The National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) added seven new Republican candidates to its ‘Young Gun” list on Thursday, a designation that is generally reserved for GOP candidates who are believed to be on a “clear path to victory.”
Originally created in the 2007-2008 election cycle by Reps. Eric Cantor, R-Va., Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., and Paul Ryan, R-Wis., the Young Guns program has become an official NRCC effort dedicated to electing open-seat and challenger candidates nationwide.
"These candidates have met a series of rigorous goals that will put them in position to win on Election Day," said NRCC Chairman Pete Sessions, R-Texas. "The momentum behind these campaigns is proof-positive that Americans are fed up with President Obama's policies that spend too much, tax too much and borrow too much at the expense of hard-working families.”
Sessions added that the seven “are leading the pack” as Republicans continue to send a loud and clear message that “we will hold Democrats accountable for their job-destroying agenda."
The seven ‘Young Guns' candidates by Congressional district are:
• Adam Hasner (Fla.). A former state Republican House majority leader, Hasner is running for the 22nd Congressional District seat, which includes Palm Beach. He is pitted against Democrats Lois Frankel, the former mayor of West Palm Beach, and Broward County Commissioner Kristin Jacobs, according to the Palm Beach Daily News. He believes in limited government, free markets, and a strong national defense. As a public servant, he amassed a consistent voting record in favor of tax relief, reducing government spending, increasing personal freedoms, reining in government regulations, and promoting entrepreneurship.
• Ben Lange (Iowa). An attorney, Lange is running against incumbent Democrat Bruce Braley of Iowa’s 1st Congressional District, which covers the north east of the state. He wants to restore the founding ideals that made America an innovative powerhouse so the next generation won’t suffer from the wasteful spending and job-crushing policies that are being exercised by the national government today.
• John Archer (Iowa). A business and community leader, Archer is within 5 points of incumbent Democrat Dave Loebsack in Iowa’s 2nd Congressional District, covering the state’s south east according to Wednesday’s Des Moines Register. The poll showed 48 percent of respondents supporting Loebsack as compared to 43 percent for Archer with 10 percent undecided, according to the paper. The poll was conducted for the Archer campaign and the NRCC., Archer has worked at John Deere for the last 12 years and is part-owner of Schebler Company, a manufacturing firm that employs 160 people. He also serves on the Pleasant Valley Community School Board of Education, Bettendorf Family Museum Board of Trustees, the Iowa Chapter of the American Corporate Counsel Board and Bettendorf Rotary.
• Kevin Raye (Maine). The State Senate president, Raye is trailing Democratic incumbent Mike Michaud by 12 points in Maine’s 2nd Congressional District — which covers the entire state outside of the urban south — according to an article in Thursday’s Portland Press Herald. He is known for getting the two parties to work together to balance the budget and foster job creation in Maine. A small businessman, he and his wife Karen own and operate Raye’s Mustard Mill in Eastport.
• Kevin Cramer (N.D.). With a distinguished career in government service, Cramer is taking on Democrat Pam Gulleson for North Dakota’s open at-large seat. He served the past nine years as the state’s Public Service Commissioner. Cramer’s portfolio includes oil, gas, and C02 pipelines, refineries and gas plants, and coal mining. Prior to the PSC, Cramer worked for eight years in Gov. Ed Schafer’s cabinet. He also served as chairman of the North Dakota Republican Party. He is a native of Kindred, N.D.
• Danny Tarkanian (Nev.). A former point guard at UNLV, Tarkanian is taking on Democrat state Sen. Steven Horsford of Las Vegas in a new congressional district, according to the Nevada News Bureau. Playing for his father, Tarkanian excelled both on and off the court by being named a two time All-Conference player, All-American Honorable Mention, Rhodes Scholar Candidate and, a two time Academic All-American. He owns the Tarkanian Basketball Academy in Las Vegas.
• Chris Collins (N.Y.). A businessman, Collins is challenging incumbent Democrat Kathy Hochul in New York’s 27th Congressional District, south west of Buffalo. He worked in the private sector for more than 36 years, fixing struggling companies and making them successful. He closed down a factory in Mexico and moved those jobs back to Western New York as part of a legacy that created or saved more than 500 jobs. As Erie County Executive, he helped reduce the debt by $120 million and cut the size of county government by more than 20 percent.
A political committee devoted to maintaining, and increasing the 242-member Republican majority in the U.S. House of Representatives, the NRCC dates back to 1866, when the Republican caucuses of the House and Senate formed a "Congressional Committee."
Today, the NRCC supports the election of Republicans to the House through direct financial contributions to candidates and Republican Party organizations; technical and research assistance to Republican candidates and party organizations; voter registration, education and turnout programs; and other party-building activities.
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