Wednesday's Campaign Round-Up, 6.17.20

Today's installment of campaign-related news items from across the country.
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By Steve Benen

Today's installment of campaign-related news items from across the country.

* A group of anti-Trump Republicans have formed a super PAC designed to help boost Joe Biden's candidacy. Anthony Scaramucci, the former White House communications director, is reportedly part of the initiative, which is called the Right Side PAC.

* Sen. Ben Sasse (R) was already a safe bet for re-election in Nebraska this year, but his odds improved yesterday when the Nebraska Democratic Party denounced its own Senate candidate, Chris Janicek, for what the party described as "sexually inappropriate comments" about a campaign staff member.

* On the heels of the Justice Department dropping its review of insider-trading allegations against Sen. Kelly Loeffler (R-Ga.), the Senate Ethics Committee this week also decided not to proceed with the matter. The Georgia Republican, appointed to the seat, is running her first campaign this year.

* Speaking of Georgia, the latest survey from Public Policy Polling found Biden narrowly leading Trump in the state, 48% to 46%. The Republican ticket carried Georgia four years ago by five points.

* Just as importantly, the same PPP survey found challenger Jon Ossoff (D) edging past incumbent Sen. David Perdue (R), 45% to 44%. If Perdue loses, the likelihood of Republicans maintaining a Senate majority is remote.

* For its 2020 strategy, incumbent Sen. Thom Tillis' (R-N.C.) campaign operation has reportedly embraced much of the blueprint utilized by Ed Gillespie's (R) 2017 gubernatorial campaign in Virginia. In case this isn't obvious, let's note for the record that Ed Gillespie lost by a larger-than-expected margin in a race many expected him to win.

* And in still more campaign news out of the South, the latest Public Policy Polling survey in Mississippi found incumbent Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith (R) leading former Agriculture Secretary Mike Espy (D) 49% to 41%. This is a rematch of their competitive special election in 2018.