Daily Kos Elections

Daily Kos's official elections portal.
  1. Daily Kos Elections weekly open thread

    Link Wray — “Fallin’ Rain”

  2. Voting Rights Roundup: Tuesday is National Voter Registration Day. Here's how to register

    Leading Off

    Voter Registration: Election Day is swiftly approaching, and Tuesday is National Voter Registration Day. Consequently, it's a great time to double-check your voter registration online to make sure you're on the rolls, as well as a timely opportunity to encourage your peers to do the same, and to register if they haven't. Each state has its own laws governing registration, and deadlines are coming up soon in many of them. Organizations like Rock the Vote provide online information and forms specific to each state, but you should also check with your state’s secretary of state or elections board website to review its particular registration rules and double-check to make sure you're still registered.

    Campaign Action

    As we wrote in a previous Roundup regarding the history and origins of voter suppression in America, voter registration itself first came about in Northern cities the mid-1800s as a way to suppress the votes of Catholic immigrants and the working class, and the relative ease of voter registration today is a significant factor affecting turnout. Even today, many states still have specific barriers to the ballot, such as Florida’s disenfranchisement of those with felony convictions for life, or Michigan’s penalization of college students by forcing voters to register at the address on their driver's license and requiring those who register by mail to vote in person the first time.

    However, not every state makes registration a pain, and North Dakota doesn’t even have it at all, only requiring that voters legally swear they’re eligible and prove their residency. Furthermore, many states have recently enacted policies to make voter registration less of a burden, and as the map at the top of this post displays, 11 states and Washington, D.C., have passed measures to automatically register eligible voters who interact with certain government agencies, such as driver's license offices, unless they opt out. Additionally, Michigan and Nevada are both voting on ballot initiatives that would enact automatic registration if they pass.

    Most states still put the burden on voters to register instead of allowing the government to do it for them, but 37 states now allow voters to register online. Furthermore, 18 states and D.C. let voters cast a ballot at the same time as they register, although Maryland and North Carolina only allow it during the early voting period. However, Marylanders will vote on a state constitutional amendment in November that would enable voters to register on Election Day itself.

    So go make sure you, your family, and your friends are registered to vote. And hopefully, more states will pass measures like the ones noted above to make the registration process as simple as possible and encourage citizens to do their civic duty and vote.

  3. House Republicans cancel ad spending, leaving vulnerable Pennsylvania member to fend for himself

     On Friday, the firm Medium Buying reported that the NRCC had canceled its entire TV reservation to aid Republican Rep. Keith Rothfus in what's looking like an increasingly uphill battle against Democratic Rep. Conor Lamb in Pennsylvania. A few weeks ago, Medium reported the committee had cut its reservation, which the NRCC said stood at $3.8 million in late April, for the period of Sept. 12 to Oct. 8. The NRCC soon insisted that they were only redirecting their money to the final weeks of the campaign and hadn't reduced their spending by "one penny." Well, now they've reduced their spending by every single penny.

    The move is very bad news for Rothfus, but it's not unexpected. The state's new court-drawn congressional map threw the once-safe Rothfus into the same suburban Pittsburgh seat as Lamb, who had won a tough special election in March for a much redder district. The new 17th District went from 52-47 Romney to just 49-47 Trump, and Lamb posted a wide 51-39 lead on a July poll from Monmouth. The GOP didn't respond with better numbers, and just before Labor Day, Politico reported that Rothfus was one of a few GOP incumbents who was worried that the NRCC would cut them loose and use the money they'd reserved on more winnable races.

    While the pro-Trump America First PAC booked $726,000 here last month, Rothfus probably shouldn't expect much more help. The New York Times recently reported that the well-funded Congressional Leadership Fund was frustrated that the NRCC hadn't abandoned weak incumbents, and the paper used both Rothfus and Virginia's Barbara Comstock as examples. (So far, the NRCC is still spending to aid Comstock.)

    While Rothfus is being left to fend for himself, he's not completely without resources. The congressman wisely stockpiled a war chest during the years when he was running in a safely red seat, and he ended June with $2 million on-hand. However, Lamb is a very strong fundraiser who had a similar amount, and his demonstrated in his March special election that he's very capable of running a strong campaign. Rothfus was already in for a very tough fight, and the NRCC's vote of no-confidence is only going to make it even tougher.

  4. Daily Kos Elections Live Digest: 9/21

    Welcome to the Daily Kos Elections Live Digest, your liveblog of all of today's campaign news.

    Please note: The Live Digest is a 2016 and 2020 Democratic presidential primary-free space. It’s also an elections-only zone. If you'd like to discuss policy, please visit the latest Daily Kos Elections policy open thread.

    Sign up here to receive the Daily Kos Elections Morning Digest in your inbox each weekday. And click here for our race ratings for every Senate, gubernatorial, and House contest in 2018.

    Friday, Sep 21, 2018 · 5:29:33 PM +00:00 · Jeff Singer

    CA-48: It seems that Russian dictator Vladimir Putin isn't the only unsavory person GOP Rep. Dana Rohrabacher is friends with. Mother Jones recently reported that Rohrabacher has repeatedly met with Charles Johnson, who has both minimized the Holocaust and been banned from Twitter for saying he wanted to "take out" a Black Lives Matter leader.

    And on Tuesday, Rohrabacher endorsed Gracey Larrea-Van Der Mark for a school board seat in Huntington Beach. Last month, the OC Weekly reported that Larrea-Van Der Mark also had a recent history of racism and anti-Semitism, including a YouTube playlist titled "Holocaust hoax?" These and other racist and anti-Semitic comments got Larrea-Van Der Mark thrown off two local school district commissions, but they clearly weren't bad enough for Rohrabacher.

    Rohrabacher also found a way to make some offensive comments of his own. On Thursday, Talking Points Memo posted audio of Rohrabacher ridiculing the allegations that Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh had committed sexual assault in high school. Rohrabacher was heard saying, "This guy who’s going to be our Supreme Court justice, and he better be our Supreme Court judge, he’s a perfect candidate, and what do they say? ‘Well, in high school you did this.’ High school? Give me a break." Rohrabacher faces a tough race against Democrat Harley Rouda in an Orange County seat that swung from 55-43 Romney to 48-46 Clinton.

    Friday, Sep 21, 2018 · 6:51:16 PM +00:00 · Jeff Singer

    LA-Gov: On behalf of the conservative Louisiana blog The Hayride, GOP pollster Remington Research takes a look at next year's gubernatorial contest. In a hypothetical jungle primary, they give Democratic Gov. John Bel Edwards the lead with 40, while GOP Sen. John Kennedy is just behind with 37. Two other Republicans, Rep. Ralph Abraham and businessman Eddie Rispone, are far behind with 8 and 3, respectively. Rispone has formed an exploratory committee, while both Kennedy and Abraham are publicly considering running.

    In a hypothetical runoff, Remington gives Kennedy a small 47-43 lead over Edwards. However, Edwards leads Abraham and Rispone 48-35 and 52-29, respectively.

    Friday, Sep 21, 2018 · 7:01:35 PM +00:00 · Jeff Singer

    Chicago, IL Mayor: Three more prominent Democratic candidates have announced over the last few days that they're running in next year's open seat race: Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle, who is also the head of the county Democratic Party and quickly picked up an endorsement from the powerful SEIU 1; former Obama White House Chief of Staff Bill Daley, who is the son and brother of Chicago's two longest-serving mayors; and former Illinois State Board of Education Chair Gery Chico, who lost the 2011 race to Rahm Emanuel 55-24.

    Additionally, a fundraising committee was opened on behalf of Cook County Commissioner Chuy Garcia, who is the Democratic nominee for a safely blue U.S. House seat. Garcia, who lost the 2015 race to Emanuel 56-44, has expressed interest in another bid, but hasn't announced he's in. Manuel Perez, who is Garcia's congressional campaign manager, says he told Garcia he would open up a mayoral fundraising committee, and while Garcia didn't oversee its creation, "he didn’t object to it." The filing deadline to run for mayor is in late November.

    Friday, Sep 21, 2018 · 7:19:34 PM +00:00 · Jeff Singer

    FL-Sen, FL-Gov: The Democratic group Priorities USA has announced that they'll spend $3.7 million on digital ads in support of Sen. Bill Nelson and Andrew Gillum. The ads are aimed at turning out black, Hispanic, and young voters.

    Friday, Sep 21, 2018 · 7:31:08 PM +00:00 · Jeff Singer

    TN-Sen: The Democratic group Majority Forward has launched a TV spot hitting Republican Rep. Marsha Blackburn for legislation she co-sponsored at the behest of the pharmaceutical industry to deliberately hobble the DEA's ability to crack down on the black market flood of prescription narcotics.

    If this sounds familiar, it's because this is the very bill that caused problems for another Republican House member, Pennsylvania's Tom Marino, who was its chief advocate. Donald Trump nominated Marino to lead the DEA last year, but he withdrew his name after a devastating report on this bill by the Washington Post and "60 Minutes." Blackburn, who was one of 14 GOP co-sponsors, said last year after the investigation was published that she'd lead the effort to fix the bill, but she said in August that she hasn't taken action because the DEA hasn't offered any guidelines to Congress.

    Friday, Sep 21, 2018 · 7:34:00 PM +00:00 · Jeff Singer

    MD-Gov: Maryland Together We Rise, a super PAC largely financed by labor groups and a few wealthy donors, has announced that they'll spend $1 million to help Democrat Ben Jealous in the general election. The Washington Post reports that their opening ad, which is the first major outside spending for Jealous since the primary, is running for $175,000.

    Friday, Sep 21, 2018 · 7:36:48 PM +00:00 · Jeff Singer

    IL-06: Planned Parenthood's political arm has announced that they'll spend $400,000 to aid Democrat Sean Casten, a buy that includes digital ads and mailers through Election Day.

    Friday, Sep 21, 2018 · 8:10:25 PM +00:00 · Jeff Singer

    PA-17: On Friday, the firm Medium Buying reported that the NRCC had canceled its entire TV reservation to aid Republican Rep. Keith Rothfus in what's looking like an increasingly uphill battle against Democratic Rep. Conor Lamb in Pennsylvania. A few weeks ago, Medium reported the committee had cut its reservation, which the NRCC said stood at $3.8 million in late April, for the period of Sept. 12 to Oct. 8. The NRCC soon insisted that they were only redirecting their money to the final weeks of the campaign and hadn't reduced their spending by "one penny." Well, now they've reduced their spending by every single penny.

    The move is very bad news for Rothfus, but it's not unexpected. The state's new court-drawn congressional map threw the once-safe Rothfus into the same suburban Pittsburgh seat as Lamb, who had won a tough special election in March for a much redder district. The new 17th District went from 52-47 Romney to just 49-47 Trump, and Lamb posted a wide 51-39 lead on a July poll from Monmouth. The GOP didn't respond with better numbers, and just before Labor Day, Politico reported that Rothfus was one of a few GOP incumbents who was worried that the NRCC would cut them loose and use the money they'd reserved on more winnable races.

    While the pro-Trump America First PAC booked $726,000 here last month, Rothfus probably shouldn't expect much more help. The New York Times recently reported that the well-funded Congressional Leadership Fund was frustrated that the NRCC hadn't abandoned weak incumbents, and the paper used both Rothfus and Virginia's Barbara Comstock as examples. (So far, the NRCC is still spending to aid Comstock.)

    While Rothfus is being left to fend for himself, he's not completely without resources. The congressman wisely stockpiled a war chest during the years when he was running in a safely red seat, and he ended June with $2 million on-hand. However, Lamb is a very strong fundraiser who had a similar amount, and his demonstrated in his March special election that he's very capable of running a strong campaign. Rothfus was already in for a very tough fight, and the NRCC's vote of no-confidence is only going to make it even tougher. 

    Friday, Sep 21, 2018 · 9:33:27 PM +00:00 · Jeff Singer

    Polls:

    • MI-Sen: Mitchell Research for MIRS: Debbie Stabenow (D-inc): 54, John James (R): 41
    • MT-Sen: Axis Research (R) for the NRSC: Jon Tester (D-inc): 44, Matt Rosendale (R): 44
    • OH-Sen: Triton Polling and Research (R) for the Ohio Star: Sherrod Brown (D-inc): 53, Jim Renacci (R): 42
    • PA-Sen: Muhlenberg College for The Morning Call: Bob Casey (D-inc): 53, Lou Barletta (R): 35 (April: 48-32 Casey)
    • TX-Sen: PPP (D) for Protect Our Care: Ted Cruz (R-inc): 48, Beto O'Rourke (D): 45
    • TX-Sen: PPP (D) for End Citizens United: Cruz (R-inc): 49, O'Rourke (D): 46 (August: 46-42 Cruz)

    FiveThirtyEight says that the sample size in the Axis poll was 480 likely voters. Interestingly, this is a slight drop for the GOP from the NRSC's August poll from WPA Intelligence, which had Rosendale up 47-45. The only other poll we've seen since then was a YouGov poll for CBS a week ago that had Tester ahead 47-45.

    PPP has two different Texas polls for two different clients. The survey for Protect Our Care asked several issue questions about healthcare before it went to the horserace, while the End Citizens United poll asked about the horserace before asking about the issues. As we recently wrote, we very much prefer polls to ask issue-related questions after the horse race numbers because these kinds of questions can "prime" voters to lean one way or the other, especially if they're on contentious topics (even though, in this case, PPP got the same margin in both polls).

    Friday, Sep 21, 2018 · 9:42:39 PM +00:00 · Jeff Singer

    MI-Gov: On Friday, the Michigan Republican Party launched a digital ad that accused Democrat Gretchen Whitmer of "refus[ing] to prosecute [serial sexual abuser and former USA Gymnastics doctor] Larry Nassar on sexual assault charges" while she was interim Ingham County prosecutor in 2016. Whitmer, who revealed that she was a rape survivor years ago, quickly held a press conference where she tearfully called the attacks a lie and declaring the GOP was "hurting the women who bravely came forward and their families every time you (put Nassar in an ad)."

    Whitmer also said at the presser that "Bill Schuette and his party’s weaponizing of the Nassar case is callous, it’s craven and it’s a complete lie when it comes to my record." Several of Nassar's victims also attended and called for the GOP to pull the spot, which the state party says they won't do. Republican Attorney General Bill Schuette also claimed that Whitmer had "failed to prosecute" and "chose not to prosecute this case."

    However, Schuette of all people should know what really happened. The Detroit News writes that Whitmer helped secure the warrants that led to the raids that got Nassar convicted in federal court for child pornography, while Schuette filed the sexual assault charges against Nassar. Whitmer, whose jurisdiction covered Michigan State University, where Nassar worked, and her chief assistant say they referred the sexual assault case to Schuette because Nassar's alleged crimes had taken place in multiple counties, so it was better for a statewide prosecutor to handle them. The paper adds that Schuette noted this point when he agreed to review the case.

    Back in December, MSU Police Chief Jim Dunlap had said that Whitmer was hesitant to charge Nassar with sexual assault because she wanted to focus instead on child pornography charges, believing she'd have an easier time securing a conviction for those; Whitmer called this characterization "patently false" at the time and said the campus police didn't give her the relevant police reports before Schuette took jurisdiction of the case. On Friday, Dunlap put out a statement saying that his department had worked with both Whitmer and Schuette's offices as well as the U.S. attorney, and their efforts had been a success in prosecuting Nassar.

    The GOP's attempt to use Nassar's crimes to tar Whitmer come at a time when things are looking pretty bad for Schuette. The RGA canceled part of its planned TV reservation a little while ago, and while there have been reports that they'd put some money back in, Advertising Analytics tells Politico that the total cut is $1.2 million. (The RGA did still launch a new ad against Whitmer days ago.)

    Polls have also consistently found Schuette in bad shape. A mid-September Mitchell Research survey for MIRS, which MIRS' Kyle Melinn kindly made available for us, finds Whitmer up 48-38; a different poll commissioned by MIRS that was conducted around the same time period by Target-Insyght gave Whitmer a similar 50-41 lead. The GOP seems to have decided that their best course of action with everything going so badly here is to try and use Nassar's crimes to smear Whitmer.

    Friday, Sep 21, 2018 · 9:52:55 PM +00:00 · Jeff Singer

    Polls:

    • OH-Gov: Triton Polling and Research (R) for the Ohio Star: Mike DeWine (R): 49, Richard Cordray (D): 44
    • PA-Gov: Muhlenberg College for The Morning Call: Tom Wolf (D-inc): 55, Scott Wagner (R): 36 (April: 47-31 Wolf)
    • RI-Gov: Fleming & Associates for Roger Williams University and WPRI: Gina Raimondo (D-inc): 43, Allan Fung (R): 36, Joe Trillo (I) 7 (July: 39-37 Raimondo)

    This is the first poll we've seen for the Rhode Island gubernatorial contest since Fleming's last survey almost two months ago. It's significantly better for Raimondo than before, though she's hardly secure. The poll gives Raimondo a 50-47 favorable rating, which is almost identical to her 50-48 score in their last survey. However, Fleming has Fung going from a 56-31 score in July to 50-35 now. That's still much better than Raimondo, but the governor has the advantage of running in a very blue state.

    Friday, Sep 21, 2018 · 10:04:51 PM +00:00 · Stephen Wolf

    FL-Gov: If it's a day ending in "Y," there's a good chance Republican nominee Ron DeSantis has found himself in some new scandal involving racism, and Thursday did not disappoint. Politico reported that a major donor, Steven Alembik, who had given DeSantis more than $20,000 and set up a speech for him to give at Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago club, recently tweeted "FUCK THE MUSLIM [N-WORD]" in reference to Barack Obama.

    Following that extremely racist outburst, Alembik has since deleted his tweet, and DeSantis' campaign condemned the remark. However, DeSantis said he won't return the tainted campaign donations or even give them to charity. That stands in sharp contrast to GOP Gov. Rick Scott, whose spokesperson called the comment "disgusting" and said the governor would give to charity the $1,000 that Alembik had donated to his Senate campaign.

    This incident is just the latest in a long line of unsavory news regarding racism that DeSantis has faced ever since he used a racist dog whistle mere days after the Aug. 28 primary to claim his black opponent, Democrat Andrew Gillum, would "monkey it up" if he became governor. DeSantis has trailed in every single poll conducted since the primary, and this steady stream of stories is unlikely to be helping his campaign.

    Friday, Sep 21, 2018 · 10:19:50 PM +00:00 · Jeff Singer

    Polls:

    • CA-16: SurveyUSA for KFSN-TV: Jim Costa (D-inc): 51, Elizabeth Heng (R): 40
    • CA-45: Global Strategy Group (D) for Katie Porter: Katie Porter (D): 46, Mimi Walters (R): 43 (August: 45-44 Walters)
    • FL-18: PPP (D) for Protect Our Care: Brian Mast (R-inc): 46, Lauren Baer (D): 43
    • FL-19: Change Research (D) for David Holden: Francis Rooney (R-inc): 47, David Holden (D): 46
    • FL-25: PPP (D) for Protect Our Care: Mario Diaz-Balart (R-inc): 41, Mary Barzee Flores (D): 36
    • FL-26: PPP (D) for Protect Our Care: Debbie Mucarsel-Powell (D): 46, Carlos Curbelo (R-inc): 45
    • IA-01: Siena for the New York Times: Abby Finkenauer (D): 52, Rod Blum (R-inc): 37
    • NY-01: Global Strategy Group (D) for Taking Action Suffolk County: Lee Zeldin (R-inc): 47, Perry Gershon (D): 44
    • WV-03: DCCC in-house: Richard Ojeda (D): 48, Carol Miller (R): 44

    Costa has struggled during the last two midterms, but he should be safe this time around. However, the Bloomberg's Greg Giroux tweeted earlier this month that Costa was going negative. Hopefully, that's just a sign that he's taking this campaign more seriously than he did in 2014 rather than an indication he thinks the race is closer than this SurveyUSA poll shows.

    Note that all three polls for Protect Our Care asked questions about healthcare issues before getting to the horserace, which is something we discourage.

    Florida's 19th District, which is in the Fort Myers area along the Florida's southern Gulf Coast, backed Donald Trump 60-38 and supported Mitt Romney by a similar margin. As much as we'd dare to dream that it could be competitive this year, we're very skeptical. The writeup doesn't include field dates, but FiveThirtyEight says the poll was conducted Sept. 10-12.

    We've seen no reliable polling out of Iowa's 1st in months, but both parties have been acting like Blum is in deep, deep trouble for a while. Even if Blum isn't quite as far in the dumps as Siena has him, there's little question he's the underdog.

    This is the first poll we've seen out of New York's 1st, an eastern Long Island seat that swung from 50-49 Obama to 55-42 Trump. National groups don't appear to have committed any ad time to this district, which is located in the ultra-expensive New York City media market.

    The DCCC's poll of West Virginia's 3rd comes about two weeks after Siena released a survey giving Miller a 48-40 lead.  

    Friday, Sep 21, 2018 · 10:21:32 PM +00:00 · Stephen Wolf

    House: We have new independent expenditure filings in a number of major House races, first up from the DCCC:

    • AZ-02: $111,000
    • CA-10: $122,000
    • CA-25: $297,000
    • CA-45: $376,000
    • CA-48: $104,000
    • CO-06: $526,000
    • FL-26: $521,000
    • IA-03: $236,000
    • IL-06: $311,000
    • KS-02: $331,000
    • KS-03: $47,000
    • ME-02: $329,000
    • MI-11: $382,000
    • MN-01: $276,000
    • MN-08: $520,000
    • NM-02: $50,000
    • NV-03: $562,000
    • NV-04: $466,000
    • NY-19: $273,000
    • TX-07: $314,000
    • VA-02: $172,000
    • VA-10: $337,000

    Next up is from the NRCC:

    • AZ-02: $91,000
    • CO-06: $112,000
    • FL-26: $477,000
    • MI-08: $305,000
    • MN-01: $346,000
    • MN-02: $207,000
    • MN-03: $356,000
    • NJ-03: $306,000
    • NM-02: $251,000
    • NV-04: $565,000
    • NY-19: $164,000
    • NY-22: $194,000
    • PA-01: $295,000
    • PA-08: $123,000
    • TX-07: $362,000
    • TX-23: $267,000
    • VA-02: $103,000
    • VA-10: $532,000

    From the conservative Congressional Leadership Fund:

    Lastly, from the progressive group Change Now:

    • CO-06: $680,000
    • FL-16: $588,000
    Friday, Sep 21, 2018 · 10:32:15 PM +00:00 · Jeff Singer

    ND-Sen: Republican Kevin Cramer has a long history of insulting comments about women, but his attempt to defend Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh is his worst yet:

    "This case is even more absurd because these people were teenagers when this supposed, alleged incident took place. Teenagers. Not a boss, supervisor-subordinate situation as the Clarence Thomas-Anita Hill situation was claimed to be. These are teenagers who evidently were drunk according to her own, her own statements. They were drunk when it evidently happened… even by her own accusation. Again, it was supposedly an attempt or something that never went anywhere. So you just have to wonder."

    Friday, Sep 21, 2018 · 10:42:56 PM +00:00 · Jeff Singer

    Ad Roundup:

  5. Morning Digest: New York Republican sparks backlash over anti-Italian-American slurs

    The Daily Kos Elections Morning Digest is compiled by David Nir, Jeff Singer, Stephen Wolf, and Carolyn Fiddler, with additional contributions from David Jarman, Steve Singiser, Daniel Donner, James Lambert, David Beard, and Arjun Jaikumar.

    Leading Off

    NY-22: This week, the New York Post uncovered a late July memo from a campaign consultant for GOP Rep. Claudia Tenney that warned staff and volunteers to watch out for their safety because of Democrat Anthony Brindisi's family. The memo read, "Brindisi's family has used their political connections to get away with violence, intimidation and thuggish behavior for years," and added, "As the Brindisi family watches Anthony's political career end, they may return to what they know—violence and intimidation."

    Campaign Action

    The memo didn't list anything about the candidate and instead focused on several allegations involving his father, attorney Louis Brindisi, and brother, Andrew Brindisi. Most of the alleged incidents are from the 1970s and 1980s, with the memo highlighting that Louis Brindisi used to represent mobsters: The older Brindisi had in fact stopped handling criminal cases in 1983 after his law partner was shot and killed inside his office. It also noted that he pleaded guilty to possession of cocaine over 25 years ago.

    The memo also alleges that in 2014, Andrew Brindisi was accused of trying to murder a man with his car, but wasn't charged. A contemporary report from the Observer-Dispatch in Utica, New York, says that Andrew Brindisi was ticketed for driving away after crashing into a gas line. A man argued that Andrew Brindisi had run him over twice and hit the gas line on his third attempt, but Andrew Brindisi was never charged with this.

    This isn't the first time that Tenney has played the "mafia" card regarding Anthony Brindisi. Last year she declared that Louis Brindisi was "very heavily involved with the organized crime in Utica for many years, representing them," and added, "I'm not saying Anthony is part of any of that but that's the family you come from." The candidate was not happy with this attack on his father, and members of the local Italian-American community, which consists of one in seven residents of the 22nd, condemned Tenney for using an anti-Italian slur.

    Tenney doesn't seem to have changed much over the last year, and she did not distance herself from the memo. While she first insisted to the Post that she didn't blame Anthony Brindisi or his family, she immediately told them to "[l]ook at what the father has been charged with and somehow has been able to get out of … I've never even had a speeding ticket," and that her opponent's brother was "charged with running over a guy … It was caught on a camera and many police have said this should have been attempted murder. It was not." She also implied that Louis Brindisi's donations to the mayor of Utica helped Andrew Brindisi keep his job with the city.

    Anthony Brindisi condemned Tenney, declaring, "To know that she's sitting in some room and feeling this immense pressure to attack my family and Italian-Americans as part of some plan to hold on to her seat is kind of sad, really." A few prominent local Republicans also said that his family should be left alone. Oneida County Executive Anthony Picente, who called Tenney a "national embarrassment" months ago, characterized Tenney's latest comments as "absurd, bigoted and shameful yet wholly unsurprising."

    GOP state Sen. Joseph Griffo also condemned smears against Italian-Americans and added, "Disparaging stereotypes are disappointing and unnecessary. The Tenney campaign should refrain from ethnic smear tactics." We're not holding our breath on that.