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SINEMA SAYS SAYONARA: Independent Arizona Sen. Kyrsten Sinema’s departure from the Democratic Party on Friday raises questions concerning the future of her pivotal Senate seat in the body’s already slim margin between Democrats and Republicans. The former Democrat was first elected in 2018, winning a tight race against then-Republican Congresswoman Martha McSally, and is up for re-election in 2024 in what is expected to be a primary target for Republicans to flip. Read more from Fox News Brandon Gillespie: What Kyrsten Sinema’s departure from Democratic Party means for pivotal Arizona Senate seat
RETENTION ISSUES? Sinema isn’t the only one. Several elected Democrats at the state and local level have chosen to end their affiliation with the Democratic Party in recent weeks, raising concern over whether the party may be suffering from a retention problem as political divides continue to widen in the United States. Strategists from both sides of the aisle appear divided over the reasons why some elected officials have decided to abandon the party. Read more from Fox News Kyle Morris: Retention issues? Political strategists weigh in on recent departures from the Democratic Party
STAYING PUT… FOR NOW: Shortly after a few members of the Democratic Party announced their departure to new political affiliation, moderate Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.V., revealed that he will not be leaving the party — but his comments left the door open for a different decision in the future. Read more from Fox News’ Aubrie Spady. This Democrat says he’s not leaving the Dem party — at least not right now
DONOR HUDDLE: Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis meets with some of his leading contributors this weekend as he considers his next political steps following last month’s convincing re-election victory for a second four-year term steering Florida. The governor and his wife on Sunday head to Miami for what’s being described as a dinner with top donors, according to sources familiar with details of the private event. It appears to be the first major huddle by DeSantis with top dollar donors since he defeated former GOP governor and Democratic congressman Charlie Crist by nearly 20 points in November’s gubernatorial election in the Sunshine State. Read more from Fox News’ Paul Steinhauser: 2024 Watch: DeSantis to huddle with top donors following landslide re-election victory
BACKLASH OVER GRINER TRADE: Top Republican contenders for the 2024 presidential race spoke out against President Biden’s prisoner swap with Russia that released a convicted arms dealer. On Thursday, Biden traded WNBA player Brittney Griner for Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout, who was arrested in 2008 on charges of conspiracy to kill Americans through global arms trade — earning the moniker “Merchant of Death.” Meanwhile, Marine veteran Paul Whelan remains in Russian prison. The exchange was celebrated for Griner’s release, though many criticized the swap for leaving Whelan behind. Read more from Fox News’ Aubrie Spady here: ‘Disgraceful abdication’: Potential 2024 contenders slam Biden’s swap of WNBA player for ‘Merchant of Death’
THE T-FILES: Twitter CEO Elon Musk confirmed Friday that political candidates in the United States and abroad were subject to “shadow-banning” by Twitter while running for office or seeking re-election. “So here’s a question for [Elon Musk] and [Bari Weiss]: were any political candidates — either in the U.S. or elsewhere — subject to shadowbanning while they were running for office or seeking re-election?” tweeted conservative commentator Ian Miles Cheong. “Yes,” Musk simply replied, but he did not provide detail on any specific political candidates who were subject to shadow-banning. Read more from Fox News Brandon Gillespie: Elon Musk confirms political candidates were subject to ‘shadow-banning’ by Twitter
CLOSE-LIPPED ON 2024: Top Democrats who are rumored to be considering a 2024 presidential run were silent when asked if they would support President Biden in a second term next cycle, heightening speculation that they will be making bids for the White House themselves. Fox News Digital reached out to 10 rumored 2024 Democratic presidential contenders to see if they would formally support Biden should he run for re-election in 2024. Read more from Fox News’ Aubrie Spady: Majority of Dems rumored to be considering presidential run won’t commit to backing Biden in 2024
MA$$IVE MAGA: The leading super PAC aligned with former President Donald Trump is sitting on $55 million in its coffers as the 2024 presidential election cycle gets underway. MAGA Inc.’s cash on hand, which was shared first with Fox News on Thursday, comes mostly from a massive transfer of funds in late October from Trump’s Save America political committee, as the super PAC has yet to launch its fundraising operations. The super PAC reports bringing in $40 million during the Oct. 20-Nov. 28 reporting period, with most of the funding coming from the Save America contribution. Read more from Fox News’ Paul Steinhauser: First on Fox: Trump-aligned super PAC has $55 million in the bank as 2024 presidential campaign gets underway
PENCE TEASES RUN: Former Vice President Mike Pence says that the positive response he highlights he’s receiving from his new autobiography “has been very encouraging” as he weighs launching a bid for the White House in 2024. “The fact that people are now getting to know me and my family, our faith, our conservative convictions better, has been a great source of encouragement as we think about the way forward and what our calling might be in the future,” Pence emphasized in a national exclusive interview with Fox News following his latest book signing for his memoir “So Help Me God.” The autobiography gives an account of his career, including his four years serving under former President Trump. Read more from Fox News’ Paul Steinhauser: Former VP Pence says positive response to autobiography ‘great source of encouragement’ as he mulls 2024 bid
COMMITMENT ISSUES: Sen. Jon Tester, the only Democrat to hold statewide office in Montana, will not commit to a re-election bid just yet. The Montana senator will be up for re-election to a fourth term in 2024, and Republicans have their eyes on picking up this seat as they fight to regain a Senate majority next cycle. During a Sunday appearance on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” the Montana Democrat was pressed on his re-election ambitions, but refused to say whether he would seek re-election in 2024. A spokesperson for the senator’s office told Fox News that Tester would make a final determination after the New Year. Read more from Fox News’ Sophia Slacik: Vulnerable Montana senator won’t commit to re-election bid: ‘Retire or lose’ says state GOP
MCCORMICK COMEBACK? Dave McCormick won’t say if he’s mulling another Senate run in Pennsylvania in 2024, but the Republican candidate who came within a thousand votes of winning the 2022 GOP Senate nomination in the crucial northeastern battleground state is making moves that signal a possible campaign may be in the works. McCormick, a former hedge fund executive, West Point graduate, Gulf War combat veteran and Treasury Department official in former President George W. Bush’s administration, has been attending receptions with influential Republican officials, activists, and donors in recent weeks. Read more from Fox News’ Paul Steinhauser here: Pennsylvania’s McCormick taking steps that hint at potential 2024 Senate campaign
CAMPAIGN TRAIL UPDATES
DEMS’ GEORGIA VICTORY: Democratic Sen. Raphael Warnock defeated Republican challenger Herschel Walker in Georgia’s high stakes Senate runoff election. While the Senate majority has already been decided, Warnock’s victory in the last ballot box showdown of the 2022 midterm elections gives the Democrats a 51-49 margin in the chamber and a bit of breathing room in their razor-thin control of the Senate. Read more from Fox News’ Paul Steinhauser and Brandon Gillespie: Sen. Raphael Warnock wins Georgia Senate runoff, defeating GOP challenger Herschel Walker
BOEBERT’S NARROW WIN: Freedom Caucus firebrand Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colo, has won her bid for re-election against Democrat Adam Frisch, an automatic recount confirmed Monday. The race was decided by 546 votes, fitting a pattern in the 2022 midterm elections when strong supporters of former President Trump finished with closer-than-expected margins or lost elections in swing districts. Secretary of State Jena Griswold announced the results Monday evening. Frisch gained a total of four votes in the recount, not nearly enough to catch up and overtake Boebert’s lead. Read more from Fox News’ Chris Pandolfo: Colorado election results: Lauren Boebert wins re-election by 546 votes, recount confirms
NOT BACKING DOWN: Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel is highlighting her team’s ground game efforts on behalf of GOP Senate nominee Herschel Walker and isn’t letting Walker’s defeat to Democratic Sen. Raphael Warnock in Georgia’s crucial Senate runoff election set her back as she seeks re-election as RNC chair. McDaniel, who last month announced she would seek a fourth two-year term steering the national party committee — an unprecedented feat in modern times — spoke to Fox News Digital in an exclusive interview. Read more from Fox News’ Kyle Morris, Paul Steinhauser and Andrew Murray: RNC’s McDaniel isn’t letting setback in Georgia Senate runoff sidetrack her run for re-election as chair
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