What's News

SPECIAL ELECTIONS: President Trump on Friday officially nominated Rep. Jim Bridenstine (R-OK 01) as NASA administrator and Rep. Tom Marino (R-PA 10) as drug czar, creating two likely special elections in their GOP-leaning districts, which backed Trump in 2016 by 29 and 36 points, respectively. Despite having taken himself out of contention for the position in May, Marino has “said he’ll take the job” if approved by the Senate. (WKOK) Several Republicans are already running to replace Bridenstine, who has said this term was his last. A special election to replace him “will be held if he is confirmed before the end of the year. If he is not, his replacement will be chosen in the regular 2018 election cycle. … It is unclear how much opposition Bridenstine will encounter in the Senate.” (Tulsa World)

HI GOV: Rep. Colleen Hanabusa (D-01) “all but declared her candidacy for governor Friday, announcing that she will file papers to form her campaign committee — Hanabusa for Governor — to challenge Gov. David Ige (D) next year.” (Honolulu Civil Beat) State Sen. Josh Green (D), who was considering a bid for governor, announced he will run for lieutenant governor. (Hawaii Tribune-Herald)

AZ SEN: Rep. Kyrsten Sinema (D-09) said Thursday she is still “seriously considering” a challenge to Sen. Jeff Flake (R). Sinema: “Many, many folks in Arizona have asked me to consider it. I'm taking the time to be thoughtful, just like I do with everything.” (Arizona Republic)

TX-23: Former Rep. Pete Gallego (D) will not challenge Rep. Will Hurd (R) for his sprawling West Texas district. “Gallego had set up an exploratory committee for the seat in July.  … In recent weeks, Gallego tried to raise money for his would-be congressional campaign, according to those plugged in with the Democratic establishment donor community — but found resistance after losing twice.” (Texas Tribune)

OH SEN: Business owner Melissa Ackison (R), an “Ohio woman whose health insurance difficulties were featured by the Trump White House as proof of Obamacare's problems, plans to run for U.S. Senate in 2018.” (Cleveland.com)

WI SEN: Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D) “received a radio ad boost from” America Working Together, which “launched a 60-second ad that praised Baldwin for introducing ‘Buy America’ legislation that would require American manufacturers be used for certain public projects. The ad, expected to run through the end of September, is the fourth in a series of radio spots that the group has aired since May. The total buy for the four ads exceeds $700,000.” (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

ME GOV: State Senate Majority Leader Garrett Mason (R) “is expected to announce his run for Maine governor during an event Wednesday.” (WMTW) Former state Sen. John Jenkins “said Friday that he’s preparing to run for governor as an independent. (Lewiston Sun Journal)

MN GOV: Ramsey County Commissioner Blake Huffman (R) “is announcing that he is no longer running. He said in a statement Sunday that he would suspend his campaign to focus on his nonprofit work.” (Twin Cities Pioneer Press)

KS-02: Former state Commerce Secretary Antonio Soave (R) “likely will announce a run for” retiring Rep. Lynn Jenkins’ Topeka-based seat “later this month.Prior to joining Gov. Sam Brownback’s (R) administration, Soave, a Michigan native with Italian roots, had a varied career that included a stint playing semi-professional soccer in Italy, an internship in the Reagan White House, a law degree, [and] a period hosting a soccer travel television show that was broadcast throughout the Middle East.” (Kansas City Star)

OH-16: Former NFL player Anthony Gonzalez (R), who played wide receiver at Ohio State University, “has filed official paperwork to run" for Congress. “Since retiring from the National Football League and receiving his MBA from Stanford University, Gonzalez, 32, had worked for an education technology company in the San Francisco bay area. But he recently moved back to Ohio to prepare to run for the seat,” which Rep. Jim Renacci (R) is vacating to run for governor. (Cleveland.com)


Our Call

In the Ohio Senate race, Republican Melissa Ackison's campaign announcement isn't likely to blunt Josh Mandel's front-runner status in the GOP primary. Mandel's statewide name ID and imposing war chest,, assets conceded even by Mandel's strongest detractors, give him the edge to take on Sen. Sherrod Brown. Still, the additional challenge to Mandel reflects unease among some in the GOP about his candidacy, on the heels of months of damaging press he received for taxpayer-funded ads. -- Kimberly Railey

A tumultuous August led both campaigns for governor this year to increasingly nationalize. The debate over removal of Confederate statues in Virginia is dominating the race to replace term-limited Gov. Terry McAuliffe, and Republican Ed Gillespie's first negative TV ad against Democrat Ralph Northam focused on sanctuary cities, even though they don't exist in the commonwealth. Meanwhile, Sen. Bob Menedez's ongoing corruption trial could impact the race for governor in New Jersey: if convicted and out of office before his term is up next year, the next governor could have a say (depending on the timing) in who replaces him. -- Zach C. Cohen

Will Hurd likely escaped drastically new district lines but is certain to face a new challenger after Pete Gallego's decision to sit out a rematch. While Gallego's two failed bids against Hurd failed to generate enough donor interest, national Democrats are excited about newcomer Jay Hulings. A prosecutor with a record of fighting corruption, Hulings is friendly with the popular Castro brothers, has a national security background, and is from the north side of San Antonio, where Hurd trounced Gallego last year. -- Ally Mutnick

Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, who said on Saturday that he “just might” run for president in 2020, will travel to New Hampshire later this month, Hotline has learned. O’Malley, who launched a short-lived Democratic bid in 2016, has already made several stops in the first-in-the-nation primary state this year and later this week is headed to Iowa, where he recently commissioned a poll of prospective caucus goers. While the Maryland Democrat is not discussed as frequently as other possible candidates to take on President Trump, he could strike a chord with some residents in battleground states like New Hampshire, who this week expressed interest in seeing a broad range of Democrats travel through the state ahead of 2020. -- Hanna Trudo


Fresh Brewed Buzz

“Opening statements are scheduled for Wednesday” in Sen. Bob Menendez’s (D-NJ) federal bribery trial, the first such trial for a sitting senator in 36 years. (New York Times)

Education Secretary “Betsy DeVos is planning to make a major announcement on Title IX, the campus gender equality law, on Thursday at George Mason University.” (BuzzFeed)

Melania Trump wears stilettos to Texas, again” (USA Today)

“Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D-NY) says he favors keeping a prominent Christopher Columbus statue that has been suggested for review by a commission examining items deemed ‘symbols of hate’ on New York City property.” (McClatchy)

Pelosi wants to meet with Ryan to help Dreamers” (Politico)

President Obama’s letter to Trump was recently revealed to include “four items of advice for his successor.” (CNN)

Sara Netanyahu Expected to Be Indicted for Fraud in Pocketing $110,000 in Goods” (Haaretz)

“Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI 01) are mulling a basic framework to raise the debt ceiling without spending cuts and avert an Oct. 1 shutdown with a short-term spending bill, according to multiple Republican aides. But while top Trump officials like Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin back a ‘clean’ debt increase, the president himself is mum on the latest strategy.” (Politico)

“‘Mitch?’ the president said when Mr. McConnell fell silent in one call. ‘Are you there?’ Mr. McConnell waited a beat, then responded. ‘Yes, Mr. President. Back to the bill.’” (Wall Street Journal)

Florida Sens. Marco Rubio (R) and Bill Nelson (D) “are voicing opposition to ... Trump’s pick for NASA administrator.” (Politico)

Democrat Phil Murphy serenaded by Jon Bon Jovi” (New York Post)

Lobbyist Matt Mika, who was shot at the Congressional Baseball Game practice in June, told Good Morning America “he hopes to get back on the field next year.” (ABC News)

“Any Dem that votes against a legitimate bill to protect Dreamers should face a primary. I will give the first donation.” -- Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-AZ 07) (Twitter)

Marguerite Holmes Suozzi, matriarch of a Long Island political family, mother of” Rep. Tom Suozzi (D-NY 03) “and creator of an annual summer concert series designed to cross economic barriers” died at 93. (Newsday)

“Exiles on Pennsylvania Avenue: How Jared and Ivanka were repelled by Washington’s elite” (Vanity Fair)

Sean Spicer has signed with Worldwide Speakers Group, the company confirmed.” (Politico)

Reid Hoffman would like to add you to his political network” (Recode)


Rooster's Crow

The House is in at 2 p.m. The Senate is in at 3 p.m.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions will announce the administration's decision on DACA at 11 a.m.

Trump will speak with Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull today at 5:45 p.m.


Swizzle Challenge

Saint Paul, MN and Raleigh, NC were named for figures beheaded by government decree.

Sam Kaplan won the last challenge. Here’s his challenge: Which U.S. president was born on the 4th of July?

The 3rd correct email gets to submit the next question.



Cuomo said “he isn't endorsing New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, a fellow Democrat, because the governor doesn't live in the city,” to which de Blasio’s campaign spokeswoman responded “that the mayor's camp ‘didn't ask for’ Cuomo's support.” (McClatchy)


I don't like your little games / Don't like your tilted stage / The role you made me play / Of the fool, no, I don't like you.” -- Taylor Swift, “Look What You Made Me Do


Danielle Bernstein, Wake-Up Call! Editor

Editor: Kyle Trygstad
Digital Editor: Justice Gilpin-Green
Staff Writers: Kimberly Railey, Zach C. Cohen, Ally Mutnick, Hanna Trudo
Fellow: Danielle Bernstein


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