Tuesday’s Campaign Round-Up, 4.7.15

Updated
Today’s installment of campaign-related news items that won’t necessarily generate a post of their own, but may be of interest to political observers:
 
* Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) is kicking off his Republican presidential campaign today. We’ll explore this in more detail in the next post, but for now, let’s note that his campaign is accepting Bitcoin campaign contributions.
 
* Welcoming Paul to the race is a dark-money group called the Foundation for a Secure and Prosperous America, led by a Swiftboat strategist Rick Reed, which is launching a $1 million advertising buy painting the Kentucky Republican as “dangerous.” The campaign, targeting Paul from the right, highlights the senator’s 2007 argument that treating Iran as a national security threat is “ridiculous.”
 
* The latest Monmouth University Poll shows Jeb Bush leading the Republicans’ 2016 field nationally with 13% support, followed closely by Scott Walker and Ted Cruz, with 11% each. Donald Trump is roughly in the middle of the pack, leading prominent candidates such as Rand Paul, Chris Christie, and Marco Rubio.
 
* Jeb Bush identified himself as “Hispanic” on his 2009 voter-registration forms. Responding to the controversy yesterday, the former governor said on Twitter, “My mistake! Don’t think I’ve fooled anyone!”
 
* Though Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) had suggested he’d retire at the end of his term, the longtime incumbent said overnight that he will run for re-election in 2016, describing himself as “ready for a new fight.” McCain will be 80 on Election Day.
 
* Right-wing neurosurgeon Ben Carson, who’ll reportedly kick off his presidential campaign in early May, has raised $2.1 million from 36,000 donors through his exploratory committee.
 
* Speaking of fundraising, it matters that Hillary Clinton will have access to “Obama’s vaunted 2012 campaign list of roughly 12 million supporters, and a separate list of about four million people gathered over the last two years by the outside group Ready for Hillary.”
 
* Tom Steyer isn’t running for the Senate, but he’s remaining politically engaged: “NextGen Climate, the environmental super PAC founded by billionaire Tom Steyer, announced plans on Monday to punish Republican presidential candidates who reject the scientific consensus on climate change.”
 
* And as we discussed yesterday, there are several interesting elections today worth watching, including Chicago voters choosing their next mayor, Ferguson residents possibly adding to the diversity of its city council, and Wisconsin helping set the direction of its state Supreme Court.

Tuesday's Campaign Round-Up, 4.7.15

Updated