July 20th, 2014
09:52 AM ET
2 months ago

The ‘Inside Politics’ Forecast: Adelson’s $100 million dollar bet?

CNN's John King and other top political reporters empty out their notebooks each Sunday on "Inside Politics" to reveal five things that will be in the headlines in the days, weeks and months ahead.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Big 2014 midterm races and calculations, and a 2016 wrinkle or two, filled a trip around our Inside Politics table to close this Sunday's program.

1. A GOP mega-donor mulls a big 2014 play

If you had a big, high-stakes project, think an extra $1 million a day might help?

Well, leading GOP sources focused on 2014 Senate races say such a boost is being contemplated by GOP megadonor Sheledon Adelson, the Las Vegas casino mogul.

Adelson has spent some time of late studying the map, and receiving briefings on state-by-state strategy and candidates. And he is promising to help Republicans target a dozen seats now held by Democrats, with the ultimate goal of picking up at least six - and the Senate majority. The GOP also is defending seats in Georgia and Kentucky.

So watch in the days and weeks ahead to see how much of a Senate play Adelson is prepared to make. One of the sources involved said it could be as much as $100 million. With 107 days to the election from Sunday, that would be an eye-popping bet.

2. Not your father's Chamber of Commerce

The Chamber of Commerce is already a big player in the 2014 battle, and CNN’s Peter Hamby discussed his in-depth reporting on just how much of a boost the business group's work has been for Republicans.

This aggressive political play outside of the capital is a big shift for the Chamber, and a huge factor in the establishment vs. tea party tug-of-war playing out in the GOP.

“The Chamber of Commerce has really moved away from being just a lobbying organization in DC to being one of the more preeminent political players in campaigns– rivaling American Crossroads,” said Hamby. “So that’s a big deal in American politics.”

3. Exhibit A: the Georgia Senate GOP runoff

Molly Ball of The Atlantic teed up a textbook example of the Chamber's 2014 strategy: next week's GOP Senate runoff in Georgia.

The Chamber backs GOP Rep. Jack Kingston over businessman David Perdue.

It was Perdue who won the most votes in the first round, with Kingston second. But the runoff is needed because neither cracked 50 percent, and Molly reports the Chamber is confident its investment in Kingston will bear fruit Tuesday.

“Although Perdue came in first in the first round, Kingston looks like he is up in the runoff,” said Ball. “If he does win the runoff, it will be another victory for the Chamber of Commerce, which has backed Kingston very aggressively.”

The Chamber of Commerce pushing for Kingston on Twitter this week:

4. Gillespie disappoints some GOP watchers

GOP leaders cheered when veteran operative Ed Gillespie jumped into the Virginia Senate race, believing it would give them a chance, albeit a long shot, to defeat Democratic Sen. Mark Warner. Even a competitive race forces Democrats to spread precious resources into the state.

Gillespie's decision was welcomed because of his deep resume: longtime Capitol Hill aide, former Republican National Committee chairman, former top Bush White House adviser, former top Mitt Romney adviser. Add all that up, and the thinking was: smarty guy, with a deeper than deep fund-raising reservoir.

Now there's no GOP panic in Virginia, but Politico's Maggie Haberman shared behind-the-scenes reporting on a development that surprised, and disappointed, some GOPers closely watching the race.

“Ed Gillespie, who is running for Senate in Virginia, has been a pretty effective fundraiser but he was outraised by Scott Brown,” said Haberman.

“He has good cash on hand, but the fact that he got $1.9 million and Scott Brown got $2.34, $2.35 million was not lost on some folks.”

Ed Gillespie’s tweet from this month wishing one of his very famous former bosses a happy birthday:

5. Yes, Virginia you ARE a quadrennial battleground now

Jonathan Martin of The New York Times reminded us once reliably red Virginia is now a presidential battleground - and the 2014 cycle offers a chance for presidential prospects to test the waters, and make some important friends.

President Obama carried the state in 2008 and 2012, and it’s hard to map out a GOP White House win without Virginia.

So Jonathan reports that Sen. Rand Paul is looking to deepen his ties in the state.

"On Tuesday, Rand Paul is going to be in Arlington, sitting down with two candidates who ran in Virginia last year—Pete Snyder and Ken Cuccinelli,” said Martin.

And Jonathan also tells us, the aforementioned Ed Gillespie is soon to get some help from another 2016 prospect: Indiana Republican Gov. Mike Pence.

soundoff (188 Responses)
  1. Lizzie

    Nice headline, but not a word about Tom Steyer ( who made millions on Oil and Gas interest and now is for carbon credits) who said he will spend as much as it takes to BUY senate seats.

    July 20, 2014 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  2. Rick McDaniel

    All true patriots of America are working to stop the corruption and criminal behavior, of the Democratic Party. That political party has become subversive to this country, in every possible way.

    July 20, 2014 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  3. Anonymous

    Lizzie
    Nice headline, but not a word about Tom Steyer ( who made millions on Oil and Gas interest and now is for carbon credits) who said he will spend as much as it takes to BUY senate seats.
    --------------

    You are aware that you in your willingness to choose sides you are buying into - without question - what's being sold as cover for the larger problem of the buying of elections in the United States of America?

    July 20, 2014 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  4. Lizzie

    Anonymous, if you believe that the US does not have the best POLITICIANS money can buy, your living on a different planet. Democrats and republicans alike sway the way, where the money comes from, NOT the $1 or $2 amounts. .
    Or maybe can you afford those $30000 a plate dinners.

    July 20, 2014 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  5. DarqueSide

    Way to go, Adelson! You made a similar 'bet' in 2012 with massive donations to Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney. You probably did more to ensure their defeat than improving their chances of winning. Big bucks donors just enhance the appearance that a candidate is 'owned' by the donor.

    July 20, 2014 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  6. Anonymous

    Lizzie
    Anonymous, if you believe that the US does not have the best POLITICIANS money can buy, your living on a different planet. Democrats and republicans alike sway the way, where the money comes from, NOT the $1 or $2 amounts. .
    Or maybe can you afford those $30000 a plate dinners.
    ------------

    I believe you missed my point entirely. Not only can I not afford $30000 a plate dinners, I am completely against the buying of political leaders by those who can afford such trinkets. I don't look to see what side is doing it before speaking my mind. That both sides do it should bring those of us who are against such practices together against the corruption, and not pit us against the one side does it so it's okay for the other side to do it too.

    Maybe I misread your comment? But, I think not. You were too quick to point out Steyer and what you thought was the injustice of CNN only mentioning GOP godfather Adelson. In other words, you were simply flaming the beginnings of a turf war and not questioning the underlaying corruption.

    July 20, 2014 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  7. Gurgyl

    -practically speaking, none, I mean none, of these republican trash is worth even for thinking. What did republican congress do for the sake of USA? For the last six years. Nothing. Don't people of USA know this truth? Well, Adelson the biggest racial thug might bet to lost his money. He spent a whole lot in Mitt election. Doesn't this nation know. We'll spectrum is changing. My advice is this is not 1990s, we are in 2014 an electronic era. World knows.

    July 20, 2014 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  8. Dark Poet

    hey how about he gives $1,000,000 of that my way since he is just throwing money away?! I could do more good than the entire Democrat and Republican party combined!

    July 20, 2014 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  9. Chris..E.al

    The chamber of commerce knows demo.s are antibusiness antijobs and antiprofits and pro tax tax tax to makeup for the handouts and stupid antiamerican ideals they dream up such as the failing not so ACa . And the very costly border scam . Dems are the scandal ? Wake up and smell the foul air .

    July 20, 2014 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  10. rick

    What? A day WITHOUT fluffing Hillarys feathers?? Nice for a change that when REAL problems show up. Like the downing of almost 300 people.. And Israiel finaly weeding out the strip problem.. Not a SINGLE WORD from her?? Must be restocking the liquor cabinet time..

    July 20, 2014 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  11. Bob

    One dollar would have been too much! Think they Rich have too much? Remember they actually got that money from you sellilng their products that you HAVE to buy otherwise you are going without food, water, drugs, clothes, healthcare, etc. Yep just like taxes you HAVE to give that rich guy your money.

    July 20, 2014 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  12. Thomas

    @Rick McDaniel
    All true patriots of America are working to stop the corruption and criminal behavior, of the Democratic Party. That political party has become subversive to this country, in every possible way.

    =========

    You sound like a true pro Vladimir Putin kinda guy. Only your in the wrong country .

    A true Patriot

    July 20, 2014 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  13. brant

    Snowden for president at least he don't lie or mis lead the public it's ok the truth will sonn come out by then it will be too late.

    July 20, 2014 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  14. Jack

    I was a Republican, but this isn't gpoing buy my vote! I am stubborn not to vote for any Republican. Koch's and Rove's PAC are not buying my vote.

    July 20, 2014 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  15. Gurgyl

    @rick, well, do you think Muslim mullahs are not watching Israel nasty drama. I am glad USA is not interfering in this self-inflicted conflict of Israel/Gaza mess. Tell you the truth, Israel wants USA on their side further rob it's boots, money, and sympathy. Pres. Obama is very strong not to interfere to this nasty rascals. These guys will see the music.

    July 20, 2014 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  16. john

    David Perdue or Purdue? proofread

    July 20, 2014 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  17. morris diehl

    In my household we do not mention anything that's corrupt, like the tebaggers, republitards or demiturds. Its a waste of tie because we all know that all politicians are not only corrupt some of the time but all of the times. Tards like Adelson are really Israeli agents. Lets hope people wise up and stop going to his casino's.

    July 20, 2014 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  18. martin vale

    It is not a bet. It is a purchase.

    July 20, 2014 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  19. thunder1road

    Global corporate money is the cancer that is eating away at our democracy - politicians for sale to the highest bidder – our senators and congressmen bought into office by a billionaire casino mogul. Not what the founding fathers had in mind.

    July 20, 2014 12:11 pm at 12:11 pm |
  20. Thatguy371

    Can't buy votes anyway, as we saw last election when Obama easily defeated Romney, so why throw money at media? Media is doing fine. Put $100 million toward helping to feed and clothe the poor, or toward Alzheimer's research. Do something meaningful and helpful.

    July 20, 2014 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  21. ThinkAgain - Don't like Congress? Get rid of the repub/tea bag majority.

    The Citizens United ruling is absolutely disgusting because it's given us the likes of Sheldon Adelson and the Koch brothers who think that just because they have money, they can buy an election.

    Shame on them, shame on the 5 SCOTUS Justices who voted for this, shame on everyone who supports this and shame on everyone who votes based on what these billionaires tell them.

    July 20, 2014 12:13 pm at 12:13 pm |
  22. ThinkAgain - Don't like Congress? Get rid of the repub/tea bag majority.

    @Chris..E.al: "The chamber of commerce knows demo.s are antibusiness antijobs and antiprofits and pro tax tax tax to makeup for the handouts and stupid antiamerican ideals they dream up such as the failing not so ACa . And the very costly border scam . Dems are the scandal ? Wake up and smell the foul air ."

    If Dems and their policies are so bad, then why has our country ALWAYS done better economically under Democratic administrations?

    *crickets the size of Godzilla*

    July 20, 2014 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  23. ThinkAgain - Don't like Congress? Get rid of the repub/tea bag majority.

    @Rick McDaniel: "All true patriots of America are working to stop the corruption and criminal behavior, of the Democratic Party. That political party has become subversive to this country, in every possible way."

    Laughable, as always, Rick. You're a fool and a tool.

    July 20, 2014 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  24. Chris..E.al

    @gurgy those indian doctor.s you so love to hate are a result of the not so aca ? The smart ones are selling insurance for the dems now ? Enjoy . P.S gurgy they even send the cash back home to send more . Just like the dems s american friends do

    July 20, 2014 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  25. JPX

    rick
    What? A day WITHOUT fluffing Hillarys feathers?? Nice for a change that when REAL problems show up. Like the downing of almost 300 people.. And Israiel finaly weeding out the strip problem.. Not a SINGLE WORD from her?? Must be restocking the liquor cabinet time..
    ---------------------------------------
    Huh?

    July 20, 2014 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
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