A Democratic Senate candidate from Missouri has argued that politicians in Washington ought to "take on their party bosses," even as he raises money in Las Vegas with the leader of his party in the Senate, Nevada's Harry Reid.
Jason Kander, a 34-year-old rising Democratic star and Missouri's secretary of state, is hoping to take on Republican incumbent Roy Blunt next year. Blunt, a former House majority leader, currently holds a position in Senate Republican leadership, a fact Kander recently used to demonstrate how the first-term senator is out of touch with Missourians.
"We don't send senators to Washington so they can climb the leadership ladder of their political party as fast as possible," Kander said at a February meeting of the Boone County Democratic party. "We send them there to take on their party bosses when they need to. We deserve an independent-minded senator who stands up for Missouri every minute of every day." Watch the video below:
It's a theme Kander has repeated on the stump, saying nearly the same thing about "taking on party bosses" at a Democratic party event last Saturday in Kansas City.
But earlier that week, as National Journal reports, Kander attended a fundraiser in Las Vegas hosted by Reid, the Senate minority leader and the most powerful Democrat in Congress. Republicans pounced on the news story.
"Democrat Jason Kander told Missourians he would stand up to his party bosses and then he snuck out to Las Vegas to meet with Senate Democrat Leader Harry Reid on his home turf," said NRSC spokesman Jahan Wilcox in an email. “After secretly appearing with the Democrat Leader in Las Vegas, it’s clear Democrat Jason Kander can’t be trusted to fight for Missouri families.”
Shortly after Kander entered the race, a poll found Blunt leading the Democrat by 13 points, 49 percent to 36 percent. Kander, who is considered the favorite to win his party's nomination, is a former Army captain and a veteran of the war in Afghanistan.
They come and they go and, now, Harry Reid has said he is going. When he announced his decision to retire, the predictable chorus of “attaboys” followed. He was a “fighter,” many of his colleagues said. President Obama went the extra mile and spoke fondly of Reid’s “curmudgeonly charm that’s hard to replace.”
Senate minority leader Harry Reid is retiring after the 2016 elections, the Nevada Democrat announced Friday. In a video message, the 75-year-old Reid claimed the decision had nothing to do with being in the minority, or with difficult reelection prospects, or with his recent accident in his home.
The National Republican Senatorial Committee responds to Harry Reid's retirement:
“On the verge of losing his own election and after losing the majority, Senator Harry Reid has decided to hang up his rusty spurs. Not only does Reid instantly become irrelevant and a lame duck, his retirement signals that there is no hope for the Democrats to regain control of the Senate. With the exception of Reid, every elected statewide official in Nevada is Republican and this race is the top pickup opportunity for the GOP.”
The United States Army has charged Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl with desertion and "misbehavior before the enemy." Bergdahl allegedly abandoned his post in Afghanistan and was held captive by Taliban-aligned forces for nearly five years before the Obama administration negotiated a deal with the Taliban forces.
The office of Harry Reid announced that the top Democrat in the Senate will undergo eye surgery to recover "full vision in his right eye." He'll miss a week of work while he's recovering.
“On Monday, as a necessary step to assist in recovering full vision in his right eye, Senator Reid will undergo surgery on his right eye at George Washington University Hospital in Washington, D.C. Senator Reid was notified that this surgery will be necessary following a doctor’s appointment yesterday," announced a Reid spokesman today.