The 2014 map is looking very good for Republicans. Here is a list of the vulnerable Democratic Senators who will be up for re-election. Most are serving their first term and will face strong GOP challengers.
- Mark Begich (Alaska)
- Mark Pryor (Ark.)
- Mary Landrieu (La.)
- Max Baucus (Mont.)
- Tim Johnson (S.D.)
- Mark Udall (Colo.)
- Al Franken (Minn.)
- Jeanne Shaheen (N.H.)
- Kay Hagan (N.C.)
In addition, Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.) and Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) could retire, opening up seats in swing states. Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) is popular, but could be vulnerable given the right circumstances.
A great deal can change between now and November 2014, but looking at the list above, we’re certainly feeling hopeful.
We are wasting no time in the battle for the Senate majority. We invite you to check out this article from September in the Washington Post that outlines the GOP’s chances to take back the Senate in 2014. Here’s a snapshot:
- 20 Democrats will be up for reelection, compared to 13 Republicans.
- 12 of those 20 Democrats come from either red states (six) or swing states (six).
- Only one of the 13 Republicans comes from a state that isn’t red, and that’s Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine), whose seat is basically safe unless she retires.
Dean Heller in Nevada, Josh Mandel in Ohio, and Tommy Thompson in Wisconsin are all being watched by top political insiders as the candidates fight to defeat their Democrat opponents with three weeks to go before the election. Read the story here.
Today, Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) pulled out his crystal ball and declared the election over one month before it takes place. Claiming that last week’s devastating debate performance by President Obama would not hurt the President’s reelection prospects or hamper Democrats’ ability to keep control of the U.S. Senate, Schumer stated he believed Democrats were “doing well”. This despite recent polls showing Governor Mitt Romney surging nationally and tied with or ahead of President Obama in key swing states such as Virginia and closing the gap with female voters. Read the full story here.
“President Obama’s tax-and-spend policies are killing the American dream by taking away the incentives for success.” – Brian J. Wise, Executive Director
President Obama’s assault on the American taxpayers continued today as he tried to spin his plan to raise taxes on small businesses as a tax cut for the middle class. He does not understand that any tax increases on American taxpayers will only prolong and worsen the economic crisis America faces. President Obama wants to follow up the biggest tax increase in American history – ObamaCare – with a “turning of the knife” as he continues to try and tax Americans into submission.
“President Obama’s War on the American Taxpayer will only serve to increase the size of government, hamstring American businesses, halt job creation, and stop economic growth. The answer to America’s economic crisis is to allow American families and businesses to keep more of their own money so they can create jobs and opportunities for all Americans.” said Brian Wise, Founder of Reclaiming Freedom PAC. “Americans do not grow up dreaming that one day they will be dependent on government programs like unemployment, food stamps and welfare. The American dream is to be self-sufficient, independent, and free. President Obama’s tax-and-spend policies are killing the American dream by taking away the incentives for success.”
Reclaiming Freedom PAC was founded to help elect conservative Republican U.S. Senate candidates as part of a national effort to regain the Senate majority. Our supporters believe strongly that the only way to protect America from the radical agenda of President Obama, should he win a second term, is by turning the do-nothing Democratic Senate into a dynamic Republican-led engine of reform. Reclaiming Freedom supports candidates who will return America to the values of our founding fathers, including limited government, a free-market economy, and individual liberty based on constitutional principles. Reclaiming Freedom PAC supports candidates who are willing and able to take on hardened liberal incumbents or challengers, and work to flip or hold the seats that will provide new Republican leadership in the Senate.
New SuperPAC Brings on Team of Experienced Advisors and Operatives to Help GOP Retake Senate Majority
WASHINGTON, DC. July 9, 2012 – As momentum builds across the nation to bring an end to Harry Reid’s dysfunctional Senate, Reclaiming Freedom has announced its team of strategists to help ensure Republicans take back the U.S. Senate majority. This select group of operatives and advisors has a wide range of local, state, and national experience with many of the most recognizable names in American politics.
“This is a team that has proven their ability to make a difference in races across the country,” states Brian Wise, founder and executive director of Reclaiming Freedom. “Reclaiming Freedom is fortunate to have this top flight political talent to ensure our endorsed candidates help tip the balance of power in the Senate, bringing an end to the radical Obama-Reid agenda.”
The organization announced its endorsed candidates last month, including Josh Mandel in Ohio, George Allen in Virginia, Dean Heller in Nevada, Tommy Thompson in Wisconsin, Linda Lingle in Hawaii, and Denny Rehberg in Montana. The new Reclaiming Freedom team includes:
Ken Kurson – Jamestown Associates
Kurson serves as the Executive Vice President of Jamestown Associates. Jamestown counts among its clients New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, the Republican Jewish Coalition, Congressman Connie Mack, and more than a dozen members of Congress. Kurson was the Chief Operating Officer for the Rudy Giuliani Presidential Committee in 2008. Prior to that, he was the Deputy Director of Communications for Giuliani Partners. Kurson wrote numerous speeches and editorials with Giuliani, including his speeches to the 2004 and 2008 Republican National Conventions. Kurson is also the co-author with Rudy Giuliani of the 2002 book, Leadership, which spent twenty-five weeks on The New York Times Bestseller List, including five weeks at No. 1. Kurson is a contributing editor at Esquire magazine, has written for numerous national publications, and appeared on television hundreds of times, including as a weekly contributor for five years on CNN.
Vincent Harris – Harris Media
Harris has worked on the digital side of three Presidential campaigns running online operations. Under his watch, the nationally acclaimed firm Harris Media has developed and executed digital strategies for, among others, John Cornyn, Nikki Haley, Rick Scott, Rick Perry, and Bob McDonnell. Harris is a strong believer in the power of the Internet as a tool to influence the public arena, and his firm’s successes have been noted in numerous publications and news outlets. He was recently named the youngest “Rising Star” in politics by Campaigns & Elections Magazine.
Thomas J. Basile – Empire Solutions
Basile is a co-founder of Reclaiming Freedom and the President of Empire Solutions. He has served in a variety of senior strategic roles both in the public and private sectors, specializing in brand development, communications, and media relations. He served as Executive Director of the New York State Republican Party from 2009-2011, and as a consultant to the Republican National Committee in 2004. Basile is an alumnus of the Bush-Cheney 2000 campaign, and served in the Bush Administration as an advisor to the Coalition Provisional Authority in Baghdad, and as Director of the Office of Communications for the US EPA. He teaches graduate political communications at Fordham University. In 2011, he was one of only two American conservatives featured in Time Magazine’s Person of the Year spread on activism around the world. Basile has been a frequent commentator on various news outlets regarding foreign policy and American politics.
Amy Pass – National Finance Director
Pass recently served as National Finance Director for Newt 2012. Prior to joining the former House Speaker’s presidential campaign, she served as Director of Major Gifts for American Solutions, one of the nation’s largest grassroots advocacy organizations with more than 1.5 million members. She is a graduate of the University of Georgia.
Joe Dillon – New York Finance Director
Dillon is principal of JLD Consulting, a global public affairs consulting firm based in New York. He has 15 years experience managing the global affairs of two leading U.S. multinational financial firms, directing policy initiatives across six continents in over 100 countries. He is also a former U.S. Treasury official and Presidential appointee. Dillon received his undergraduate degree from Georgetown University and his graduate degree in International Affairs from Columbia University.
ABOUT RECLAIMING FREEDOM
Reclaiming Freedom PAC was founded to help elect conservative Republican U.S. Senate candidates as part of a national effort to regain the GOP Senate majority. Our supporters believe strongly that the only way to protect America from the radical agenda of President Obama, should he win a second term, is by turning the do-nothing Democratic Senate into a dynamic Republican-led engine of reform. Reclaiming Freedom PAC is a so-called “SuperPAC” registered with the Federal Election Commission.
By Brian Wise and Thomas J. Basile
As they often do in Washington, a debate recently broke out during a dinner party. The Democrats asserted that Republicans “out-think” them, and the Republicans stated that Democrats “out-campaign” them. A candid assessment of the last 20 years of campaigning proves that both are right.
The Republican message resonates with the vast majority of Americans—limited government, individual liberty and the free market – are all hallmarks of life in our republic. Republicans have more white papers, more think tanks, more big brains thinking great thoughts about how to protect freedom. They have their place. But having a political message that resonates is pointless if you are unable to effectively deliver it and then actually mobilize voters to actively support those people and ideas.
Republicans have lagged behind Democrats for years when it comes to developing and deploying human infrastructure. With the unions being a built-in ground game for the Democrats, creating an active force for conservatism has been a constant struggle. The Walker recall victory, however, gives conservatives an example of what is possible in 2012.
Innovative grassroots mobilization strategies developed by Democrats and liberal activists have driven their political success. Beginning with voter registration efforts, micro-targeting, Rock-The Vote concerts, and Get Out The Vote campaigns in 1992 for Bill Clinton, Democrats have prioritized effective mobilization. By micro-targeting demographics rather than messaging policy positions, Democrats have frequently been able to out motivate America’s conservative majority.
The political graveyard is littered with campaigns who outspent their opponents on television and radio but failed to execute an effective ground game. The recent primary in Texas between David Dewhurst and Ted Cruz is an example. Dewhurst dumped money into the air war while Cruz used the latest technology to target, mobilize and monitor both volunteers and voters. He forced a runoff that by the numbers shouldn’t be happening.
This multi-tactical approach isn’t just important for campaigns and party committees on the right. It’s also necessary for the new SuperPACs to effectively leverage resources into votes. If Republicans want to take back the White House and regain a majority in the Senate in 2012, GOP-aligned SuperPACs must complement traditional “independent expenditures” such as television ads with the successful campaign strategies the left has deployed for years.
Traditional PACs, political groups, and now Super PACs are needed to counter the unions and liberal groups who have been hitting the streets for years. The PACs are necessary and successful in ensuring parity or superiority in the air war, delivering important messages to wide audiences.
But voters today are bombarded with media on a regular basis. Successful campaigns must cut through the noise and connect with voters directly. Millions will be spent on what essentially ends up as “white noise” particularly in battleground states where the airwaves will be saturated with political ads.
Inundating the airwaves must be accompanied by on the ground efforts including micro-targeted direct mail, voter registration, solid coalitions work and large-scale grassroots mobilization. These strategies propelled President Bush into office in 2000 and won him reelection.
It was this comprehensive approach plus a vibrant digital strategy that won the Presidency in 2008 for then-Senator Barack Obama. Using grassroots mobilization and coalition building to reach targeted demographics, the Obama campaign was able to effectively deliver a message and translate that into votes while the GOP struggled to connect.
Republicans must understand that the delivery of the message is sometimes more important than the message itself. Our DNA as conservatives is about real American values. That gives us a leg up on borrow, tax, and spend progressives that are bankrupting America. But our challenge is to personalize this message, utilizing the latest data, cutting edge technology and create methods of having a real dialogue with voters who can make the difference between winning and losing.
It’s about campaigning smarter and partnering with other groups to ensure, as conservatives, we have all the building blocks of an effective campaign. Not just firing from the air, but a house to house, block by block effort that is truly engaging. If the SuperPACs can collaboratively take this more universal approach to aiding their candidates, the GOP will truly have an edge heading into the November elections.
Brian Wise and Thomas J. Basile are the founders of Reclaiming Freedom, a SuperPAC focused on helping the GOP regain the Senate Majority. www.ReclaimingFreedom.org.
The Supreme Court has upheld ObamaCare.
The Court ruled 5-4 that an individual mandate is constitutional under Congress’ power to tax. Essentially, they gave Congress a blank check to tax and spend as much of your hard-earned money as they want.
House Republican leaders have said they will vote to repeal the law next week, but with Harry Reid still controlling the Senate, there is little chance of actually repealing the law any time soon.
The ONLY way to repeal ObamaCare now is to take back the GOP Senate majority in 2012. If we don’t, you can be sure this will not be the last we hear of President Obama’s so-called health care reform.
Liberals are emboldened by this decision, and are already talking about ObamaCare 2.0. The only way to stop this cycle of insanity is to stop the people who want to force their liberal, costly and unconstitutional agenda on all of us. President Obama, Harry Reid and the Senate Democrats have to go. They must be replaced with principled Republicans who will defend the Constitution – not try to bend it to their whims.
The only way to stop ObamaCare once and for all is to retake the GOP Senate majority, and change the do-nothing Democrat Senate into a Republican-led engine of reform.
Reclaiming Freedom was founded for the sole purpose of accomplishing this mission.
Many believe, as we do, that this is the most important election cycle of our lifetime. Reclaiming Freedom needs your help today to send a strong message: Winning key Senate races across the country and reclaiming the Senate majority must be a top priority for Republicans in 2012.
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Today, Reclaiming Freedom released its initial list of Senate races it will support to help the GOP retake the Senate Majority. These men and women are outstanding leaders and public servants who represent the American values of smaller government and individual freedom. Not only are these candidates strong conservatives, but they are also the most viable opportunity to get America working again.
In order to succeed, Reclaiming Freedom will be supporting these candidates through a range of tactics including direct mail, online strategy, GOTV programs, and volunteer mobilization, along with television and radio advertisements. Initial targets include:
DEAN HELLER – Nevada
As US Senator from Nevada, Dean Heller has been a champion for common sense conservative government. In the Senate, he introduced “No Budget, No Pay” legislation that would prevent lawmakers from getting paid if they fail to pass a budget and voted against Obamacare. He led the effort to require citizenship verification before eligibility for taxpayer-funded healthcare benefits, and to require Members of Congress to join any government-run healthcare plan. Prior to Heller’s service in the Senate, he served as Nevada’s Representative to the Second Congressional District, as Nevada’s Secretary of State, and in the Nevada State Assembly.
GEORGE ALLEN – Virginia
Former Senator George Allen has been fighting for conservative policies for decades as a state legislator, congressman, governor and senator. As Governor, Allen emphasized economic growth and encouraged new business development in Virginia. He abolished the parole system and spearheaded reforms in the juvenile justice system. Allen also initiated statewide welfare reforms that reduced welfare rolls by 73%. As a U.S. Senator he advocated for the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts that helped spur job creation in Virginia. He was one of a small group to vote against the “Bridge to Nowhere” and advocated budget reforms including a balanced budget amendment, line item veto and paycheck penalty for Members of Congress.
LINDA LINGLE – Hawaii
As a former governor and mayor, Linda Lingle knows how to lead during tough times. During her administration as governor she closed a $3 billion budget deficit without raising taxes. She earned national attention for her successful welfare-to-work initiatives helping Hawaiians transition from government assistance to self-sufficiency. Under the Lingle administration, 81% of program participants successfully transitioned into unsubsidized employment. She secured new clean energy investments for Hawaii and reformed the education system through performance-based contracts for teachers and principals that increased accountability. She was the first female elected governor in Hawaii as well as the state’s first Jewish governor.
JOSH MANDEL – Ohio
Ohio State Treasurer Josh Mandel was the top vote getter of all statewide executive candidates, in 2010 winning 80 of Ohio’s 88 counties. He is a Marine Corps veteran who served two tours in Iraq. Throughout his career he has established a record of advancing the free enterprise system, advocating for limited government, school choice and standing up to bureaucrats who treat businesses as if they’re “guilty until proven innocent.” Applying the principles of fiscal conservatism and common sense decision-making, the state’s liquidity portfolio is up $1.4 billion from the day he took office, and he has navigated the European sovereign debt crisis with a yield on behalf of Ohio’s taxpayers.
TOMMY THOMPSON – Wisconsin
The son of a grocery store owner, Tommy Thompson has been serving the people of Wisconsin and the United States for more than 40 years. In the US Army, in the state legislature and as Wisconsin’s longest-serving governor, he has been a reliable voice for common sense conservativism. As governor he enacted pro-growth, low-tax policies that created more than 740,000 new jobs and led the most prosperous era for the people of Wisconsin in history. Thompson cut taxes 91 times, saving Wisconsin taxpayers $16 billion and initiated the Wisconsin Works welfare reform program and school choice reforms. He served as Secretary of Health and Human Services under President George W. Bush.
DENNY REHBERG- Montana
Awarded the US Chamber of Commerce’s “Spirit of Enterprise” Award, Denny Rehberg is a rancher, small business owner and fifth generation Montanan serving his sixth term as Montana’s Congressman. Having spent a majority of his life working on the family ranch, Rehberg has firsthand experience with many of the problems facing agriculture producers and small business owners. He has long fought for spending reform in Washington and sponsored a Balanced Budget Amendment to the US Constitution. He also voted against Obamacare and the Wall Street bailout and supports making the Bush tax cuts permanent.
Harry Reid and the Democrats can no longer be trusted, and joining our fight is a first step toward removing them from power. Please donate to Reclaiming Freedom today.