Feb 16, 2018

Michigan gubernatorial candidate's campaign manager resigns over "inappropriate behavior"

Gretchen Whitmer (left) in Detroit, Michigan. Photo: Ali Lapetina for The Washington Post via Getty Images

The campaign manager for Gretchen Whitmer, a Democratic gubernatorial candidate in Michigan, resigned yesterday over "inappropriate behavior with people in the workplace" numerous years ago, according to a campaign statement.

Why it matters: Allegations of inappropriate behavior that have riled national politics —
— such as the resignation of Sen. Al Franken — is now impacting state races.

The former campaign manager, Keenan Pontoni, told local media "the allegation as presented to me does not match up with the facts as I know them." Someone who has worked in Michigan politics across the state said that Pontoni's behavior was an "open secret" in local politics and that his behavior "has occurred for many years against many women working across campaigns."

Background: Pontoni was Democratic candidate Jon Ossoff's campaign manager during his special election in Georgia. Less than a year ago he was called "a rising star in a party desperate for fresh blood" by CQ Roll Call.

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Warren sees bump in national poll following Nevada debate

Photo by David Becker/Getty Images.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren surged to 19% and second place in a CBS News/YouGov national poll released Sunday, trailing front-runner Sen. Bernie Sanders (28%) but edging out Joe Biden (17%) and Michael Bloomberg (13%).

Why it matters: The poll notes that only 42% of Democratic primary voters have made up their minds. While Warren underperformed in the first three states, her strong debate performance in Nevada last week may have given her campaign new life.

Pence aide says intel report of Russia helping Trump is "false information"

Marc Short. Screenshot: Fox News

Marc Short, chief of staff to Vice President Mike Pence, claimed on "Fox News Sunday" that the White House has not received intelligence that Russia is seeking to help President Trump win re-election, calling it "false information" that has been selectively leaked by Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee.

The big picture: Short and national security adviser Robert O'Brien both dismissed reports published in the Washington Post and New York Times last week about a briefing provided by top election security official Shelby Pierson, an aide to outgoing acting director of national intelligence Joseph Maguire.

Bernie's juggernaut

Sen. Bernie Sanders speaks in San Antonio last night with his wife, Jane. Photo: Eric Gay/AP

Sen. Bernie Sanders won so big in the Nevada caucuses that Democrats are hard-pressed to sketch a way he's not their nominee.

Driving the news: With 60% of precincts counted (slow, but better than Iowa!), Sanders is running away with 46% of delegates — crushing Joe Biden's 20%, Pete Buttigieg's 15%, Sen. Elizabeth Warren's 10% and Sen. Amy Klobuchar's 5%.