rainn.png
Sunday June 20th, 2021 2:47AM

Tom Cotton is campaigning hard, just not for re-election

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) —

Six years after being elected in an expensive and heated race, Republican Sen. Tom Cotton is on the ballot again and he's campaigning hard — just not in Arkansas.

With no Democratic rival and millions in campaign funds to spend, Cotton has run ads in the battleground states of Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin. He's on the trail with Senate colleagues like Kelly Loeffler in Georgia and Steve Daines in Montana, and made the rounds at events in Iowa and New Hampshire.

Cotton's moves show a barely concealed ambition: While his GOP colleagues are struggling mightily to save their Senate seats, his schedule has all the hallmarks of someone focused on the White House in 2024. His is one of several shadow campaigns going on behind the din of the 2020 election battle, and an example of a missed opportunity for Democrats who, even with President Donald Trump motivating opposing voters, couldn't find a viable Senate candidate to possibly take advantage.

Cotton insists his focus has been on helping fellow Republicans and the president, not on any future plans.

“The campaigning I've been doing this year across the country is laying the groundwork for a Republican majority in the Senate and hopefully the president's re-election," Cotton said. “I am always Arkansas' voice in the Senate, but I've got to tell you my voice is much stronger if I have at least 49 other Republicans there with me."

The only Democrat who announced a bid against Cotton abruptly withdrew his candidacy hours after the filing deadline. His sole remaining opponent is the Libertarian nominee, Ricky Dale Harrington, a 35-year-old former prison chaplain who's never sought public office before.

State Democratic Party Chairman Michael John Gray said he doesn't know if Cotton's race could have been a tossup like Lindsey Graham's in South Carolina, where Democratic opponent Jaime Harrison has shattered fundraising records.

But, Gray says, “he certainly would have had a real race on his hands."

Instead, Cotton's effort is barely perfunctory. His campaign had about $6.5 million as of October 14. Aside from two TV spots he's run in Arkansas, the lawmaker has run ads in battleground states targeting former Vice President Joe Biden and echoing many of Trump's talking points.

For example, an ad Cotton aired in Minnesota showed images of violence that occurred at some demonstrations over police brutality earlier this year.

“The liberal mob is out of control," the ad says.

Cotton has also lent his support to a proposal going before Arkansas voters that would impose new restrictions on ballot initiatives.

The incumbent lawmaker declined to participate in a debate on Arkansas public television, which essentially gave Harrington an hour of unfettered questions to himself.

“He's on Fox News — I don't know how many times a week, two, three times a week? — but he can't come here to address the people of Arkansas?" Harrington said during the program.

It's a far cry from 2014 when Cotton unseated Democratic incumbent Mark Pryor in one of the most closely watched Senate battles that year.

Cotton, 43, a Harvard law school graduate who served in the Army in Afghanistan and Iraq, is the most aggressively conservative of the state's top Republicans, especially when compared to Arkansas' other senator, the soft-talking John Boozman. Since taking office, Cotton has eagerly taken on national issues popular with the Republican base and hewed closely to Trump's rhetoric.

He advocated the use of federal troops to quell nationwide protests in a New York Times op-ed that sparked a backlash and later l ed to the editorial page editor's resignation. He's called for defunding any curriculum that's based on the newspaper's 1619 Project, which centered on slavery's enduring role in American history.

Cotton is among several Republicans positioning themselves to be the next standard-bearer for the party, no matter who wins on Nov. 3. The list includes fellow senators Josh Hawley of Missouri and Ted Cruz, neither of whom is up for re-election this year.

With no Democrat on the ballot, Harrington is likely to pick up Democratic voters like Heather Edmiston of Springdale, who has never voted for a Libertarian.

“I don't feel like like he’s going to win," she said, 'but I don’t feel like it would hurt either."

While he's a Trump loyalist, Cotton and Trump have split on some issues, including saying he would have urged the public to wear masks earlier in the coronavirus pandemic.

“In retrospect, I wish the president might have turned his marketing genius from his red MAGA hats to red MAGA masks," Cotton said.

___

Follow Andrew DeMillo on Twitter at www.twitter.com/ademillo.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP National News, Top U.S. News short headlines, AP Online Headlines - Washington, AP Online Congress News, AP Elections, General Election News, General Presidential Election News, General Senate Election News, AP Elections - Political Conventions, AP Elections - Campaigns
© Copyright 2021 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
French doctor warns his country has 'lost control' of virus
A French doctor warns that his country has “lost control of the epidemic,” a day after health authorities reported more than 52,000 new coronavirus infections
12:02PM ( 8 minutes ago )
Tom Cotton is campaigning hard, just not for re-election
Republican Sen. Tom Cotton is on the ballot again six year after being elected in a heated race, but this time his campaign's focus isn't on Arkansas
12:00PM ( 10 minutes ago )
New Mexico legislator flees home after receiving threats
A New Mexico state senator says fled his home after receiving anonymous telephone message threats following his criticism of demonstration where many did not wear masks outside the state Capitol in Santa Fe
11:48AM ( 22 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Trump plans battleground blitz despite growing virus worries
President Donald Trump plans to intensify an already breakneck travel schedule in the final full week of the presidential campaign despite growing worries about the coronavirus nationwide
10:39AM ( 1 hour ago )
Early vote total exceeds 2016; GOP chips at Dems' advantage
The number of people casting an early ballot in the presidential election now surpasses those who voted early during all of 2016
10:38AM ( 1 hour ago )
US to get 9th justice with Dems powerless to block Barrett
The Senate is set to confirm Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court
10:35AM ( 1 hour ago )
AP National News
Californians see power shutoffs as winds, fire danger rise
Hundreds of thousands of Californians lost power as utilities sought to prevent the chance of their equipment sparking wildfires and the fire-weary state braced for a new bout of dry, windy weather
11:17PM ( 12 hours ago )
Power cut to 117,000 customers as California faces fire risk
Pacific Gas & Electric cut power Sunday to more than 100,000 California customers and planned outages for many more to prevent the chance of sparking wildfires because of extreme fire weather
7:25PM ( 16 hours ago )
Power cut to thousands as California braces for fire risk
Pacific Gas & Electric started cutting power Sunday to tens of thousands of California residents and planned outages for many more to prevent the chance of sparking wildfires because of extreme fire weather
6:50PM ( 17 hours ago )
Top U.S. News short headlines
Low expections in Mexico as US election approaches
A week before United States elections, expectations in Mexico are low
10:24AM ( 1 hour ago )
The Latest: Meadows defends against Biden virus criticism
White House chief of staff Mark Meadows is taking issue with Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s criticism that the Trump administration has given up on trying to control the coronavirus pandemic
10:18AM ( 1 hour ago )
Democrats ask Pence to skip Barrett vote over COVID-19 risk
A deeply torn Senate is set to confirm Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court
7:54AM ( 4 hours ago )
AP Online Headlines - Washington
Thai parliament opens special session over protest tensions
Thailand’s Parliament has begun a special session that was called to address tensions as pro-democracy protests draw students and other demonstrators into the streets almost daily demanding the prime minister’s resignation
12:06AM ( 12 hours ago )
Malaysian PM acknowledges king's rebuff of virus emergency
Malaysia’s prime minister said his government was prioritizing protecting people from COVID-19 amid a new outbreak after the king rejected an emergency proposal that critics saw as an undemocratic attempt to hold onto power
11:22PM ( 12 hours ago )
Malaysia's king rejects PM's proposal to declare emergency
Malaysia’s king has rejected a proposal by embattled Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin to declare a state of emergency to fight a new outbreak of the coronavirus
9:59PM ( 14 hours ago )
AP Online Congress News
`The books that help her through': Winfrey suggests seven
With Election Day approaching and the pandemic ongoing, Oprah Winfrey is setting aside her usual book club recommendations
10:02AM ( 2 hours ago )
Global shares fall on uncertainty over US election, pandemic
Global shares are lower amid widespread uncertainty over what the U.S. presidential election will portend for markets and economic policy
5:27AM ( 6 hours ago )
Asian shares mostly fall on uncertainty over US election
Asian shares are mostly lower in muted trading amid widespread uncertainty over what the U.S. presidential election will portend for markets and economic policy
2:38AM ( 9 hours ago )
AP Elections
Trump intensifies fracking assault on Biden in Pennsylvania
In a persistent gambit to win the battleground state of Pennsylvania, President Donald Trump has worked to peel off voters connected to its booming natural gas industry and accuse former Vice President Joe Biden of plotting to shut it down
1:53PM ( 22 hours ago )
The Latest: Biden attends church, plans push on early voting
With nine days to go until Election Day, Joe Biden is spending a quiet Sunday in Wilmington, Delaware
12:47PM ( 23 hours ago )
Senate aims to put Barrett closer to a final vote on Monday
Senators are poised to remove a key hurdle to Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett's confirmation on Sunday
12:05PM ( 1 day ago )
General Election News
Observers say Tanzania's presidential vote is already flawed
Tanzania’s opposition faces a new obstacle in its quest to unseat President John Magufuli in Wednesday’s election: It says the government has made it difficult to accredit thousands of opposition electoral observers who want to ensure the vote is fair
4:59AM ( 1 day ago )
Ukraine's local elections test leader and his young party
Ukrainians are voting in local elections that are considered a test for President Volodymyr Zelenskiy
3:24AM ( 1 day ago )
The Latest: Pence's top aide tests positive for coronavirus
A spokesman says Vice President Mike Pence will continue with his aggressive campaign schedule after his chief of staff, Marc Short, tested positive for the coronavirus Saturday
11:11PM ( 1 day ago )
General Presidential Election News
Cunningham keeps low in NC Senate race marked by his affair
North Carolina Democratic Senate candidate Cal Cunningham is bypassing uncomfortable questions about his extramarital activities in the final days of his race with GOP Sen. Thom Tillis
2:40PM ( 1 day ago )
Egypt's parliamentary vote likely to tighten leader's grip
Egyptians have begun voting in the first stage of a parliamentary election, in a vote that is highly likely to produce a toothless lower chamber packed with supporters of President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi
7:14AM ( 2 days ago )
Parties' late spending on Senate races shows GOP's jeopardy
Republicans and Democrats are unleashing millions in eleventh-hour spending in Senate races
5:21PM ( 2 days ago )
General Senate Election News
Senate GOP pushing Barrett ahead past Democrats' blockade
The Senate has opened a rare weekend session as Republicans race to put Amy Coney Barrett on the Supreme Court
12:54PM ( 1 day ago )
The Needle goes away as probability experts assess 2020 race
Probability estimates for the 2020 U.S. presidential election are still being made, but one fixture of the 2016 cycle won’t make a return
8:40AM ( 2 days ago )
Senate GOP marches ahead on Barrett over Democrats' blockade
The Senate is gearing up for a rare weekend session as Republicans race to put Amy Coney Barrett on the Supreme Court and cement a conservative majority before Election Day despite Democratic efforts to stall President Donald Trump’s nominee
12:13AM ( 2 days ago )
AP Elections - Political Conventions
The Latest: Biden will work hard for Trump 'chumps' too
Vice President Joe Biden has called Trump supporters gathered outside his drive-in rally “chumps,” but said he’d work hard for them if he win’s next month’s presidential election
3:05PM ( 1 day ago )
The Latest: Trump touts 'incredible' numbers as virus soars
President Donald Trump is continuing to criticize Joe Biden for saying during their debate that the country is headed for a dark winter because of the pandemic — something health experts have been warning for months
2:45PM ( 1 day ago )
The Latest: Biden repeats no fracking ban at Pa. rally
Joe Biden is repeating that he has no plans to ban hydraulic fracturing in Pennsylvania, a critical battleground state where many jobs depend on the industry
1:08PM ( 1 day ago )
AP Elections - Campaigns
French doctor warns his country has 'lost control' of virus
A French doctor warns that his country has “lost control of the epidemic,” a day after health authorities reported more than 52,000 new coronavirus infections
12:02PM ( 8 minutes ago )
New Mexico legislator flees home after receiving threats
A New Mexico state senator says fled his home after receiving anonymous telephone message threats following his criticism of demonstration where many did not wear masks outside the state Capitol in Santa Fe
11:48AM ( 22 minutes ago )
US stocks tumble toward worst day in a month amid virus woes
Stocks are slumping in midday trading on Wall Street Monday and deepening last week’s losses
11:28AM ( 43 minutes ago )
Thai protesters shun Parliament, ask Germany to probe king
Pro-democracy demonstrators in Thailand are expanding their protests internationally, marching to the German Embassy to appeal to Angela Merkel’s government to investigate whether Thailand’s king is exercising political power during his extended stays in Bavaria
11:20AM ( 51 minutes ago )
Women's groups plan more protests over Poland abortion law
Women’s rights activists are planning more protests in Poland after a top court tightened the predominantly Catholic nation’s already strict abortion law
11:18AM ( 53 minutes ago )