So much for an anti-establishment wave in the Democratic Party primaries. Two of the Democratic Party's handpicked Senate candidates survived a rough and bruising primary. In Maryland, Representative Chris Van Hollen defeated Representative Donna Edwards, 53% to 39%. Van Hollen, who is in the House Democratic leadership, will be leaving his post for a run in the Senate and was considered the preferred candidate of the establishment. Edwards was the insurgent progressive who got heavy backing from groups like Emily's List as well as shadowy super PACs. Interestingly, she did not get an endorsement from the Congressional Black Caucus. The primary got nasty with Edwards accusing Van Hollen of being too willing to cut entitlement programs, like Social Security, but Van Hollen had a considerable war chest to rebut any of these claims. Van Hollen now goes to the general election, as the heavy favorite to win the open seat due to Maryland's heavy blue tilt.
In Pennsylvania, former Clinton Administration Official and Chief of Staff to former Governor Tom Wolf, Katie McGinty, beat former 2010 Senate Democratic Nominee Joe Sestak, who had fallen out of favor with the party, 43% to 32%. Sestak, who constantly irked party leadership by ignoring their campaign advice and going his own way, got a late challenge from McGinty when she jumped into the race with the Democratic Senate Campaign Committee's (DSCC) prodding. The DSCC brought out all the stops to ensure McGinty would be their nominee, including endorsements from President Obama, Vice President Biden and $4 million in campaign money. The Senate seat, currently held by Republican Pat Toomey, is a top takeover target for Democrats as they try to regain the Senate majority.
In the race for president, both front runners further cemented their leads with businessman Donald Trump winning all five contests and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton winning four of the five states. Senator Bernie Sanders (VT) has all but conceded the race to Clinton by indicating that the rest of the remaining contests will be focused on issues and not on Clinton as well as shifting his focus to his main goal, which is to take as many delegates to the Democratic Convention to influence the Party's policy platform.
On the other hand, the Never Trump movement looks to have their last chance to stop Trump from gaining a majority of delegates this coming Tuesday in Indiana. This is seen as the last favorable battleground state for Senator Ted Cruz (TX) before the race shifts out west where Trump is seen as the favorite. In what many see as a desperation move, Cruz has named his running mate and potential vice president in former CEO Carly Fiorina. The unusual move where a losing candidate announces their running mate was met with a bit of ridicule and puzzlement. Fiorina, who ran for the Republican nomination earlier in the year, never really gained any traction and dropped out of the race after New Hampshire. She's also never won a race for political office, getting crushed in California in her 2010 Senate race. Shortly after the Cruz announcement, the Trump PR machine announced an appearance with Indiana legend Bobby Knight. This development may seal the state for Mr. Trump, who is currently polling on average about five points ahead of Cruz in Indiana making the reality of a Trump nomination more real than ever.
Did you know...
HUPAC has issued a Chapter Challenge that matches up chapters of similar size across the country. To win your matchup, the chapter needs to win in three of four of the scoring categories: A) total contributions; B) total contributors; C) average contribution; and D) percent of chapter contributing. The challenge includes all contributions from June 1, 2015, to May 31, 2016. We will be recognizing all the winning chapters at Annual Convention.
There will also be special recognition for the top three chapters in each size category at Annual Convention during the Awards Breakfast: chapters with membership of 1 to 50 members; 51 to 100 members; 101 to 175 members; and 176 plus members. Members from the winning chapters will get special ribbons at Annual Convention to display on their badges and show off their chapter's HUPAC pride! Click here to make your contribution and help your chapter beat your competitor! Click here to view your chapter's matchup.