been and 17% saying they do not know.”
CALIFORNIA U.S. SENATOR. A new Emerson College Polling/Inside California Politics survey of California voters finds 63% of voters think Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) should resign from her position, allowing Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) to appoint a successor to complete the remainder of Feinstein’s term.
Thirty-seven percent think Senator Feinstein should remain in her seat, finishing her term in office in 2024.
BIDEN 2024. USA Today: “Biden’s reelection campaign is targeting North Carolina as a top state to try to flip in 2024, with Democrats convinced that the Tar Heel state’s booming suburbs with college-educated voters around Charlotte and Raleigh’s Research Triangle, combined with its sizable Black population, make it prime for a Democratic pickup.”
“It’s a similar formula that turned once-reliably red Georgia to the Democratic column in 2020, and it makes North Carolina and its 15 electoral votes perhaps the best shot for Biden to reshape the electoral map by carrying a state he lost in 2020.”
WISCONSIN U.S. SENATOR. Senate Republicans looking to recruit Wisconsin Rep. Mike Gallagher received disappointing news Friday morning when the congressman announced that he’d run for reelection rather than challenge Democratic Sen. Tammy Baldwin. Both local and national Republicans—including NRSC chair Steve Daines—had spent months trying to convince Gallagher to seek a promotion, and the NRSC even tried to entice the Marine veteran with a recent internal poll showing him trailing the incumbent by a narrow 47-46 margin.
Several other Badger State Republicans could still get in, though, including one far-right figure that the NRSC almost certainly doesn’t want as their standard-bearer. Former Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke celebrated Gallagher’s decision by crowing about a survey the Democratic firm Public Policy Polling had released the previous day that showed him far ahead of his would-be rival in a hypothetical GOP primary. “This poll has to give the RNC and the National Republican Senatorial Committee sleepless nights when somebody outside their establishment circle wipes away these other GOP potential primary candidates,” tweeted Clarke. “None of them energizes or excites the base voter like I do.”
Rep. Tom Tiffany, meanwhile, recently told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that he’d decide whether or not to run “probably end of July, August, something like that.” A spokesperson was a little more definitive with the timeline, informing Axios that the congressman “plans to make a decision in August.” However, while Tiffany and Gallagher represent neighboring northern Wisconsin districts, they cut very different profiles.
Tiffany responded to Joe Biden’s 2020 victory by joining a failed lawsuit that would have let Wisconsin’s GOP-controlled legislature ignore voters and instead award the state’s electoral votes to Donald Trump. He then joined the majority of his caucus in voting to overturn Biden’s win hours after the Jan. 6 attack. True to form, he responded to Trump’s federal indictment Thursday by calling it part of the “politically motivated attacks against conservatives.” Politico, by contrast, wrote earlier this month that one of the reasons Gallagher was such a prized recruit was that he’d voted the other way on Jan. 6 and has continued to criticize Trump.
The race could also prove newly tempting for other Republicans now that they know they won’t have to face Gallagher. Wealthy businessman Eric Hovde, who lost a close primary for this seat in 2012, said last month he’d decide on another try by December, while another rich businessman, Scott Mayer, has pledged to make up his mind by Labor Day. The Journal Sentinel also reported in March that former Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch, who lost last year’s primary for governor, wasn’t ruling out a Senate bid, though we haven’t heard anything about her interest since then. Finally, the Dispatch, a conservative site, wrote in May that businessman Kevin Nicholson, who failed to win the 2018 nod to take on Baldwin, was also considering another try.
KENTUCKY GOVERNOR. The DGA affiliate Defending Bluegrass Values is continuing to air ads linking Attorney General Daniel Cameron to the pardon scandal that overshadowed fellow Republican Matt Bevin’s final days as governor. The narrator declares that, while Cameron “promised to investigate” the matter, he “used taxpayer money to hire Bevin’s top aides instead, surrounding himself with the same people who helped push Bevin’s pardons.”
WASHINGTON GOVERNOR. The Democratic firm Public Policy Polling, working on behalf of the Northwest Progressive Institute, has released the first survey we’ve seen of next year’s top-two primary since Democratic incumbent Jay Inslee announced his retirement:
- Attorney General Bob Ferguson (D): 25
- Physician Raul Garcia (R): 17
- Richland school board member Semi Bird (R): 10
- Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz (D): 9
- State Sen. Mark Mullet (D): 7
- Not sure: 33
Ferguson, who formed an exploratory committee shortly after Inslee confirmed his departure, is the only one of these contenders who hasn’t officially announced he’s in, though Washington doesn’t actually distinguish between these sorts of entities and full-fledged campaigns.
“One of the nation’s most powerful political groups tasked with helping female candidates is readying a massive investment to improve Kamala Harris’ public standing,” Politico reports.
“EMILY’s List, the political action committee whose aim is to elect female candidates supportive of abortion rights, says it will be spending ‘tens of millions of dollars’ to defend and prop up the vice president during the 2024 election.”
“Outside political groups have already poured millions of dollars into Iowa this presidential election cycle, as donors and supporters aim to raise awareness of their candidates of choice — or slam their opponents — ahead of the first-in-the-nation caucuses,” the Des Moines Register reports.
“Political action committees have spent almost $25 million in the state so far this year.”
Atlanta Journal-Constitution: “A host of hardline conservative activists who support Donald Trump’s election fraud lies were elected to top party leadership posts by the more than 2,000 delegates to this weekend’s Georgia GOP convention.”
New York Times: “The federal indictment of former President Donald J. Trump has left the Republican Party — and his rivals for the party’s nomination — with a stark choice between deferring to a system of law and order that has been central to the party’s identity for half a century or a more radical path of resistance, to the Democratic Party in power and to the nation’s highest institutions that Mr. Trump now derides.”
“How the men and women who seek to lead the party into the 2024 election respond to the indictments of the former president in the coming months will have enormous implications for the future of the GOP.”