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September 21, 2014

Posts in "New Mexico"

March 19, 2014

Memo to Democrats: Running Toward Barack Obama Might Work

ireland005 031414 445x300 Memo to Democrats: Running Toward Barack Obama Might Work

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

Should vulnerable Democratic incumbents in Republican-leaning districts run from President Barack Obama? The Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza did a good job of explaining the futility of the strategy in his Tuesday post, “Memo to Democrats: Running from Barack Obama Won’t Work.”

There is an alternative, though in all likelihood few Democrats running in swing states or districts have considered it seriously: Run toward the president. And even though it may sound like political suicide, the strategy has been deployed with success in the past.

In 2004, Republican Dave Reichert was elected to Washington’s 8th District with 52 percent in what was then one of the most competitive seats in the country. He immediately became a Democratic target for the following midterm elections, particularly as President George W. Bush’s job ratings began to slide.

But instead of running as far away from President Bush as possible, Reichert invited him to the district for a fundraiser in mid-June 2006. Full story

March 5, 2014

Democrats Have Primaries, Too

Every six minutes, some reporter in the world is writing about a Republican primary. That’s not to say that GOP primaries don’t matter — because sometimes they do — but there are a handful of Democratic House primaries that could have general election ramifications as well.

Here is a look at five Democratic primaries to watch, in order of primary date:

Illinois’ 13th District
Primary: March 18

Democrats are looking to complete their sweep in Illinois by winning the 13th District this fall. Party strategists are ecstatic that former Madison County Judge Ann Callis is running, but she must win the upcoming March 18 primary before focusing on GOP Rep. Rodney Davis.

Callis had $517,000 on hand at the end of December. But University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana physics professor George Gollin had $265,000 on hand thanks in part to a $165,000 candidate loan, and he had a small TV ad buy during the Winter Olympics.

Democrats can’t afford to take the primary for granted. Callis is up with her second TV ad, but still is being outspent on the air, according to Emily Cahn’s Roll Call story. If Gollin wins the nomination, Democrats might punt until the next presidential election.

Illinois’s 13th District is rated Toss-Up/Tilt Republican by Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call.

Pennsylvania’s 6th District
Primary: May 20

Democrats have spent the last decade trying to defeat GOP Rep. Jim Gerlach in the 6th District outside Philadelphia. But now that he is retiring, Democrats have to sort out their own May 20 primary before focusing on the general election.

Some Democratic strategists believe businessman Mike Parrish, a former Republican, has the most crossover appeal in a district that Mitt Romney won with 51 percent in 2012. But physician Manan Trivedi announced he is running again after losing to Gerlach in the last two elections.

Parrish raised a quick $100,000 before the end of the year. But Trivedi raised and spent $1.3 million in each of the last two races and built an initial name identification advantage. The Democratic nominee will likely face Chester County Commissioner Ryan Costello in the general election.

Pennsylvania’s 6th District is rated Lean Republican by Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call.

Pennsylvania’s 8th District
Primary: May 20

Iraq and Afghanistan veteran Kevin Strouse was one of Democrats’ earliest recruits of the cycle. He entered the 8th District race in the Philadelphia suburbs nearly a year ago, and the DCCC added him to its Jump Start program for prized recruits. But that doesn’t guarantee Strouse the Democratic nomination, particularly since he didn’t make the initial Red-to-Blue list this week.

Strouse faces publishing company owner and chemist Shaughnessy Naughton in the May 20 primary. Shaughnessy had $177,000 in the bank as of Dec. 31 (compared to $472,000 for Strouse), but she also has the support of EMILY’s List.

The Democratic candidates can’t afford to spend too much on the primary, considering GOP Rep. Mike G. Fitzpatrick had $1.3 million on hand at the end of the year and has maintained consistently favorable polling numbers — even though he represents a potentially competitive district.

Pennsylvania’s 8th District is rated Republican Favored by Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call.

California’s 21st District
Primary: June 3

The Central Valley-based 21st District was the site of one of Democrats’ worst disasters of the 2012 cycle when they failed to get a quality candidate through the top-two primary. Last cycle’s Democratic candidate, John Hernandez, is running again, and one Republican poll had him leading establishment favorite Amanda Renteria for the second slot against GOP Rep. David Valadao.

Democratic strategists believe Renteria is in better shape than that, but she can’t take the June 3 primary for granted. She had $257,000 on hand at the end of the year while Hernandez has yet to file a report with the Federal Election Commission. But Renteria will likely to spend some of that money, at least on direct mail and not necessarily television, to secure her place in the general election.

California’s 21st District is rated Toss-Up/Tilt Republican by Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call.

New Mexico’s 2nd District
Primary: June 3

At the beginning of the cycle, Democratic strategists identified New Mexico’s 2nd District as trending in their direction, as the Hispanic population continues to grow. The thinking was that GOP Rep. Steve Pearce would be vulnerable in four or six years, that is, until former Eddy County Commissioner Roxanne “Rocky” Lara entered the race.

Democrats believe she is the right candidate to win the seat this year and added her to the committee’s Jump Start program last year and its Red-to-Blue program this week. But the scenario is likely dependent on Lara winning the June 3 primary over attorney Leslie Endean-Singh. While Lara entered the race in September, Endean-Singh had a five-month head start and $93,000 (including more than $50,000 in personal loans) in the bank at the end of December.

New Mexico’s 2nd District is rated Currently Safe Republican by Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call.

July 13, 2013

Top 5 Races to Watch in the Southwest

The battle for the Southwest boils down to two states: Arizona and Texas. And unless Republicans redraw the congressional map in the Lone State State once again — highly unlikely —  there are not many competitive races.

Here are the top five races to watch in the Southwest:

Arizona’s 2nd District. Rep. Ron Barber, a Democrat, won re-election to a full term last fall. But his close race against retired combat pilot Martha McSally wasn’t easy, and she has already filed paperwork for a rematch. Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call rating: Pure Tossup.  Get the full Rothenberg Political Report analysis here ($). Full story

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