SSP Daily Digest: 4/21

CA-32: Chu-mentum! Board of Equalization chair Judy Chu seems to be building up speed as we head toward the May 19 special election. Last week, Chu reported a sizable fundraising edge, raising $823K in the first quarter (compared with $568K for state senate Gil Cedillo and $153K for investment banker Emanuel Pleitez). And now, Chu received the unanimous endorsement of the state Democratic Party over the weekend.

MN-Sen: No real surprise; Norm Coleman filed notice of intent to appeal to the Minnesota Supreme Court. Cost of 1,000 more billable hours: $500,000. Cost of another month of keeping the Democrats down to only 58 votes? Priceless.

PA-Sen: Arlen Specter has picked up another Democratic opponent; Bill Kortz, a member of the state House representing Allegheny County, has announced that he intends to file his statement of candidacy with the FEC soon. Kortz, a relatively fresh legislator (he successfully beat an incumbent Democrat in 2006), may find a statewide primary challenging — Rendell ally Joe Torsella has been in the race for a while and has raised nearly $600K, while other candidates, such as fellow state Rep. Josh Shapiro, are also eyeballing the race. In any event, his first item of business should be to upgrade his website. (J)

MD-Gov: Bob Ehrlich is reportedly weighing a rematch with Martin O’Malley in 2010. If Ehrlich (Maryland’s only Republican governor in the last 30 years) doesn’t run, next in line may be Anne Arundel Co. Executive John Leopold.

OK-Gov: State senator Randy Brogdon announced his run for the GOP gubernatorial nod this weekend, preventing Rep. Mary Fallin from having a clear shot at the nomination (after Rep. Tom Cole declined). A couple bigger names, ex-Rep. J.C. Watts and mmmmaybe Sen. Tom Coburn (who’s been sounding ambivalent about re-election to the senate), may still get in too.

MN-06: There are mixed signals cropping up on whether Elwyn Tinklenberg is angling for a rematch with Archduchess Cuckoobananas Michele Bachmann. The Minnesota Independent says he’s “all but declaring himself a candidate.” On the other hand, he just gave almost $250,000 to the DCCC, suggesting he won’t be using it (unless he’s doing it to make amends for winding up with $500K in the bank at the end of the campaign last year… not exactly his fault, though, since almost all his cash arrived at the very last minute). State senator Taryl Clark is also eyeing the race.

AL-07: The field to replace Artur Davis is getting clearer. Jefferson Co. Commissioner Sheila Smoot launched her campaign. State senate president pro tem Rodger Smitherman, however, said he won’t run. Smoot joins attorney Terri Sewell and state rep. Earl Hilliard Jr.

FL-22: The GOP’s leading recruit to take on Democrat Ron Klein next year, state House Majority Leader Adam Hasner, has decided that a congressional bid is not in the cards for him. (J)

NY-19: GOP Assemblyman Greg Ball, who has been “testing the waters” in anticipation of a congressional bid for months now, will formally announce his candidacy for the seat of two-term Dem Rep. John Hall on May 9th. Ball was previously courted to run for this seat after gajillionaire businessman Andrew Saul unexpectedly terminated his bid against Hall in 2007. (J)

CA-04: Third time’s the charm? Democrat Charlie Brown is telling local activists that he’s actively considering another run for the northeast California seat he narrowly lost last November to GOP wingnut Tom McClintock. Brown says that he expects to make up his mind “by this fall”. (J)

WA-08: The Seattle Times strikes again, going on the early offensive against just-announced Dem candidate Suzan DelBene. Turns out DelBene didn’t vote in nine elections over the last five years (including the 2006 general, where Dave Reichert barely beat Darcy Burner the first time). (On the other hand, better this come out now than Oct. 2010.)

TN-01: Rep. Phil Roe and ex-Rep. David Davis may get a nice Baron Hill/Mike Sodrel-style relationship going. Davis may be gearing up for a third run at Roe in the 2010 GOP primary. (Davis defeated Roe in an overcrowded 2006 primary when this was an open seat, then the slightly-less-conservative Roe defeated Davis in a two-man contest in 2008.)

NM-01: The 2010 race in NM-01 promises to be fun(ereal). Kevin Daniels, owner of a chain of funeral homes, is exploring the race on the GOP side and, if nothing else, has the capacity to self-finance.

Friendship: In the diaries, possumtracker makes a hilarious catch from a recent Hill survey in which all 41 Republican Senators were asked to name the Democrats whom they most enjoy partnering with on legislation. While most of the Senators gave thoughtful (and sometimes surprising) answers, Kentucky’s Jim Bunning could only muster up one word in response to the idea of collaborating with a Demmycrat: “No.” (J)

43 thoughts on “SSP Daily Digest: 4/21”

  1. he’s young, good looking and popular in the Hudson Valley. He eats into Hall’s Northern Westchester base too.

    I think he’s still an Air Force Captain. Met him a year or so ago, my stomach was in knots thinking this guy could run for Congress.  

  2. Cobb County Commission Chairman Sam Olens (R), widely expected to enter the governors race (after previously being rumored to run for Lt. Governor) and make some noise, has decided to run…for Attorney General.  This makes the third Cobb County resident in the race for Attorney General, along with State Senator Judson Hill (R), who represents East Cobb, and State Rep. Rob Teilhet (D), who represents Southeast Cobb.

  3. Bonoff lives in MN-3 and is eying that race, not MN-6.

    Tinklenberg would again be a good candidate, but I feel that 2008 was his year, or 2006 rather was really his year but oh well.

  4. The voters in that district for better or for worse just seem to love The Sheriff, regardless of its PVI D+3.

    If we hope that they will vote to fire and replace The Sheriff, running another ex-Microsoft female middle-manager (and a rookie newbie candidate at that) just doesn’t seem likely.

    So have they already largely written-off WA-08? Maybe the DCCC likes her because presumably she can largely self-fund? (I’m guessing that as an ex-VP she has some personal wealth).

    Please, Van Hollen, recruit someone else!

    Irony: in the linked story, both Steve Ballmer and Bill Gates gave to Reichert in the 1Q.

  5. Actually, the fact that Suzane DelBene has missed a lot of elections first came out in the left leaning Seattle alternative paper, “The Stranger”.

    I liked Darcy Burner and volunteered for her.

    Ms. DelBene is off to a rocky start indeed.

    If Rodney Tom doesn’t jump in I think that this race is Reichert’s to lose, especially in a non gubernatorial and non presidential year.

  6. I believe he’s actually considered a moderate republicans for that district.  Ya, that isn’t saying much.

  7. for a district that decided it couldn’t elect a liberal Republican like Sue Kelly any more. Ball represents a house district gerrymandered to elect Republicans, I doubt he eats into the base that much. Hall has had two terms to fortify himself with district voters and the district only continues to trend more Democratic.

    Unless 2010 is a terrible year for Democrats don’t expect to lose, he might even have, in the end, big coattails from both Gillibrand and Cuomo helping him out. The only reason I’m remotely worried is that Ball has a good profile and is young and a good campaigner. Still, Hall has proved himself in the past.

  8. about getting a better candidate in this race, and here’s why. The top two candidates that people would like to see are probably both content to wait for 2012. That’s partly because they don’t want to give up their seats… state senator Rodney Tom is up for re-election in 2010, but would get a free shot in 2012. And state rep. Chris Hurst may try to move up to state senate in 2010, as Pam Roach (Washington’s answer to Jean Schmidt) is apparently retiring… where, if he won, he would also have a free shot in 2012 without giving up his state senate gig. (Other possibilities are state senator Fred Jarrett, but he’s running for King County Executive in the 2009 general… and state rep. Ross Hunter, who’s the biggest question mark now. Hunter would be my first choice, but I’ve heard Hunter is instead interested in governor in 2012, which seems a little above his pay grade right now.)

    Plus, everyone probably wants to wait for 2012 redistricting, to see how this district gets sliced up, especially if Washington gets a 10th seat (not likely, but on the cusp). This is Washington’s most populous seat, so we may see it broken down into a Dem-leaning district on the Eastside and a GOP-leaning district in SE King County and rural Pierce County. Reichert lives in SE King County (and presumably would want to represent the safer district), so an open seat purely on the Eastside would pretty much be a slam dunk for Hunter or Tom or whoever.

  9. Looks like we are indeed going to face a second-tier Republican in the race for governor.  We might actually get this one back.

  10. Am I correct in thinking that Rodney Tom was first elected as a Republican but switched parties a few years back? Would that hurt him in a Democratic primary for a hypothetical Eastside seat? Or is he popular enough or the Democratic base conservative enough for him to still have the head start?

  11. …thanks to increasing racial/ethnic diversification and urbanization leading to cosmopolitianism (okay, I’m not sure that’s actually a word, but it works).

    We control 6 state house seats versus 8 for the Republicans and 2 state senate seats versus 3 in Cobb.  Roy Barnes is from Cobb.  David Scott represents a large part of Cobb and wins it every time.

  12. for a whole diary (someday). Let me just say for starters that Washington uses an independent commission that’s concerned with compactness and competitiveness, so despite the Dem trifecta we won’t be gerrymandering Reichert out.

  13. He wrote two major hits for Orleans (“Still the One” and “Dance With Me”) and had a few other minor hits here and there.

  14. was pretty Republican even a decade ago. A substantial number of Dems there have either moved in recently and wouldn’t remember that Tom started out as a Republican, or else probably were moderate Republicans a decade ago and have gone through a similar evolution that he did. So I doubt his past would get held much against Tom. In fact, I was worried he’d be gumming up the progressive works behind the scenes in Olympia when he switched, but I’ve been pretty favorably impressed by him. Most significantly, after Brian Weinstein left the state senate last year with his Homeowner’s Bill of Rights (mostly designed to give people a warranty against crappy condo construction) still dangling, Tom picked up the flag and finally got it through the senate… unfortunately, now it’s hung up in the house and doesn’t look like it’ll pass this year. (Which is impressive because not only is the builder and real estate lobby powerful on the Eastside, but because Tom is a REALTOR(tm!) himself for his day job, and that probably pissed off a lot of friends.)

    Which isn’t to say he’d be a true-blue Progressive in the U.S. House; he’d fit in more with the New Dems (as would Jarrett, Hunter, etc.). But there’s no university or regentrifying area or anywhere else on the Eastside that provides much of a foothold for a Progressive; it’s pure unadulterated suburbia.

  15. Only in the south can you find that kind of hyper partisanship.  A big splotch of blue surrounded by a sea of red.

  16. Thankfully, the blue is getting bigger.  We added three Metro house seats to our totals: the 38th in Central Cobb, the 104th in Central Gwinnett, and the 95th in Southern Gwinnett, Northern Rockdale, and parts of Newton.

  17. a true-blue progressive would be able to easily hold a Obama-leaning suburban district.  Had Darcy Burner won in 2006 or 2008, she would have held the district as long as she wanted.

  18. Especially in that House map. That’s great to see one color coded like that, could you do one for the rest of the state?

  19. Go to:

    The full state and Metro maps are there.  Click on “General Assembly” and then on the chamber.

  20. We absolutely must pick it up in order to prevent a horrendous gerrymander in the next decade.  Thankfully I feel we have a top-notch candidate in Thurbert Baker who will face off against a 2nd-tier at best GOP nominee.

  21. Yeah, I would be shocked if there were Democrats representing any part of Cherokee or Forsyth.  

  22. I fear it may turn into a “I want to lock up and execute people, too” pissing match.  It’s early and I won’t actually start to really look around for a while, but I’m leaning toward Barnes at this very early juncture.

    Your point about the Governor is a very good one, though.  I will futher add that, IIRC, whichever party controls the governor’s mansion gets top billing on the ballot for state legislature races.  Being at the top of the ballot can add several points to your total.  Had we had that, we may have picked up more seats, such as the 34th, 13th, 81st, 103rd, and 153rd State House districts, made the 38th, 104th, and 140th more confortable pick ups, and might have saved our two losses: the 8th and 28th.

  23. Uninformed voters are everywhere. But that is an interesting law to keep the challenging party down. It worked for Democrats for 150+ years!

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