It didn’t take long after Ebola spread to the United States for it to spread to the campaign trail.

North Carolina Speaker Thom Tillis (R) on Thursday became the first Senate candidate to weigh in on the news of the diagnosis of Ebola in the U.S., calling for a ban on travel from Ebola-affected nations.

“Keeping the American people safe must be our nation’s top priority, and the White House should immediately ban travel from from Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea to contain the spread of Ebola,” he said in a statement. “It makes absolutely no sense to risk more cases of Ebola in the United States by continuing to allow travel from Ebola-inflicted countries. It’s time for Washington to take action to protect the American people.”  

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He notably didn’t mention Sen. Kay HaganKay Ruthven Hagan2020 Dems compete for top campaign operatives Senate GOP rejects Trump’s call to go big on gun legislation Politics is purple in North Carolina MORE (D-N.C.) by name, only knocking “Washington.” A virus that’s caused the deaths of thousands globally is a tricky issue, and candidates must tackle the issue lightly lest they be accused of politicizing tragedy.

But he likely won’t be the last GOP candidate to press for solutions to the situation and hammer Washington, or perhaps the Obama administration, as some lawmakers in Washington have done. Before the disease even hit on U.S. soil, in August, Sen. Mark PryorMark Lunsford PryorMedicaid rollback looms for GOP senators in 2020 Cotton pitches anti-Democrat message to SC delegation Ex-Sen. Kay Hagan joins lobby firm MORE (D-Ark.) ran an ad saying his GOP opponent, Tom CottonThomas (Tom) Bryant CottonGOP senators condemn 'vulgar' messages directed at Collins over Kavanaugh GOP turns its fire on Google Overnight Defense: Trump denies report he's looking at Mattis replacements | Inhofe officially gets Armed Services gavel | Trump revives shutdown threat MORE, “cut billions from our nation's medical disaster and emergency programs."

The outbreak offers Republicans yet another example of what they see as President Obama’s — and more broadly, the Democratic Party’s — incompetence, and another opportunity to frame themselves as an alternative option, offering solutions.

 

SENATE SHOWDOWN

AK-SEN (BEGICH): Sen. Mark BegichMark Peter BegichElection Countdown: Trump plans ambitious travel schedule for midterms | Republicans blast strategy for keeping House | Poll shows Menendez race tightening | Cook Report shifts Duncan Hunter's seat after indictment The Hill's Morning Report — Trump’s legal jeopardy mounts after Manafort, Cohen felony counts Dunleavy, Begich win party nods in 3-way race for Alaska governor MORE (D-Alaska) and former Alaska Department of Natural Resources commissioner Dan Sullivan (R) met in their first general election debate, sparring over the fishing industry in Kodiak in front of an audience that leaned toward Begich.

Sullivan has jumped out to a lead in recent polls, and while the state is tricky to survey, some Democrats are getting worried that Begich is playing catch-up.

AR-SEN (PRYOR): Sen. Mark Pryor (D-Ark.) told donors at a closed-door fundraiser that the "best thing that could happen" to the Senate would be if Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellMurkowski echoes calls for Kavanaugh, accuser to testify McConnell rips Democrats for handling of Kavanaugh nomination Kavanaugh furor intensifies as calls for new testimony grow MORE (R-Ky.) "gets beat and Harry ReidHarry Mason ReidKavanaugh furor intensifies as calls for new testimony grow Dems can’t ‘Bork’ Kavanaugh, and have only themselves to blame Dem senator: Confidential documents would 'strongly bolster' argument against Kavanaugh's nomination MORE gets replaced,” suggesting Sen. Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerDemocrats should end their hypocrisy when it comes to Kavanaugh and the judiciary Celebrities back both Cuomo and Nixon as New Yorkers head to primary vote Dems launch million digital ad buy in top Senate races MORE (D-N.Y.) would be a better majority leader.

OR-SEN (MERKLEY): Sen. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainAnother recession could hit US in 2019, says credit union association chief R-E-S-P-E-C-T: One legacy of Franklin and McCain is up to us To cure Congress, elect more former military members MORE (R-Ariz.) stumps for GOP candidate Monica Wehby as she attempts to rebound from plagiarism charges and close gap with Democratic Sen. Jeff MerkleyJeffrey (Jeff) Alan MerkleyOvernight Energy: Warren bill would force companies to disclose climate impacts | Green group backs Gillum in Florida gov race | Feds to open refuge near former nuke site Warren wants companies to disclose more about climate change impacts DHS transferred about 0M from separate agencies to ICE this year: report MORE.

KS-SEN (ROBERTS): Independent Greg Orman has owned multiple million-dollar homes, a detail that prompted Sen. Pat RobertsCharles (Pat) Patrick RobertsPat Robertson asks followers to help cast 'shield of protection' ahead of hurricane Cruz gets help from Senate GOP in face of serious challenge from O’Rourke The farm bill gives Congress a chance to act on the Pet and Women Safety (PAWS) Act MORE's (R-Kan.) campaign to slam him as out of touch.

NC-SEN (HAGAN): North Carolina Speaker Thom Tillis (R) is calling for a travel ban on countries that have been hit hard by Ebola.

 

BATTLE FOR THE HOUSE

LA-5 (MCALLISTER): The NRA endorsed Rep. Vance McAllister (R) for reelection.

MI-11 (BENTIVOLIO): Rep. Kerry BentivolioKerry BentivolioIndiana Republican: Leaders duped me Reindeer farmer saves 'cromnibus' with yes vote High drama as .1T spending package advances by one vote MORE (R-Mich.), who got crushed in his primary against businessman Dave Trott (R), will indeed run a write-in campaign. He’d told The Hill two weeks ago he was likely to.

 

AD WATCH

AK-SEN (BEGICH): A new ad for Republican Dan Sullivan fires back against “shameful” attacks from Sen. Mark Begich (D-Alaska) that as attorney general he was lenient toward sex offenders, in which a woman he worked with says “offenders got longer prison sentences and abused women are getting the legal representation they need to restart their lives.”

NH-SEN (SHAHEEN): American Crossroads is launching a $3 million ad blitz in the race later this month, having been “encouraged” by polling they’ve seen on the race.

CO-SEN (GARDNER): The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee continues its line of attacks on Rep. Cory GardnerCory Scott GardnerSome employees' personal data revealed in State Department email breach: report Colorado governor sets up federal PAC before potential 2020 campaign Hillicon Valley: Trump signs off on sanctions for election meddlers | Russian hacker pleads guilty over botnet | Reddit bans QAnon forum | FCC delays review of T-Mobile, Sprint merger | EU approves controversial copyright law MORE (R) for supporting a law to restrict access to abortions. Gardner pushes back against those attacks and touts his “four corners” policy plan.

KS-SEN (ROBERTS): Independent Greg Orman blames Sen. Pat Roberts (R) for failing to support a plan to stop illegal immigrants from crossing into America.

IA-SEN (OPEN): American Crossroads is adding a week of airtime to its already considerable buy in Iowa, spending a total $4.5 million since July. A new Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee ad charges Joni Ernst would keep tax breaks for companies that send jobs overseas.

MI-SEN (OPEN): The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee claims that Republican Terri Lynn Land supports a Medicare plan that would adversely affect seniors.

Land attacks Rep. Gary Peters (D-Mich.) on the auto industry.

N.C.-SEN (HAGAN): An anti-abortion-rights women’s group is out with an ad hitting Sen. Kay Hagan (D-N.C.) on late-term abortions.

SD-SEN (OPEN): Independent Larry Pressler launched two new ads, a bio spot and a spot touting his independence.

Every Voice Every Action went up with an ad hitting Republican Mike Rounds on the EB-5 Visa program.

NY-24 (MAFFEI): The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee hits John Katko with two ads, one focused on his handling of an underage prostitution case as a federal prosecutor and one on Medicare.

AZ-2 (BARBER): The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee hits Republican Martha McSally on Social Security.

CA-17 (BERA): Rep. Ami BeraAmerish (Ami) Babulal BeraDem, GOP groups prepare spending blitz for midterms Bipartisan group of lawmakers seeks rules changes under next Speaker By reversing course on Ebola funding, Trump brings compromise MORE (D-Calif.) is out with a contrast ad attacking former Rep. Doug Ose (R-Calif.) on Social Security.

 

POLL POSITION

IA-SEN (OPEN): Republican Joni Ernst leads Rep. Bruce BraleyBruce Lowell BraleyOPINION | Tax reform, not Trump-McConnell feuds, will make 2018 a win for GOP Ten years later, House Dems reunite and look forward Trump: Ernst wanted 'more seasoning' before entertaining VP offer MORE (D) 50 percent to 41 percent in a new poll from GOP firm Gravis Marketing.


Braley has a 47 percent to 46 percent lead in a new poll from Democratic firm Greenberg Quinlan Rosner.

MI-SEN (OPEN): Rep. Gary Peters (D-Mich.) leads former Michigan Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land (R) 49 percent to 36 percent in a new poll from Mitchell Research for the local Fox affiliate.

N.J.-SEN (BOOKER): Sen. Corey Booker (D-NJ) leads Republican challenger Jeff Bell 51 percent to 40 percent in a new poll from Quinnipiac University in Connecticut.

NY-21 (OPEN): A poll from GOP firm Harper Polling gives Republican Elise Stefanik 45 percent support and Democrat Aaron Woolf 37 percent support.

CA-3 (GARAMENDI): Rep. John GaramendiJohn Raymond GaramendiTrump is wrong, Dems are fighting to save Medicare and Social Security McCarthy joins push asking Trump for more wildfire aid in California Pelosi urges Trump to expand disaster relief for California wildfires MORE (D-Calif.) leads Republican Dan Logue by 46 percent to 34 percent in an internal poll conducted for Garamendi's campaign by Democratic firm Fairbank, Maslin, Maullin, Metz & Associates. Logue recently released an internal poll with Garamendi up by a smaller margin.

FUNDRAISING FIGURES

FL-18 (MURPHY): Rep. Patrick Murphy (D) raised more than $1 million in the third quarter, his campaign said.

 

2016 RUMBLINGS

BUSH: Former President George W. Bush said he thinks his brother, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R), “wants to be president” in a Fox News interview.

BIDEN: Vice President Biden is stumping for Democrats in South Carolina later this month and will headline an event in Washington state supporting Sens. Kay Hagan (D-N.C.), Mary LandrieuMary Loretta LandrieuLobbying world Former New Orleans mayor: It's not my 'intention' to run for president Dems grasp for way to stop Trump's Supreme Court pick MORE (D-La.), Jeanne ShaheenCynthia (Jeanne) Jeanne ShaheenSome employees' personal data revealed in State Department email breach: report Dems seek ways to block Trump support for Saudi-led coalition in Yemen Hillicon Valley: Trump signs off on sanctions for election meddlers | Russian hacker pleads guilty over botnet | Reddit bans QAnon forum | FCC delays review of T-Mobile, Sprint merger | EU approves controversial copyright law MORE (D-N.H.), Kentucky Democratic Senate candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes, Georgia Democratic Senate candidate Michelle Nunn and West Virginia Democratic Senate candidate Natalie Tennant
 next week.

CLINTON: Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonTrump to declassify controversial text messages, documents related to Russia probe Hypocrisy in Kavanaugh case enough to set off alarms in DC Clinton: Hard to ignore 'racial subtext of virtually everything Trump says' MORE spoke of her new granddaughter to underscore the importance of giving women equal opportunities in the world during a speech to the Commercial Real Estate Women Network Convention on Thursday.

 

QUOTE OF THE DAY

"Make no mistake: these policies are on the ballot.  Every single one of them."

— President Obama, in comments that surely made red-state Democrats cringe 

Updated at 10:05 p.m.