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Campbell Soups Up Consultant Team

California state Sen. John Campbell (R), the frontrunner in the yet-to-be scheduled special election to replace Rep. Christopher Cox (R-Calif.), already has a full team of consultants in place.

The general consultant is the Sacramento-based firm Gilliard, Blanning, Wysocki and Associates. Arnold Steinberg, a veteran GOP consultant, will handle the polling. And Sara Myers is the local finance director. All have already worked for Campbell’s legislative campaigns.

Meanwhile, Campbell has turned to Keelen Communications, an Alexandria, Va.-based firm, to handle Washington, D.C., fundraising.

Campbell is set to run in the special election that will be scheduled after the Senate confirms Cox to be the next chairman of the Securities and Exchange

Commission. So far, the state Senator’s principal rival in the all-party primary is former state Assemblywoman Marilyn Brewer (R). Brewer is scheduled to visit D.C. early next week to huddle with party leaders and strategists.

Driving Ford’s Campaign. Jim Hester will manage the Senate campaign of Rep. Harold Ford Jr. (D-Tenn.), Ford announced last week.

Hester leaves his post as executive director of the Tennessee Democratic Party, a position he has held since 2003.

He previously worked for Rep. Bart Gordon (D-Tenn.) and then-Rep. Bob Clement (D-Tenn.), serving as campaign manager, field director and get-out-the-vote director.

Hester also worked in the Senate office of former Vice President Al Gore as well as on his failed 1988 presidential campaign.

Nathan’s Famous. Nathan Daschle, son of former Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle (D-S.D.), has joined the Democratic Governors’ Association.

Daschle comes from the law firm Covington and Burling. Heine has worked for then-Gov. Rudy Perpich of Minnesota and on Capitol Hill with Sen. Jeff Bingaman (D-N.M.). Both have worked for the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees.

Keeping Score. The Club for Growth will begin tracking Members of Congress on certain key votes and score them accordingly, the group announced this week.

“These scores will help in understanding the true policies of members of Congress and will guide selection of Congressional candidates to receive support from the Club for Growth political action committee’s massive resources,” the pro-growth group said in a news release. “Equally important, the scorecard will help determine which incumbents could face Club for Growth PAC endorsed challengers in a primary or general election.”

The first vote scored this Congress was an Agriculture appropriations amendment sponsored by Reps. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.) and Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) and voted on by the House last month.

Team Teresa. Businesswoman Teresa Bartels (R) has begun hiring staff for her effort to unseat freshman Rep. Melissa Bean (D-Ill.) in the Land of Lincoln’s 8th district.

Mike Zolnierowicz was named campaign manager, Lisa Shydlowski will serve as finance director, and Brad Goodman was tapped as field director, the Illinois Leader reported late last month.

Zolnierowicz served as campaign manager to Rep. Katherine Harris (R-Fla.) last year, and Shydlowski was once an aide to Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Texas).

Scott Cottington inked a deal as her general consultant, and John McLaughlin is her pollster, the paper added.

All in the Family. Rep. Dan Lungren (R-Calif.) has hired his daughter as a fundraising consultant.

Kelly Lungren, formerly the Maryland Republican Party’s finance director, has launched a consulting business to help her dad with his lackluster fundraising, the Sacramento Bee reported earlier this month.

As of March 31, Lungren had banked only $10,000. Kelly Lungren hopes to push that number up to $150,000 in the Federal Election Commission reports due Friday.

California Dreamin’. Hoping to fill the void left by the demise of the California Journal late last year, Political Pulse Inc., which publishes a weekly newsletter on California government and political happenings, has purchased Capitol Weekly Inc., a publisher of neighborhood newspapers in the Sacramento area.

The new company, Capitol Pulse Inc., will publish a weekly newspaper for California political insiders called Capitol Weekly. California Journal, a well-respected monthly magazine that covered Golden State government and politics, suspended publication late last year.

“We feel there is a need for a publication dedicated exclusively to California politics and policy,” said Anthony York, who will serve as director of editorial operations for Capitol Pulse.

In addition to the new newspaper, the newly formed company will continue to publish the Political Pulse, another newsletter called Education Beat, and the community newspapers.

York’s father, Arnold York, will serve as publisher of the new company. Capitol Weekly founder Ken Mandler will remain with the new company as a consultant during the transition period. John Howard, a 20-year veteran of California political coverage, with stints at The Associated Press, Orange County Register and California Journal, will be the company’s managing editor.

Phillips Collection. New York lawyer Ed Cox (R), who is exploring a Senate bid against Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.), continues to expand his consultant team.

Cox, son-in-law of the late President Richard Nixon, has hired Dallas-based Malakoff Partners Inc. to his national fundraising team.

The company, founded by Jeanne Johnson Phillips, is a fundraising and event-planning firm with political, corporate and non-profit clients, including Hutchison and the Republican National Committee.

Prior to forming Malakoff, Phillips operated Jeanne Johnson and Co., which raised money for President Bush’s first gubernatorial campaign in 1994 and his 2000 presidential campaign. Another Bush campaign veteran, Mary Westfall, is the president of Malakoff.

Malakoff is the second Texas consulting firm that Cox has hired. He recently inked an agreement with the Austin firm Olsen and Shuvalov, a company with ties to White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove.

He Went to Join Nora and Asta. Crain’s New York Business reported this week that Nick Charles has left his job as press secretary for the New York mayoral campaign of Manhattan Borough President C. Virginia Fields (D). Kirsten Powers will take over as communications director and will soon hire a new press secretary.

Ironically, Powers used to run a political consulting firm, Powers/Bluestein, with Jen Bluestein, who is the communications director for former Bronx Borough President Fernando Ferrer, the frontrunner for the Democratic mayoral nomination.

Fields was scheduled to travel to D.C. Wednesday night for a fundraiser at B. Smith’s in Union Station, hosted by former Secretary of Labor Alexis Herman. Rep. Charlie Rangel (D-N.Y.) was also expected to make remarks.

NOW and Again. The National Organization of Women re-elected Kim Gandy as president last week.

Olga Vives was named executive vice president, Melody Drnach becomes action vice president and Latifa Lyles now serves as membership vice president.

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