National Journal Online

Hotline Whip Count: The RNC Chairman's Race

Updated Dec. 9, 7:02 a.m.

Republican National Committee members are being inundated with promotional material, phone calls and even personal visits from candidates who want to be their next chairman.

Some of the 168 voters are already making up their minds, but the majority are keeping their options open. The race is viewed as a free-for-all, with at least five serious contenders battling for votes. That means the five weeks between now and the January 14 election day will be a furious sprint for votes. And we at The Hotline will track every voter.

Posted: Wednesday, December 8, 2010 - 3:30pm

Emmer Concedes To Dayton In Minnesota

The final unresolved gubernatorial contest of 2010 has come to an end. Trailing Republican candidate Tom Emmer (R) conceded to Democrat Mark Dayton (D) Wednesday morning, ending a post-election battle that has lasted over a month.

"Mark Dayton is going to be seated as the next governor of the state of Minnesota and it is our job to make sure that he can be the best governor he can possibly be," said Emmer.

Posted: Wednesday, December 8, 2010 - 1:26pm

Steelman Courts DeMint

Missouri Senate contender Sarah Steelman met with Sen. Jim DeMint on Tuesday afternoon, her latest attempt to court the Tea Party wing of the Republican Party.

Steelman, who announced last week that she will challenge Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) in 2012, is seeking to position herself as the Tea Party candidate in the race in the face of a potentially difficult Republican primary. Former Sen. Jim Talent (R) is seriously considering the race and would be the establishment favorite.

Posted: Wednesday, December 8, 2010 - 10:30am

Altschuler Concedes, GOP House Gains Stick At 63

Republican Randy Altschuler conceded defeat to Rep. Tim Bishop (D-N.Y.) Wednesday after a weeks-long ballot tally left him facing a 263-vote deficit with just 977 absentee ballots left to count.

Posted: Wednesday, December 8, 2010 - 10:29am

Spain Leaves NRCC , Heads To Private Consulting

Ken Spain, who led the National Republican Congressional Committee's communications shop for the 2010 cycle, is leaving the committee and heading into private consulting.

The Private Equity Growth Capital Council announced Wednesday morning that Spain will join the company as vice president of public affairs and communications. The Blackstone Group, Bain Capital and The Carlyle Group are three headlining members of the Council.

Posted: Wednesday, December 8, 2010 - 9:49am

Video: Weapon of Choice, 'Stupid and Unnecessary Visual Aids'

Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert go after Pres. Obama for making a deal with Republicans to extend the Bush era tax cuts. Colbert on the tax deal increasing the deficit: "Eventually [the deficit] will reach infinity. And we just turn our heads sideways, and boom, it's an eight. Eight, that's not much. I'll pay that off myself. Here's a sawbuck. Keep the change America."

Jay Leno reveals more WikiLeaks secrets: "Wolf Blitzer has a sister named Coyote Ugly. Did you know that?"

Posted: Wednesday, December 8, 2010 - 8:46am

Starting Lineup: Emmer's Exit

Good Wednesday morning and welcome back to the Starting Lineup. On the radar today: The Cook Political Report lays out the 2012 landscape; Tom Emmer (R) to concede in the Minnesota Governor's race; Jim DeMint (R) flexes his muscle on the tax cut deal; Kay Bailey Hutchison (R) tests the fundraising waters for 2012 and Michael Capuano (D) -- a potential 2012 Senate contender -- stokes Massachusetts' liberal base.

Posted: Wednesday, December 8, 2010 - 8:42am

Cook Political Report Names First 2012 Targets

Don't expect the next election to be a let-up from the breakneck political pace set in 2010: The Cook Political Report on Tuesday already categorized five Senate and 10 House races as "toss-ups" nearly two years before the next federal Election Day.

Posted: Tuesday, December 7, 2010 - 8:05pm

Elizabeth Edwards Dies At 61

From NationalJournal.com:

Posted: Tuesday, December 7, 2010 - 6:01pm

Steele's Island Firewall In Trouble

Republican National Committee chairman Michael Steele can no longer count on the support of a key caucus within the RNC, the latest blow to his chances of keeping a job he's held since 2009.

Steele has long counted on the 18 votes that make up the unofficial Island caucus, a group of members representing U.S. territories on the national committee. Those votes represent nearly a quarter of the votes he would need to win re-election, and any cracks in what are ordinarily a solid coalition could prove fatal to Steele's chances.

Posted: Tuesday, December 7, 2010 - 4:34pm