NRCC Finally Announces First Round of Patriot Program

Three months ago, the NRCC announced its “Patriot Program,” a Frontline-like effort to protect the most vulnerable Republican members of the House. But then, they did nothing – no announcements, no lists, nothing. For three months. Until, finally, today. Here’s the first-round list:

Name District PVI 2008
Dan Lungren CA-03 R+6 6%
Ken Calvert CA-44 R+6 2%
Brian Bilbray CA-50 R+3 5%
Judy Biggert IL-13 R+1 10%
Joseph Cao LA-02 D+25 3%
Thad McCotter MI-11 R+0 6%
Erik Paulsen MN-03 R+0 8%
Leonard Lance NJ-07 R+3 8%
Christopher Lee NY-26 R+6 14%
Dave Reichert WA-08 D+3 6%

Note that despite the PVIs, the only district on here which Obama did not win was NY-26 (carried by McCain 52-46). There are also some pretty notable absences on this list, such as Mike Castle (DE-AL), Mark Kirk (IL-10), Jim Gerlach (PA-06), and Bill Young (FL-10). All of these guys could run for higher office or retire, so maybe the NRCC is tipping its hand here – or just hedging its bets.

16 thoughts on “NRCC Finally Announces First Round of Patriot Program”

  1. Obviously they had to do it for some pr reasons, but if they end dropping anything there I would be surprised.  They know a nickel there could be spent better elsewhere.

  2. with the exception of Cao and Reichert, these seats were drawn to be Republican leaning.

  3. Erik Paulsen needs to be careful in his district. He is more conservative than the majority of his constituency. When I was at the capital, I spoke to State Senator Terri Bonoff (D-Minnetonka) who ran in 2008 but lost in the primary to Ashwin Madia. Bonoff would be the perfect candidate to run in Minnesota 3 and is a very charismatic and energetic state senator.  

  4. Even when we account for the districts left out (and in addition to the ones mentioned SC-01, SC-02, FL-25, AL-03, MN-06, CA-04, LA-04, MO-09 and NE-02 saw close enough races that they ought to be on the list, whilst there may be something to watch in at least some of OH-02, OH-12, PA-15, WV-02, FL-15, FL-18, FL-21, KY-02, IN-03, MI-08, NV-02, CA-46, AZ-03, TX-07, TX-10, TX-24 and TX-32, LA-06 and KS-02) the list of potentially vulnerable Republican seats is not huge.

    I’ve just listed just about all the seats we have a reasonable shot at under the current lines, and in some of them even the reasonable part of that is in question for another three cycles.

    That’s because Republicans have lost almost all the old battlegrounds. But this seems like a sign that they don’t expect us to consolidate our gains and push forward.

    I’d also note that most of the figures on the list are what passes for moderates in the GOP today. Were they too scared to point out to the likes of Shadegg and Bachmann that they put their seats in danger by being so unutterably crazy?

  5. Some of the others are interesting.  They include Lance and Lee, two freshmen who beat reasonably strong Democratic challengers by significant margins.  But they leave out guys like the others you mention.  Maybe they do have the inside scoop on those guys either retiring or going statewide.

  6. They have to cut this guy loose…unless somehow they think Jefferson might be back.

  7. And the perfect storm will not happen in 2010.  It’s time we make some overtures with Cao and get him to change his affiliation to a Democrat.  If he would change party affiliations immediately, I would break out my Visa and make a contribution to his re-election campaign ASAP.  Another slap in the face to the Republicans would be worth it.

  8. I figured they would have picked Bono-Mack, Gallegy, or Drier.

    I always thought Bilbray was fitting in a little better with his district and his was a bit more Republican (straight ticket-ey) than the rest. Then again, Bono-Mack (near husband) and Gallegy (previous retirement attempt) could try and retire.

  9. those three; Bono-Mack, Gallegy, Dreier; won by wider margins than did Lungren, Calvert, and Bilbray. So investing in the latter 3 is probably more cost-effective than the former 3.

  10. Louisiana Democrats may not be the most progressive lot, and if it wasn’t for the fact that it’s a city that is unsurprisingly wary of outsiders it’d be well worth outside organisations wading into the Democratic primary.

    Still, just about any Democrat, even an Artur Davis clone, would be superior to Cao.

  11. Cao, even if he switched to the Democratic party, probably would be defeated in the 2010 Democratic primary.

    It would just be cool to have another defection to the Democratic party.  Add insult to injury to the GOP.

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