Daniel Strauss

Daniel Strauss is a reporter for Talking Points Memo. He was previously a breaking news reporter for The Hill newspaper and has written for Politico, Roll Call, The American Prospect, and Gaper's Block. He has also interned at Democracy: A Journal of Ideas and The New Yorker. Daniel grew up in Chicago and graduated from the University of Michigan with a B.A. in History. At Michigan he helped edit Consider, a weekly opinion magazine. He can be reached at daniel@talkingpointsmemo.com.

Articles by Daniel

Sen. Thad Cochran (R-MS) will decide whether he's running for re-election by the end of the month, according to WTVA in Mississippi.

If Cochran decides not to run, the race would open up for state Sen. Chris McDaniel (R) to be the likely inheritor of the Senate seat. McDaniel is currently running in the Republican primary against Cochran and has been endorsed by FreedomWorks, the Tea Party Express and the Senate Conservatives Fund. He's also made headlines for attending at least one neo-confederate gathering.

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The latest tallies in the Virginia attorney general race has flipped the lead in state Sen. Mark Herring's (D) favor. 

As of Monday evening, the unofficial results at the Virginia State Board of Elections had Herring leading state Sen. Mark Obenshain (R) by 117 votes. Herring has 1,103,610 votes while Obenshain has 1,103,493 votes. That's in contrast from earlier in the day on Monday when Obenshain lead Herring by 17 votes. 

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Tea party challengers to Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) may inadvertently be helping to cement his reelection.

Primary contenders for Graham keep coming. As of Friday there were a total of four Republicans hoping to take Graham's seat in 2014. The problem for them is that that the bigger the field, the more the vote against Graham will likely be split, preventing a strong tea party challenger from posing a serious threat to the senior senator from South Carolina.

Here are the candidates running from the right for Graham's seat so far:

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Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) on Friday ratcheted up the tension in an increasingly visible cold war between the National Republican Senatorial Committee and the Senate Conservatives Fund, which has relentlessly hammered McConnell as a fake conservative.

McConnell said he was "prepared to be specific about" the Senate Conservatives Fund (SCF), which has "elected more Democrats than the Democratic Senatorial [Campaign] Committee over the last three cycles," he said in an interview with The Wall Street Journal.

"Right now they're on the air in obvious coordination with Harry Reid's super PAC -- Harry Reid's! -- in the same markets, at roughly the same amount, at the same time," McConnell added.

McConnell's beef with the Senate Conservatives Fund is both personal and general. The group has endorsed McConnell primary challenger Matt Bevin. The feud between SCF and the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) -- which amplifies a war between the tea party conservatives and more mainstream Republican base -- has become increasingly public in the last few weeks as attention is shifting to the 2014 primary season. The Senate Conservatives Fund backed four Senate primary challengers and one running for the house House so far this cycle. It plans to deploy endorsements in more Senate races soon.

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Update: November 8, 2013, 3:33 pm. 

Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-LA) skipped an event with President Barack Obama in her homestate of Louisiana on Friday. 

The senator from Louisiana got a ride to her homestate on Air Force One but did not appear with Obama while he toured the Port of New Orleans for an event on the economy. 

Obama praised Landrieu during his visit saying that "nobody is a tougher advocate" for the people of Louisiana than Landrieu, according to Huffington Post reporter Jennifer Bendery. 

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Kentucky Democratic Senate candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes invited Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) to go to a gun range.

"As an NRA member, my strong support for the Second Amendment is unquestioned. I am proud of Kentucky's long-held gun ownership, sporting and hunting traditions," Grimes said in a statement on Friday. "It is unfortunate that Senator McConnell is desperate to mislead Kentucky voters about my strong support for the Second Amendment. In the Senate, I will protect my fellow Kentuckians' right to keep and bear arms. Whenever he's not busy pandering to Washington lobbyists, I welcome Senator McConnell to come shoot with me at the range any day."

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Updated: November 8, 2013, 11:37 am.

Democratic Governors Associations Chairman Peter Shumlin (D) told reporters at a Christian Science Monitor-sponsored meeting on Thursday that Democrat Terry McAuliffe's victory in this week's Virginia gubernatorial election is spurring Democrats to go on the offensive in 2014.

"These are the states that I'm optimistic about for the reason that these governors have done exactly what Cuccinelli has done," he said, referring to Democratic governor-elect Terry McAuliffe's narrow win over Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli (R).

Below is the ambitious list of governorships Shumlin said Democrats want to retake from the GOP:

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