The Buzz

Trailwatch, Aug. 12: Here's a look at campaigns dialing things up

There was once a rule in electoral politics that campaigns took August off — to rest up, raise money, figure out a strategy, give voters a break.

Those were the days, my friend.

A warning, though: if you dial up your campaign to 11 in the second week of August there won’t be much room for greater volume in, say, October.

(And a reminder: candidates, send us your endorsements, links, ads, releases, and events for inclusion here.)

To the trail!

U.S. Senate, Missouri

A Missouri Scout/Remington poll has it Roy Blunt 47, Jason Kander 40. (Kander’s folks point out the poll is associated with our friend Jeff Roe and Axiom; on the other hand, Remington has been pretty accurate.)

Blunt picked up expected endorsements: The NRA’s PAC, the Missouri Farm Bureau. The Republican spent the week touring the state during the summer recess.

He’s also up with an ad. Two things to remember: early ad buys suggest this race is closer than expected, and it looks like the most important issues in Missouri will be named Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.

Might be a bigger challenge for Blunt.

Kander is up with this:

And this, on Blunt’s lobbyist connections:

The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee criticized Blunt for lack of progress on a funding bill to fight Zika.

The National Journal said the Blunt-Kander race is one to watch.

Kansas 3rd District House

Is Kevin Yoder nervous? Sure, some people are writing that he’s vulnerable, but he’s up 17 points in a recent poll. No reason to worry.

So why go negative in the first ad? Just because Larry Sabato changed the race rating?

Democrat Jay Sidie is trying to attach Yoder to Gov. Sam Brownback. And the DSCC points to a poll showing Trump losing in KS 03. Sidie trails Yoder in the money race, would could explain the early ad.

Missouri Governor’s race

Democrat Chris Koster endorsed spending limits in Missouri campaigns. He also picked the endorsement of the Farm Bureau, a rarity for a Democrat. Other farm groups followed suit.

The Dems put up a website attacking Eric Greitens.

An ethics complaint has been filed against Greitens: http://www.kansascity.com/news/local/news-columns-blogs/the-buzz/article93731982.html

Ethics complaints have been filed against Koster: http://www.kansascity.com/news/local/news-columns-blogs/the-buzz/article94836137.html

Let’s be clear about something: complaints from both sides about “dark money” and “secret donations” are largely crocodile tears. Secret money has been pouring into Missouri elections, and all elections, for years. I wrote about it in 2010.

Steve Kraske says Greitens is struggling.

But Greitens trailed by just two points in that Remington/Missouri Scout poll. (Greitens’ team said their candidates remains close despite a bitter primary, with lots of attack ads. Perhaps, but that cuts both ways: Greitens has been up for weeks. Koster is just getting started.

The Republican Governor’s Association is up with an ad buy on Greitens’ behalf:

More next week.

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