Pro-Trump and pro-Lewandowski rally in Manchester

State Rep. Fred Doucette, R-Salem, uses a bullhorn to address a recent anti-impeachment rally in Manchester. Lewandowski is shown left from Doucette. A rally attendee holds up a sign encouraging Lewandowski to enter the 2020 GOP primary for U.S. Senate.

In a Tuesday appearance on a Virginia radio show, Corey Lewandowski dropped yet another hint about his possible run for U.S. Senate.

Lewandowski, President Donald Trump‘s first campaign manager, has been batting around a run against Sen. Jeanne Shaheen for months. Last month, he told Politico he was “very, very close” to making a decision. Earlier this month, he told a New Hampshire talk radio program he was still waiting to decide, watching what the three declared candidates could raise.

On Tuesday, Lewandowski intimated he could decide this weekend, after consulting with his family.

“I think this weekend is going to be a very, very important one for the Lewandowski family going forward,” he told radio host John Fredericks.

On Tuesday, candidates had to file third-quarter financial reports with the Federal Elections Commission. All three Republican Senate candidates have entered the race since July, so this was the first occasion for the public — and Lewandowski — to peek under the hoods.

Where Shaheen took in almost $2.3 million and has close to $4.3 million cash on hand, none of the Republican candidates raised more than a quarter-million between July 1 and Sept. 30.

Bryant ‘Corky’ Messner raised $219,847.70, and loaned the campaign more than $1 million of his own money.

Retired Brig. Gen. Don Bolduc raised $239,818.16, including $48,716 from the Senate Conservatives Fund political action committee, which has thrown its support behind more conservative Republicans — including, once, a primary challenger to Sen. Mitch McConnell.

Former Speaker of the New Hampshire House Bill O’Brien‘s report had not been uploaded to the FEC website as of Wednesday evening.

“Just as I predicted, the candidates do not have the financial resources to compete with Jeanne Shaheen,” Lewandowski told Fredericks.

Worth noting: Trump was not the top fundraiser in his Lewandowski-managed primary race, but won the nomination anyway.

As he toys with the notion of becoming one of New Hampshire’s U.S. senators, Lewandowski told Fredericks he is still advising the vice president’s political action committee, serving as a senior adviser to Trump’s campaign and “fighting for him on television.”

Warren defending front-runner status

Recent polls have put Sen. Elizabeth Warren at the top of the presidential primary heap, alongside former Vice President Joe Biden. And as the lower-polling candidates have taken turns taking shots at Biden in past debates, candidates worked to poke holes in Warren’s ‘plan-for-everything’ image during the Tuesday debate in Ohio.

Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar and South Bend, Ind. Mayor Pete Buttigieg teamed up to pummel Warren’s “Medicare for All” proposal. Buttigieg and Klobuchar support a public option, and critiqued Warren’s refusal to say during the debate she would raise taxes to pay for the plan.

During the debate, Sen. Bernie Sanders openly admitted he would raise taxes, but said he hoped the higher tax burden would be dwarfed by the savings on monthly premiums and out-of-pocket costs. Warren stuck to a line about lowering costs.

Kathleen Kelley is a Warren supporter and party activist in Coös County. Kelley said she thought Warren fended off the attacks well.

“I thought she was pretty straightforward, pretty transparent,” Kelley said. And she thought it was canny of Warren not to say she would raise taxes.

“She knows that’s going to be a point picked up by the Fox crew,” Kelley said.

Warren’s communications director Kristen Orthman crowed about the debate performance in a statement.

“She took heat tonight as a result of that momentum, but she stayed focused on what’s broken and how she plans to fix it with a government and an economy that works for the people.”

Buttigieg repeated the attack in a Wednesday morning statement. “[S]he was more specific and forthcoming about the number of selfies she’s taken than about how this plan is going to be funded,” he said.

Moving to New Hampshire?

Sen. Kamala Harris now-famously said she was “moving to Iowa,” but New Hampshire hasn’t gotten similar focus from the Democratic candidate.

Klobuchar is visiting the state’s 10 counties this week, but will only be in New Hampshire for a couple of days. Former Pennsylvania Rep. Joe Sestak is walking across New Hampshire this week, after two weeks of campaigning around New Hampshire — but this comes only after about two months of campaigning in Iowa.

Ray Buckley, chair of the state’s Democratic party, said this is normal. A candidate has to have a strong showing in Iowa to really compete in New Hampshire, he said. The candidates have been campaigning here, some of them since last year — or in the case of former Maryland Rep. John Delaney, since 2017.

And he noted the investments in campaign offices and staff in New Hampshire — some candidates have several campaign offices, and employ dozens of organizers and staff.

“New Hampshire is certainly receiving an enormous amount of attention,” Buckley said.

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