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Friday's Campaign Round-Up, 4.21.17

Today's installment of campaign-related news items from across the country.
Today's installment of campaign-related news items from across the country.* The Congressional Leadership Fund, the House Republican leadership's super PAC, is investing $800,000 in Montana's congressional special election, trying to connect Rob Quist to House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi.* On a related note, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee is reportedly "making an initial six-figure investment into the Montana state party to back Quist's campaign."* In Georgia's special election, Republican Karen Handel has decided to accept Donald Trump's backing ahead of the June runoff: the president sent out a fundraising appeal on the GOP candidate's behalf yesterday.* On a related note, the DCCC launched its first negative ad against Handel yesterday. It's not yet clear how big the ad buy in support of the spot will be.* The latest national PPP poll shows Trump with a 43% approval rating. Looking ahead to the 2018 midterms, the same results found Democrats leading Republicans on the generic ballot, 47% to 41%.* Speaking of survey data, Gallup reported yesterday that Trump is the first president since the dawn of modern polling to end the first quarter of his first term with support well below 50%.* On the heels of his surprise retirement announcement, Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) conceded yesterday that he's thinking about leaving Congress early, stepping down before his term ends next year.* Heath Mello, a Democratic mayoral candidate in Omaha, Nebraska, has become the subject of an intra-party controversy after some of his national supporters discovered he "supported legislation to require women to undergo an ultrasound before getting an abortion" eight years ago.* On the heels of France's national elections, Donald Trump hasn't explicitly endorsed Marine Le Pen, but the American president continues to politicize terrorist violence and connect them to electoral considerations. Trump tweeted early this morning, "Another terrorist attack in Paris. The people of France will not take much more of this. Will have a big effect on presidential election!"* Barack Obama, meanwhile, spoke via phone yesterday to Emmanuel Macron, a centrist French candidate who appears likely to do well in the elections. The American Democrat didn't endorse Macron, but the call signaled a degree of support, and Macron, eager to take advantage of Obama's broad popularity in France, was eager to promote yesterday's conversation.