Today’s installment of campaign-related news items from across the country.
* Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) formally kicked off her 2020 presidential campaign with a big rally in her hometown of Oakland yesterday. “If I have the honor of being your president, I will tell you this: I am not perfect,” the California Democrat said. “Lord knows, I am not perfect. But I will always speak with decency and moral clarity and treat all people with dignity and respect. I will lead with integrity. And I will tell the truth.”
* Republican National Committee Chair Ronna McDaniel boasted at the RNC’s winter meeting on Friday, in reference to the 2018 midterms, “We minimized our losses in the House.” In reality, Republicans suffered their worst House losses since the Watergate era, which looked even worse when one considers the margin of the GOP’s popular-vote losses.
* At the same meeting, RNC members approved a resolution late last week hailing Donald Trump as a “pragmatic, energized president who shares and understands the will of the American people.”
* I don’t know if Sen. Michael Bennet (D-Colo.) is serious about a presidential campaign, but his confrontation with Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) certainly raised his visibility: C-SPAN told Colorado Politics the argument on the Senate floor was viewed online more than 11 million times.
* Hoping to boost his weak standing ahead of his re-election campaign this year, Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin (R) announced late last week that he’s changing running mates. Lt. Gov. Jenean Hampton (R) is out, and state Sen. Ralph Alvarado (R) is in.
* As Arizona becomes a more competitive battleground, stories like this one from the Arizona Republic take on a greater significance: “Kelli Ward, the bomb-throwing conservative former state senator and loyalist to President Donald Trump, upended the race to lead the Arizona Republican Party by beating the establishment favorite and incumbent GOP chairman, Jonathan Lines. In doing so, Republicans from across the state on Saturday chose a more right-wing vision headed into the 2020 election cycle where Arizona is poised to reach battleground status.”
* And in West Virginia, former state Sen. Richard Ojeda (D), who launched a failed congressional bid a few months ago, ended his longshot presidential campaign. His bid for national office didn’t quite last two weeks.