“So, I have spent almost nothing on my run for president and am in 1st place.”
— Donald Trump, in a tweet Tuesday, part of a series in which he bragged about how his campaign is under budget and promised to start spending money on ads in early primary states. Trump is running the most cost-effective presidential campaign in modern history.
Jeb Bush is down. Way down. The former Florida governor and once GOP front-runner is in fifth and sixth places in Iowa and New Hampshire, respectively, and sixth place nationally. With the Iowa caucuses four weeks away, it’s not impossible for him to come back. And the eye-popping amount of money in his Super PAC, Right to Rise, is certainly a reason not to count him out. But The Fix's Philip Bump notes that since Bush began a fall bus tour designed to reinvigorate his struggling campaign, he has lost a third of his national support. For Democrats, it’s one less candidate in a crowded and unpredictable field to have to worry about.
Democrats are losing a hold of one of their last strongholds in the South: the Kentucky state House. After November elections that went poorly for the party, two Democratic state representatives announced they were switching to the Republican side, setting the stage for special elections this spring that could help Kentucky Republicans gain control of the chamber — and regain dominance at the state level for the first time in decades. (Republicans won the governor's mansion and most statewide executive offices in November.) Political scientists who follow Kentucky politics say this is probably a final realignment of America's decades-old North-South political reality: Republicans rule the South; Democrats the North. And Republicans are more than happy to reclaim a Southern state that had long eluded them.
3: The number of high-level campaign staff members who resigned from retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson's struggling GOP presidential campaign, including his chief of staff. Carson said Sunday there was a stifling of ideas up top.
$35 million: The amount under budget Trump says his campaign is.
$55 million: The amount of money Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton raised in her campaign in the latest fundraising quarter, the most of any non-incumbent candidate in a non-election year.