Gizzi on Politics: Clinton Predicts; Colorado Blues; Pennsylvania Targets; More

Friday, 05 Apr 2013 03:21 PM

By John Gizzi

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Hedge fund honcho Marc Lasry will soon become ambassador to Paris, longtime family friend Bill Clinton predicted to delighted guests at a recent Democratic fundraising event at Lasry’s Manhattan home.

Born in Morocco and fluent in French, the 53-year-old head of Avenue Capital Group has been a major fundraiser for many Democrats, most recently President Barack Obama, for whom Lasry raised more than $1 million in 2012.

French correspondents in Washington expect the appointment to come soon and seem genuinely happy with Lasry, although they almost always bring up his controversial remark — “We don’t invest in France” — that he made in June 2010 at an event sponsored by the French bank BNP. Lasry apologized for the comment as he was making it.

Dog Days for Colorado Republicans
With no heavyweight Republican contenders in sight to challenge Colorado’s Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper or Sen. Mark Udall next year, and with both houses of the state Legislature in Democratic hands, Centennial State Democrats are now gunning for the open office of state attorney general.

Incumbent Republican John Suthers is stepping down and the GOPer many had hoped would carry their banner, Ken Buck, Weld County district attorney and the Republican 2010 U.S. Senate nominee, recently revealed he is battling cancer.

The leading Republican prospect is currently state House Minority Leader Mark Waller. The likely Democratic nominee is liberal state Sen. Morgan Carroll, who was a professional dancer and choreographer and a student of kung fu.

Pennsylvania GOP Congressmen Targeted
With the goal of a Democratic capture of the U.S. House next year, President Obama and his Organizing for Action political organization are focusing on capturing 17 House districts now in Republican hands.

Two of the targets are in Pennsylvania: the Bucks County district held by Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick and the Western Pennsylvania district won narrowly last year by freshman Rep. Keith Rothfus.

Last week, Kevin Strouse, onetime U.S. Army Ranger and part of the rescue team for Private Jessica Lynch in Iraq, declared for the Democratic nomination against Fitzpatrick.

A few days earlier, Erin McClelland, former ballerina and head of the Arche Wellness addiction rehabilitation center, said she would seek the Democratic nod against Rothfus.

Waiting for Rogers in Michigan

Rep. Mike Rogers, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, is expected to decide within days whether he will seek the Republican nomination for the seat of retiring Democratic Sen. Carl Levin of Michigan next year.

Rogers, the clear favorite of all GOP factions, has given no clue whether he will run for the Senate or remain in the House for his eighth term. If he passes on the race, GOP National Committeewoman and former Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land is expected to get in the race. Also mentioned is two-term Rep. Justin Amash, a protege of Ron Paul.

Democratic sources in Michigan say that the party will soon “clear the decks” for Wayne County-area Rep. Gary Peters to be their Senate nominee.

John Gizzi is the former political editor for Human Events, working for the conservative weekly from 1979 to 2013. Gizzi is a recipient of the William A. Rusher Award for Journalistic Excellence, was named Journalist of the Year by the Conservative Political Action Conference in 2002, and has appeared on hundreds of radio and TV talk shows.

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