Senate races

Senate races

Progressive group calls for McConnell challengers

A progressive group, frustrated with the lack of development in the Kentucky Senate race, has launched a number of petitions urging a candidate to come forward to challenge Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).

Though the group, Progress Kentucky, is liberal, it's calling for any candidate — from the right or the left — to challenge the senator.

The petitions circulating read, "We strongly urge ________________ to challenge Mitch McConnell for Kentucky's U.S. Senate seat in 2014.” On its website, Progress Kentucky lists 22 possible challengers, 11 from the right (including a handful of Tea Party candidates and a libertarian candidate), 10 from the left and one Independent.

The petitions are issued through SignOn.org, the petition arm of MoveOn.org, and each only calls for 50 signatures. The petition calling for actress Ashley Judd to run currently has 11 signatures (including one from Progress Kentucky), the most of any other petition.

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Ted Cruz sends out thank-you note for Sarah Palin's PAC

Sarah Palin's super-PAC is out with a letter from Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) thanking her for her primary endorsement, a sign that the former vice presidential candidate plans to stay active in political campaigns going forward.

"We started out as underdogs in a long, competitive primary. But despite the odds being stacked against us, Governor Palin and SarahPAC showed daring leadership by endorsing my campaign," Cruz writes in the email. "The governor's support and your constant encouragement played a critical part in our triumph."

Cruz has the backing of a number of outside groups in his come-from-behind primary win, though Palin's rally with him in the closing days of the primary may have helped give him some momentum.

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Frank says no better option for interim Mass. Senate appointment

Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) believes he is the best option to serve as interim senator if Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) is confirmed for secretary of State, he told the Boston Globe.

After Doug Rubin, a top adviser to Gov. Deval Patrick, tweeted over the weekend that there were "better options" for the interim appointment, Frank told the Globe, "I disagree with him."

Frank said previously that he believes he can be of particular help in the coming months, as Congress is set to tackle the debt ceiling and possibly the budget, as well as looming sequestration and, most likely, entitlement reform.

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Paulsen doesn't rule out bid for Sen. Franken's seat

Rep. Erik Paulsen (R-Minn.) is not, in fact, ruling out a bid for Sen. Al Franken's (D-Minn.) seat in 2014.

"I am planning on just continuing to represent my district right now. I haven’t ruled anything out. But just staying focused on my district," he told The Hill.

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