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(From the diaries -- kos)

Last Wednesday, I wrote a long and rambling diary summarizing the races where we can pick up seats from the GOP (updating the initial look from a month ago), and ranking them in order of likelihood of victory based on various empirics and my gut. That diary is here. Today, I do the same with the seats we are defending. That list has shrunk due to lackluster GOP recruiting. While it includes 27 seats, only the first eight are considered competitive at this time, with the next nine on the bubble.

Here are the seats, again ranked by likelihood of turnover.

1. Georgia 08 (Prev. Rank: 3) (Rep. Jim Marshall (D) vs. Former Rep. Mac Collins (R))
This race moves up to the top spot because Collins has officially entered the race since my last writing.  Marshall is pressed because his old lean-Dem 3d district was DeLaymandered out of existence and he's left running in a district suspiciously similar to the pre-2002 8th District, where Marshall lost 57-43 to then-Rep. and now-Sen. Saxby Chambliss in 1998.  One addition, though: Collins' house.  Now Marshall is the incumbent, and he'll need all of the advantages that provides.  Both candidates will be well funded and this race will be close.

2. Texas 17 (1) (Rep. Chet Edwards (D) vs. Iraq war vet Van Taylor or Attorney Tucker Anderson (R))
This race slid down because of events in Georgia; it is still a tough defense.  The GOP has a rare Iraq war vet as a candidate on their side.  Taylor is the better funded of the two and more likely primary victor.  Still, I have to believe Edwards is better off facing him than a local elected official, of which the GOP have many.

3. Louisiana 03 (4) (Rep. Charlie Melancon (D) vs. State Sen. Craig Romero (R))
Romero was just squeezed out of the 2004 runoff for this seat when it was open, and he's back for a second bite in this lean-GOP seat.  He has raised $322,000 to Melancon's $793,000.

4. Illinois 08 (6) (Rep. Melissa Bean (D) vs. One of six GOPers (R))
This is a tough district for Bean--one of the most GOP in the state.  Among the Republicans running are a state Rep. and three well-funded businesspeople, including the wife of moonbat 1996 U.S. Senate and 1998 Sec'y of State nominee Al Salvi.  Bean is geared up for a fight, however: she's raised over $1.4 million and has over $1.1 million on hand.  That fundraising total is the highest of any candidate in a competitive or potentially competitive race who is not named Tom DeLay.  That includes NRCC chairman Tom Reynolds (R-NY).

5. Ohio 06 (5) (State Sen. Charlie Wilson (D) vs. One of 4 GOPers (R))
This is the seat held by Gov. candidate Ted Strickland in the southeastern part of the state.  Wilson is an excellent candidate who is very much in line with Strickland and should benefit from his coattails.  On the other side, state House Speaker Pro Tem Chuck Blasdel is running and has to be considered the strong favorite.  This will be a very close race.  Thus far, Blasdel has raised $237,000 to Wilson's $221,000.

6. Colorado 03 (7) (Rep. John Salazar (D) vs. Pottery Co. Owner Scott Tipton (R))
This is a lean-GOP seat that Salazar captured when it opened up in 2004.  He is on much firmer ground than fellow freshmen Bean and Melancon, however, and Tipton is a third tier opponent.  No word yet on whether '04 GOP nominee Greg Walcher will seek a rematch.

7. Georgia 12 (10) (Rep. John Barrow (D) vs. Former Rep. Max Burns (R))
Barrow is another intended target of the Georgia DeLaymander, but obliquely.  The new district is still lean-Dem, about as much as the old one, but its composition has been altered: the district lost Athens and its white liberals and instead picked up more heavily-African American areas.  The GOP intent is for a black Dem to knock off Barrow in the primary and then lose to Burns in the general.  Supposedly former Rep. and '04 Senate nominee Denise Majette is considering challenging Barrow.  If Barrow is the nominee, he will be favored.  If Majette or someone else defeats him in the primary, all bets are off.

8. Iowa 03 (20) (Rep. Leonard Boswell (D) vs. State Sen. Pres. Jeff Lamberti)
One of the few GOP recruiting successes thus far, Lamberti should give Boswell a good race in this swing district.  Still, Boswell has been around since 1998 and has turned back tough challenges before.

9. Utah 02 (2) (Rep. Jim Matheson vs. Consultant Joe Tucker (R))
Matheson has worked hard to become entrenched in this ridiculously GOP district.  If the nominee is the unknown and apparently underfunded Tucker, Matheson will be favored, but there are stronger candidates considering.  Matheson will never win big here, however, and can never be considered safe.

10. Vermont at Large (26) (State Sen. Pres. Pro Tem Peter Welch (D) vs. State Adj. General and Air Force Maj. Gen. Martha Rainville or Retired Businessman and Vet Dennis Morrisseau (R) vs. State Rep. David Zuckerman (Prog))
This is Bernie Sanders' seat; he's running for the Senate.  The GOP doesn't win in Vermont unless there is a strong third party challenge from the left.  Lo and behold, there is a stronger than usual third party candidate in Zuckerman.  Welch, however, looks pretty strong, outraising Rainville $270,000 to $7,000 (Morrisseau and Zuckerman did not file FEC reports).  This one bears watching.

11. South Dakota at Large (8) (Rep. Stephanie Herseth (D) vs. Former Rapid City Councilman Larry Partridge or Salesman Thomas Bixler (R))
The GOP has third-tier candidates against Herseth, who won a special election narrowly and then the 2004 general by a slightly larger margin.

12. Kansas 03 (12) (Rep. Dennis Moore (D) vs. Banker and vet Chuck Ahner (R))
Moore has done a good job entrenching himself here, and Ahner is far from a top-tier challenger.  He has, however, reported strong fundraising ($110,000 with $109,000 on hand), and Moore will still have to work for it.

13. Pennsylvania 17 (11) (Rep. Tim Holden (D) vs. Frank Ryan (R))
Holden unexpectedly ousted fellow Rep. George Gekas (R) from this seat in 2002 and absolutely destroyed highly touted challenger Scott Paterno last year.  I have no clue who Ryan is, but he's raised $109,000 (but only has $3,000 on hand).

14. Texas 28 (36) (Rep. Henry Cuellar or one of 3 other Dems (D) vs. Francisco Canseco (R))
This is kind of a mystery race to me.  Canseco is listed on the FEC website as having raised a whopping $1,030,000 with $299,000 on hand, yet I've never heard of him and politics1.com does not list him as a candidate, either actual or potential.  On the Dem side, Cuellar will face a tough primary.  Cuellar ousted former Rep. Ciro Rodriguez in the 2004 primary by 128 votes.  Politics1 is reporting that Rodriguez is back again, although my understanding is that he's still mulling the possibilities.  State Rep. Richard Raymond is in, however, and has outraised the incumbent ($507,000 to $487,000) and has more cash on hand ($430,000 to $290,000).  Rodriguez has reported raising $104,000 with $71,000 on hand.  College student John Webb is also in the Dem race.  Contrary to what some have said, this district is winnable for the GOP under the right circumstances; W. won it in 2004, 53-47, and a no-name GOPer took 40% against Cuellar.

15. Tennessee 04 (14) (Rep. Lincoln Davis (D) vs. '02 State Sen. candidate Alan Pedigo (R))
Davis won this gerrymandered slight lean Dem seat in 2002.  The GOP targeted this seat in both '02 and '04.  This time, Davis appears to have an easier time; Pedigo is relatively unknown and has raised only $9,000 through end of September.

16. Ohio 13 (not rated) (Former Rep. Tom Sawyer (D) (?)vs. Businessman Joe Ortega (R))
This is the seat Sherrod Brown is leaving to run for Senate.  It is a fairly solidly Dem district, but the GOP can win it under the right circumstances.  The Dem field is far from set, but there has been much speculation about Tom Sawyer, the odd man out when GOP redistricters cut a district in 2002 (he lost to Rep. Tim Ryan (OH-17) in a primary that year).  Politics1 lists him as an announced candidate--the only one so far.  Ortega has raised $49,000 through the end of September.

17. Washington 02 (33) (Rep. Rick Larsen (D) vs. Businessman and Fmr. Navy Officer Doug Roulstone (R))
Roulstone is a touted GOP recruits in a district that was among the closest in every election from 1994-2002.  Larsen was first elected in 2000 when GOPer Jack Metcalf honored his three-term pledge.  Larsen's original election and his first reelection were close, hard-fought affairs, but he cruised in 2004.  Larsen has raised $443,000 with $484,000 on hand; Roulstone has raised $156,000 with $136,000 on hand.

18. Arkansas 02 (24) (Rep. Vic Snyder (D) vs. Fmr. State Official Andy Mayberry (R))
Snyder is one of those longtime Southern Dems who hold Bush districts but generally have done so comfortably.  Snyder reports no fundraising, however, if the FEC site is to be believed.  If true, it indicates retirement, which would set up a very competitive open seat race.  Mayberry has raised $47,000.

19. South Carolina 05 (25) (Rep. John Spratt (D) vs. Businessman Park Gillespie or State Rep. Paul Norman (R))
Like Snyder, Spratt keeps winning his conservative district.  Unlike Snyder, Spratt has raised $267,000 and has $559,000 in the bank.  Gillespie reports $30,000 raised; Norman did not file a report.

20. Indiana 07 (34) (Rep. Julia Carson (D) vs. Financial Consultant Bob Croddy or Salesman Richard Reynolds (R))
Carson has a history of unperforming in this solid blue Indianapolis district.  So far, she's raised only $61,000, with $271,000 on hand.  Neither Croddy nor Reynolds appears particularly strong, however.

21. Pennsylvania 13 (29) (Rep. Allyson Schwartz (D) vs. Attorney Marina Kats (R))
Schwartz romped in the open seat contest in this suburban Philly swing district in 2004, winning 58-42 against a top GOP recruit who had held the previous incumbent, Joe Hoeffel to a 52-48 win in 2002.  She's a prolific fundraiser, reporting just shy of $1.2 million raised and $842,000 on hand.  GOPer Kats is an unknown.

22. California 47 (41) (Rep. Loretta Sanchez (D) vs. Stockbroker Tan Nguyen or Angel Coronado (R))
Sanchez won an upset over Bob Dornan in 1996, and since then this Orange County district has turned reliably Dem.  This year, however, Sanchez is facing two well-funded GOPers.  It remains to be seen how much that matters.

23. Illinois 17 (40) (Rep. Lane Evans (D) vs. One of three GOPers (R))
24. Oregon 04 (42) (Rep. Pete DeFazio (D) vs. '04 Nominee Jim Feldkamp)
25. Washington 03 (32) (Rep. Brian Baird (D) vs. Contractor Tom Crowson (R))
26. Wisconsin 03 (39) (Rep. Ron Kind (D) vs. Realtor & Vet Paul Nelson (R))
27. Mississippi 02 (43) (Rep. Bennie Thompson or state Rep. Chuck Espy (D) vs. Minister James Broadwater or Bob McDonald (R))
None of these look competitive.  The GOP has bodies in place in theoretically winnable districts, but little more.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 11:11 AM PST.

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Comment Preferences

    •  I just figured out what the Tips posts (none)
      are for.  Jesus and to think I bartended my way through college a century ago...Yeah, I'll go throw eight bits in  your jar for the effort of gathering all that info.
      •  Are tips (none)
        anything more than "recommend"? If so, do tell please.

        "It's the Supreme Court, Stupid!"

        by Kestrel on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 12:24:31 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  You also (none)
          get the ability to look at hidden comments (which disappear after they've been sufficiently troll-rated).  One only gets this ability by amassing and maintaining a steady stream of 4's.

          Visit RemoveRepublicans.com and follow every 2006 Senate race.

          by AnthonySF on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 12:27:20 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Tips... (none)
          Are your way of thanking the author of the diary by giving them mojo. If you have enough mojo, you become a Trusted User, able to see hidden comments and troll-rate wingnuts who try to disrupt the community. You also have the power to edit tags.
          •  How many 4s do you need in a given amount of time? (none)
            I've always wondered that.  Are the 'rules' posted anywhere?

            Fox News--As fair as a Florida Election, as balanced as Ann Coulter when she forgets her medicine.

            by Dizzy on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 12:47:45 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  More terminology (none)
            If the reader didn't understand the difference between Recommend & Tips, why then throw in the term Mojo?

            I've been reading & posting here for a while, and decided I really don't care what these things are. I Recommend the diaries I think need to be seen by all. Otherwise, I don't worry about it.

            For a brief shining moment, I was a Trusted User. Don't know if it's something that doesn't last long if not "fed," or if something happened with one of the dkos upgrades, but it was gone in a day or 2. Whatever.

            I read the diaries here because I'm getting breaking news days ahead of the MSM (Main Stream Media), and it's news that is tilted my way - to the LEFT.

            "Unpatriotic, my ASS!"

            by WV Democrat on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 06:22:55 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  Tips are for... (none)
          ...moving to trusted user status. When most of us rank comments, we get a choice from 1(Unproductive) to 4 (Excellent). The more high rankings you get, plus some other algorithm I don't know anything about, elevates you to Trusted User status...which gives you access to the 0 rating. Which I think is essentially a troll rating, though I don't know if that's the official name of it. That's why folks like tips. Also lets them know you liked it.
          •  Thank you, everyone for clarifying (none)
            Do 3-Good ratings also help elevate people?  Sometimes I give threes because I think a post is good, though not exceptional...I still think it means a person deserves recognition, and should count toward 'trusted user' status.  I didn't know there were 'hidden' responses...now I'll be wondering when I will be able to see them...but I'm patient.

            Once in a while you get shown the light in the strangest of places if you look at it right

            by darthstar on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 01:04:41 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  About "3"s (none)
              People tend to not like 3 ratings, it apparently can hurt trusted user status.  The only time I give out 3s is when someone makes a really good point but makes an unnecessary personal attack.  If the comment is just "good" but not "excellent", I just don't rate it.
          •  Thanks to all (none)
            for replying to my query about tips. I've been around here forever (UID 893) but have never looked at the innards, so to speak. (Only learned my UID a couple of months ago, in fact.) Now I know what tips are and, lo and behold, I have Trusted User status (which I never knew before.) Not sure why I would want to read Hidden Comments -- if they're troll-rated, why bother? Just for amusement?

            "It's the Supreme Court, Stupid!"

            by Kestrel on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 01:08:38 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Ha (none)
              To answer my own question, yes, just for amusement. I just now went and looked at Hidden Comments and see that most of them (of late anyway, only looked at a few) are from some dimwit I won't dignify by mentioning his name. Pretty funny. Still, not something I think I'll do very often. Would rather use my time on Daily Kos topics of interest.

              "It's the Supreme Court, Stupid!"

              by Kestrel on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 01:17:27 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

    •  YOU FORGOT CA-48 (4.00)
      This election is on DEC 6.  We're not done yet.

      Win this one and it will be the pebble that starts the avalanche.

      We have a demoralized, despirited and disillusioned GOP here in California.  We have an excited and energized Democratic base.  We are going to win this one.

      Steve Young is running a great campaign with a successful fundraiser last night and union endorsements coming in almost daily.  

      Get active, get involved and help us start the avalanche.

      Sorceress Sarah

      It is no accident that Liberty and Liberal are the same word.

      by Sorceress Sarah on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 12:55:04 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  This is defense (none)
        Seats we need to hold.
        •  OK (4.00)
          Before we go into defending our turf,

          LET'S ADD TO IT

          This is the last race to be decided this year.  This is where Democrats need to focus their full, undivided attention for the next three weeks. There's nothing left on the calendar but this.

          I feel like I'm talking to a football team that has "The Big Game" coming in two weeks.  But they are looking past "The Little Game" this week.  We're seen it happen.  And the "Little Game" is where they get stomped.

          The Rethugs were bruised badly last week.  But they said, "It doesn't change the math..."  A win here CHANGES THE GODDAM MATH

          Do you want to stael one?  Do you want to drive a stake into the beating heart of the Republican Party?  Here's your chance.

          Step up.  

          Sorceress Sarah

          It is no accident that Liberty and Liberal are the same word.

          by Sorceress Sarah on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 01:22:18 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  Thanks for keeping track (none)
    Of all these races, because the House is too much information for me to stomach, and someone has to do it.

    "If Kaine...can win by 6 points, then it's safe to say this is no longer a red state. Virginia is now a purple state" - Chuck Todd

    by VirginiaBelle on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 09:30:17 AM PST

  •  If CO-3 (4.00)
    is number 6, we're in pretty good shape. There is no serious Republican challenger, and John Salazar is raising money at a good clip, so he has both incumbency and a fundraising advantage, as well as simply having a headstart on campaigning. Walcher lost in a close race in '04, but there's no reason to think he would do better in '06. Voter registration does favor Republicans, but Independents are a very large group in Colorado, and I think - knock on wood - we can expect to do well with I's in '06.

    Pointless, incessant barking since Mon Feb 9, 2004 at 3:05:52 PM MST

    by Blue the Wild Dog on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 09:37:53 AM PST

    •  I agree (none)
      I think we're in good shape there.  A case could be made that a few on the list (GA-12, IA-03, VT-AL) should be ahead of it, but we're generally in very good shape.
    •  Tipton's fundraising (4.00)
      Has been embarrassingly poor -- something like only 10k in the 3rd quarter.  The conventional wisdom is that the R's in Colorado are going to be preoccupied with holding the governorship and CO-7 and are already writing off CO-3 for this time around anyway.
    •  Agreed (4.00)
      There's nothing to see in CO-3 right now except the wide swath of fundraising that John Salazar is paving across the region.  Tipton looks to get paved over by Salazar's cash flow...  Add to that Salazar's moderate/conservative voting record, our worst problem in CO-3 will be the ridiculous amounts of cash the NRCC might throw at Tipton or other GOP contender.

      I'll be sleeping comfortably if that district is #6 on our list of tough defenses.

      Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom. It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves. - William Pitt

      by Phoenix Rising on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 12:02:37 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  CO-03 Should be safe (4.00)
      I agree that John Salazar should do okay:
       - Brother Ken Salazar's coat-tails

      District demographics:
       - Colorado Mtns plus Pueblo on the Front range
       - Working class Pueblo,
       - Good-sized Hispanic population
       - Resort & 2nd Home owners
       - Tourist Industry.

      Negatives:
       - Rural Farmers & Ranchers tend Republican
       - Mormon population in Grand Junction

      Other things that favor a Democrat in the Mountains:
       - Water issues between the Mountains and Plains.
       - Energy industry growth has an impact on the environment.

  •  Oregon 4th (4.00)
    I'm not sure why you put this district up as Peter Defazio has the second safest Democratic district in the state, which includes the city of Eugene.  A Defazio loss would mean a rout by Republicans in Oregon.

    Districts 1 and 5 are more vulnerable.  Last election, Republicans put up a popular candidate against David Wu in District 1, but still couldn't prevail.  

    However, given the current political climate, I see all four of our seats safe in Oregon next year.  The governers race may play a hand in it, but we'll have to wait and see how that progresses.

    Thanks for the post, it is very informative.

    •  I've often gotten questions about OR-04 (4.00)
      I don't think the GOP gets close to DeFazio, but the objective criteria I use include districts that have a partisan rating of 55% Dem or lower and an incumbent who got under 65% last time or a partisan rating under 60% and an incumbent under 60%.  OR-04 qualifies because DeFazio took only 62% and the district has a partisan rating of 49.5% Dem; Bush won it 53-47 in 2000 and it was 50-50 last time.  The 1st District, by contrast, just missed.  It has a rating of 55.5% Dem (Gore 53-47; Kerry 56-44) and Wu took 60% in '04.  I would have added it anyway if the GOP had someone strong, but they don't.
      •  yeah (4.00)
        Defazio has been the congressperson there for ever. The democraphics have shifted a little to the right over the years -- I grew up in Eugene, and it's less liberal than it was 10 years ago -- there's no GOP organization to speak of. Not much chance for a serious challenge.

        Bush won it 53-47 in 2000 and it was 50-50 last time.

        Also, those 2000 numbers don't take Nader into account. IIRC he got close to 5% statewide, and Eugene and PDX were where most of that came from.

        I'm traveling the US this summer with a couple friends. We'll let you know what we find: vagabender.com, baby.

        by Outlandish Josh on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 11:51:08 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Didn't Wu have a sex scandal in 04? (none)
        An old college accusation of unspecified sexual impropriety that was handled by the college in house (counseling, etc.) with no official criminal report?  If he took 60% despite that, then I'd say the district is safe.
      •  Take 2004 with a grain of salt. (none)
        That's when the Anti-Gay Marriage ballot measure hit in Oregon, plus Bush was at the top of the ticket for Oregon wingnuts in the general, so I'd consider it a high-water mark for the Dark Side.

        And yet, incumbents won handily. Hooley, in particular, crushed a primary challenge and a GOP Special Forces Vet in the general without breaking a sweat in my former district. Goli Ameri slung shit at Wu (including that scandal, which they helped the Oregonian break), and was losing 88 to 12 by bedtime on Election Day.

        Any Oregon seat currently held by Dems (1,3,4,5) is going to stay that way in 06. In fact, go ahead and pencil up Oregon-02 (Walden, R-Hood River) in your old thread.

        The urban and rural Ds are beginning to work together, and if there's any type of candidate recruitment and coordination by now, Walden can be hammered on his environmental record and his rubber-stamping of Bush.

        But DeFazio's legend in Oregon, and Dist. 4 has deep, deep bench in case he moves on in '08 to remove Gordon Smith like a boil, in which case I'll be sending him regular money for the lancets.

    •  Incidentally, (none)
      just considering the districts, I have the 4th as the 2d most GOP district, a hair more GOP than the 5th.  DeFazio, however, is an incredibly strong incumbent, much stronger than Hooley (who would have been higher than either DeFazio on this list if the GOP had a candidate).
  •  I think Loretta Sanchez (none)
    will be fine, although I agree it is one to keep a distant eye on.  She's even being talked about for Gov. next year, which is interesting if a bit premature.

    Visit RemoveRepublicans.com and follow every 2006 Senate race.

    by AnthonySF on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 09:58:34 AM PST

  •  Louisiana (4.00)
    Melancon did well in 2004 in a fairly Republican district by raising tons of money.

    I don't like the fact that no one is challenging  party traitor Rodney Alexander.  He may have the best rating of the 'phants, but that's not saying a lot.

    •  On a tit-for-tat level (4.00)
      I agree with you, but that district is pretty tilted against us.  Alexander's win as a Dem in 2002 was a fluke.  I'd much rather see Chris John run for his old 7th district and a strong effort be put into that race.  FWIW, the 5th is the 2d most GOP district in the state, behind the first.
    •  Post-Katrina (4.00)
      How many of the residents of that district have been driven away by the storm? It was pretty much Ground Zero.
    •  Unfortunately for Melancon.... (none)
      ....a good chunk of his district is absentee due to Katrina.  And I get the feeling that it's Melancon's African-American base that is more likely to have evacuated than white Republicans.  Hopefully, the sugar growers are still smarting over GOP support of CAFTA...and will thus rally to anti-CAFTA ally Melancon.
      •  Charlie... (4.00)
        ...comes from a family of sugar cane farmers. The industry has his back.  

        Charlie's base consists of blacks and Cajuns.  But not much of his black base is gone.  Orleans Parish is not in Charlie's district (that's William Jefferson's district).  

        Charlie's black base is (mostly) in the parts of Cajun Country that were spared the brunt of the storms.  So, that base is still there and his Cajun base is still there.  

        And Charlie will probably have the advantage in a couple of Parishes that went to Little Billy last time.

        The 2 parishes in Charlie's district that were practically wiped off the map are St. Bernard Parish (east of NOLA) and Plaquemines Parish (SE of NOLA).  But those are the heavily white, Republican-leaning Parishes, particularly St. Bernard.  Not Charlie's base, but that ain't really what La. politics is about anyway.  It's more a case of voting for the candidate whose hometown is closest to your hometown.  Little Billy's and Melancon's hometowns are about 15 miles apart (SE La), so it was more a matter of Melancon having to peel off a sufficient number of Tauzin's daddy's voters.  He managed to do it, but not by much.  If I remember correctly, Romero is from SW La, heavily hit by Hurrican Rita.  So, I predict the race will be split along those geographic lines more than anything.  

        That said, many of the displaced people from St. Bernard, Plaquemines, South Terrebonne and SW La. haven't gone too far from home.  And you better believe that many La. residents will be voting absentee next year (the state has already tweaked the election laws to make sure displaced people can vote by absentee in the district that they resided in before the hurricanes, and FEMA has agreed to send election notices to every displaced person that registered with them).  I predict phenomenal voter turnout in La. elections next year!  :)

        The simmering rage that Louisianians feel is directed somewhat at Gov. Blanco (more before than now), but more so at FEMA and Army COE.  Thus, more so at Bush.  (And a fair number of New Orleanians feel betrayed by Nagin...who is at loggerheads with some of the City Council members.  Mayor's election is this February.)

        I don't think constituents  are pointing fingers much at their respective US Rep. or the 2 Senators, regardless of party affiliation.  A lot feel like the entire La. delegation is going above and beyond (except for that cretin, Richard Baker, and his pending federal land grab bill [HR 4100]...but his racist white constituents love his racist ass...he's the guy who said that God finally cleaned up NO public housing).

        I think all of the incumbents are going to benefit from the "don't change horses midstream" view.  Gov. Blanco is not up until 2007, but US Rep. Bobby Jindal will likely run against her again, and he will win.  Hell, he will win whatever race he next enters in La.  He's the flavor of the year in the wake of Katrina.  All of the La. delegation are busting their asses, but he is the one who is on the radio and TV damn near every day reminding Louisianians that he has their back.  He matches the Big Dog's skills (and charisma) in that regard, and it will be real easy for Louisianians to make the logical leap and assume that Jindal saved the state single-handedly.  He will be pretty prominent on the national stage at some point, I imagine.  (His parents immigrated from India, but he was born in Louisiana, so he is not disqualified from the top job.  And I'm sure that is what is in his sights.)

        •  Thanks for the Heads-Up..... (none)
          ...I knew Orleans Parish wasn't in Melancon's district, but I wasn't sure of the demographics of the areas where Katrina hit.  Sounds like Charlie still may have more of a chance that I thought he did.  I'm anticipating another close one though.
          •  Yes. (none)
            It will be close.  I fully expect it to split mostly along geographic lines -- SE La. for Melancon and central-SW La. for Romero (SW La. is not in the 3rd district).  

            I give Melancon the benefit of incumbency, which will be a stronger benefit than usual for a 1st termer because of the storm.  

            Not taking anything for granted, though.  He scored a lot of Brownie (pun intended) points with Lousiana folks when he slapped Mike Brown's FEMA emails up on official website for all the world to see. :)

    •  That is because.... (4.00)
      ...the 2 main Republicans in the race, Craig Romero and Little Billy Tauzin (who was trying to inherit his father's seat) utterly ripped each other to threads leading up to Nov. 2.

      Unlike other states, La. has open general elections, meaning that all candidates face each other the 2nd Tuesday in November.  Hence, when 4 Dems run vs. 1 Repub (and a candidate from goodness knows how many alternative groups, since we like our politics strange), the Dems split the vote (and vice versa for 4 Repubs vs. 1 Dem, but it is much more often the other way around).  If no one manages to pull out a majority, then the 2 top vote getters have a runoff in early Dec.  

      That is what happened last year with Melancon.  Little Billy and Romero (the 2 Repubs) split the Repub votes.  Put Little Billy and Melancon in the runoff.  Romero was greatly pissed, and rightly so, at Little Billy's smear tactics (rather, I should say, the RNC's smear tactics because Little Billy was the RNC-chosen puppet candidate).  Hence, Romero endorsed Melancon instead of Little Billy after Nov. 2.

      The RNC smearing did not stop after that, but this time aimed squarely at Melancon.  Melancon won by less than 600 votes, I think.  

      The RNC smearing of both Romero and Melancon was so bad that, soon after the runoff election (but not before, of course), Little Billy (who knows that Cajun voters do not forgive easily) took out large ads in some of the small-town papers apologizing for the smears in a way that pretty much said "I couldn't stop these bad, bad, bad national RNC people from coming here and sticking their nose where it does not belong and causing all this hate among our people and I hope you don't hate me because it wasn't my doing and I'm so, so, so, so SORRY for what they did."  

      So....it will be VERY interesting to me to see how much, if any, support the RNC gives Romero this time around...and how much, if any, he accepts by selling his soul to the devil that tried to burn him alive last year.

  •  WI 03 (none)
    State Sen. Dale Schultz, now the Majority leader, was the Republican's best shot last year, and he's not likely to run again, as his seat is up this cycle.

    Kind's more vulnerable to a hypothetical challenge from Libertarian Ed Thompson, than to any GOPer, presuming the Republicans clear the field. Ed took something like 15% in the District in his 2002 run for Governor, and would likely get the backing of the non-trivial Green Party in the largely rural District.

    A Senator YOU can afford
    $1 contributions only.
    Masel for Senate
    1214 E. Mifflin St.
    Madison, WI 53703

    by ben masel on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 10:37:15 AM PST

    •  Agreed (none)
      The big fight in wisconsin should be over the republican dominated state assembly and re-electing doyle.  I do not see any of the house seats changing parties or kohl losing the senate.  If any house seat changes I sure hope its my home, the 8th, and john gard going down in flames!

      democracy-60% of the time, it works every time!

      by Brodiewankenobi on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 12:57:04 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I think I asked this same question a month ago (none)
    when you had 74 vulnerable Repubs and 42 vulnerable Dems, but  

    What do you think is the most likely net gain?

    I guess there are about 8 "very vulnerable" Dems and about 16 "very vulnerable" Repubs. Do you see a net gain of 8 being too optimistic or pessimistic?

    •  Isn't 8 what we need (none)
      to take back the house?

      Also, we're still a year out.  Races which hadn't been close before may become close too.  It'd be great if we had 1994 in reverse.  I'm not hoping for that much, but I can still dream.

      •  need, want and likely (none)
        are 3 different things.
      •  Why stop (none)
        at 8 seats? Why not more? Let's turn back the entire 1994 revolution!

        "Power corrupts. Absolute power is kinda neat." - David Letterman

        by Blue387 on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 11:15:57 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  I think a sober assessment of where to put the (4.00)
        over/under right now would be plus 7 or 8, but with lots of room for growth.  We need 15 for control.  What we've seen is a LOT of GOP seats where there's a challenger as a defined object in the rearview mirror, so to speak.  Our playing field is potentially huge; theirs is not.  1994 is certainly not out of the question.  Indeed, most of the macro factors present in 1994 are present now (scandals, unpopular president whose agenda has gotten high profile setbacks, still sluggish economy, etc.)
        •  Models will fail to predict (none)
          The models predict a large turnover based on Bush unpopularity and the downward trend of real income.  Unfortunately, the continued gerrymandering of House seats (which favors both parties, depending on who's drawing the lines) makes the models unreliable.  Even if Bush doesn't recover it will be tough to swing 15 seats.

          I have more hope for the Senate because it's not gerrymandered.  Dems only need one house to shut down the Bush agenda and begin investigating and exposing the damage the fucktards have done to the country since 2001.

          "This machine kills fascists"--words on Woody Guthrie's guitar

          by Old Left Good Left on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 12:05:39 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Not to speak for the diarist (none)
            but I think they are taking the gerrymandering into account
            •  Yes (4.00)
              There is a limit to what you can do with gerrymandering; the other party's voters have to go somewhere.  In a perverse way, gerrymandering can serve to increase the punishment the in party takes when there is a wave election against them.  This is because a typical gerrymander creates a whole bunch of districts the line-drawing party would win from about 53-47 to 55-45 in a neutral year.  When it is no longer a neutral year, suddenly all these districts are winnable for the opposition.  This happened to the Dems in a lot of places in 1994.
              •  What I am curious to know is is the national (none)
                party planning to put money behind the places you have described using similar analysis that next year will be a reallignment year? Last I heard they were still going to approach the races next year with the same old strategy as before. I mean if your numbers are right- there is roughly around 100 seats at play here when combining both sides. Are the Democrats playing from this strategic view or are they playing to the classic gerrymandering view that most seats are "safe" Last I heard they were playing along the view that most seats are safe. I remember this discussion as part of a larger debate over the 50 state, 435 seat strategy which was in part expoused as a way to divide a conquer the Republicans by forcing them to divide their resources, but also to go after all the races you are mentioning as real chances for pickups or retentions.
                •  Putting Money Behind the Races (none)
                  Actually, Kos gave a hint of this in one of his posts this morning, regarding Howard Dean and the DNC.  As he points out, big wig Dems are bemoaning the fact that DNC fundraising is 2-to-1 behind the RNC; but that's only the DNC accounts, and, as Kos showed, Dean has been funneling money and staff to the state parties through localized fundraising efforts, and that's not being counted in DNC coffers.  The national-level pundits will whine and whine that Dean's not pumping up the DNC, but Dean's state-level strategy will make the difference in many of these local and state-wide races.  That won't stop the Inside-the-beltway Democrat Dean-haters from still hating Dean, but they're not the ones who voted him into the position, anyway.
              •  Actually I just pulled this from (none)
                the DOnkey Rising site about the "slim" chance for a openning for Democrats next year reported by the NY Times and discussed at Donkey Rising.

                "Despite the daunting numbers cited by Toner, University of California redistricting expert Bruce Caine points out in her article, "The annals of redistricting are replete with stories of parties that thought they drew themselves into safety but got blown away." And U.S. Rep. Rahm Emanuel of Illinois, chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee sees as many as 50 competitive House races. With good candidates, credible alternative policies and hard work, a net pick-up of 15 of those House seats should be possible."

                I agree with the hard work part, but wonder if he is limiting the field based on preconceived ideas of where we have a chance of winning, and by doing so- he is also decreasing our odds of getting enough seats because of the 27 you mentioned we can assume that we will lose some of them.

                •  Well, if Rahm (none)
                  is at 50, he's almost where I am.  I had 74 that initially looked promising, plus five others that join the list because of strong candidates (WI-05 would take a miracle even though I have nothing but respect for what Bryan Kennedy has done).  But 14 of those lack candidates at present, so my number is 65.  I suspect Rahm looks at the big picture the way I do, but perhaps was less optimistic at the margins.
                  •  If such a small number lacks candidate- I wonder (none)
                    whether people are actively being recruited in the area? The generic numbers are only useful when its up against a real person is a rule of thumb right?
                    •  I'm sure they are (none)
                      The 14, for what it's worth:

                      KY-03 (Anne Northup): We really want Jack Conway, the '02 nominee and the DCCC is lobbying him hard.

                      PA-15 (Charlie Dent): No idea who could run; ideal would be State Sen. Lisa Boscola or PA Dem Chair T.J. Rooney.  Both have turned it down.

                      LA-07 (Charles Boustany): Former Rep. Chris John is being heavily recruited.

                      OH-01 (Steve Chabot): Former Cincy Mayor (and former Rep.) Charlie Luken would be perfect, but no word of anybody.

                      OH-12 (Pat Tiberi): If Columbus Mayor Coleman is from the 12th (as opposed to the 15th), he'd be perfect.  Otherwise, not sure who's out there.

                      IA-04 (Tom Latham): Not sure who's out there.  Paul Johnson gave Latham a tough race in 2002.

                      AL-03 (Mike Rogers): Not sure who could run, but 2002 nominee Joe Turnham would probably be the best bet.

                      NY-13 (Vito Fossella): Several prominet Dems are looking at it, including a state Sen. and a state Rep.

                      NY-03 (Peter King): Not sure who we have, but there's got to be somebody after almost 10 years of inroads into Long Island.

                      NM-02 (Steve Pearce): No rumblings.

                      MI-07 (Joe Schwarz) and MI-08 (Mike Rogers): Longshot races, no leads.

                      KS-02 (Jim Ryun): A Nancy Boyda rematch would be ideal; no other ideas.

                      NY-24 (Sherwood Boehlert): No ideas for this longshot race, but Boehlert has a primary challenge from the right, so we should at least make a showing.

                      OH-04 (Open): With this seat just opening up, I'm sure there will be some interest.

                      •  We may have a candidate for NY-03 (none)
                        I'm working with people from my local DFA group on a campaign against Peter King and so far it looks like Suffolk County Legislator is looking at the possibility of running.  The DCCC has sent a pollster to look at this race.

                        "Those who are too smart to engage in politics are punished by being governed by those who are dumber" - Plato

                        by Dan Torres on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 03:35:55 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                      •  RE: Paul Johnson in the IA4 (none)
                        I disagree, Paul Johnson did a rather poor job of challenging in the 4th in 2004.  That said, Latham is a good old boy who has done nothing, but also makes few mistakes, and is tough tough tough.  The only saving grace is he isnt as wingnuttish as Steve King (IA-5), the congressman from McCarthyism to his west (and representing my home..  damn it all.)
                      •  Tom Latham Is..... (none)
                        ....potentially vulnerable if the Dems are able to find a credible opponent.  I don't know alot about him considering his district is only a few miles south of mine, but I think he's in the Charles Grassley wing of the party.....glimmers of populism and sanity that helps disguise a broader right-wing agenda.  If we end up taking Latham down, it'll be a damn good night for us across the board.
                  •  By the way (none)
                    I understand that he is making a conservative estimate, but I hope that this is not the approach he takes in this present political environment. Now is the time for risk taking, not conservative investments. I can see a case for why 435 races is unrealistic, but your math + the present political environment would suggest defending + maximum aggressive campaign in as many districts as reasonably possible to obtain the magic 15. Or to put it simply- the more seats we make competive races the more the odds are driven in our favor of picking up the 15 seats. Will we get all 25 or so extra seats you mention? No. However, the odds are that we will win some of them- and those margins may matter in the end. By taking a risk we have a net gain potential whereas by taking no risk we maintain the status quo- at least numerically. Even a 1 in 5 or 1 in 10 of the 25 extra races yields a net of 3 to 5 extra seats which can cushion against a lose of 3 to 5 else where and possibly add to a gain if next year really is a realignment so that the Democrats could maintain the reallignment for future cycles (b/c of the resource allocations of the Republicans in 2008).  In other words, a blow your money approach at this juncture would be the smartest move for the Democrats because the circumstances allows for the maximazation of benefit not only now but in future cycles where we are supposed to be in better shape.
                    •  one final point (none)
                      numerically a gain of 3 to 5 seats out of the 25 you mention would reduce if we are successful in defense would mean that we would already be one fifth or one third of the way to the majority position in congress, and i think that alone int his environment justifies a stronger offense
  •  What about the (none)
    NY-13 and the PA-03? Vito Fosella (R) and Phil English (R) need to be challenged again as they were in 2004.

    "Power corrupts. Absolute power is kinda neat." - David Letterman

    by Blue387 on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 11:15:11 AM PST

    •  As of now, (none)
      Fossella has no announced challenger, but several potential candidates are "eyeing" the race, including State Sen. Diane Savino and State Rep. Michael Cusick.  The one where I've heard absolutely zip is NY-03, where after last week Peter King, really is the last GOPer standing on Long Island.

      As for English, his '04 opponent (Steve Porter) is back again.

      •  We will have someone in NY-03 (none)
        Suffolk County legislator Pete Bishop is seriously looking at this one and has requested a pollster from the DCCC.  They sent Stan Greenberg, so they are taking this seriously.  My local DFA group is working on this campaign.

        "Those who are too smart to engage in politics are punished by being governed by those who are dumber" - Plato

        by Dan Torres on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 03:38:08 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  VT (4.00)
    VT's an interesting one to watch. If this was '02 or even '04, I would've said that Rainville had a decent shot. But the national GOP is sooooo unpopular in VT right now, and Bush/Delay/etc are such a drag on any GOP candidate, I'd be surprised if she gained much traction. She'd have to be a seriously talented politician to get people beyond the "R" after her name. Maybe she is, but we'll see.

    I also doubt that Zuckerman will cause too much of a problem. He's a really good guy, but the Progs are sort of having trouble in VT ever since they threw the Lt. Gov. spot in '02 to nice guy/dummy Brian Dubie (R). Bernie's all but a Dem, and Peter Clavelle (Burlington mayor) is now a Dem.

    PubliusTV: A Collaborative Media Network

    by BriVT on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 11:15:26 AM PST

  •  What happened to New Hampshire? (none)

    A peace vigil has as much effect on foreign policy as a debug vigil would on broken software.

    by RequestedUsername on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 11:16:41 AM PST

  •  instead of dalaymandered... (none)
    how about just delayndered? s.

    the best lack all conviction while the worst are full of passionate intensity --w.b.yeats the second coming

    by synth on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 11:19:31 AM PST

  •  TX-28 (3.50)
    It looks like Francisco Canseco loaned himself the money, about 1 million, but then later repaid himself 650,000 of it. So he may have just done it to inflate his numbers or he's crazy.
  •  Re; IN-07 Julia Carson (4.00)
    A note about the "underperforming" Julia Carson in the 7th. That can be traced mostly to the dysfunctional Marion County Democratic Party, not to her campaigning and get out the vote operation (her GOtV is one of the best there is).  I could go into detail of some of the ways that the MCDP is dragging dems down in this county, but suffices to say we've taken over the county on pure demographics - not because of a functional and efficient county party.

    (the 7th is almost entirely marion county, indiana/indianapolis)

    I am friends with a member of her staff and know her campaign chair casually. Julia is lookign pretty solid and I don't see a reason that she'll lose. The Indiana GOP regularly throws some ex-libertarian or low-end GOP hopeful into the race and hopes for the best. Last year was a scare, but with her minor health problems from last year behind her she should be back up comfortable again in '06.

    Julia is an amazing congresswoman (voted agaisnt the war and has taken Bush to task many a time). my only fear is that her challenger will try to pull the "unpatriotic" card, but with the war's sinking popularity that shouldn't be as tough a thing as it woudl have been before. She also stays involved in local politics, including chastizing city/county council dems who voted AGAINST an equal rights for GLBT (long story, it was 5 afraid of a backlash. things are looking promising for reintroduction next year, though)

    Now I will say I think this should be her last campaign and it is time to groom a replacement. My favorite right now is Indiana State Rep. Greg Porter.

    Of course, she coudl always use financial help. Those who like to support truly progressive and outspoken members of congress shoudl head over to www.juliacarson.com and slide a little into her tip jar. Blue Hoosiers would appreciate it.

  •  I'm concerned about IA-03 (4.00)
    Leonard Boswell has been ill for much of this year and had major abdominal surgery. A couple of weeks ago he and his doctor gave an interview to the Des Moines Register (sorry no link, it's no longer available for free on their site), saying that Boswell did NOT have cancer (they didn't specify the condition he did have) and would be well enough to mount a vigorous campaign.

    If he were 100 percent healthy I would not worry at all--he has beaten back tough challenges before, and this is a Democratic-leaning district. However, if his health goes south next year and it's too late to bring in a strong candidate for us, we could easily lose this seat. All of the population growth is in the Republican-leaning parts of this district.

  •  any prediction (none)
    Of what our net gain (or loss) in 2006 will be?

    "This...this is the fault of that Clinton Penis! And that powermongering wife of his!"

    by CaptUnderpants on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 11:29:37 AM PST

  •  UT-02 (none)
    ridiculously GOP?  highly gerrymandered, yes, but aside from park city, you have the liberal sections in the state, no?

    The thing with politicians is I wouldn't have suspicions if I saw their worst positions and their ugly underneath...

    by mstarr77 on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 11:29:46 AM PST

  •  Georgia's 12th (none)
    This is the first time I've heard that Majette is now in the 12th. Are you sure about that? I was really hoping that she'd either challenge McKinney again for the 4th CD seat or just go away.

    My congressional district is so frustrating. Its superbly liberal, very racially diverse, gay friendly, environmentally aware, with improving schools. Yet our rep is a racist anti-semite. I was thrilled when Majette won 3 years ago, but then she made the ridiculous run for the Senate, leaving the seat open for McKinney to come back in. So basically, I'm just wanting some reason to hope that another Dem will take the seat from McKinney. Any hope?

    "She was very young,he thought,...she did not understand that to push an inconvenient person over a cliff solves nothing." -1984

    by aggressiveprogressive on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 11:35:26 AM PST

    •  She could go either way (none)
      I've heard she's looking at the 12th because of the racial dynamic.  For what it's worth, politics1 lists her as a potential candidate in BOTH the 4th and the 12th.  I'm not sure which district (if either) she actually lives in.  I suspect the 12th simply because of the machiavellian nature of the remap.
    •  yeah (none)
      I said the same thing upthread. I'm from Ga 4th as well. I had heard of Majette running in the 12th before, but it just doesnt make any sense. I'm with you, primary McKinney or dont run(or maybe run for something else statewide). Unfortunately, I dont think Cynthia is going anywhere though, even if Majette runs. She got 51% in the primary last year when everyone was expecting a run off that wouldnt include her, and she has toned down her rhetoric.

      The only thing to get more strongly rejected than Arnold's four propsitions were his last four movies- Mark Maron

      by jj32 on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 11:42:33 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Toned down rhetoric (none)
        That's true. I've noticed that I haven't heard any of her usual over-the-top nonsense for a while. Her decision to lay low shows better judgment than I would have expected from her. It was such a let-down when I moved to the 4th from John Lewis's 5th CD several years ago. He's such a hero.

        Also, last year's primary a 3-way contest, so a one-on-one match-up may work out better. But it would be a big surprise if McKinney were beat again.

        "She was very young,he thought,...she did not understand that to push an inconvenient person over a cliff solves nothing." -1984

        by aggressiveprogressive on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 11:47:46 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Majette will not be elected anywhere (none)
          So we can stop talking about her.  She also doesn't live anywhere near the new 12th, to my knowledge anyway.

          I'll not get into an argument about Cynthia McKinney here, but I will say that she addresses many important issues (especially our relationship with other countries in the Americas) that go unaddressed by many (even progressive) Congressmen and women who seem content with the status quo.

          John Barrow should be ok in the new 12th, even though his home (in Athens) is now outside of the 12th.  

      •  Last I heard about McKinney (none)
        she was trying to get Tupac Shakur's death records from the government. That's something to work on, I guess, but I hope she is focusing on the people in her district sometimes at least.
  •  re: PA 13 (none)
    FYI: Raj Bhakta, former contestant on "The Apprentice" TV show is considering running against Schwartz.

    link: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/...

    •  PA 13 (none)
      My guess is that either Bhakta or Al Taubenberger (NE Philly Chamber of Commerce president) will be the nominee.  One would generate some easy free media, while the other would throw some red meat to the party base.

      Either candidate will get clobbered in fundraising; Bhakta might have more upside here.  

      The national R's have much bigger worries in the Philly area (i.e., defending PA- 06, 07, 08).  Plus they're probably gunshy after their embarrassing involvement with Melissa Brown's moronic campaign in '04.

      Schwartz wins this one by a minimum of 25 points.

  •  VT-AL (none)
    Does this Zuckerman guy have any chance at winning the race?  Also, any idea whether DFA will be endorsing in this race, and if so, if that endorsement would have any chance at going to Zuckerman?  DFA is pretty well-established in Vermont and I think could easily help sway an election one way or another there.
  •  Georgia (none)
    I really hope Denise Majette doesnt challenge Barrow for the reasons you say. If she is goin to challenge anyone, let be McKinney again in the 4th.

    The only thing to get more strongly rejected than Arnold's four propsitions were his last four movies- Mark Maron

    by jj32 on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 11:36:51 AM PST

  •  AR-02: Snyder will not retire (4.00)
    Rep. Snyder is always slow to raise funds. I wouldn't read "retirement" into that. Even if he does retire, this is a marginally Dem seat, not marginally Republican.

    Bush barely carried this seat in 2004 and it almost always goes Democratic in state and local races. Little Rock's Pulaski County has become increasingly Democratic through the late 90's and early '00 (what do you call the 2000s now?).

    •  I agree (none)
      I was thinking the same thing; Snyder always gets started late and probably because he rarely has any strong competition. Then again, it wasn't too long ago that he had heart surgury and that could play a factor. But I thought he had already committed to run again?

      Btw, I don't think that Snyder is "one of those longtime Southern Dems." He's originally from Oregon and moved to Arkansas after graduating from medical school about 25 years ago. He's the most liberal Congressman in Arkansas and probably one of the more liberal Congessmen in the South. That would likely be an accurate description of Arkansas' other Democrats, but I wouldn't apply it to Snyder.

      Democrats -- Progress for the Working Class

      by rogun on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 12:08:25 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Aren't Little Rock's Suburbs.... (none)
        ....growing increasingly Republican?  Long-term, I think the Dems will have a problem with Saline and Faulkner Counties in AR-02, but probably not any time soon.  And I concur about Arkansas' relative liberalism in the context of the rest of the South.  If only Benton and Sebastian Counties could be annexed to Oklahoma, the Dems would almost always win AR.
        •  Not in my opinion (none)
          I think that Little Rock suburbs are probably becoming more Democratic. I agree with bullett2382.

          Republican growth in the suburbs, throughout the 80-90's, has stymied, imo, and the "white flight" transformation is probably over. I think that people are now moving back into the city, particularly as a result of the successful downtown restoration project that has seen a multitude of new upscale apartment and condo complexes.

          The suburbs are probably still growing strong, however, because they seem to be the preference of many newcomers to the area. I can't say with much certainty, but I think that because of the newcomers, that Saline and Faulkner counties are likely becoming more Democratic than in the past. Saline County used to be pretty Republican, but it's probably trending toward a more equal balance now.

          This is just my opinion based on observation and I have no idea about it's accuracy. But I do think that it's fair to say that the metro Little Rock area has become more Democratic in recent years, after Republicans had gained enough ground to marginalize any Democratic advantage for awhile.

          Democrats -- Progress for the Working Class

          by rogun on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 01:52:06 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Another thing... (none)
            I agree with you about Benton and Sebastian Counties, but if you compare the 2004 and 2000 election maps, you'll find that there was less support for Bush in NW Arkansas in the last election. I'm expecting this region to lose it's identification with the GOP in the long term.

            The areas where Bush gained support was in the South and East Arkansas, if I remember correctly. These are, of course, yellow dog Democrat areas and my guess is that they just had too much trouble identifying with Kerry (it would probably be fair to say that Kerry completely ignored them while campaigning) and they're the type of Democrats that are more easily persuaded by simple, misleading rhetoric from Bush.

            The Democratic Congressmen representing these areas are not bad, but I do think that these are the areas that Democrats need to work on in the future and this leads to the debate on working with conservative Democrats.

            Democrats -- Progress for the Working Class

            by rogun on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 02:05:41 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  NW Arkansas.... (4.00)
              ....didn't seem to get much redder than it was in 2000, but Faulkner and Saline counties saw pretty significant growth for Bush.  My ex-girlfriend lived in Lawrence County, AR (NE corner) which was one of the few eastern AR counties where Kerry won handily and didn't see much slippage from Gore's numbers.  Kerry's complete lack of presence and cultural disconnect from traditionally Democratic eastern and southern Arkansas undoubtedly cost him some support, and resulted in his losing 11 of the 32 counties Gore win in 2000.  Throughout the campaign, I thought Kerry was foolish to concede Arkansas so early, but I think even if he had treated it like a true swing state, the "moral values" climate last year would have still been likely to put Bush over the top there.  With Mark Warner or Wesley Clark (or maybe even Hillary) on the ticket in '08, however, I think Arkansas is definitely back in play.
  •  Vermont (none)
    Werent the Dems and progressives trying to work out some kind of a deal?? Like, that Demoratsw oudlnt field a challenger to Sanders for Senate, and in turn, the Progressive party wouldnt field a challenger for house. Maybe I'm wrong.

    The only thing to get more strongly rejected than Arnold's four propsitions were his last four movies- Mark Maron

    by jj32 on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 11:39:30 AM PST

  •  GA-12: Barrow will not face primary challenge (none)
    I'm convinced Barrow will not face a primary challenge in GA12. Majette wouldn't have a base in the 12th. She's from DeKalb, and many members of the black community are against her because of her ouster of Rep. McKinney back in 2002.

    On Barrow: let me tell you from my experiences with this man, no human being deserves to be beaten by a progressive Democrat more than John Barrow. He is the most arrogant, elitist, asshole you could ever meet.

    But he's better than Burns and any other Republican candidate. He wouldn't be better than a well-funded Democrat though.

  •  Still looking good (none)
    Marshall and Barrow of Georgia are both outraising their opponents, Bean and Melancon are fundraising like mad, and we've got top-tier replacements for Strickland and Sanders.

    Chet Edwards will probably never have an easy race in his life, but by 2006, any Iraq War vet running as a Republican will suffer an anti-war backlash.

    Off-year elections are tricky, on one hand, many of these red-district Dems are safer because there won't be Bush at the top of the ticket, but the low turnout allows mobilizing groups like churches to have a larger effect in swinging the vote.

  •  Anything in Kentucky, Superribbie? (none)
    I know this diary is on seats we're defending, but I didn't see any Kentucky races listed on your linked diary about seats we might pick up.

    Given the Fletcher implosion and the close connection to Ohio, any chance of picking up seats in the scandal-weary bluegrass?

    "She was very young,he thought,...she did not understand that to push an inconvenient person over a cliff solves nothing." -1984

    by aggressiveprogressive on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 11:54:45 AM PST

    •  well... (4.00)
      Anne Northup has been a top target since she was elected in '96. Her district (Louisville) is Democratic-leaning, and she won by narrow margins in '96, '98, '00, and '02. However, the lameness of her opponent in '04 caused her first landslide - 60% to 38%. If '02 nominee Jack Conway runs, we could keep her tight again. If not, she's holding this one for a long time.

      Yeah yeah, I know, the Rapture is coming.

      by Nathaniel Ament Stone on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 12:08:37 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  There are two KY seats (none)
      that are arguably winnable (the second would have been 75th on my original list, but I tend to think it's a goner).

      1. Nathan does a good job of discussing KY-03, the only real Dem district in the state (KY-06, which Ben Chandler (D) holds, is actually a fairly GOP seat).  As of now, there is no opponent for Northup, so the race was not on the list.  The powers that be are going after Conway hard.  He, Chris John (LA-07), and Michael Coleman (OH-12 or 15) are Rahm Emanuel's top three wish list candidates.  

      2. KY-04 was won by conservative Dem Ken Lucas in a fluke in 1998 after being held by Jim Bunning for years.  Lucas survived three terms and then retired.  We ran Nick Clooney, about the best candidate we were going to find, in 2004, and he got trounced.  We have nobody for 2006.

      As for the other three, we have a State Rep. running against Ron Lewis in KY-02, and a former one-term Congressman turned frequent loser in KY-01.  Nobody in KY-05.  None of the three is particularly hospitable terrain.  
  •  Moore is pretty safe unless someone else challenge (none)
    This is probably going to be Dennis' biggest landslide after having close elections the last three times. I live in the district and I've never even heard of Ahner, nor did I even know he had announced his candidacy. Most GOPers either don't think they can topple Moore, or are too disgusted with the KS GOP to stay on board (GOP turned Dem AG candidate Paul Morrison).
    •  '04 wasn't even close (none)
      DMo had his largest margin of victory ever in '04 - +10. MFC declared victory by 10PM on election night  usually the race was called well past midnight.  
      •  He still needs to run like it will be close (none)
        This is KS-03 so no Dem should ever sit back BTW, even against an unknown GOPer, but I would take this race off the top tier status.

        In this current political climate if the race was held today I would say 55 - 45, but on E-day in '06 it could easily be 52 - 48.

  •  TX-17 (4.00)
    Yeah, I'm with you on that one (sadly). Chet Edwards would never win a Kossack popularity contest, but he's as close to center as that Delaymandered district will have for quite some time.

    The main reason he managed to hang on last time was that the Bushie and "business community" pick, the relatively sane Dot Snyder, was beat out in the primary by the batshit-crazy Arlene Wohlgemuth. Many Snyder supporters ended up supporting Edwards, as he's not insane, but it was still a near thing.

    That which you do unto the least of these, you do unto me - Matthew 25:40

    by A Texan in Maryland on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 11:58:29 AM PST

  •  OR-1 (none)
    I would also add Oregon-1 to the list.  Wu is not a great incumbent and if the R's get a strong candidate watch out.  The only reason Wu got a blowout last time is Goli Ameri (Wu's opponent) way overreached on negative attacks and ended out getting burned.  It is worthwile remembering that while this district is more blue than it has been historically, Elizabeth Furse (D) won this seat by less than a thousand votes all three teams she ran in the 90s.

    "Polls are like crack, political activists know they're bad for them but they read them anyways."

    by skywaker9 on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 12:04:03 PM PST

    •  The GOP (none)
      has nobody serious thus far.  Also, the district has been more Dem, and Wu hit 65% in 2002, before coming down to 60% last time.
      •  With all due respect (none)
        As I said, Ameri bombed due to her own volition and 2002 was an election with no real opponent (some wacko conservative radio host I believe).  D's are still only about 40% of this district, with about 25% indy, if they swing it could be a whole new ball game.

        All that being said..I think Wu's safe.

        "Polls are like crack, political activists know they're bad for them but they read them anyways."

        by skywaker9 on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 01:03:37 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  WI-03 (none)
    Some media people I talked to about Paul Nelson's entry into the race talked about how lame of a campaign announcement he had, and how his demeanor went from generally nice to angy at the system when being asked about the race.  Their consensus is the guy doesn't stand a chance against Kind.
  •  WA-02: Larsen is Safe (none)
    Larsen is Safe. He's done a great job of responding to a wide variety of constituent concerns from military and veteran issues to open space and wilderness areas in the district in an interesting district coposed of liberal towns, conservative farmland, large military bases and vast wilderness areas. He has a strong reputation as a hard-working moderate, which appeals to people across the district - including my crusty, conservative, retired military, pro-GOP parents.
  •  Newbie alert! Candidate, that is, PA 3 (none)

    -7.13 -6.51 Pity poor Scott county. They have to take Kilgore back.

    by emmasnacker on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 12:27:44 PM PST

  •  NM-01 (none)
    I think we have a fair chance of picking up NM-01, Rep. Heather Wilson's seat. We now have a seasoned Dem candidate in current NM Attorney General Patricia Madrid.
  •  WA 03 (none)
    My District. Brian Baird isn't going anywhere. Tom Crowson is an idiot. I'm surprised to see Idiot Crowson even listed as a candidate. Last time out I think it was something a like 43,000 to 19,000.

    Crowson was fully loaded with the Limbaugh lingo talking points and all the groovy wedge issues. He came off as a pathetically mindless auto-bot.
    He had some goofy slogan like "send yourself to Congress."

    A Crowson rematch would be sweet, but I'll bet Vance and the state party thugs draft someone brighter than "hay ah gaht 30% of the vote last tahm I runned." Crowson. Guffah!

    "We do not torture," -GWB

    by gbg on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 12:31:09 PM PST

    •  I agree (none)
      Baird is popular enough in his district that I suspect he would survive a serious strong GOP challenge.

      However the GOP seems to have been singularlly inept in recruiting challengers for Baird. Which makes Baird's re-election all the more likely.

      Barring strong canidates I don't get the feeling that the state Democratic party is particularly worried about defending any of its house seats this cycle.

      The big challenge other than defending Cantwell's Senate seat is to try for pickups in the state legislature in both the Seattle suburbs and Eastern Washington along with trying to flip as many of the 3 GOP held Congressional seats as possible.

      BTW I think Hastings (WA-04) is way more vulnerable than is commonly recognized. His underfunded opponent in '04 did supprisingly well and Hastings is DeLay's pet on House Ethics Committee.

  •  WV-01 (none)
    Does anyone think that there will be competition between incumbent US Rep. Alan Mollohan (D-WV) and Del. Chris Wakim (R-Ohio Co.)? Wakim announced his candidacy Saturday night. The link is to an article in the Sunday News-Register (Wheeling, WV) that speaks of an upcoming fundraiser partly connected to WV country star Brad Paisley. If Paisley publicly supports Wakim, it could be bad news for Mollohan. Wakim is a West Point grad, a defiant conservative, a Bu$h blow-hard, and pro-life (like Mollohan). However, I also believe that Chris Wakim (I could be wrong) is PRO stem-cell research, while Rep. Mollohan has voted AGAINST stem-cell research. Mollohan is the ranking member of the House Ethics Committee (battling neighboring Congressman Bob Ney) and would become CHAIRMAN if the Democrats take the House. Ignoring his pro-life stance, Mollohan is a reasonably moderate Democrat who is both direct and succinct in his statements regarding the Ethics Committee.
    •  WV-01 (none)
      is the most Republican of the 3 WV House districts, but Mollohan has been a very strong incumbent.  I'd have to see how this one develops before getting overly worried.  If Mollohan retires, we have an uphill fight to keep the seat, but I don't think that will happen this time.
      •  I Thought WV-02.... (none)
        ....was the most Republican.  Doesn't that take in the DC exurbs in the panhandle?  I thought WV-01 was Morgantown, Wheeling, Weirton, Fairmont and Clarksburg....and bluer than WV-02.  Even so, I fear that post-Mollohan, this district will be difficult to hang onto.
        •  They are close (none)
          Kerry lost both 58-42 last time, but Gore did one point better 45% compared to 44% in 2000.  Charlie Cook lists the 2d as R +5 and the 1st as R +6.
        •  Mollohan on VoteSmart.org (none)
          Here are some interesting facts about my representative, Alan B. Mollohan (D-WV-01):

          http://www.vote-smart.org/...

          Representative Mollohan supported the interests of the National Right to Life Committee 91 percent in 2003-2004.

          Representative Mollohan supported the interests of the Family Research Council 50 percent in 2004.

          Representative Mollohan supported the interests of the Christian Coalition 61 percent in 2004.

          Representative Mollohan supported the interests of the Christian Action Network 57 percent during their legislative career up until 2004.

          Representative Mollohan supported the interests of the Concerned Women for America 68 percent in 2003-2004.

      •  Mollohan could have a battle in 2006 or 2008... (none)
        considering that Chris Wakim is a Wheeling native. I realize it would be difficult for Chris Wakim to amass a 42000 vote pickup (based on 2004) to beat Mollohan, but Mollohan is sure to lose votes in Brooke, Ohio, and Marshall Counties because he wouldn't support I-68 in the SAFETEA reauthorization. Furthermore, Wakim has been receiving press because he didn't succeed in his "civil disobedience" over the Ohio County Indoor Smoking Ban. Wakim was on WWVA in Wheeling yesterday, and Mollohan will be on WWVA today at 3PM. (WWVA does not have an online feed) Steve Novotney, the WWVA host, is a soldier's father, a host on a notoriously conservative station, and a friend of Chris Wakim. It should be interesting to say the least. Mollohan will be on defense this afternoon.

        P.S. I'm trying to get Paul Hackett to come to east Ohio.

  •  Nice List.... (4.00)
    ...here are my thoughts.

    GA-08, TX-17, and IL-08 are likely losses.  Edwards only prevailed last year (by a scant 52-48 margin) because the GOP ran a wingnut fire breather considered too extreme even for Texas.  Jim Marshall's incumbency will only matter in parts of the district where he's served in the past...and how much of his old district falls within the lines of the new district?  And Melissa Bean's vote for CAFTA has alienated what little "base vote" she has in this Republican district. I would consider her the most vulnerable of all, particularly with Blagojevich at the head of the ticket in IL and not likely to fare well in IL-08.

    Melancon can only be rescued if he's given credit for his vigorous defense of sugar growers following CAFTA...but since Katrina destroyed his district (along with evacuating many of his voters), it seems unlikely that CAFTA remains high on the list of concerns for voters in LA-03.

    OH-06 is still a lean-Dem district with Athens and Steubenville on board (Gore won it in '00).  If Strickland's the gubernatorial candidate and if the GOP woes continue in Ohio, our chances there are definitely odds-on.

    I'm not worried about CO-03 aside from the troubling erosion of Dem support in Pueblo (luckily, it's being made up for by a rising Democratic tide nearly everywhere else in the district).

    I already commented on Boswell's health being potential trouble point in increasingly less-Democratic central Iowa.  I'm hoping for John Barrow in GA-12, and am not overly concerned (yet) about Vermont.

    Beyond that, the rest of the list doesn't serve up too many concerns for me.  If South Dakota takes the unlikely step of voting out Stephanie Herseth, the only bona fide "hot chick" in Congress, it'll be an incredibly dark night for Dems.

    •  Is Bean Cooked? (none)
      As a resident of Melssia Bean's district, I can tell you she is in for the fight of her life.  Prior to Bean, the prior two congressmen from this district were Phil (make it a double) Crane and Donald Rumsfeld.  Yeah, that Rumsfeld.  Myself and the other six D's in the district shake hands every year at the Fourth of July Parade, that's how tough the road will be for her, this cycle and every cycle.  T

      hat being said, she has a lot of money and hopefully will continue to raise money well as the R's beat on each other for the right to run and pick off what they perceive as an easy win against her.  If you've got the cash to give, keeping this seat out of the R column is a worthy investment.  Give to Melissa Bean.

      Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside a dog, its too dark to read. Groucho Marx

      by M A P on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 01:21:00 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'm less of a pessimist than many here (4.00)
        and I suspect that people are saying the CAFTA and Bankruptcy bill votes will hurt her because they want that to be so.  They want to be able to hold up Bean and say "this is the price of apostasy to the party line."  

        In fact, I think that votes like these were absolutely necessary to keep up the image of a "maverick fiscal conservative" that is the only chance for a Dem in this district.  The base a.k.a. you and the other six Ds should come around when faced with the choice of reelect or Kathy Salvi (or one of the other, equally odious GOPers).  

        Further, Bean's fundraising is unrivalled; she's outraised all other Dems on this list, and every candidate in a competitive race (including NRCC Chairman Tom Reynolds) other than Tom DeLay.  And we all know where he got his money.  Meanwhile, the GOP primary will be crowded, chaotic, expensive, and probably bloody.

        •  From what I've read (4.00)
          Bean represents one of the wealthiest districts in the nation.  We tolerate anti-choice and anti-gay rural Democrats because they are with us on labor and tax issues.  We should also tolerate suburban pro-business and pro-wealthy Democrats as long as they are with us on social issues (which Melissa Bean is).
        •  One problem and it could be a big one (none)
          Bill Scheurer has declared he will run as an independent, on a anti-war, pro-single payer health insurance platform. He ran against Bean in the D primary in '04 and got about 25% of the vote.

          Even if he only gets 2 or 3% in the '06 General election, he may well play the spoiler for Bean.

          •  This is true; that could well be a problem (none)
            Let's see how well we on the left (or at least those of us in Illinois' 8th District) learned the Nader lesson.  Incidentally, I HATE THIRD PARTY SPOILERS!!!!! Sorry, had to get that off my chest.
        •  I'm Willing.... (none)
          ....to tolerate Bean's dissent if it helps us into the majority.  In no way do I want her to lose, but the only use I have for the CAFTA Dems are strength in numbers.  However far she lurches to the right, I still think Bean is vulnerable as long as there's a (D) next to her name.  By the way, where is this district?  Mostly Cook County or mostly McHenry County?
    •  Melancon (none)
      Katrina did not destroy his district!  He has a large district.  St. Bernard, Plaquemines and south Terrebonne (by Rita) and the sliver of Jefferson Parish that is Grand Isle were pretty well decimated by the hurricanes; he has many more Parishes in his district.  He does not represent Orleans Parish.  

      See my 2 comments upthread for a the long explanation.

      The race between Melancon (from SE La) and Romero (from SW La) will be split, by and large, along those geographical lines, and less so along Dem and Repub. lines, IMO.  It will be close.  

  •  Not one of our seats but (none)
    The scuttlebut is that Emily Pataki(George's daughter) is attempted to push Sue Kelly(R) out of the race into retirement from behind the scenes. Pataki lives in that district, so its intresting to see what happens. This is a lean R district, but is very takable even in a non-dem year. Kelly is not a wingnut, but not a moderate R(a little to the right of Michael Castle, Chris Shays etc).  Could be a dem pickup
    •  oh yea- WAYY OT (none)
      and on an unrelated topic, i figure id just stick this here to brag
      at my brothers bar mitzvah on saturday, the hagba(the guy who lifts the torah) will be 2nd circuit court of appeals judge Robert A. Katzmann
       ---> lifelong friend of my fathers.
    •  hmmmmm (none)
      Would love to hear more about that... where do you pick up these bits? Actually, is Emily ready yet? Wouldn't they prefer Kelly to stick around for one more cycle before launching the young Pataki?

      For all your Sue Kelly needs, check out http://take19.blogspot.com and feel free to add your insights!

      Thanks!

      •  i heard it (none)
        my dad does a show on local westchester radio once a month with tony colavita(former NY republican chair), former westchester repub chair and former westchester dem chair. He is a former westchester liberal chair, abeit voting both ways(Anderson in 80, Reagan 84, Bush 88, Clinton 92,96 Gore 00 Bush 04).  They talk about what they hear in the off time, and that is what several of them heard going around. Sue Kellys district is right next door, so its something that if is going around, they would hear it
    •  A gay Republican is running against her (none)
      in the primary. He probably has no chance, but that should be a pretty funny race.
  •  Michigan (none)
    Is there ANY hope for Michigan? Granted we are gerrymandered up a creek, but are there any possibilities?
    •  See the other diary (none)
      We have legit (if 2d tier) shots at both Thaddeus McCotter (11th) and Joe Knollenberg (9th).
      •  McCotter and Knollenberg (none)
        Knollenberg may look vulernable but even before the Gerrymandering from heck that occured in 2001 he always managed to win somewhat decently (nothing spectacular but usually with at least 53% if memory serves).  With the Gerrymandering?  He probably isn't vulnerable.  

        McCotter is in an interesting district as, if memory serves, his district contains Redford, Westland, Livonia, and (I believe) Novi.  Westland and Redford are both fairly Dem. (particularly Redford which is getting a lot of people moving out of Detroit and has always had a UAW influence) but Novi is hard-right and Livonia is traditionally Republican.  However, last year the Democratic nominee for State Representative in Livonia's district managed 47% which is an unusually strong showing.  If this is a sign that Livonia is trending Dem. then McCotter is in trouble.  His last 2 opponents were not particularly strong as Redford Supervisor Kevin Kelly had some issues due to the nature of Redford politics (and the DCCC didn't quite come through...though Kelly's fundraising was better than a lot of people claim) and the incredibly weak Phil Truran (bad, underfunded candidate...who interestingly enough got a higher percentage than Kelly).  Currently radio host Tony Trupiano is running for the seat and is looking initially stronger than Kelly or Truran.

        "All Politics is Local" - former Speaker of the House Tip O'Neil

        by Mister Gloom on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 03:28:31 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  PA-17 (none)
    I haven't seen an official statement from Ryan that he's running again. He was reactivated into military service in Iraq in December 2004.  Not sure if he's back yet.

    In the '04 primary, Ryan - the presumptive frontrunner at the outset - finished fifth in a six way primary, and spent $500K in the process.  Failing to disclose a "Protection From Abuse" order filed by his ex-wife may have had a little bit to do with that.

    The $100K he's raised this cycle has largely gone toward paying old campaign debts.

    Holden will be fine.

  •  Keep an eye on NJ (none)
    If Corzine appoints Holt, Pallone, or Andrews to fill out his Senate term, the GOP might make a run at the vacated House seat, especially in Holt's district, which leans Republican,
  •  LA-03 and LA-07 (none)
    It's interesting how similar the LA-03 and LA-07 races were last year.  Tauzin Sr. (R) and Chris John (D) both retired from safe seats.  In LA-03, the Republicans got 59% combined on election day to replace Tauzin, but lost the runoff to Melancon (D) after a bitter intra-party fight between a state Senator and Tauzin's son.  In LA-07, the Democrats got 51% combined on election day to replace John, but lost the runoff to Boustany (R) after a bitter intra-party fight between a white and a black Democrat.

    Reading about how the Progressives are going to contest the Vermont seat, and how Melissa Bean's primary challenger is now running as an independant...we have not learned the primary lesson of 2000: unity.  We won't beat the wingers when we are divided.  Until we have serious electoral reform (instant run-off voting first and foremost), anything aside from a clean positive primary only serves to weaken our side.  That includes running Greens along with Democrats, primary challengers running as independants, and negative intra-party primaries such as the ones that doomed Tauzin and Romero, and Mount and Cravens.  And it will doom us again in the Ohio Senate race if the Brown-Hackett attacks get any more negative.

  •  Lane Evans (none)
    Has long-running health problems, so he may retire in some near-future year.  I don't live in the district.

    "Freedom's just another word for nothing left to lose."

    by Odysseus on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 04:45:46 PM PST

  •  This is outstanding.... (none)
    thanks for this.

    "The problem in defense is how far you can go without destroying from within what you are trying to defend from without." Dwight D. Eisenhower

    by RichardG on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 05:43:52 PM PST

  •  Put NC-05 In the possibility category (none)
       One of the most Republican districts in the state might just be in reach next year. Allen Joines, the fantastic mayor of Winston-Salem, has been so widely respected for drawing business and jobs to the area (the Dell plant was his coup de force), and so deeply respected for his character, that the Republicans could not even field a token challenger against a one term Democratic mayor in a "Red" State.
      Virginia Foxx, the current officeholder, turns off nearly all who learn anything about her, and her nasty primary battle with Vernon Robinson (now out of the picture for a good while, thanks to local grassroots dems) left a bad aftertaste in many folks mouths.
       Ultimately, with a national wind behind our backs, Joines could put a Democrat in Congress from this previously given up for gone seat, and put us one free step closer to control in the House.

    Some men see things as they are and ask why? I dream of things that never were, and ask, Why Not? ~Robert F. Kennedy

    by Southern Liberal on Mon Nov 14, 2005 at 07:16:43 PM PST

  •  CA-47 (none)
    I think Loretta Sanchez will be fine.  If she chooses to run for statewide office, I am sure that State Seantor Joe Dunn will easily replace her.  This Tan Nguyen is funny, I once met a Republican named Tun Nguyen...I wonder if they're related.....
  •  Ohio (none)
    On one hand, I wouldn't get very worked up over the possibility of gaining seats outside of the metropolitan areas in Ohio.  I live in rural SW Ohio, and our town runs 75% Republican and votes that way.  Although Strickland has a good shot at the Governorship, it will likely come at the expense of his Congressional seat changing parties.  Fierst is a nice enough guy (my wife and I met him when he was doing a walk-thru of our town a while back), but Turner has been fairly moderate and isn't unpopular regardless of what the Republicans in Ohio have been up to.  Unless he gets some major funding and name awareness, I look for an easy Turner victory.

    On the other hand, like troglodytes coming out of their caves, I'm getting more and more questions about where I got my IMPEACH BUSH bumper sticker these days.  One of the most telling things is the students my wife teaches.  During the '04 election cycle, everyone was pro-Bush.  Now it's the exact opposite, and in both cases this comes from the parents.  Great example...the other day we were eating lunch in our car outside her school and one of the 3rd Grade classes was having PE doing laps around the parking lot.  A group of boys stopped behind the car and one was reading the bumper stickers aloud.  As he finishes the SUPPORT OUR TROOPS don't let Bush profit off them one, he shouts "YEAH, BUSH SUCKS!"  Another boy immediately chimes in "HE LIED!"  Then as they're passing the car, one says to another "You mean you LIKE him?"  They continued on their way talking as they went before stopping to high-five each other...I suspect the support was converted, but I can't say for sure.  We still laugh about it.

    •  Largely agree (none)
      although I would put a small finger on the scale for Wilson beating Blasdel and holding the 6th; GOP fatigue and the Strickland coattails should be enough to put a guy who is a popular officeholder in his own right over the top.  Similarly, I suspect that Bob Ney's Abramoff scandal issues will be acute enough by election time that Chillicothe mayor Joe Sulzer (an excellent challenger) will oust him from the neighboring 18th.

      As for the rest, the open 4th presents an opportunity, but the district is tilted against us in a big way--similar to the 2d.  As you say, the other seats I'd be most excited about picking up are the three metropolitan seats held by the GOP: the 1st (Cincy), 12th (Columbus & outlying), and 15th (ditto).  Unfortunately, we have nobody at all in the 1st or 12th and an underfunded neophyte in the 15th.

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