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Seth McLaughlin

Seth McLaughlin, a reporter on the Politics Desk, can be reached at Follow him on Twitter: @SethMcLaughlin1

Articles by Seth McLaughlin

Florida Gov. Rick Scott has a fortified ground game for his re-election campaign. The Republican likely will face former Gov. Charlie Crist, a Republican turned independent turned Democrat. (Associated Press)

Team Obama inspires Florida Republicans

The head of the Florida GOP says he is confident that Gov. Rick Scott, a Republican, will win re-election this fall in part because of the moves they have made to strengthen their ground game. Published February 2, 2014

'ONE OF THE STRONGEST VOICES' Sen. Jeff Sessions, Alabama Republican, stands tall among conservative groups such as the Tea Party Nation, the American Conservative Union and the Club for Growth. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)

Sessions: A tea partyer before the tea party was cool

Long before there was a Sen. Ted Cruz filibustering Obamacare on the Senate floor or a Sen. Rand Paul demanding answers on government drone policy, Sen. Jeff Sessions was holding the Senate floor for hours on end, espousing classic tea party stances against higher spending and expanding presidential powers. Published February 2, 2014

** FILE ** In this Jan. 14, 2014, file photo, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie delivers his State Of The State address at the Statehouse in Trenton, N.J. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez, File)

Chris Christie knew about lane closures, ex-official claims

The attorney for the former Port Authority official at the center of the George Washington Bridge scandal said there is evidence showing that New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie was aware of the lane closures when they happened. Published January 31, 2014

**FILE** Former Indiana Rep. Chris Chocola is president of the Club for Growth. (Associated Press)

Club for Growth hires firm blacklisted by Senate Republicans

The Club for Growth announced on Friday it had hired a prominent advertising firm that had been blacklisted by the campaign arm of Senate Republicans because some of its work went toward defeating incumbent GOP lawmakers in primary contests. Published January 31, 2014

Kentucky Senator Mitch McConnell Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell fired a major shot Thursday, taking to the chamber floor to say the rules amount to a declaration of war on free speech and vowing the GOP will try to block them. 
 "Every American needs to know about this abuse of power," said Mr. McConnell, Kentucky Republican. "Let me be clear: What the administration is proposing poses a grave threat to the ability of ordinary Americans to freely participate in the Democratic process."

IRS rules change seen as limiting free speech for nonprofit organizations

Conservative groups are mounting a major resistance effort against the Internal Revenue Service's post-tea party targeting scandal rules, which are designed to clamp down on outside groups' ability to organize as nonprofits and still play a role in political conversations. Published January 30, 2014

"If the RNC does select Las Vegas [for the GOP's 2016 convention], they'll probably sell out every show for Donny and Marie and Garth Brooks that week," said Faith and Freedom Coalition Chairman Ralph Reed. (ASSOCIATED PRESS)

Republicans weigh gamble on Las Vegas for 2016 convention

Republican officials are grappling with whether they can stomach holding their 2016 nominating convention in Las Vegas, which for many represents pretty much everything that a family values party should be trying to avoid. Published January 27, 2014

Republican National Committee (RNC) Chairman Reince Priebus speaks at the Republican National Committee winter meeting in Washington, Friday, Jan. 24, 2014. Seeking to shorten the Republican presidential selection process, the GOP moves to hold  its national convention in late June or early July in 2016, roughly two months sooner than usual. Iowa and New Hampshire would retain their coveted spots atop the presidential primary calendar. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

Looking to 2016, RNC shortens presidential primary calendar

The Republican National Committee voted Friday to condense its presidential nomination contest, in the hopes of avoiding another drawn-out and destructive primary battle that could hinder their chances of winning back the White House in 2016. Published January 24, 2014

RNC Chairman Reince Priebus, center, and Florida National Committeewoman and RNC Co-Chairman Sharon Day, third from right, introduce Conservative Activist Alison Howard, left, Cabinet Aide to Florida's CFO Chelsi Henry, second from left, New Mexico State Representative Monica Youngblood, third from left, Arizona State Senator Kimberly Yee, second from right, and CRNC Naitonal Chair Alex Smith, right, as the GOP's rising stars at the Republican National Committee's annual winter meeting, Washington, D.C., Thursday, January 23, 2014. (Andrew Harnik/The Washington Times)

Republicans move to change timing of primaries, convention as 2016 looms

Republicans are moving this week to confront some of their biggest problems from 2012, including changing their primary and convention schedules to gain a fundraising advantage and highlighting rising women within their party — a demographic they struggled with in the last presidential election. Published January 23, 2014

**FILE** Donald Trump speaks at the 124th Annual Republican Lincoln Day Dinner in Novi, Mich., on May 21, 2013. (Associated Press/The Detroit News)

Billionaire battle: Trump vs. Adelson over the future of online gambling

Sheldon Adelson, the Las Vegas casino magnate and GOP megadonor, is raising the stakes in the battle over online gambling by throwing his financial muscle behind a national campaign to end Internet gambling altogether. That puts him at odds with a number of fellow billionaires. Published January 19, 2014

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie delivers his State Of The State address at the Statehouse, Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2014, in Trenton, N.J. Christie apologized again Tuesday, saying his administration “let down the people we are entrusted to serve” but that it doesn’t define his team or the state. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

Defiant Christie taunts critics: Scandal won't hijack agenda

Looking to minimize the damage from two scandals, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie led off his State of the State Address Tuesday by taking responsibility for any mistakes, but also saying he won't allow those — or Democrats in the state legislature — to use the scandals as an excuse to avoid the rest of his agenda. Published January 14, 2014

United States Senator Ted Cruz-R from Texas speaks out against Obamacare at the Texas Public Policy Foundation morning keynote address Friday, Jan. 10, 2014 in Austin, Texas.  U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz told a conservative conference in Austin Friday that President Barack Obama is lawless, dangerous and terrifying, providing the right-wing rhetoric to his base that makes him so popular in his home state.  (AP Photo/Austin American-Statesman, Ralph Barrera)  AUSTIN CHRONICLE OUT, COMMUNITY IMPACT OUT, MAGS OUT; NO SALES; INTERNET AND TV MUST CREDIT PHOTOGRAPHER AND STATESMAN.COM

Cruz hires ousted Republican Study Committee director

Sen. Ted Cruz has hired the former executive director of Republican Study Committee to be a member of his inner circle months after he was ousted for allegedly undermining lawmakers on Capitol Hill. Published January 13, 2014