Super Speculative House Predictions!

So this is my most ambitious and most speculative exercise to date.  Below are my predictions for the TWO WAY vote in every House race that I expect to be within 20% (plus three pickups in AR-02, LA-03, and TN-06 that I expect to be greater than 20%).  Unlike my previous efforts, this is almost entirely unscientific and subjective, except that I have tried to make a reasonable distribution of margins of victories (not too many close ones, not too many blowouts).  

Overall, I have a net of 25 seats to the Republicans, with 29 Republican pickups and 4 Democratic ones.  Pickups are in bold.  

AK-AL – Young (R) 59, Crawford (D) 40 – Crawford underfunded and AK too red.

AL-02 – Bright (D) 50.3, Roby (R) 49.7 – Bright scrapes by with conservative record.

AL-05 – Brooks (R) 59, Raby (D) 41 – Northern Alabama going red fast.

AR-01 – Causey 50 (D), Crawford (R) 49 – AR Dems able to focus here for lack of other competitive races.

AR-02 – Griffin (R) 60, Elliott (D) 40 – This one was decided by the Dem primary.

AZ-01 – Kirkpatrick (D) 53, Gosar (R) 46 – Republican field somewhat unimpressive.

AZ-03 – Quayle (R) 59, Hulburd (D) 41 – R+9 open seat too much to ask this cycle.

AZ-05 – Mitchell (D) 51, Schweikert (R) 48 – Rematch of 2008, where Mitchell won by 9.

AZ-08 – Giffords (D) 52, Paton (R) 47 – Paton a strong candidate, but Giffords has lots of $$$.

CA-03 – Lungren (R) 55, Bera (D) 44 – R+6 seat too tough in this environment.

CA-11 – McNerney (D) 52, Harmer (R) 48 – McNerney wins a squeaker.  Bluing part of Cali.

CA-18 – Cardoza (D) 56, Berryhill (R) 43 – Cardoza needs to raise more $$$.

CA-20 – Costa (D) 59, Vidak (R) 41 – No problem for Costa.

CA-44 – Calvert (R) 59, Hedrick (D) 41 – Calvert not taken by surprise this time.

CA-45 – Bono-Mack (R) 58, Pougnet (D) 41 – Bono-Mack prevails in favorable environment.

CA-47 – Sanchez (D) 58, Tran (R) 41 – Have never taken this one too seriously.

CO-03 – Salazar (D) 54, Tipton (R) 46 – Substantial $$$ advantage for Salazar.

CO-04 – Gardner (R) 53, Markey (D) 47 – Tough HCR vote in this district.

CO-07 – Perlmutter (D) 56, Frazier (R) 43 – D+4 district.  Perlmutter has fundraised well.

CT-04 – Himes (D) 56, Debicella (R) 44 – Himes a super fundraiser.

CT-05 – Murphy (D) 56, Caliguiri (R) 43 – Murphy notches relatively comfortable win.

DE-AL – Carney (D) 55, Urquhart (R) 45 – Glad Carney got in the race early.

FL-02 – Southerland (R) 51, Boyd (D) 48 – HCR vote seals Boyd’s fate.

FL-08 – Grayson 50 (D), Webster (R) 49 – Grayson spends huge to win.

FL-10 – Young (R) 59, Justice (D) 40 – Poor Charlie Justice.  Fundraising embarrassing.

FL-12 – Ross (R) 57, Edwards (D) 43 – Once-promising race goes by the wayside due to environment.

FL-22 – Klein (D) 53, West (R) 47 – West has raised tons of $$$, but thankfully Klein has too.

FL-24 – Miller 50 (R), Kosmas (D) 49 – Another tough HCR vote for the district.

FL-25 – Rivera (R) 55, Garcia (D) 44 – Rivera had monster first fundraising quarter.

GA-02 – Bishop (D) 56, Keown (R) 43 – Bishop is pretty entrenched in this heavily AA district.

GA-08 – Marshall (D) 54, Scott (R) 45 – Scott starting from scratch in fundraising.

HI-01 – Hanabusa (D) 54, Djou (R) 46 – Djou can beat two Democrats but not one.

IA-03 – Boswell (D) 54, Zaun (R) 45 – Zaun has a lot of catching up to do in fundraising.

ID-01 – Minnick 50.4 (D), Labrador (R) 49.6 – Tough year to rely on crossover votes.

IL-08 – Bean (D) 58, Walsh (R) 41 – This one could be worse.  Walsh is a joke.

IL-10 – Seals (D) 50.1, Dold (R) 49.9 – Seals squeaks by in 20%+ Obama district.

IL-11 – Kinzinger (R) 53, Halvorson (D) 47 – Kinzinger an outstanding candidate.

IL-14 – Hultgren 50 (R), Foster (D) 49 – Top of the ticket hurts Foster.

IL-17 – Hare (D) 58, Schilling (R) 42 – Schilling raising decent money in D+3 seat.

IN-02 – Donnelly (D) 55, Walorski (R) 45 – Jacky too wacky to win.

IN-08 – Bucshon (R) 52, Van Haaften (D) 47 – Van Haaften a good candidate, but tough district.

IN-09 – Young 50 (R), Hill (D) 49 – Another tough HCR vote.

KS-03 – Yoder (R) 55, Moore (D) 45 – Big fundraising head start for Republicans.

KS-04 – Pompeo (R) 59, Goyle (D) 40 – Way too red for this cycle.

KY-03 – Yarmuth (D) 59, Lally (R) 40 – Lally only semi-serious competition.

KY-06 – Chandler (D) 54, Barr (R) 45 – Barr is a decent candidate, but Chandler should win comfortably.

LA-02 – Richmond (D) 58, Cao (R) 41 – Huge Dem lean too much for Cao.

LA-03 – Downer (R) 61, Sangisetty (D) 38 – Easy pickup in Cajun country.

MA-05 – Tsongas (D) 59, Golnik (R) 40 – Golnik has raised some decent $$$.

MA-10 – Keating (D) 55, Perry (R) 45 – Don’t think this hyped race will be all that close.

MD-01 – Harris (R) 53, Kratovil (D) 46 – Really tough district for Kratovil to defend.

MI-01 – Allen (R) 52, McDowell (D) 47 – Tough district for Dems to hold.

MI-07 – Walberg (R) 52, Schauer (D) 48 – Schauer barely got by Walberg in 2008.

MI-09 – Peters (D) 55, Welday (R) 44 – Peters has huge financial edge.

MN-01 – Walz (D) 57, Demmer (R) 42 – Big financial edge for Walz.

MN-06 – Bachmann (R) 57, Clark (D) 43 – PPP poll did not bode well for Clark.

MO-03 – Carnahan (D) 56, Martin (R) 43 – Martin has raised some serious $$$.

MO-04 – Skelton (D) 54, Stouffer (R) 45 – Tough race but Skelton pulls through comfortably.

MS-01 – Nunnellee (R) 53, Childers (D) 46 – Wish Nunnellee had to deal with a runoff on Tuesday.

MS-04 – Taylor (D) 57, Palazzo (R) 43 – Taylor very well entrenched in incredibly red district.

NC-02 – Etheridge (D) 58, Ellmers (R) 42 – Don’t think the fisticuffs will have a tremendous impact here.

NC-07 – McIntyre (D) 58, Pantano (R) 41 – McIntyre has gone as far as any Dem to act Republican.

NC-08 – Kissell (D) 54, Johnson (R) 46 – PPP polling suggests Kissell will be OK here.

NC-11 – Shuler (D) 55, Miller (R) 44 – Shuler a very good fit for the district.

ND-AL – Berg 51 (R), Pomeroy (D) 49 – Hoeven coattails carry Berg.

NE-02 – Terry (R) 57, White (D) 43 – Too much to ask for in this cycle.

NH-01 – Guinta (R) 50.2, Shea-Porter (D) 49.8 – Tough year for Dems in NH.

NH-02 – Bass (R) 52, Kuster (D) 48 – Bass has strong polling leads.

NJ-03 – Adler (D) 54, Runyan (R) 45 – Runyan better at pass blocking than politics.

NJ-12 – Holt (D) 56, Sipprelle (R) 43 – Sipprelle has just about matched Holt fundraising.

NM-01 – Heinrich (D) 56, Barela (R) 44 – Heinrich should hold on in Dem district.

NM-02 – Pearce (R) 51, Teague (D) 48 – Tough district, tough opponent.

NV-03 – Heck (R) 52, Titus (D) 48 – Polls show Titus down.

NY-01 – Bishop (D) 54, Altschuler (R) 46 – Altschuler spending scary money.

NY-13 – McMahon (D) 55, Allegretti (R) 44 – Republicans in this district are a mess.

NY-19 – Hall (D) 53, Hayworth (R) 46 – Hall needs to get on the fundraising.

NY-20 – Murphy (D) 57, Gibson (R) 42 – Murphy lucky to have lackluster opponent.

NY-23 – Owens (D) 53, Hoffman (R) 46 – Owens widens lead in re-match.

NY-24 – Hanna (R) 52, Arcuri (D) 47 – Arcuri a poor candidate and Hanna a good one.

NY-25 – Maffei (D) 58, Buerkle (R) 42 – Maffei should be OK against subpar opposition.

NY-29 – Reed (R) 58, Zeller (D) 42 – Easy pickup for the GOP.

OH-01 – Chabot (R) 56, Driehaus (D) 44 – Afraid the awful polls are right on this one.

OH-06 – Wilson (D) 58, Johnson (R) 42 – Wilson has not had any problem in this Appalachia district.

OH-12 – Tiberi (R) 59, Brooks (D) 41 – Big financial edge for Tiberi.

OH-13 – Sutton (D) 55, Ganley (R) 45 – $$$ isn’t everything.  Sutton wins Dem district.

OH-15 – Stivers (R) 56, Kilroy (D) 44 – Kilroy only swept in because of strong 2008 environment.

OH-16 – Renacci (R) 53, Boccieri (D) 46 – Tough HCR vote for Boccieri in this district.

OH-18 – Space 51 (D), Gibbs (R) 49 – Huge Space fundraising edge.

OR-01 – Wu (D) 57, Cornilles (R) 43 – Should be enough Dem votes here for Wu to get by pretty easily.

OR-04 – DeFazio (D) 58, Robinson (R) 42 – Only a D+1 district, but no problem for DeFazio.

OR-05 – Schrader (D)  56, Bruun (R) 44 – Swing district, but Schrader should win.

PA-03 – Dahlkemper (D) 54, Kelly (R) 46 – Republicans failed to land big-time opponent here.

PA-04 – Altmire (D) 55, Rothfus (R) 45 – Altmire in a decent position for re-election.

PA-06 – Gerlach (R) 57, Trivedi (D) 43 – This isn’t the year to finally take out Gerlach.

PA-07 – Meehan 51 (R), Lentz (D) 49 – Meehan financial advantage gets him through.

PA-08 – Murphy (D) 52, Fitzpatrick (R) 48 – Worried about this one.  Fitzpatrick raising $$$ fast.

PA-10 – Carney 51 (D), Marino (R) 49 – Carney a good politician with a strong financial edge.

PA-11 – Barletta (R) 50.4, Kanjorski (D) 49.6 – Kanjorski barely got by in 2008.

PA-12 – Critz (D) 53, Burns (R) 47 – Critz takes the re-match.

PA-15 – Dent (R) 55, Callahan (D) 44 – Tough to take out Republican incumbents this cycle.

PA-16 – Pitts (R) 59, Herr (D) 41 – PPP showed a 9-point race here.

PA-17 – Holden (D) 57, Argall (R) 42 – Holden survived 1994.  He’ll survive this.

SC-02 – Wilson (R) 59, Miller (D) 40 – “You lie!” outburst goes unpunished.

SC-05 – Spratt (D) 51, Mulvaney (R) 48 – Spratt barely holds on.

SD-AL – Herseth-Sandlin (D) 52, Noem (R) 48 – Don’t see the fireable offense for Herseth-Sandlin.

TN-04 – Davis (D) 53, Bailey (R) 47 – Republican internal had Davis up 11 in March.

TN-06 – Tracy (R) 63, Leming (D) 36 – Dems giving this one away.

TN-08 – Herron (D) 50.1, Fincher (R) 49.9 – Strong candidate squeaks by in tough district.

TX-17 – Flores (R) 53, Edwards (D) 47 – R lean of the district finally catches up to Edwards.

TX-23 – Rodriguez (D) 54, Canseco (R) 46 – Moderately competitive race for Ciro.

TX-27 – Ortiz (D) 58, Farenthold (R) 41 – Not much trouble for Ortiz.

UT-02 – Matheson (D) 57, Philpot (R) 42 – Matheson has enormous financial advantage.

VA-02 – Rigell (R) 51, Nye (D) 48 – One of those districts that sweeps in and out with environment.

VA-05 – Hurt 51 (R), Periello (D) 49 – Periello needs Teabagger to draw from Hurt.

VA-09 – Boucher (D) 54, Griffith (R) 45 – Big financial advantage for Boucher.

VA-11 – Connolly (D) 52, Fimian (R) 47 – Fimian ran reasonably strong in 2008, losing by 11.

WA-02 – Larsen (D) 57, Koster (R) 42 – Koster reasonably well-funded.

WA-03 – Heck 51 (D), Herrera (R) 49 – Heck has early financial edge.

WA-08 – Reichert (R) 56, DelBene (D) 44 – Too tough a year to beat Reichert.

WI-03 – Kind (D) 57, Kanapke (R) 42 – Big financial edge for Kind.

WI-07 – Lassa (D) 51, Duffy (R) 48 – Maybe it’s just hard for me to take reality TV stars seriously.

WI-08 – Kagen (D) 52, Ribble (R) 47 – Kagen goes into his pockets to win another tough race.

WV-01 – Oliviero (D) 50, McKinley (R) 49 – Incredibly conservative Oliviero squeaks by.

58 thoughts on “Super Speculative House Predictions!”

  1. I think we’ll hold these seats: FL-2, FL-24, IL-11, IL-14, MI-1 (teabagger beats Allen in primary), NV-3, OH-16, PA-7,

    and we’ll lose these: FL-8, IA-3, ID-1, SC-5, TN-7, TN-8, WV-1.

    so that’s a net -24.

  2. ND-AL will be close, but not that close. ND voters haven’t got a good reason to dump Pomeroy when they’re already losing Dorgan. Small states like ND (also AK and DE spring to mind) usually vote strategically based on clout, and while Hoeven is certainly popular, he doesn’t have the coattails that a popular Republican in an urban state would.

    In IN-09, Young is a terrible candidate with anemic fundraising from the wrong part of the state who doesn’t fit the district at all, and I don’t think he’ll play well compared to Hill, HCR vote or no HCR vote. Hill may be the incumbent, but you underestimate his campaigning skills in this district. And I think we’ll hold IN-08 and NH-01 based on the quality of our candidates vs. theirs. All three of these races will be close, but I think the odds are ever so slightly in our favor despite the negative environment.

    Finally, I’d be more pessimistic about TN-08 and WV-01, simply because Appalachia is the one place where the Democratic brand has collapsed overnight. Olivero being batshit crazy might hold WV-01, but he’ll pull a Griffith within a year anyway, so it doesn’t really count even if he wins.

    I agree with you about everything else – even Boyd and Edwards losing while Bright, Minnick, and Causey all win.

    Net D -23 sounds about right.  

  3. and sound commentary.

    I also think all the rest of the comments in this thread are of very high-quality. Sorry I couldn’t add anything substantive to them. :-)

  4. I haven’t done a full prediction like this, but I’m guessing Grayson is one of the 10 most likely Democratic incumbents to lose this cycle. He can spend with the best of them, but if that money goes into polarizing ads like the one he debuted this week, I can’t see him holding on in an R-leaning district with a lot of moderate swing voters. His saving grace may be a divisive and fairly late GOP primary, however.

  5. I disagree with a few projections though.

    FL-08- I like Grayson well enough but just because we like him does not mean his constituents do. He is doing good financially but that does not always make the difference. The Republicans have fielded strong candidates and with the environment and his decisiveness (I agree with him but still) I think he loses.

    FL-24- Perhaps I am just being optimistic but I do not think Miller is all that strong. I think Kosmas is popular enough to slip through but it will undoubtedly be close.

    ID-01- Sorry I wish I felt different but I do not think Minnick makes it. I wish he would but I just do not see it happening. Perhaps he can make a good gubernatorial candidate some day.

    NC-08- I will be in the strong minority but I think Kissel will lose assuming Johnson is the nominee. I think his former staffer snags enough votes away and he nearly loses.

    ND-AL- I do not care what Scotty says Pomeroy will survive. When Hoeven announced he would run I had no doubt it would be competitive but no I don’t see it happening.

    NM-02- Close but Teague survives.

    NY-24- Polling has him doing well and I don’t like him much but I think he survives.

    OH-16- My gut thinks he makes it. You could be right though.

  6. We’ve got things called almost exactly alike right now, in fact our number of Rep and Dem pickups is exactly the same, 29/4 for a +25 Rep score.  The only difference is on the seats that will flip.  By my count we have the same 4 democratic seats flipping, on the republican side here’s where we differ and agree:

    Spiderdem has going red/Stephencle has staying blue – FL-24, IL-11, IL-14, IN-9, OH-15, PA-7

    Spiderdem has staying blue/Stephencle has going red – AL-2, AR-1, TN-4, TN-8, WV-1, WA-3

    Agreement – AR-2, CO-4, FL-2, IN-8, KS-3, LA-3, MD-1, MI-1, MI-7, MS-1, ND-1, NH-1, NH-2, NM-2, NV-3, NY-24, NY-29, OH-1, PA-11, TN-6, TX-17, VA-2, VA-5

    The cool part about this is, even if the 23 seats on which we agree flip, along with the 12 in which we currently don’t, that’s only 35 seats in total and the republicans will still be shy of taking control by 4 seats.  Awesome.

    I do notice a geographical divide in our calls, notably in that you appear to have us losing virtually across the board in most of the midwest, while I have a lot more seats in the southeast going under.  I can see the arguments for both sides of that continuum.

  7. that’s long enough for people to get used to it. You attributed a lot of future Dem losses to HCR, but I really think most people won’t care about HCR in November. Even today the biggest issue isn’t HCR, it’s the oil spill.

  8. In MO-08, I think Sowers will get within 60%. I doubt he’ll win or even get in single digits, but though the district is very red and it’s a Republican year, he is a very strong candidate.

  9. Only a couple of observations.  I don’t think you are necessarily wrong on the races I’ve listed below, but I’ve got a few differing opinions.

    FL-02:  I believe this race will be tight, but my gut feeling is that Boyd will prevail.

    NH-01:  I like Shea-Porter, and I think she has what it takes to win this race, albeit narrowly.  Could go either way, but I’ll give her the slightest of an advantage.

    WV-01:  Olviero could pull this race off, but I’m not sold on it at this point.

    Overall, this diary is one of the best I have seen.  Great job!

  10. …outcomes in your list are, favorite, Alan Grayson winning, and most disappointing, Tom Perriello losing.

    I gave Perriello $500, he’s just been THE MOST courageous House members in the freshman class.  And I’m rooting for him to find some way to pull out a victory against the odds.

    Grayson is a guy whose bombastic personality makes me of two minds, where on one hand I cringe or just disagree with some of what he says, but on the other hand I like seeing someone bombastic on the left because we do need that.  And if he survives such a tough cycle in such a tough district, that’s going to frustrate conservatives in a big way.

    Ultimately I think a net loss of 25 might be a bit optimistic, but if that’s how it ends up, I’ll be ecstatic.  I think there’s no way it can be spun as anything but a disappiontment for Republicans.  That they got out ahead of themselves so early in insisting they’d take over the House really cost them the expectations game already.  They might be able to still plausibly claim a moral victory if they get real close with 35 net pickups and leave Dems with a bare majority that can’t really do much going forward, but if we’re still holding 230 seats in the 112th Congress that’s going to be a clear Democratic victory.

  11. But I have to disagree with you about Betsy in CO-4, she’s tough as nails and raises money like crazy!  It’ll be a tough hold for sure, but she’s more than prepared in my opinion and her votes have been very strategic.  Even in her healthcare vote I don’t see it being a huge issue.  Weld county, the swing area of the district was hit really hard by the recession so I can’t see her opponent being able to make a big issue out of healthcare.

    As for her opponent, Cory Gardner is not very intelligent or even charismatic person, he is fundraising reasonably well though.  His biggest downfall in my opinion is that his base is in the eastern plains, being from Yuma county, and NO ONE lives there.  The margin really won’t change there in a big way for him and the plains are never the deciding factor in the district.  He’s no Musgrave, but he doesn’t have any geographical advantage or personal appeal to make him any better than generic R.  And don’t forget Betsy won in 08 by a 56-44 margin, that’s incredible for this district even if you’re running against someone like Musgrave!  

    I say Betsy pulls through narrowly with everything working in her favor that she needs to (money, outreach, voting).

  12. I’m probably giving too much credence to Republican internal polling in FL-02, IL-11, IL-14, and OH-16.  Especially IL-14 where the internal polling is at least close.  I’m a little nervous about many of the “yes” votes on HCR in R+ districts.  

    Mason-Dixon has Titus down, but that may improve if Harry Reid’s fortunes improve higher on the ticket.

    Primary turnout in the Philly suburbs makes me nervous for Lentz in PA-07.

    Teabagger surprise in MI-01 would be terrific.  I did note the possibility, but gave Allen the primary win.

  13. even in the reddest of red tides, I firmly believe that the Democrats will not lose seats they did not have in the first place. 😉

  14. A Dem primary candidate who decided to drop out suggested that Herron had big polling leads in the general, but didn’t release the poll.  I’ve probably subconsciously put a lot of stock into that statement.

    IN-09 – First I’ve heard of Young being a poor candidate.  Thought he was the “sane” choice, and while his fundraising is not up to Hill’s standards, it was better than his primary opponents’.  Hopefully you’re right.

  15. Boyd is well known to be a conservative Democrat.  One vote (HCR) does not change that, especially in a district that is not that hostile (Obama got 45%) and with very mediocre GOP opposition.  If his district was much more Repub or he has a decent opponent, I’d be more worried.

  16. with Boyd down 52-37.  It was by the Tarrance Group, which has a pretty good track record.  Had an INCREDIBLE amount of Dem to Rep crossover voting.  I’m also a little worried that Boyd could lose the primary given his terrible standing with Democrats in the poll.

  17. I also don’t trust their “likely registered voters” screen either.  I don’t believe that Boyd will lose that many Dems, and I don’t think he’ll lose the primary either.

    It’s just my gut feeling, but this doesn’t feel like a flip to me, it doesn’t have any of characteristics of a flip.  If Boyd loses, there is a major GOP wave, and the GOP will probably pick up the House.

  18. you compare Young to Sodrel or Hankins he is the very sane choice but that does not make him overly special or anything, he is pretty much just a generic R. I do think it will be competitive but think he will win all the same. Please don’t take that FDL poll seriously, even Sodrel’s own very biased internal had him leading or trailing (I can’t remember) by a couple of points and in the same poll it had him leading the primary by a huge margin so I am thinking Hill probably leads by about 5-10. I am also very optimistic about Van Haaften, I think notanothersonofabush and IndianaProgressive will agree that he is a very strong candidate. I think he will win by mid to high single digits. I am currently writing a diary on Indiana races that I will probably publish tomorrow.  

  19. I would not put a lot of stock in the internal poll that House Finance Chairman Craig Fitzhugh (D-Ripley) released after seeing he could not beat Senator Herron (D-Dresden)in a primary effort. The poll was taken before Fincher, Kirkland, or Flinn started started campaigning. They are all spending boat-loads of money on television driving up their name IDs, while Herron has kept his powder dry. This race hinges on the independent Tea Party-ish candidate, Don Janes, siphoning votes off from the R in the general and/or disgruntled votes of defeated primary candidates not supporting the nominee.

    Its a pure toss-up race at this point.

  20. I think his polarizing ad is a web ad, which would be directed to the base.  The guy did something right to beat an incumbent who didn’t have major problems.  And that something was spending shitloads of money.  Don’t think I’m that high on him having him win by one.

  21. Well that’s consistent with my prediction.  What is Herron like ideologically?  Pretty conservative?

  22. are high on Van Haaften.  Do Dems have a registration advantage in this district?  Is this one of those areas that is ancestrally Democratic?  Somehow I doubt it, but that may make me feel better about this race.  If we are left dependent on Indies and crossovers, not so much.

    Look forward to your diary.

  23. so much on historical Dem district but still we have many other positive factors. Like Buschon won a very narrow win and there are a lot of pissed off baggers and Van Haaften has been reaching out to them, he is not a teabagger but he is being very smart politically. Ellsworth will likely win the district by a fairly substantial margin and there will have to be some coattails. Also I believe Van Haaften’s state house seat has a Republican lean to it which will help. Van Haaften is the best candidate we could have gotten besides the Mayor of Evansville. Also I forgot to mention that this was a good diary!

  24. part of it is simply that Ellsworth is the most popular politician in the district in the history of ever (pretty much), and even if he loses the Senate race there will be super-strong turnout for him in this district…and unlike in many places, his endorsement of Van Haaften carries a LOT of weight. Van Haaften is also getting a lot more of the state party’s resources compared to most other D candidates this cycle.

    Of course, IN-08 was also the only place where Hostettler won any votes at all in the GOP Senate primary, so it’ll be a place where GOPers aren’t that enthused about Coats and GOP turnout will be reduced. Van Haaften’s opponent is pretty much just Generic R, AFAIK, so nothing special there, either. There’s also simple difference in priorities – state Dems’ main priorities are holding Bayh’s seat, IN-08 and to a lesser extent IN-09 (though Hill can take care of himself for the most part). The state GOP’s main priority has shifted from picking up IN-08 to defending IN-03 to avoid a truly embarrassing loss in a district that should in no way be competitive. They were never all that interested in IN-09 in the first place because they know they can take that district the easy way through redistricting later – and if they’re going to make IN-09 a safe Republican district, they have to make IN-08 a fairly safe Democratic one.

    I’m sure there are other factors as well (I don’t know IN-08 as well as central Indiana), but mainly it comes down to the Senate race creating a big enthusiasm gap for the GOP in this district.  

  25. Roy Herron would best be described a calculated, conservative Democrat in action, with aspects of his messaging being tempered with southern populism. He gives great stump speeches and can be very charismatic. He can small talk very well one-on-one, esp. if you don’t know him, but often can be a tad over-bearing and transparent in working a room/crowd. His record is thin in stand-out accomplishments and in terms of championing projects that would motivate support for his campaign (esp. in terms economic development), which is a tad discouraging for as long as he has served.  

  26. is the House race I am most looking forward to.  I have never seen a Democrat behave the way he behaves.  The addition of the fact that he has virtually unlimited self-funding ability makes him a truly unique case.  Webster is at least as ideological as Grayson.  My theory is that voters are not going to punish Grayson much for being ideological and outspoken.  He was that way against Heller.

    Kosmas – HCR vote is tough in that district.  Miller’s opening ad is underwhelming though.

    Minnick – Huge financial advantage for Minnick.  Seems to get good pub up there.  Even a Tea Party endorsement!

    Kissell – Kissell’s $$$ stinks.  That area is overwhelmingly Democratic in terms of registration.  I suspect Kissell will keep most of them.

    Pomeroy – Huge financial edge for Pomeroy.  I could second-guess this one.

    Teague – Don’t know.  Really evenly matched, but it’s a Republican year in all likelihood.

    Boccieri – Internal poll last week was disheartening.

  27. Pearce is unfortunately still well liked in New Mexico, and Obama narrowly lost NM-2.  Teague is considered a conservative Democrat, and is fairly well liked.  If the turnout is similar to 2008 (especially among Hispanics), then Teague will pull through, but otherwise Pearce will probably win narrowly.

  28. That geographic divide is pretty stark.  My theory is that the ancestrally Democratic seats in the South will stay blue as long as the candidates are free to run away from the mainstream Democratic agenda.  Bright has already run away from it, and the open seat contestants can too.  And yes, I’m expecting us to get killed in the Midwestern, blue collar districts.  It’s really stunning how the differences in our lists track those thematics so closely.  Guess the battle lines are drawn, and we’ll know in November.

    I feel good about WA-03 because the field is now clear for Heck and he has a big fundraising lead.

    I vacillate about FL-24, but ultimately think Kosmas’s HCR vote is going to do her in.

    Kind of surprised there is so much overlap between our lists because of how strongly I have disagreed with your take on the South.  But there it is.

    Thanks for making these comparisons.  It was really interesting for me.  I hope either one of us is anywhere close to correct, as it means we get to keep the House!

  29. that even if HCR gets around 50-50 nationwide, it will still be pretty unpopular in some of the reddish districts.

    I don’t think HCR is going to hurt Democrats all around the country, just in some select districts.

  30. And the Senate really fucked up by voting against cloture for an extension of unemployment benefits and emergency aid to strapped state governments. The eruption of oil is the second most important issue, and I wouldn’t be surprised if the wars are #3.

  31. then candidates won’t get defeated for voting for it.

    I see you’re using HCR as a reason in districts full of old people, like ones in Florida. But I don’t see a pro-offshore-drilling Republican beating Allen Boyd in FL-02.

  32. I’m not that thrilled with Denish.  I never have been too high on her.  I’ll probably vote for her at the end, but I suspect that Susana Martinez has a good chance of winning the Governorship.

  33. Ric Keller did have major problems.  He won the primary in 2008 by less than three percentage points.  He had an affair with a staffer (after running as a family values candidate), broke a term limits pledge, and supported a “Cheeseburger Bill” that PACs that heavily contributed to his campaign supported.  Alan Grayson surely benefited from Keller’s mishaps.  Add in a Democratic year in a marginal district and Grayson’s outsider status and freespending ability, Keller was at a significant disadvantage.

  34. Las Cruces isn’t a bad place to be from for a Republican running statewide. I’m a bit surprised at how Denish and the state party have been pretty aggressive against Martinez, I wonder what their polling is showing.

    So what part of the state are you from?

  35. I’m pretty sure Sowers was just below the 20 percent cutoff.  Did you see the Emerson internal though?  72-18.  Ouch!

  36. FL-02 – I have to admit I am spooked by the Tarrance Group’s poll showing Boyd way behind.

    NH-01 – Should be a nailbiter.  IIRC PPP polled it within one point.

    WV-01 – People underestimate how Democratic West Virginia is at this level.  One thing I’m confident of is that our chances of keeping the seat went up and not down when Oliviero won the primary.  From a “winning isn’t everything, it’s the only thing” standpoint, in a West Virginia general election my thinking is the more conservative the Dem the better.

  37. People forget that election outcomes aren’t linear where if one guy falls, everyone thought to be more vulnerable than him also falls.  It never works out that way, no matter the size of the wave.

    In that vein, I like how you predicted in Florida that Boyd would lose and Grayson will win.  That’s a combination that everyone would say on paper shouldn’t happen, but when you look at 1994, 2006, and 2008, you see exactly those kinds of things happening.  Every race has its own peculiarities that make the overall results uneven, and there’s not uniform swing.  So while maybe that specific combo of Boyd losing/Grayson winning might or might not happen, strange mixes along those very lines will happen in quite a few places.

  38. I don’t know how attractive Oliverio will be for WV-01.  He might be conservative, but that’s not going to bring home the pork to this district.  

    I hope you are right and I am wrong.  I’m not overly optimistic on this race.

  39. The commute can be a real pain in the butt, I hope you have a car with good gas mileage so it’s not too expensive doing that.

  40. Did not know about Gardner being from the sticks.  That can make a real difference if he lacks a base in a population center.

  41. I have to agree with you, larimercodem, on this one.  As someone on the ground in Colorado (though comfortably ensconced in CD-1), I’d add another point.  Not only is C. Gardner from the wrong part of the district, but you don’t win if you don’t show up.  Gardner, whose job is to show up for votes in the State Capitol, has been totally AWOL. This has been especially glaring on a key state water funding bills, as well as on Military Appreciation Day…and as we know, CO-04 is a pretty agricultural and military-friendly district (especially in the areas Cory represents).  The issue has been getting a lot of play on Colorado Pols, but I don’t know how much hay Betsy’s people are making of it.  If they’re not, they need to be.

    In fact, I see the ad right now:

    Background Shot of Yuma County Farm:

    Voice-over:  Where was Cory Gardner when Senate Bill 52, which dealt with the water needed for the Eastern Plains?  That’s right. He was palling around with his Washington D.C. buddies.

    Voice-over: Where was Cory Gardner during the official Colorado appreciation day for military personnel? And during Colorado 4-H Day?  Again, he was making friends in DC.

    End Shot: Where is Cory Gardner when it matters?  ABSENT.

  42. I used PVI and $$$ as rough guidepost and then made the calls based on the subjective information of which I am aware in each district.  

    Grayson for example.  My sense is that his strong partisanship, to put it kindly, is probably offending the sensibilities of Beltway pundits more than it is voters.  I don’t know how voters will react to an incumbent like Grayson because I don’t think we’ve seen an incumbent quite like Grayson.  So I’ll be eagerly awaiting that result.  What we do know is that he has over $1.5 million on hand and a whole lot more that he’s willing to tap into.

  43. I put a lot of time into this one.  I’ve been stuck on 25 for quite awhile, and it may be just because of a subconscious prejudice against predicting more because I can’t stomach the thought of more.  

  44. …they didn’t expect him to win.

    The question is, is Oliviero merely a right wing plant and will he simply lay down for the general.

    My gut says that he’s a pretty ambitious guy and even if his right wing overlords order him to take a dive, I think he will continue to try and win this thing.  If that is the case, then he’s got a pretty clear shot.  No republican can “out-right” him and he’s the “right kind of democrat” (i.e. not much of one) that makes WV’ers happy.

  45. The question is, is Oliviero merely a right wing plant and will he simply lay down for the general.

    That’s not anyone’s question except yours, and it’s not a legitimate one.  It’s not much better than a statement like: “The question is, was the President born in the United States or was he not?”  There’s no evidence of which I am aware that Oliviero is in the race for any reason but to win it.  And the fact that he finally relented on his hedging about voting for Pelosi as Speaker in order to please his DCCC “overlords” and now has the backing of the DCCC really seals the deal to the extent that your question was a legitimate one, which it wasn’t.

    And incidentally, who are these right wing overlords?  Conservative Democrats are the rule and not the exception in WV.  This guy running from the right is about as unusual and as suspicious as a cow going “Moo.”  

  46. that ended up formatted weird, but it looks nice.  I’ll have to try that again on purpose at some point.

  47. I have to weigh in on Illinois here:

    1) Seals will IL-10 somewhat easily. Dold is a terrible candidate and it is a Democratic district. The superficially moderate Kirk was about the only Republican who could hold that seat, but Dold is not the GOP man to do it.

    2) I disagree with your assessment of IL-11. I believe Halvorson will win. I lived pretty much my whole life in that area (I moved to Chicago but am still registered there), and I feel good about our chances. Halvorson was a state senator for many years in an overlapping district before running for Congress. Last cycle, she won this swing district by nearly 20%. Even in a Democratic year, we did not see candidates in swing districts win by nearly that margin, so that really is saying something. She is a very, very strong candidate and will hold on narrowly.

    3) I think IL-14 is a real toss-up. Won’t fight you on picking Foster to lose, as that seat is naturally a lean R district. Yet, Foster is pretty well thought of so I’d give him a coin flip chance to win that one.

  48. that type of ad is of limited value.  People seem to understand that campaigning is a full time job these days.  Just about everyone who is campaigning while in a legislature or council seems to do a pretty poor job of showing up nowadays.  I could definitely be wrong though.  

  49. all three of these races.  At least two of them show Halvorson down significantly.  One showed Foster down a little.  One showed Seals up a little.  I gave these polls some but not absolute weight in making my predictions.

    In IL-11, I have considered Halvorson a strong candidate for all the reasons you noted.  But it’s hard for me to accuse even GOP polling of being off by double digits.

    As to IL-10, Dold is a bit conservative but he is a strong fundraiser.  I noticed that turnout was about even in the D and R primaries, which is good news for Dold.  And despite Obama’s big margin, IL-10 is not THAT Democratic.  Kerry won it by 6 and Gore by 4.  It has historically been represented by Republicans IIRC.

    In IL-14, Foster has done everything right to win, but as you note, it is a bit of a Lean R district.

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