MI-Gov: Hoekstra Announces Run

Not terribly surprising:

U.S. Rep. Pete Hoekstra kicked off his campaign for governor in Detroit this morning. ….

Hoekstra was first elected to Congress in 1992 and rose through the ranks to become chairman of the powerful House Intelligence Committee, a position he held until Democrats won control of the House of Representatives in 2006. He remains the ranking minority member of the committee.

Before winning elective office, Hoekstra was an executive at Herman Miller Furniture Co. in Zeeland.

He joins a crowded field of potential Republican candidates for the state’s top job, including: state Sen. Tom George of Texas Township, Attorney General Mike Cox, Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land.

Hoekstra had said several months ago that he wouldn’t seek a tenth term in the House. The question then was whether he’d retire or look to move up, and now we have our answer. Hoekstra’s main competition right now looks to be AG Mike Cox. The primary is a long way off – August 3, 2010.

Open seat fans also have a legitimate reason to be intriged by MI-02. Swing State Project’s analysis shows that after supporting Republican presidential candidates by twenty points for two cycles in a row, Obama surged here, holding McCain to a narrow 51-48 win. As James noted previously, the fact that McCain dissed Michigan late in the game undoubtedly killed his numbers statewide, so this may be a high-water mark for Dems. Nonetheless, there may be some promise here. Any thoughts on potential candidates?

OH-Lt. Gov: Ryan Will Run

From Roll Call:

Rep. Tim Ryan (D-Ohio) will announce a bid for lieutenant governor later this week, according to the Washington Post.

Ryan would run alongside Gov. Ted Strickland (D) to succeed Lt. Gov. Lee Fisher (D), who is running for Senate in 2010. Ryan, a four-term Democrat, also considered running to replace retiring Sen. George Voinovich (R-Ohio), but he decided against it and has backed Fisher’s bid.

While Ryan’s name has been batted around as one of Strickland’s top choices for his running mate, this still strikes me as a surprising move. If Ryan had any ambitions for House leadership, I guess he has decided to shelve them and set himself up as the likely nominee to replace Strickland once he faces mandatory retirement in 2014 (assuming Strickland is successful in his re-election campaign).

Unfortunately for us, this could very well mean that Capri Cafaro will be first in line to replace Ryan in the House. Yuck.

Calling all Swingnuts: Roll Call references a Washington Post article in their coverage of this news, but we can’t seem to track it down. If anyone spots the original article online, please post a link in the comments. Thanks! (UPDATE: Found it.)

AK-Gov: Will Palin Run Again?

Okay, folks, prediction time: Will Sarah Palin seek re-election as Alaska governor? If she did run for a second gubernatorial term, that would make it difficult if not impossible to run for president in 2012, for a variety of reasons: a) she’d be dogged by questions about her future daily; b) she wouldn’t be able to spend much if any time preparing for the presidential run; c) she’d open herself up to a primary challenge; and d) even if she won, she’d have to turn around on election night and start running for president right away – creating yet another fertile avenue for attacks on her character.

Then again, Palin’s political skills anywhere outside of an arena packed with rabid supporters & a teleprompter are weak, and her staff has no idea what it’s doing. So I could see her thinking she could pull off both. If she has any sense, though, she’d wait until 2016 (she’s certainly young enough) and use a second term in the statehouse to repair her image and build up the team necessary to fight Mitt Romney.

But anyhow, I don’t went to delve too far into presidential politics on this site. Mostly I’m interested in the question I posed above. Please share your thoughts in comments & take the poll – it’s below the fold.

By what margin will Bob Shamansky win?

View Results

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NY-20- 2006 and 2008 Results by County-UPDATED

Someone said they wanted this, so here they are;

UPDATED: Presidential results; Obama won every county in the district except for Greene, Delaware and the district’s share of Ostego.



Gillibrand 58%

Sweeney    42%


Sweeney    54%

Gillibrand 46%


Gillibrand 55%

Sweeney    45%


Gillibrand 52%

Sweeney    48%


Sweeney    52%

Gillibrand 48%


Gillibrand 52%

Sweeney    48%


Gillibrand 54%

Sweeney    46%


Gillibrand 53%

Sweeney    47%


Gillibrand 54%

Sweeney    46%


Gillibrand 53%

Sweeney    47%



Gillibrand- 67%

Treadwell- 33%


Gillibrand- 54%

Treadwell- 46%


Gillibrand- 60%

Treadwell- 40%


Gillibrand- 52%

Treadwell- 48%


Gillibrand- 56%

Treadwell- 44%


Gillibrand- 54%

Treadwell- 46%


Gillibrand- 64%

Treadwell- 36%


Gillibrand- 62%

Treadwell- 38%


Gillibrand- 64%

Treadwell- 36%


Gillibrand- 66%

Treadwell- 34%

Redistricting 2012 (again): Michigan

I know redistricting diaries are a dime a dozen these days, but I’m going to do one that has never been done before: Michigan (assuming full Democratic control of the process).  Nathaniel90 already drew a split control compromise map found here: http://www.swingstateproject.c…  

Michigan will be losing a seat in 2012, going from 15 to 14.  I think the chances of full Democratic control is about 50-50 or maybe slightly better.  It looks like we have a very good shot at taking back control of the State Senate, while the Governors race is still pretty much up in the air, with presumptive nominee John Cherry lagging in the most recent poll.  But this far out, no one can predict this one yet.

By this map Democrats would presumably hold a 9-5 advantage in Representation.  They currently hold a 8-7 Advantage.  In 2002, when Republicans drew the map, they (Rs) held a 9-6 advantage.  My map protects freshmen Gary Peters and Mark Schauer, while throwing Dave Camp and Mike Rogers into a district together.  It also draws a much more Democratic district for Thaddeus McCotter (or his Democratic successor), presumably eliminating him if he isn’t already gone by 2012.

My map was drawn on microsoft paint, and some of the more detailed borders aren’t exact.  Also my computer has some kind of problem with pixelation or something, so it may appear a little blurry.  Without further ado, here’s my map with district profiles down below the flip.  

District 1– (Bart Stupak D) mostly the same but expands to include Kalkaska, Roscommon, and the rest of Bay County.  Overall becomes slightly more Democratic.

District 2– (TBD[successor of Pete Hoekstra]R) gives up Allegan County in the south, as well as Eastern portions of Ottawa County and the North-West corner of Kent County that was formerly in the district.  Gains Leelanau, Grand Traverse, Missaukee, and Osceola Counties.  This district becomes a bit more Democratic (mostly because it loses strongly conservative parts of Ottawa and Kent Counties) and Barack Obama would have carried this district narrowly, but it should still favor Republicans in the future.

District 3– (Vern Ehlers R) Drops Barry and Ionia County in exchange for some very Conservative areas of Kent and Ottawa Counties.  Becomes more Republican.

District 4– (Dave Camp R + Mike Rogers R) I decided that I would throw these two together because I did not want to eliminate Thad McCotter in case he is defeated by a Democrat in 2010. I put Livingston County (Rogers base and home) in with most of the current 4th District. Dave Camp should be the favorite considering it includes his base of Midland as well as most of his old turf, but I wouldn’t count Mike Rogers out.  The inclusion of Livingston County makes this district more Republican.  Barack Obama would have lost here.

5th District– (Dale Kildee D)  Looks like a combination of James Barcia’s old District and Dale Kildee’s current district.  It drops all of the territory it held in Bay County but gains the more Republican thumb counties of Huron and Sanilac.  However, with Flint as the base of this district and Genesee County making up more than half of the population, this District stays Democratic.

6th District– (Fred Upton R) This is the most gerrymandered district in the state, and yet it only splits one County!  This district looks quite a bit different from it’s current shape  It’s base of Kalamazoo is taken out to make Mark Schauer safer.  In exchange it gets all of Allegan, Barry, and Branch counties and about half of Eaton County.  The loss of Kalamazoo makes this district a lot more Republican, although Barack Obama may have won here, depending on exactly what parts of Eaton County are included.

7th District–  (Mark Schauer D) I think that I succeeded in making Mark Schauer safe from any Republican challenge, but I fear that I may have set him up for a primary challenge from a Lansing area Democrat, as Lansing becomes the new base of this district.  The only part of the old 7th district that I left was Calhoun County (Battle Creek) which is Schauer’s home.  I put in all of Ingham and Kalamazoo Counties and about half of Eaton.  Barack Obama won every county in this district and probably came close to 60% here.

8th District– (Gary Peters D)  It is hard to tell on my map, but according to my plan for the 8th district, Gary Peters would get Madison Heights and Southfield, both extremely Democratic cities (Barack Obama got 88% in Southfield), while dropping the strongly Republican cities of Rochester, Rochester Hills, and Berkley.  The addition of Southfield probably brings Barack Obama to around 60% here.

9th District– (Candice Miller R)  Instead of a “Thumb” district, this district becomes a “Detroit suburbs and exurbs district.” It loses Sterling Heights and Utica in Macomb County, and Huron and Sanilac Counties in “The Thumb,” While picking up some seriously Republican turf in Oakland County, including the suburb Novi that is currently in Thad McCotters 11th District.  It still includes the Republican leaning Exurb St. Clair and Lapeer Counties.

10th District– (Thad McCotter R [Should favor Democrat])  Includes all of Thad McCotter’s current portion of Wayne County, plus the cities of Inkster, Romulus, and part of Dearborn Heights.  The current part of Wayne County in the 11th gave Obama 57%.  That probably bumps up to just under 60% Obama.  Also includes Monroe County, which Obama won 51-47.

11th District– (Sander Levin D)  Changes very little, except that it swaps out Southfield for the rest of Sterling Heights.  Becomes a bit less Democratic, but still favors Levin or his successor.

12th District– (Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick D)  One of two VRA protected districts in Michigan.  Population loss will force this district to expand, but it still stays within Wayne County and is majority Black.

13th District–  (John Conyers D)  The other VRA district expands into Dearborn but stays heavily Black and heavily Democratic. (Note that John Dingell’s home is in this new district, but I expect that he’ll have retired by 2012 and if frankly, if Debbie Dingell is holding his seat by then, I really don’t care if she gets stuck in Conyer’s district)

14th District– (John Dingell D)  This district moves out of Wayne County and now takes in all of Washtenaw County as well as Jackson, Lenawee, and Hillsdale Counties.  It is now completely based in Ann Arbor and should elect a liberal, Ann Arbor Democrat.  Barack Obama won three out of the four Counties in this new district.

Questions? Comments? Errors to point out?  Leave ’em in the comments.  

HI-01: Ed Case to Run


Former Rep. Ed Case (D-Hawaii) wants to come back to Capitol Hill. The former two-term Member entered the race Saturday for retiring Rep. Neil Abercrombie’s (D) seat.

Abercrombie announced last month that he was running for governor, opening up his Honolulu-based district for a slew of candidates in Hawaii looking to take higher office. Case represented the 2nd district for two full terms before stepping down in 2006 to challenge Sen. Daniel Akaka in the Democratic primary. Case lost his challenge to Akaka, but has since openly discussed another bid for governor or the House.

“I represented Manoa and Makiki for eight years in our state legislature, have crisscrossed the First in two statewide campaigns, and have addressed its needs in Congress,” Case said in a statement. “I know the First, and I know I can represent its 600,000 citizens well in Congress.”

In Hawaii, it is not uncommon or illegal for candidates to run in either Congressional district. Case’s predecessor, the late Rep. Patsy Mink (D) represented both districts over the course of her 24-year Congressional career.

Case is the only announced Democratic candidate so far, although Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann, state House Majority Leader Kirk Caldwell, state Senate President Colleen Hanabusa and former state Rep. Brian Schatz have also been mentioned as possible candidates.

Hardcore DLC’er Ed Case hails from the same school which has produced some of our dimmest, most annoying lights: Harold Ford, Dan Boren, Bob Kerrey, Joe Lieberman. He sucked the first time he was in the House – hopefully a strong progressive like Colleen Hanabusa will get in so that we can help deny him a second opportunity to muck things up.

Redistricting NC in 2010

So I decided to have a look at how my state’s congressional districts could be redistricted come 2010. It looks like we’ll miss getting a 14th seat by about 100k people (so close…), so I had to make a plan with 13 seats. This was interesting because based on the 2008 census estimates, each seat would have over 700,000 people

In NC, redistricting is done solely by the legislature, which is now under Democratic control. While it could hypothetically shift to the GOP in 2010, our numbers are good enough that that would be unlikely.

I focused mainly on protecting the 8 Democratic incumbents (espescially Kissell and Shuler), seeing as the 5 districts still in GOP hands are pretty Republican for the most part.

Here is my map:

2010 NC Redistricting

1st District – G.K. Butterfield (D-Wilson). This is a solidly Democratic, black majority district that covers much of northeastern North Carolina. I didn’t make many big changes to this district, mostly because it was hard to pinpoint specific black areas and how much the black populations there have changed.

2nd District – Bob Etheridge (D-Lillington). This mainly rural district narrowly went for Obama after voting for Bush in 2000 and 2004. I added more black areas in Wake County to make it somewhat more Democratic and moved some Republican parts of Johnston County to the nearby 3rd district. Etheridge has been elected 7 times so he is probably safe here.

3rd District – Walter Jones (R-Farmville). This is a solidly Republican coastal district where Obama got only 37% of the vote, and Jones is fairly popular so I didn’t change very much, Just for kicks, I drew Jones’ home into the 1st district, but he can still run in the 3rd.

4th District – David Price (D-Chapel Hill). This rapidly growing district includes much of the Triangle and RTP. Obama won 62% here mainly thanks to Durham and Orange counties. I transferred some of the populous Wake County parts of this district to the 13th and 2nd districts to make them more Democratic.

5th District – Virginia Foxx (R-Banner Elk). This is GOP country. It would have been a challenge to make this district more Democratic without harming some of the neighboring districts. The 5th lost Democratic Watauga County, but I added Republican parts of Guilford County (Greensboro) from the 6th district and most of Rockingham County from the 13th district.

6th District – Howard Coble (R-Greensboro). Coble is NC’s longest serving congressman, first elected in 1984. I kept his Republican district mostly the same but gave some of his Guilford territory to Virginia Foxx. Coble will keep his job for as long as he wants.

7th District – Mike McIntyre (D-Lumberton). This district went for McCain by 6 points, but on the state and local level it is mostly Democratic. I added some more areas in Sampson County but didn’t change very much. McIntyre is a conservative Blue Dog who matches his district well and the 7th has only had 3 congressmen in the the last 50 years, so he is safe.

8th District – Larry Kissell (D-Biscoe). After narrowly losing to Robin Hayes in 2006, Kissell finally defeated him in 2008, while Obama won the district by 8 points. To make it more Democratic, I gave parts of Republican-leaning Union County (Jesse Helms grew up there) to Sue Myrick’s 9th district. In return, the 8th picked up some Democratic urban areas of Charlotte from the 9th.

9th District – Sue Myrick (R-Charlotte). This district is made up of the Republican-leaning suburbs of Charlotte and it has been held by former Myrick since 1995. McCain won the 9th by 10 points and Myrick will be safe for a long time. In addition to trading urban areas of Charlotte with Republican parts of the 8th district, I put all of Gaston County into the 9th district (I will explain).

10th District – Patrick McHenry (R-Cherryville). This is the granddaddy of GOP districts in NC and has been in Republican hands since 1969. I took in all of Rutherford and McDowell counties from Heath Shuler’s 11th district. I also drew McHenry’s lifelong Gaston County home into the 9th just to annoy him 🙂

11th District – Heath Shuler (D-Waynesville). I gave McHenry Rutherford and McDowell counties, but in return I took in Mitchell and Avery counties from the 10th. I added Democratic trending Watauga County (App State) to Shuler’s district to make it more Democratic.

12th District – Mel Watt (D-Charlotte). This is the infamous 12th district, which has been declared unconstitutional 3 different times. It’s a black plurality, very Democratic district that follows the I-85 corridor. I didn’t make many changes, mainly because I didn’t know much about the specific racial concentrations within each county.

13th District – Brad Miller (D-Raleigh). After narrowly going for Bush in 2000 and then Kerry in 2004, this district gave Obama a whopping 58% of the vote in 2008. It was gerrymandered by then State Sen. Brad Miller 2001 to elect him when NC gained a 13th seat in 2000. I made it more Democratic by adding some urban areas of Wake County. Miller will be safe until he decides to move up to higher office.

Please let me know what you think and if there are any changes or improvements that I can make.

Thanks and enjoy!

SSP Daily Digest: 3/27

NY-Gov: Andrew Cuomo made statements in a speech at Schenectady County Community College on Tuesday to the effect that his “only plan is to run for re-election as attorney general,” and that he believes David Paterson will be re-elected as governor. I wouldn’t be prone to believe him (and it seems like nobody else does either; only The Hill has taken any notice of this comment), given his poll numbers and the fundraising groundwork he’s laid. It just seems weird; he’s well past the point where he needs to be coy about his plans.

NY-20: About that recent DNC ad touting Obama’s endorsement of Scott Murphy… while the existence of the ad itself has been gobbling up a good deal of headlines, it appears that it won’t actually be seen by a lot of eyeballs in-district. The DNC’s independent expenditure filing with the FEC indicates that they’re only putting up $10,000 for the ad buy. (J)

CA-10: Departing Rep. Ellen Tauscher has already endorsed state senator Mark DeSaulnier to take her place. Apparently she had intended to wait until he formally announced his candidacy, but the internal poll from yesterday from assemblywoman Joan Buchanan showing her in the lead may have forced Tauscher’s hand.

UT-Sen: The knives are still out for Bob Bennett, but it’s looking like someone higher up the totem pole than former Juab County DA David Leavitt may jump into the primary: Attorney General Mark Shurtleff is also “considering” it. Ultra-conservatives sense an opening because of Bennett’s pro-bailout vote, and also because of Utah’s unique nominating system. A candidate who consolidates activist support and breaks 60% at the state convention outright wins, and can avoid the primary altogether.

KS-Sen: Here’s another example of how Oklahoma senator Tom Coburn likes to keep us guessing. Not only is he wading into the GOP senate primary in his neighboring state, but he’s endorsing Rep. Jerry Moran, who passes for a moderate by Kansas standards, over Rep. Todd Tiahrt, from the religious right corner of the party.

MI-11: Back to the drawing board? Democratic state Sen. Glenn Anderson, who has been the target of a draft effort to encourage him to take on GOP weirdo Thaddeus McCotter, says that he’ll probably run for re-election instead. (J)

PA-12: Bill Russell, who held Jack Murtha to 58% in 2008, is back for another try in 2010. No word if he’ll use BMW Direct for his fundraising efforts again.

MO-Sen: Carnahan Leads Blunt and Steelman in GOP Internal

Wilson Research Strategies (R) (3/7-9, likely voters, no trendlines):

Robin Carnahan (D): 47

Roy Blunt (R): 44

Robin Carnahan (D): 47

Sarah Steelman (R): 39

(MoE: 4%)

Even a Republican internal poll can’t spin away the advantage that Missouri Secretary of State (and daughter of the former governor) Robin Carnahan seems to have in the race to fill Kit Bond’s open seat. Carnahan leads Rep. Roy Blunt by 3, and less-known ex-treasurer Sarah Steelman by 8. (The poll indicates 97% name ID for Blunt and 75% for Steelman.)

The poll has an interesting backstory; it was taken as a feasibility study for the Steelman campaign, but paid for by an unidentified third party unaffiliated with Steelman. While I would assume the poll therefore also polled a Blunt/Steelman primary, those numbers aren’t released (I would assume they showed Blunt winning by a wide margin).

What the poll does release is interesting, though: Blunt’s negatives among “soft” Democrats are high (25 favorable/50 unfavorable), while they tolerate Steelman (39/13). And when voters are read a paragraph describing Blunt’s support for earmarks and his relationship with Jack Abramoff, the “informed voter” ballot in the general turns into Carnahan 55, Blunt 30. Clearly the Steelman camp is testing what messages will be effective in the primary, but she may wind up doing a great job of softening Blunt up for the general (much as she did to Kenny Hulshof in last year’s gubernatorial race).