Today’s installment of campaign-related news items from across the country.
* A few weeks after he assaulted a reporter, Rep.-elect Greg Gianforte (R-Mont.) plans to plead guilty in court today. Note, immediately after the incident, Gianforte’s team told reporters it was the journalist who initiated the physical confrontation. Evidently, that was a lie that literally added insult to injury.
* Donald Trump hosted a fundraiser at his private club in New Jersey over the weekend in support of Rep. Tom MacArthur (R-N.J.), who almost single-handedly rescued the House Republicans’ far-right health care legislation. MacArthur has faced a local backlash, in part because the GOP plan would take a severe toll on New Jersey.
* Though for decades the press has been permitted to attend presidential fundraisers, Trump’s event for MacArthur was closed to the media and no transcript of the president’s remarks was made available.
* In a bit of a surprise, Rep. Jared Polis (D) is giving up his U.S. House seat and launching a gubernatorial campaign in Colorado. He joins a crowded Democratic primary, which also includes his congressional colleague, Rep. Ed Perlmutter (D).
* Virginia’s gubernatorial primaries are tomorrow, and the final poll from Hampton University Center for Public Policy shows former Rep. Tom Perriello (D) and former RNC Chairman Ed Gillespie (R) leading their respective contests.
* Voters in Puerto Rico voted overwhelmingly in support of U.S. statehood over the weekend. It was, however, a non-binding vote, and the Republican-led Congress is likely to ignore the results.
* With House Democratic leaders making a deliberate effort to recruit veterans for congressional campaigns, it’s worth noting that Iraq War veteran Pat Ryan (D) has kicked off his bid against Rep. John Faso (R) in New York. The Democratic primary field now has seven candidates – and counting.
* And seven months after last year’s presidential election, Kellyanne Conway continues to take shots at Hillary Clinton.