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NATIONAL
March 7, 2014 | By Mark Z. Barabak
DES MOINES - For more than 40 years, Iowa voters have played a vital role in picking the nation's president, culling the field of hopefuls and helping launch a fortunate handful all the way to the White House. For about 35 of those years, Iowa has been the target of jealousy and scorn, mainly from outsiders who say the state, the first to vote in the presidential contest, is too white and too rural; that its caucuses, precinct-level meetings of party faithful, are too quirky and too exclusionary to play such a key role in the nominating process.
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NATIONAL
March 5, 2014 | Molly Hennessy-Fiske
Republican incumbents threatened by tea party challengers emerged triumphant in Tuesday's Texas primary, with longtime U.S. Sen. John Cornyn and U.S. Rep. Pete Sessions coasting to victory. The primary also marked the electoral debut of the fourth generation of the Bush dynasty with George P. Bush's candidacy. The son of former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, nephew and grandson of the former presidents and great-grandson of a U.S. senator, the 37-year-old won the Republican nomination for Texas land commissioner, a little-known but powerful post that has served as a launching pad for state politics.
NEWS
March 4, 2014 | By Molly Hennessy-Fiske
HOUSTON - Republican Sen. John Cornyn of Texas fended off a tea party challenge in Tuesday's primary, easily outdistancing U.S. Rep. Steve Stockman and other GOP candidates to capture his party's nomination. The Associated Press declared Cornyn the winner as early votes showed the incumbent winning more than 6 in 10 votes. Stockman, a Houston-area congressman, drew national attention for walking out on President Obama's last State of the Union address and calling for his impeachment.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 2, 2014 | By Seema Mehta
Gubernatorial candidate Tim Donnelly received the imprimatur Sunday of a conservative group once deemed the "conscience" of the state GOP by Ronald Reagan. "I want my state back. I want my freedom back," Donnelly told hundreds of delegates and supporters at a California Republican Assembly convention in Buena Park. "You are going to be the key, because … you are the foot soldiers of freedom. " Shortly afterward, the group unanimously endorsed him. The nod, not unexpected, could be a boost for Donnelly, a second-term assemblyman from San Bernardino County and a Tea Party favorite.
NEWS
February 27, 2014 | By Michael A. Memoli
WASHINGTON - Vice President Joe Biden urged fellow Democrats to stop obsessing about the role that well-funded outside groups are expected to play in the midterm election, saying it will be enough for their party to lay out an affirmative case on the issues. Biden, in a speech to state Democratic Party leaders Thursday, said he had never seen public sentiments align with Democrats'  positions on major issues - raising the minimum wage, immigration reform and marriage equality - as they do today.
NEWS
February 27, 2014 | By Cathleen Decker
In its swiftness and brute force, Republican opposition to the Arizona measure that would have bolstered the right to deny services to gays sent one message to GOP Gov. Jan Brewer: Veto it. And it sent another to everyone else in the Republican Party: Keep your eyes on the ball. On the cusp of what the GOP hopes will be a November takeover of both houses of Congress, and the start of a 2016 presidential contest that it hopes will end with the White House in its embrace, party leaders appear to have shifted strategy: Instead of ignoring deviations from Republicans' strong suit, they will try to quash them.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 18, 2014 | By Seema Mehta
Ron Nehring, former chairman of the California Republican Party, said Tuesday that he is running for lieutenant governor. "It's a key leadership position in state government, and the lieutenant governor's office is what the holder chooses to make of it," Nehring said in an interview. Current Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, a Democrat, "treats it like a taxpayer-funded gubernatorial exploratory committee for 2018," Nehring said. "The office should be used as a platform to develop the type of bold reform plans that the state needs.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 15, 2014 | Jean Merl
When Rep. Gary Miller this week became the latest California congressman to throw in the towel, the Rancho Cucamonga Republican in effect delivered his district into Democrats' hands. While Miller's is the only one of the five open House seats in California that analysts say is likely to flip from one major party to the other in this year's elections, the state's relatively new "top two" primary system is helping to reshape all of them. Contests in districts dominated by one major party, once essentially settled in primaries, could now continue into the fall.
NATIONAL
February 6, 2014 | By Lisa Mascaro and Brian Bennett
WASHINGTON - Just a week after Republicans raised hopes for a bipartisan overhaul of the nation's immigration laws, House Speaker John A. Boehner all but abandoned the effort Thursday, saying it would be "difficult" to get any legislation approved this year by his GOP majority. Boehner's sudden shift, coming after his high-profile unveiling last week of Republican immigration principles that were partly embraced by the White House, left immigration advocates fuming and renewed speculation that the speaker's tenuous grip on a rebellious rank-and-file was slipping again.
NATIONAL
January 29, 2014 | By Christi Parsons
WEST MIFFLIN, Pa. - He has taken to saying he has a pen and a phone that he can use to work around Republicans in Congress, but President Obama also has a jet and a helicopter. He used them both Wednesday as he set off on a two-day traveling sales tour to promote his State of the Union agenda to increase economic mobility for American workers, stopping first at a Costco store in Lanham, Md., just outside the Beltway, and then at a U.S. Steel plant here. "Wherever I can take steps to expand opportunity for more families, regardless of what Congress does, that's what I'm going to do," Obama told steelworkers gathered on a factory floor.
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