GOP slams Paul Davis for bringing Rep. Steny Hoyer to Kansas
Democratic congressional candidate Paul Davis' campaign has confirmed that Rep. Steny Hoyer, D-Md., the No. 2 Democrat in the U.S. House, will be in Kansas this weekend — a fact that the National Republican Congressional Committee is trying to use against him.
The NRCC issued a statement earlier this week using the event as a link between Davis and former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California, now the minority leader and a favorite foil for Republicans.
That's important because when he announced his campaign in August, Davis specifically said that if he's elected, he would not support Pelosi for another term as leader of the Democratic caucus.
"Think voters will believe Paul won’t support Pelosi for Speaker while the establishment pulls out the stops to prop him up? Yeah, we don’t either," the NRCC statement said.
Davis, a former state lawmaker from Lawrence and the Democrats' unsuccessful candidate for governor in 2014, is running for the 2nd District seat that Rep. Lynn Jenkins, of Topeka, will vacate next year. There is a crowded field of Republicans seeking the nomination, led by state Sens. Steve Fitzgerald, of Leavenworth, and Caryn Tyson, of Parker.
In their first quarterly campaign finance reports released in October, Davis reported raising more than $400,000 in just a little more than a month, more money than all the Republican candidates combined. The Cook Political Report, a nonpartisan political handicapping website, rates the 2nd District as leaning Republican, one notch above the toss-up category.
Davis spokeswoman Haley Pollack confirmed in an email this week that Hoyer will be in Kansas on Saturday to stump for Davis as part of a swing through several states where he is campaigning for Democratic House candidates.
But she categorically rejected the idea that Davis is now in the camp of Pelosi, whom Republicans often portray as a quintessential San Francisco liberal.
"Congressman Hoyer is a respected moderate," Pollack said. "Paul has pledged he will not support Nancy Pelosi for Leader or Speaker. His position on this is clear, has not changed, and will not change – period."
She said the event would take place at a "private venue" on Saturday with a small group of supporters after Hoyer campaigns in Kansas City, Mo., for Rep. Emanuel Cleaver that same day.