Colorado Congressional Fundraising Numbers

Republican Congressional $ Numbers

CD 1 – No Repub Filed

CD 2 – No Reports Filed Yet

CD 3
– No Reports Filed yet

CD 4

1 – Gardner for Congress

Raised 197,553.40 – Spent 86,386.37 – COH – 383,338.56

2 – Dean Madere – No Report Filed yet

3 – Diggs Brown – No Report Filed yet

4 – Tom Lucero – No Report Filed yet

CD 5 – Lamborn for Congress

Raised 49,079.60 – Spent 28,863.85 – COH – 110,531.82

CD 6 – Coffman for Congress

Raised 105,770.00 – Spent 40,731.31 – COH – 360,917.27

CD 7 –

1. Ryan Frazier for Colorado

Raised 218,824.00 – Spent 60,345.98 – COH – 280,355.38

2. Lang Sias – No report filed yet

Democratic Congressional $ Numbers

I am tossing them up

CD 1 – Diana Degette for Congress

Raised 98,421.38 – Spent 94,687.97 – COH 84,553.27

CD 2 – Friends of Jared Polis

Raised 72,771.88 – Spent 29,516.12 – COH 120,250.31

CD 3 – John Salazar for Congress

Raised 187,160.00 – Spent 61,000.41 – COH 847,099.45

CD 4 – Not Filed yet

CD 5 – No Dem running yet

CD 6 – Flerlage for Congress

Raised 19,329.00 – Spent 13,490.62 – COH 23,556.44

CD 7 – Perlmutter for Congress

Raised 215,201.30 – Spent 82,473.39 – COH 1,045,319.11

A More Complete Look at the Campaign for Control of the Michigan State Senate

Some of you may recall that last July I wrote here about the upcoming 2010 State Senate elections here in Michigan.  My diary received a lot of unexpected attention, including from, much to my surprise, the DLCC. As you can imagine, much has changed in the past 6 months. The fields are finally beginning to take shape and we now have a better view of what will be competitive, and what won’t.

I’ll start with a bit of background information.  The Michigan State Senate limits each member to serving no more than two four-year terms.  Because of these strict term limits, 31 of Michigan’s 38 seats will be Open this year.  We all know that under normal circumstances an open seat is much more likely to switch parties than one with an incumbent, so expect a lot of seats to change hands.  Currently the senate stands at 22R, 16 D.  (after the 2006 elections the makeup was 21R, 17D but Democrats have since then lost the 17th District in a special election).

Unlike last time, I will only be writing about districts that are either likely, lean, or tossup.  I made this choice because to write about every contested primary in every safe district would be extremely tedious and time consuming, especially because we are focused on seats that may switch parties.

Like last time, I will include race ratings at the end of this diary. Unlike last time, however, I will be using Rothenberg style ratings rather than Cook style.  For those who don’t know, Rothenberg ratings feature two more categories than Cook. Tossup/Tilt D and Tossup/Tilt R. Feel free to skip to the ratings if you don’t wish to read every writeup.

District 6 Glenn Anderson (D) Livonia, Westland, Redford, Garden City

Democrat Glenn Anderson defeated Republican Laura Toy in this historically Republican (but Democrat-trending) suburban Detroit district in 2006.  Anderson is one of the few Senators who is eligible to run for re-election in 2010.  So far no Republicans have filed, and to my knowledge, none have announced they will challenge Anderson.

Presidential Results: 57.8 – 40.4 Obama

Rating: Likely Democrat

District 7 Bruce Patterson (R) OPEN Canton, Northville, Plymouth, Trenton

The L-shaped 7th district is the last remaining Republican held Senate seat in Wayne County.  Obama won it easily, but don’t let his numbers fool you; The Canton-Northville-Plymouth area remains Republican friendly (locally at least). However, Democrats have made a lot of gains here over the past two cycles.  Every State House district that is located within the 7th District is held by a Democrat.  Marc Corriveau won the 20th District in 2006 and Dian Slavens captured the 20th in 2008.

Marc Corriveau, the young, affective, energetic State Rep. who represents the 20th District in the historically Republican Northville-Plymouth area, has announced he will run for this seat. Also running is former Democratic State Rep. Kathleen Law, who hails from the more Democratic Southern portion of the district.  

The Republican field, in contrast, is far less impressive.  Two have filed so far, Abe Munfakh, a Plymouth Township Trustee, and Colleen McDonald, a former factory worker.  Republicans should be hoping they will be able to find a more viable candidate…perhaps former State Rep. Philip LaJoy of Canton.  

With Corriveau as the likely Democratic nominee as well as the Republicans’ thus far lackluster array of candidates, I’m inclined to give Democrats a slight edge here.  However, the historically Republican nature of the district as well as the ugly national environment means that this is nowhere near a guaranteed pickup.    

Presidential Results: 54.7 – 43.7 Obama

Announced Candidates:

Marc Corriveau (D) State Rep. (2006-  )

Kathleen Law (D) State Rep. (2002-2008)

Abe Munfakh (R)

Colleen McDonald (R)

Rating: Tossup/Tilts D

District 10 Mickey Switalksi (D) OPEN

Sterling Heights, Utica, Roseville, Clinton, Mount Clemens

The 10th District, located in Central Macomb County, is one of two heavily Polish and Roman Catholic, working class, “Reagan Democrat” districts North of Detroit.  The 10th is the least Democratic of the two, but still favors Democrats.  Senator Mickey Switalski is term limited and running for Congress.  Thus far two strong Democrats have filed to run for the seat: Former Macomb County Prosecutor Carl Marlinga and Current Macomb County Commissioner and former State Rep. Paul Gieleghem.  No Republican has filed.  Due to the strength of the Democratic field and the announcement by Republican Kim Meltzer that she won’t run, I’ve switched my rating to Likely Democrat.

Presidential Results: 55.5 – 42.7 Obama

Announced Candidates:

Carl Marlinga (D) Former Macomb County Prosecutor

Paul Gieleghem (D) Former State Rep. (1998-2004) and Current Macomb County Commissioner

Rating: Likely Democrat

District 12 Mike Bishop (R) OPEN

Pontiac, Rochester, Auburn Hills, North East Oakland County

Majority leader Bishop is term limited in this swing district in Oakland County.  Although President Obama won this district, I’m not extremely optimistic about picking this one up because Obama’s margin of victory was almost entirely from majority black Pontiac, where turnout won’t be as high this year.

Republican State Rep. Jim Marleau has filed and is probably the favorite in both the primary and general.  The only Dem State Rep. in the district is Tim Melton of Pontiac, and he seems unlikely to run.

Presidential Results: 52.5 – 46.0 Obama

Announced Candidates:

Jim Marleau (R) State Rep. (2004-  )

John Garfield (R)

Ted Golden (D)

Rating: Likely Republican

District 13 John Pappageorge (R)

Royal Oak, Madison Heights, Berkley, Troy, Bloomfield, Birmingham

In 2006, State Rep. John Pappageorge beat Andy Levin (son of Sandy Levin) by less than 1,000 votes.  Many Democrats blamed Levin’s loss on Kyle McBee, the Green Party candidate who took 3,129 votes, more than 3 times Pappageorge’s margin of victory.  Democrats will challenge Pappageorge again, although it isn’t clear whether Levin will try again, or a State Representative like Marie Donigan will give it a shot.

Presidential Results: 53.7 – 44.8 Obama

Announced Challengers:

Potential Challengers:

Andy Levin (D) 2006 nominee

Marie Donigan (D) State Rep. (2002-   )

Rating: Tossup

District 14 Gilda Jacobs (D) OPEN

Farmington Hills, Southfield, Huntington Woods, Oak Park, Ferndale

This district is probably the most liberal district in Michigan, although not the most Democratic.  Rep. Gilda Jacobs is term limited, and while the all three of the State Reps. in the district are freshmen, whoever wins the Dem nomination will win.

Presidential Results: 74.6 – 24.3 Obama

Announced Candidates:

Potential Candidates:

Rep. Ellen Cogen Lipton (D) (2008-   )

David Coulter (D) Oakland County Commission (2002-  )

Helaine Zack (D) Oakland County Commission (2002-  )

Rating: Safe Democrat

District 15 Nancy Cassis (R) OPEN

Novi, South Lyon, West Bloomfield Township, Northville

I was shocked when I calculated the results for this district.  A decade ago, this was at least one of, if not the most Republican area in Michigan.  Western Oakland County being so Republican is the reason that we have Thad McCotter and Craig DeRoche, and yet this district voted for Barack Obama.  Even the city of Novi voted for him.  And better yet, he won by more than 3,000 votes!  Still, locally we have a while to go before a Democrat can represent Western Oakland County in the State Legislature.  I’m not very keen on this district as a possible pickup in ’10.

Presidential Results: 50.3 – 48.2 Obama

Announced Candidates:

Potential Candidates:

Craig DeRoche (R) State Rep. (2000-2006)

David Law (R) State Rep. (2004-2008)

Rating: Likely Republican

District 16 Cameron Brown (R) OPEN, Lenawee, Branch, Hillsdale, and St. Joseph Counties

I doubt this district will be competitive, unless State Rep. Dudley Spade (D) runs, but even then a Republican like Bruce Caswell starts off with an advantage.

Presidential Results: 49.8 – 48.3 McCain

Announced Candidates:

Potential Candidates:

Dudley Spade (D) State Rep. (2004-  )

Bruce Caswell (R) State Rep. (2002-2008)

Rick Schaffer (R) State Rep. (2002-2008)

Rating: Likely Republican

District 17 Randy Richardville (R) Monroe County, South Washtenaw, East Jackson

Not only the most gerrymandered, but also one of the most closely divided districts in Michigan, this one will likely be home to another competitive race in 2010.  The Washtenaw County portion of this district favors Dems, while the Jackson county portion favors Republicans and Monroe county is a swing region.  In fact, the Presidential results here are almost exactly what President Obama got nationwide, giving it a 2008 PVI of EVEN.  Unfortunately, our bench in this district isn’t the greatest, with our strongest possible candidate running for Secretary of State.  Still, State Rep. Kate Ebli might be able to beat Richardville.

Presidential Results: 52.7 – 45.6 Obama

Announced Challengers:

Potential Challengers:

Kate Ebli (D) State Rep. (2005-   )

Rating: Leans Republican

District 18 Liz Brater (D) Open Washtenaw County, Ann Arbor

One of the most Democratic districts in Michigan and the home of the University of Michigan.  The Democratic bench in this district is quite deep.  Any Democrat is safe here.

Presidential Results: 73.7 – 26.2 Obama

Announced Candidates:

Potential Candidates:

John Hieftje (D) Mayor of Ann Arbor

Rebekah Warren (D) State Rep. (2006-  )

Pam Byrnes (D) State Rep. (2004-  )

Chris Kolb (D) State Rep. (2000-2006)

Rating: Safe Democrat

District 19 VACANT (D)  Calhoun County (Battle Creek) and most of Jackson County

This is the Senate seat that Mark Schauer left vacant when he moved up to Congress last year.  It is usually a swing district, although President Obama won it with votes to spare.  Because this seat is vacant, there will be a special election to fill it later this year.  The Primary will be August 4th and the General on November 9th.

The Democratic candidates are State Rep. Martin Griffin of Jackson, and Sharon Reiner, who ran for congress in 2006 and 2008, narrowly losing to Tim Walberg and then losing badly in the primary to Mark Schauer.  Griffin is backed by the State Democratic Party and should win the Primary.  The Republican candidates are State Rep. Mike Nofs of Battle Creek and Sandstone Township Supervisor C. James Wellman.  Nofs, who is a moderate and popular in the Battle Creek area, should win the primary.  

The fact that 1. Nofs is very moderate 2. He’s very well known and liked in the Battle Creek area and 3. This will be a low turnout special election makes this a tough race for us.  Both parties with certainly spend a lot of money here.  Martin Griffin is from the Jackson area, which is an advantage, as Mark Schauer lost Jackson County in 2002 when he first ran for the State Senate.  If we lose this race it will make it that much more difficult to retake the Senate, so in some ways, whether or not Democrats can gain the trifecta and control redistricting depends on this race.

Presidential Results: 52.7 – 45.6 Obama


Martin Griffin (D) State Rep. (2006-  )

Sharon Reiner (D)

Mike Nofs (R) State Rep. (2002-2008)

C. James Wellman (R) Sandstone Township Board Memeber

Rating: Tossup

District 20 Thomas George (R) OPEN Kalamazoo County, part of Van Buren County

Tom George, who is running for Governor, will be vacating the 2nd most Democratic seat currently held by a Republican, going by Obama’s winning percentage.  The Republican field is already starting to shape up, with former State Rep. Lawrence Wenke, who’s district included part of Western Kalamazoo County, and current State Rep. Tonya Schuitamaker are both running.  Schuitamaker’s base is Van Buren County, which she represents.  This district only includes two townships in Van Buren, so she would probably be at a disadvantage against Wenke in the primary.  Still, Republicans would do well to nominate someone from the city of Kalamazoo or it’s suburbs, and both Wenke and Schuitamaker are from the rural parts of the district.

Democrats have a few good potential candidates.  Former state Rep. and 2006 candidate Alex Lipsey, State Rep. Robert Jones, or Kalamazoo County Commission Chairman David Buskirk.

Presidential Results: 58.6 – 39.7 Obama

Announced Candidates:

Lawrence Wenke (R) State Rep. (2002-2008)

Tonya Schuitamaker (R) State Rep. (2004-   )

Potential Candidates:

Alex Lipsey (D) State Rep. (2000-2006)

Robert Jones (D) State Rep. (2006-  )

David Buskirk (D) Kalamazoo County Commissioner; Chairman

Rating: Tossup

District 21 Ron Jelinek (R) OPEN Berrien, Cass and Van Buren Counties

A historically Republican area, President Obama did very well here.  This area is home to a lot of moderate Republicans (Fred Upton is from this area), and Berrien County is home to a lot of African-Americans.  Democrats have a very weak bench here, so don’t expect a win here.

Presidential Results: 52.1 – 46.3 Obama

Announced Candidates:

Potential Candidates:

Judy Truesdell (D) 2006 and 2008 Candidate for State House

John Proos (R) State Rep. (2002-   )

Rating: Leans Republican

District 22 Valde Garcia (R) OPEN Livingston, Shiawassee, and Southern Ingham Counties

Livingston County is one of the most Republican Counties in Michigan.  You can be sure that another conservative “family values” Republican will be elected to replace Senator Garcia.

Presidential Results: 52.4 – 45.8 McCain

Announced Candidates:

Potential Candidates:

Joe Hune (R) State Rep. (2002-2008)

Chris Ward (R) State Rep. (2002-2008)

Rating: Safe Republican

District 23 Gretchen Whitmer (D) Ingham County (Lansing)

Gretchen Whitmer will be safe if she runs for re-election.  If she runs for Attorney General, as many expect her to, there is a strong bench of Democrats in the lansing area to take her place.

Presidential Results: 67.2 – 31.3 Obama

Rating: Safe Democrat

District 24 Patricia Birkholz (R) OPEN Allegan, Barry, and Eaton Counties

Although Eaton county showed an impressive swing towards President Obama, the rest of this district, especially heavily Dutch Allegan, is still strongly Republican.

Presidential Results: 50.5 – 47.6 McCain

Announced Candidates:

Potential Candidates:

Brian Calley (R) State Rep. (2006-   )

Rick Jones (R) State Rep. (2004-   )

Fulton Sheen (R) State Rep. (2002-2008)

Rating: Safe Republican

District 25 Judson Gilbert (R) OPEN Lapeer and St. Clair Counties

Lapeer and St. Clair Counties are mostly suburban/exurban areas north of Detroit.  There is also quite a bit of rural farmland and the medium sized city of Port Huron.  A democrat could win here, expecially moderate like John Espinoza, although he doesn’t actually live in the district.  The Republicans have a deep bench here, and I’m not sure whether or not the State Democratic party will decide to put money here.

Presidential Results: 49.2 – 48.6

Announced Candidates:

Potential Candidates:

John Espinoza (D) State Rep. (2004-  )

Phillip Pavlov (R) State Rep. (2004-  )

John Stahl (R) State Rep. (2002-2008)

Rating: Leans Republican

District 26 Deb Cherry (D) OPEN North and East Genesee County, Central Oakland County, Waterford

I don’t know why, but for some reason Republicans gave this suburban Flint area district an arm that reaches into central Oakland County, and they actually used touch-point contiguity to connect it to Waterford Township.  Maybe it was to make this district more Republican, although Waterford voted easily for Obama.  This district was held by Lt. Gov. John Cherry, and is now held by his sister, Deb.  It’s comfortably Democratic, but rising star, moderate African-American Republican Paul Scott could concievably give a Democrat a run for their money.

Presidential Results: 55.8 – 42.4 Obama

Announced Candidates:

Potential Candidates:

Richard Hammel (D) State Rep. (2006-  )

Jim Slezak (D) State Rep. (2008-   )

Ted Hammon (D) State Rep. (2006-2008)

Fran Amos (R) State Rep. (2002-2008)

Paul Scott (R) State Rep. (2008-  )

Rating: Leans Democrat

District 27 John Gleason (D) Flint, South-West Genesee County

The other Genessee County District, this one is much more Democratic.  It includes the city of Flint and other very Democratic areas west of the city.  If Gleason primaries Dale Kildee, there is a big Democratic bench here.

Presidential Results: 68.8 – 29.7 Obama

Rating: Safe Democrat

District 28 Mark Jansen (R) Kent County, suburban Grand Rapids

The 28th District is very strangely shaped.  It skirts around the city of Grand Rapids but includes conservative suburbs like Wyoming.  Mark Jansen should have not trouble winning re-election.

Presidential Results: 55.9 – 42.5 McCain

Rating: Safe Republican

District 29 Bill Hardiman (R) OPEN Grand Rapids, Kentwood

This is another district that we almost must win if we want to retake the senate.  It is the most Democratic district currently held by a Republican, going by Barack Obama’s winning margin.  It is basically all of the city of Grand Rapids plus a few suburbs.  Both Republicans and Democrats have decent benches here, but Democrats have been making gains lately (we won a state house seat in 2006).  I think that at the end of the day, the Democrat will win this district.

Presidential Results: 59.1 – 39.3 Obama

Announced Candidates:

Potential Candidates:

Michael Sak (D) State Rep. (2002-2008)

David LaGrand (D) Grand Rapids City Commissioner and 2006 Candidate

George Heartwell (D) Grand Rapids Mayor

Carol Hennessy (D) Minority Vice-Chair, Kent County Commission

Dave Hildenbrand (R) State Rep. (2004-  )

Glenn Steil (R) State Rep. (2002-2008)

Justin Amash (R) State Rep. (2008-   )

Jerry Kooiman (R) State Rep. (2000-2006)

Rating: Tossup

District 30 Wayne Kuipers (R) OPEN Ottawa County

This district is home to Ottawa County, one of the fastest growing and most Republican counties in Michigan.  Although, like with the South, as the population grows, so does the Democratic performance.  I’d estimate we may start winning this district by the 2020’s, but until then it will remain safely in Republican hands.

Presidential Results: 61.0 – 37.4 McCain

Announced Candidates:

Potential Candidates:

David Agema (R) State Rep. (2006-  )

Arlan Meekhof (R) State Rep. (2006-  )

Rating: Safe Republican

District 31 James Barcia (D) OPEN Sanilac, Huron, Tuscola, Bay, and Arenac Counties

Former Congressman James Barcia is term limited in this big district which includes the “Thumb” region and wraps around Saginaw Bay, including Bay City.  It’s relatively Democratic, although not overwhelmingly.  Democrats have a good bench, and State Rep. Jeff Mayes would be a big improvement over the moderate to conservative Barcia.

Presidential Results: 51.8 – 46.3 Obama

Announced Candidates:

Potential Candidates:

Jeff Mayes (D) State Rep. (2004-  )

Terry Brown (D) State Rep. (2006-  )

John Espinoza (D) State Rep. (2004-  )

Rating: Leans Democrat

District 32 Roger Kahn (R) Saginaw and Gratiot Counties

In 2006, Roger Kahn (AKA Kaaahn!!) won this seat by only 450 votes.  He’s had sort of a rough first term, alledgedly getting into a physical altercation with a 72 year old female Senator Irma Clark-Coleman (D) of Detroit.  The incident was so bizarre that I think that I should post here excerpts from Clark-Coleman’s letter to Majority leader Bishop:

I submit this letter as a formal complaint against the State Senator

from the 32nd District who is a menace to the state legislature. He

perpetrated petulant and violent behavior toward me following a Senate

Appropriation committee meeting yesterday afternoon in the Capitol

building. I ask that you sanction him for conduct unbecoming of an

elected official. I am fearful that given the opportunity, this

legislator would continue to use physical intimidation to reinforce his

policy positions.

He accosted me inside of the main elevator. He rushed at me as if he

were going to strike me in the face after I expressed my great

displeasure with the committee’s approval of the Senate substitute for

HB 4436, which decimates Wayne County’s and Detroit’s ability to provide

mental and medical treatment for poor and uninsured residents…

The Senator from Saginaw charged at me like a bull while we were both

confined in a 6 x 6 elevator. His hysterical behavior startled

citizens who like me were simply trying to leave the Capitol building.

Everyone looked on in horror until the good Senator from the 13th

District blocked his advance to my side of the elevator car.

As the doors opened on the ground floor, the Senator from Troy took me

by the elbow and escorted me out of harm’s way. Despite my exit, the

legislator from the 32nd District continued his verbal assault. His

bellowing startled the Kentwood Senator and the state Budget Director

who were conversing at the visitor’s desk. Both gentlemen looked up in

utter amazement.

Never, in my twelve years as a state legislator, seven years as a member

of the Detroit Board of Education, and thirty years as a Wayne County

employee have I been attacked for my policy positions. I commend Troy’s

best for his quick action to shield me from my aggressor who had lost

control of his temper and his ability to reason.

Senator Kahn denies this, although it’s pretty crazy if true.  That, plus the Democratic nature of this district means he should be in for a tough race next year.

Presidential Results: 56.9 – 41.5 Obama

Announced Challengers:

Potential Challengers:

Andy Colouris (D) State Rep. (2006-   )

Carl Williams (D) State Rep. (2000-2006) and 2006 Candidate

Rating: Tossup

District 33 Alan Cropsey (R) OPEN Clinton, Montcalm, Isabella, and Ionia Counties

Cropsey, who has always been to conservative for his district, is term limited.  Based mostly on his strength in Isabella County (home to CMU), Barack Obama won this district.  We also picked up a State House seat within this district last year, and we will probably pick up another one next year.  Still, our bench is not very strong here.  Democratic turnout may not be a strong next year, either, so I’m cautious about this district.

Presidential Results: 50.7 – 47.4 Obama

Announced Candidates:

Potential Candidates:

Mike Huckleberry (D) State Rep. (2008-  ), 2004 and 2006 candidate for Congress

Bill Caul (R) State Rep. (2004-   )

Paul Opsommer (R) State Rep. (2006-  )

Rating: Leans Republican

District 34 Gerald VanWoerkom (R) OPEN Muskegon, Oceana, Newaygo, and Mason Counties

It’s difficult to tell this far out, but I think that if we win any seats next year, this is our best shot.  Moderate Muskegon Republican Gerald VanWoerkom is retiring, and the Republican candidate to replace him looks to be State Rep. Geoff Hansen, although former State Rep. David Farhat it “thinking about it.”

Either way, we start out with an advantage.  Unlike VanWoerkom, who represented Muskegon County in the House, Hansen hails from the rural Northern portion of the district.  David Farhat, on the other hand, represented the same district as VanWoerkom.  That is, until he was spanked in 2006 by Dem Mary Valentine (he lost 56-44).  Mary Valentine has announced that she is running. Her popularity in the more suburban and rural part of the district and the fact that Farhat is thought to be somewhat corrupt, and Hansen has no base in Muskegon tells me that this one looks like a pickup.

Presidential Results: 58.3 – 40.0 Obama

Announced Candidates:

Mary Valentine (D) State Rep. (2006-   )

Geoff Hansen (R) State Rep. (2004-   )

Potential Candidates:

Mary Valentine (D) State Rep. (2006-   )

Doug Bennett (D) State Rep. (2004-  )

Julie Dennis (D) State Rep. (1998-2004) and 2006 Candidate

David Farhat (R) State Rep. (2002-2006)

Rating: Leans Democrat

District 35 Michelle McManus (R) OPEN Leelanau, Benzie, Manistee, Kalkaska, Wexford, Missaukee, Roscommon, Lake, Osceola, Clare, and Mecosta Counties

I consider Michelle McManus to be Michigan’s version of Michelle Bachmann.  She’s crazy, loud, and extremely conservative.  Luckily, she’s term limited.  Unluckily, she’s running for Secretary of State.  I doubt, however, that she’ll make it out of the Primary.  Obama won her district, and we picked up a State House seat, but our bench is weak in the North-Western Lower Peninsula area.  

Presidential Results: 49.3 – 49.0 Obama

Announced Candidates:

Potential Candidates:

Darwin Booher (R) State Rep. (2004-   )

David Palsrok (R) State Rep. (2002-2008)

Rating: Leans Republican

District 36 Tony Stamas (R) OPEN Alpena, Alcona, Iosco, Ogemaw, Midland, Gladwin, Crawford, Montmorency, Oscoda, and Otsego Counties

Although Republican leaning nationally, this is a swing district in local in statewide races.  The southernmost county, Midland, favors Republicans.  In fact, the Republicans intetionally drew the Democratic northern Counties, especially Alpena, with Midland to create a Republican district.  In 2002, Alpena Democrat Andy Neumann ran against Midland Republican Tony Stamas, with Stamas prevailing narrowly.  Stamas in now term limited and Neumann, who is a State Representative, is “Strongly Leaning Towards running,” also likely to run is State Rep. Joel Sheltrown (D), who is more moderate than Neumann, and also not from the Alpena area, but Iosco County in the center of the district.  I think that Sheltrown would be a stronger candidate, but the primary will be nasty.  The Republican candidate will probably be former State Rep. John Moolenaar of Midland.

Presidential Results: 49.9 – 48.1 McCain

Announced Candidates:

Potential Candidates:

Andy Neumann (D) State Rep. (1998-2002, 2008-   )

Joel Sheltrown (D) State Rep. (2004-  )

John Moolenaar (R) State Rep. (2002-2008)

Rating: Tossup

District 37 Jason Allen (R) OPEN Grand Traverse, Antrim, Charlevoix, Emmett, Cheboygan, Presque Isle, Mackinac, and Chippewa Counties

This is the most Republican Northern Michigan District.  I starts at Traverse City, then jumps the Straits of Mackinac and takes in Mackinac and Chippewa Counties in the U.P., including Sault Ste. Marie.  The Traverse City area has quite a few Republicans to replace Senator Allen, but Emmett, Mackinac, and Chippewa Counties, also a Republican area, are represented by State Rep. Gary McDowell (D).  McDowell is term limited and I could concievably see him winning this district, although it would be an uphill climb.

Presidential Results: 50.8 – 47.5

Announced Candidates:

Potential Candidates:

Gary McDowell (D) State Rep. (2004-   )

Howard Walker (R) State Rep. (2002-2008)

Rating: Leans Republican

District 38 Mike Prusi (D) OPEN Keweenaw, Houghton, Ontonagon, Gogebic, Baraga, Iron, Dickinson, Marquette, Menominee, Delta, Alger, Schoolcraft, and Luce Counties.

My home district! I’ll be sad to see Prusi go, but it’s more important that we get a progressive Dem like him to take his place.  The Democratic bench is deep, the Republican one, not so much.  The Presidential results are a bit misleading, as the Democratic baseline here is far higher than President Obama’s total (which was still a comfortable win).  The most likely candidate is probably former State Rep. Tom Casperson, although the spanking he received at the Hands of Bart Stupak last year make keep him out of politics forever.  If he doesn’t run, it’s likely Dem.  If he does, it’s leans Dem.  Democrats hold every house seat in this district, and other than Casperson, we have for years, so we’ve got a very strong bench.  The two progressive Dems, Steve Lindberg and fmr. Rep. Steve Adamini are from Marquette, while the more conservative Reps are Mike Lahti of Houghton County and Judy Nerat of Menominee County.  

Presidential Results: 52.5 – 45.5

Announced Candidates:

Potential Candidates:

Steve Lindberg (D) State Rep. (2006-   )

Mike Lahti (D) State Rep. (2006-   )

Steve Adamini (D) State Rep. (2000-2006), 2008 Candidate for Marquette County Prosecutor, Northern Michigan University Board of Trustees

Judy Nerat (D) State Rep. (2008-   )

Tom Casperson (R) State Rep. (2002-2008) and 2008 Candidate for Congress

Joel Westrom (R) First District GOP chairman and 2006 Candidate for State House

Rating: Leans Democrat

And for those who skipped some of that, here’s my summary.  Republican seats are bold and italic

Safe Democrat Seats

District 1 (OPEN)

District 2 (OPEN)

District 3 (OPEN)

District 4 (OPEN)

District 5 Hunter

District 8 (OPEN)

District 14 (OPEN)

District 23 (OPEN)

District 27 Gleason

Likely Democrat Seats

District 6 Anderson

District 9 (OPEN)

Leans Democrat Seats

District 10 (OPEN)

District 26 (OPEN)

District 31 (OPEN)

District 34 (OPEN)

District 38 (OPEN)

Tossup Seats

District 7 (OPEN)

District 13 Pappageorge

District 19 VACANT

District 20 (OPEN)

District 29 (OPEN)

District 32 Kahn

District 36 (OPEN)

Lean Republican Seats

District 12 (OPEN)

District 17 Richardville

District 21 (OPEN)

District 25 (OPEN)

District 33 (OPEN)

District 35 (OPEN)

District 37 (OPEN)

Likely Republican Seats

District 11 (OPEN)

District 15 (OPEN)

District 16 (OPEN)

Safe Republican Seats

District 22 (OPEN)

District 24 (OPEN)

District 28 Jansen

District 30 (OPEN)

Analyzing Swing States: Virginia, Part 1

This is the first part of a series of posts analyzing the swing state Virginia. The second part can be found here.

Analyzing Swing States: Virginia,Part 1

During the ’08 campaign, the political beltway famously defined Virginia as a Republican stronghold gone Democratic. For ten straight presidential elections, the state had reliably turned up in the Republican column. President Barack Obama, however, promised to change that – and he did.

More below.

Virginia indeed is becoming bluer – but not as much as one might think. The state moved Republican sooner than the rest of the South, but never became as deep red as places like Alabama. The actual trend from ’04 to ’08 is less prominent than one might think:

Analyzing Swing States: Virginia,Part 1

I think this in fact slightly understates Republican strength. Mr. Obama, after all, fit extremely well with Virginia’s Democratic base – blacks and rich NoVa residents. He might have overperformed. In many ways, Virginia still constitutes a purple state, perhaps even a red-leaning one. Democrats must run competent candidates and/or do this in favorable national environments; if both conditions are missing, they may get pummeled ala Creigh Deeds.

This may change in the future. As its wealthy, diverse, and Democratic-leaning NoVa suburbs continue growing; Virginia may soon become more Democratic than even Pennsylvania. This trend was much noted in 2008.

What is less noted is the degree to which the media has overstated this change. These demographic shifts are the work of decades, not one election; they occur very gradually. Moreover, even as bluing NoVa expands, Virginia’s western regions continue to redden – especially the once Democratic-leaning panhandle. This blunts the NoVa effect. Virginia may be turning Democratic, but Democrats should not underestimate continued Republican strength.


SSP Daily Digest: 1/29

AZ-Sen: CQ has an interesting tidbit about Rodney Glassman, the young Tucson city councilor who’s the top Democrat in the Senate race right now. The general sense has been that it would be good to have someone with some self-funding capacity to be able to jump in and make a race of it in case the bombastic J.D. Hayworth somehow takes out John McCain in the GOP primary… and it turns out that Glassman has been that guy all along. He’s been capping contributions to his campaign at $20 for now, but the Dems’ state chair says Glassman can step in with his own money in case things heat up.

IA-Sen: Rasmussen takes a pretty dim view of the odds for Roxanne Conlin (or any other Democrat) against Chuck Grassley in 2010. They see Conlin, a wealthy attorney last seen losing the 1982 gubernatorial race, losing to Grassley 59-31. The other less-known Dems, both veterans of the state legislature, fare only slightly worse: Bob Krause loses 59-26, and Tom Fiegen loses 61-25.

IL-Sen: One last component from Rasmussen’s poll of the Illinois primary fields dribbled in late yesterday: a look at the Republican Senate field. Like other pollsters, they find Rep. Mark Kirk way ahead of his nearest competitor in the GOP primary, real estate developer Patrick Hughes. Unlike others, though, they at least see Hughes in the double-digits, losing 53-18 (with 12 for “some other candidate”).

NC-Sen: Rasmussen also examines North Carolina, and while they find Republican incumbent Richard Burr with a significant lead, he’s not quite in the safety zone. Burr leads Democratic SoS Elaine Marshall 47-37, and he leads former state Sen. Cal Cunningham 50-34. Rasmussen also finds Burr’s knowns to be much, much higher than anyone else has found them: he has an approval of 56/32, with only 12% not sure (whereas most pollsters find his unknowns to be well into the 30s).

NY-Sen-B: After rumors of his renewed interest in challenging Kirsten Gillibrand in a Democratic Senate primary, Rep. Steve Israel sounds like he’s backing off. His chief of staff says “definitively that he’s not running,” although there’s no comment from Israel himself. Israel, however, did commission another poll in recent weeks to take the race’s temperature, so it’s clear his interest was briefly re-piqued.

AK-Gov: Former state House speaker John Harris had been a rumored candidate to oppose appointed Gov. Sean Parnell in the GOP gubernatorial primary, but has made clear that he won’t run and will run for re-election to the House instead. Another former speaker, Ralph Samuels, was also in the race, leaving Harris little room to grab whatever anti-Parnell vote might be out there. (A PPP poll finds the uncontroversial Parnell with a 58/19 approval, so it’d be an uphill run anyway.)

FL-Gov: Rasmussen has new numbers out for the Governor’s race in Florida, and they’re very similar to what Quinnipiac released yesterday. Republican AG Bill McCollum leads Democratic CFO Alex Sink 46-35. (Presumably, this means they’ll have Senate numbers shortly.)

MI-Gov: We’re getting strange signals out of the Virg Bernero camp. The Lansing mayor sent out an e-mail soliciting interns for his gubernatorial run (which would be a strange way of announcing your run, which he hasn’t done so far, although he does have an exploratory committee up). It was quickly followed up with word that Bernero hasn’t decided whether or not to run, and it should have said interns sought for his exploratory committee only.

NY-Gov: Here’s a sign of how unenthused the state GOP is with the idea of ex-Rep. Rick Lazio as their standard-bearer for the Governor’s race: they’re actually sitting down with Suffolk Co. Exec Steven Levy, who has recently expressed some interest in the race, to discuss the possibility of him running as a Republican. Levy, of course, is a Democrat, although a rather conservative one (particularly on immigration issues) and one who received a Republican cross-endorsement during his barely-contested 2007 re-election. The crux of the matter may be that Levy has a $4 million warchest available, while Lazio is sitting on $637K. State party chair Ed Cox offered this stirring endorsement of Lazio on Wednesday: “At the moment, he is the candidate.”

WI-Gov: One final Rasmussen poll to look at today: it’s the other half of their Wisconsin sample, the one that found 68-year-old ex-Gov. Tommy Thompson leading Russ Feingold in a hypothetical match. They find Republican ex-Rep. Mark Neumann leading Democratic Milwaukee mayor Tom Barrett 42-38, while Milwaukee Co. Exec Scott Walker leads Barrett 48-38 (again, a much more Republican-favorable view of the race than other pollsters have seen it).

AR-01: Dems won’t be getting their most-desired candidate to succeed Marion Berry in the 1st: AG Dustin McDaniel already announced that he won’t run. Possible Dem candidates sniffing out the race, though, including state Rep. Keith Ingram, state Sen. Robert Thompson, and former state party chair Jason Willett. CQ also mentions former state Rep. Chris Thyer, former state Sen. Tim Woolridge, and Berry’s CoS, Chad Causey.

AR-02: In the 2nd, Democratic state House speaker Robbie Wills seems to be getting into the race to succeed Vic Snyder. State Sen. Shane Broadway has also expressed interest, but says that he’ll head for the Lt. Governor race if LG Bill Halter gets into the field in the 2nd. State Public Service Commissioner Paul Suskie is already putting campaign infrastructure into place, and a potential wild card people are eyeing is Little Rock’s mayor, Mark Stodola.

CA-19: Smackdown in the Central Valley! Retiring Republican Rep. George Radanovich lashed out at CA-11 ex-Rep. Richard Pombo, seeking to replace him, saying that he should have “run in his own district.” Radanovich backs state Sen. Jeff Denham in the GOP primary, and was seeking to quash Pombo claims that Radanovich wouldn’t have endorsed Denham had he known Pombo was going to run. In other news, Rep. Tom McClintock at some point endorsed Pombo, finally making it clear that McClintock, used to running for something new every two years, wasn’t going to reflexively abandon his district and run in the 19th instead.

GA-04: A primary is the only way to dislodge Rep. Hank Johnson in this safely blue district, and it looks like Johnson is poised to keep his seat even though he’s drawn several prominent opponents (at least some of whom would be coming at him from the right), former DeKalb Co. CEO Vernon Jones and DeKalb Co. Commissioners Connie Stokes and Lee May. Johnson has an internal poll from Lake Associates out showing him with 47% of the vote, leading Jones at 19, Stokes at 12, and May at 5.

KY-06: Just days after attorney Andy Barr was named to the bottom tier of the NRCC’s “Young Guns” program, another Republican has jumped into the fray to take on Rep. Ben Chandler in this Republican-leaning district. Mike Templeman retired last year as CEO of Energy Coal Resources, and is touting his business experience.

NH-02: Ex-Rep. Charlie Bass is touting an internal poll that has him in commanding position, at least as far as the GOP primary is concerned. He leads the 2008 Republican candidate, talk radio host Jennifer Horn, by a 42-19 margin (with 4 for state Rep. Bob Giuda). No numbers for the general election in this Dem-leaning district, however.

NY-01: Rep. Tim Bishop is pushing back against, well, everything: he said, as far as retirement rumors go, he’s “sure as hell” not going to back down from a fight now. He also announced strong fundraising (a $378K quarter) in the face of wealthy opposition, Randy Altschuler and George Demos. (There are also rumors that Chris Cox, the grandson of Richard Nixon and son of new state GOP chair Ed Cox, may get into the race.) Bishop’s camp also alluded to (although didn’t specifically release) an internal poll showing him over the 50% mark against his Republican opponents, in contrast to other recent polls.

PA-03: I wouldn’t have expected freshman Kathy Dahlkemper’s 3rd to be only 4th or 5th among Pennsylvania Democratic seats in terms of vulnerability this year, but them’s the breaks. The GOP hasn’t found a top-tier recruit here yet, but another Republican got into the race: Mike Kelly, a car dealer from the suburban Pittsburgh part of the district. It sounds like he’ll be able to partly fund his own way, which will help him compete against fellow businessman Paul Huber.

PA-10: Former US Attorney Tom Marino finally announced his long-rumored bid against Rep. Chris Carney this week. While Marino seems imposing on paper, there are a number of problems here for him: for starters, Carney quickly used the December efforts of GOPers to recruit him to party-switch to boost his own bipartisan bona fides. Marino also faces questions over his relationship with Louis DeNaples, a developer who was the target of probes over links to organized crime, and particularly a casino license granted to him (where Marino was a reference on DeNaples’ gaming application). And a number of state legislators – at least in the far western part of the district where Malcolm Derk is from – are lining up behind Derk instead of Marino in the GOP primary. With chiropractor David Madeira, who’s been reaching out to the teabaggers, also in the race, even the primary won’t be an easy ride for Marino.

PA-15: One more internal poll, this one not looking so good for Democrats. Republican Rep. Charlie Dent, in his first competitive race, well, ever, against Bethlehem mayor John Callahan, has a big edge in his own poll conducted by the Tarrance Group. The poll gives Dent a 53-27 lead, with 8 going to teabagging independent Jack Towne. The moderate Dent pulls in one-quarter of all Democratic voters.

TN-08: He’s in like Flinn. George Flinn, that is: the official entry of the Shelby Co. Commissioner, who’s also a radiologist and radio station owner in his spare time, expanded the Republican field in the 8th. With two money-bags candidates already in the picture, physician Ron Kirkland and most prominently farmer Stephen Fincher, Republicans look poised to bleed each other badly in an expensive primary while state Sen. Roy Herron looks to have the Democratic field mostly to himself in this open seat race.

VA-05: Another primary that’s getting out of control for the GOP is the one in the 5th, where there’s a backlog of die-hards each claiming to be the “true conservative” as opposed to establishment fave state Sen. Robert Hurt. Real estate investor Lawrence Verga seems to have had the most success at gaining the attention of the teabaggers (although Verga‘s spotty voting record can’t help his image much), but now rival real estate developer Jim McKelvey just slammed down half a million dollars on the table to up the ante. Even more delicious in terms of cat fud: McKelvey is also making threats that he’ll run as an independent if things don’t go his way in the primary. With right-winger Bradley Rees already running as a Tea Party-powered indie, there could be enough fracturing on the right to let vulnerable Democratic Rep. Tom Perriello have a shot at survival.

VA-09: Here’s a seat that would have been a bear to defend in the event of a retirement, but where we got the final word that the incumbent is staying put. Rep. Rick Boucher confirmed he’ll go for a 15th term in the Fightin’ 9th in southwestern Virginia. He’s still not out of the woods, as Republican state House majority leader Morgan Griffith may get in the race, although for now Boucher doesn’t have an opponent.

WA-03: This caught me, and seemingly a lot of other people, by surprise: Gov. Chris Gregoire weighed into the Democratic primary in the 3rd with an endorsement, and she bypassed the two sitting state legislators in the field to go for ex-state Rep. Denny Heck, suggesting that rumors that he’s got a lot of behind-the-scenes establishment support are quite true. Heck, who subsequently founded a public affairs cable channel and did a lot of successful for-profit investing as well, can spend a lot of his own money on the race, which is probably why he’s getting the establishment backing despite having been out of office for decades.

WV-01: After a rather protracted four-year investigation, the Justice Dept. ended its investigation of Rep. Alan Mollohan over earmark steering, removing the ethical cloud from over his head. Mollohan had been on retirement watch lists, in the face of several decent Republican challengers, but he recently filed for re-election and now his opponents have less ammo to use against him.

OH-SoS: Progressives have been dismayed that socially conservative state Rep. Jennifer Garrison is the only Democratic option in the Secretary of State primary anymore, but that sounds like it’s about to change. Franklin Co. Clerk of Courts (and former Columbus city councilor) Maryellen O’Shaugnessy is rumored to be about to enter the race, and it also sounds like she’ll have the backing of the state party’s power brokers, starting at the top with Gov. Ted Strickland (who can’t afford to have progressives stay home in 2010, as he needs them to save his own bacon in what promises to be a tight gubernatorial race).

Census: New York state Senate Democrats are proposing changes in the way that prison inmates are counted. They’d like for them to be considered residents of the district where their last known address was, not where they’re currently incarcerated. It’s actually a very important issue, considering that there are more than 58,000 state prisoners in New York, most of whom are from cities but are currently in rural Upstate, and it could tip the balance significantly in redistricting the state Senate. In other Census news, Robert Groves talked extensively to Pew about increasing participation, tracking turnout, and overcoming language barriers.

Humor: Finally, here’s a cartoon that SSP fans are uniquely positioned to enjoy.

AR-Sen: Baker Will Stay In, Teabag Boozman to Death (Hopefully)

In a piece on GOP Rep. John Boozman’s plan to challenge Blanche Lincoln, the Politico has a tasty cat fud alert:

His candidacy hurts the prospects of state senator Gilbert Baker, who looked like the GOP frontrunner after he announced his campaign last September. Baker got off to a fast fundraising start – aided by his connections in the state legislature – but struggled to raise additional money in the fourth quarter, announcing today that he added just $293,000 to his campaign coffers.

Sources close to Baker’s campaign said the state senator will remain in the race, and draw a stark contrast between Boozman’s Washington background with his legislative work in Arkansas. Baker campaign officials believe that the congressman’s support of the Troubled Assets Relief Program to aid banks could hurt him with conservative primary voters.

At the very least, the primary should be fun!

RaceTracker Wiki: AR-Sen | AR-03

IN-04: Buyer Will Retire

From the Indy Star:

U.S. Rep. Steve Buyer will announce this morning he is not running for re-election.

Buyer will make his announcement at 11 a.m. at a news conference at University Hospital in Indianapolis. […]

Buyer has come under fire for a charitable scholarship organization he founded, The Frontier Foundation, which has raised money from groups and businesses with interests before the committees he serves on in Congress. The group has spent money on lavish golf outings, but so far has not given out any scholarships. Buyer has said he is waiting until the group had raised $1 million, in order to be self-sustaining.

This is at least a bit of a surprise to us — Buyer wasn’t on our open seat watch. Open seat fans shouldn’t expect too much fireworks from this race beyond the primary, though, as the district’s PVI is R+14. Bush won this district by 66-32 and 69-30 margins in 2000 and 2004, respectively, and McCain by 56-43 in ’08. That’s a pretty dramatic drop for the GOP, but they were up against the full onslaught of the Obama field campaign’s effort to squeeze out every possible Dem vote out in the Indianapolis ‘burbs.

(Hat-tip: Blue Indiana)

RaceTracker Wiki: IN-04

SSP Daily Digest: 1/28

AR-Sen: Despite the seemingly imminent entry of Rep. John Boozman into the GOP field in the Arkansas Senate race, soon-to-be-former-frontrunner state Sen. Gilbert Baker says he’s staying in the race. The alternative would be to run for Baker, who represents Little Rock suburbs, to run for the open seat in AR-02 instead – but there he’d face a tough primary against Beltway GOP favorite Tim Griffin, who’s already established a solid fundraising foothold. (Some of the seven dwarves in the GOP field, who seem concentrated in the state’s right-leaning northwest, may be interested in switching to Boozman’s open seat in AR-03, though.) And unbelievably, yet another Republican is interested in getting in the Senate race: former NFL player Jim Lindsey is readying for a bid. Lindsey is a real estate developer and former University of Arkansas trustee.

AZ-Sen: Sarah Palin is still dancin’ with the one who brung her. She announced yesterday that she’ll appear on behalf of John McCain, who plucked her from near-obscurity and is now needs a favor of his own as he’s facing a primary challenge from the right from ex-Rep. J.D. Hayworth. Needless to say, this provoked a lot of disappointment from her supporters among the teabagging set, who would prefer to see her stab McCain in the back and then field dress him.

CO-Sen: With right-wingers filled with antipathy toward establishment choice ex-Lt. Gov. Jane Norton, there’s been a lot of casting about for an alternative. Weld County DA Ken Buck seems more and more like he’ll be that guy, as he’s been making common cause with the Paulists, who are now planning to pay for a statewide advertising campaign on Buck’s behalf. Meanwhile, on the Dem side, primary challenger Andrew Romanoff is trying to energize his sleepy campaign with a big hire – pollster Celinda Lake, whose previously sterling reputation got driven off a cliff with her handling of the Martha Coakley campaign.

CT-Sen: There’s not much left to see for the 2010 race, but everyone’s thinking ahead to 2012, with the new rumor afoot that – with the Senate Kennedy-free for the first time in more than half a century – Ted Kennedy Jr. may run against Joe Lieberman in 2012. Lieberman himself is up to his usual asshattery, speculating out loud that he could conceive of becoming a Republican, and also saying that he might support Linda McMahon in the 2010 race… seeing as how Richard Blumenthal (tepidly) supported Lamont in the 2006 general while McMahon supported Lieberman. Apparently Lieberman learned his politics from watching the Godfather: it’s not business. Just personal. (Lieberman also seems to be a believer in leaving the cannoli, and taking the guns.)

FL-Sen: In the wake of new polling showing him falling behind Marco Rubio in the GOP Senate primary, the questions are getting louder about whether Charlie Crist might consider running as an independent instead. He said no to that idea… but people are noticing he didn’t rule out switching parties altogether. With Crist appearing side-by-side with Barack Obama today in Florida (something he wouldn’t consider doing if he saw any hope in trying to compete with Rubio – who just got the endorsement of ur-conservative Steve Forbes — on conservative bona fides alone), could that actually be a consideration? If so, he’d need to switch parties by April 30.

MA-Sen: There are a couple more retrospectives worth reading on Massachusetts, as people try to make sense of the mixed messages sent by exit polls (with one particularly intriguing tidbit: 52% of Scott Brown voters approved of Ted Kennedy’s performance). Mark Blumenthal also looks at the shift in polling over the last few weeks, wondering again about the differing results gotten by live interviewers vs. robocallers, while also pointing to questions of how much pollsters’ views of a race can actually change the overall momentum of the race (fundraising and perception-wise) and thus become a self-fulfilling prophecy. And get ready for the teabaggers’ week-long love affair to end very soon: Scott Brown (who apparently has some self-preservation instincts) just served notice on the GOP that he won’t always vote with them.

ND-Sen: This isn’t going to make the teabaggers any happier: Gov. John Hoeven, now running for the Senate, joined the Democratic Party in 1996 (at a time when he was head of North Dakota’s state-owned bank), ditching them in 2000 for his gubernatorial run. With Hoeven already on their naughty list for his insufficiently anti-government stances, now he’s just going to get more wrath.

NH-Sen: Former AG Kelly Ayotte is wielding an internal poll by the Tarrance Group that gives her a big edge in the GOP primary against her challengers. She leads Ovide Lamontagne, coming at her from the right, 43-11. Random rich guys Bill Binnie and Jim Bender clock in at 5 and 3 apiece. No general election numbers were released.

NV-Sen: One more disastrous poll for Harry Reid, which came out from Research 2000 a few days ago. This poll closely echoed one from PPP a few weeks ago that tested alternative Democrats, and finds that only Las Vegas mayor Oscar Goodman beats the Republicans (while Rep. Shelly Berkley and SoS Ross Miller don’t fare much better than Reid). Unfortunately, this was all rendered moot a few days ago by Goodman’s announcement that he wasn’t going to run for either Governor or Senator. Reid loses 52-41 to Danny Tarkanian and 51-42 to Sue Lowden. Berkley loses 46-40 to Tarkanian and 45-40 to Lowden, while Miller loses 44-36 to Tarkanian and 43-37 to Lowden. Goodman beats Tarkanian 44-41 and Lowden 44-40. Rep. Dina Titus, facing a tough re-election of her own, doesn’t seem to think much of Reid’s chances anymore: she publicly said “Reid is done; he’s going to lose.”

NY-Sen-B: One other Research 2000 poll to talk about: they looked at the Democratic primary in New York, and find about what everyone else has found. Kirsten Gillibrand leads ex-Rep. Harold Ford Jr. by a 41-27 margin (with 3 for Jonathan Tasini), looking solid but still with a ton of undecideds. This also exists merely at the level of rumor, but with the potential presence of Ford scrambling things for the ever-so-briefly-thought-to-be-safe Gillibrand, sources say that Democratic Rep. Steve Israel (who got dissuaded from a primary challenge) and Republican ex-Gov. George Pataki (who hasn’t sounded interested until now) are both giving the race a little more consideration.

PA-Sen, PA-Gov (pdf): Franklin & Marshall’s previous polls in Pennsylvania have tended to have unusually high undecideds, suggesting that they don’t do any pushing of leaners at all – but this may have reached an all-time high with their new poll. Most notably, they find Allegeheny Co. Exec Dan Onorato completely dominating the Democratic gubernatorial primary… at 10% (more than doubling up on Jack Wagner, Joe Hoeffel, and Chris Doherty, all at 4)! They also find similarly low numbers in the Senate race, where Republican ex-Rep. Pat Toomey leads incumbent Dem Arlen Specter 45-31 and Rep. Joe Sestak 41-19 (?!?), and where Specter beats Sestak in the primary 30-13. (They didn’t do a general election poll in the Governor’s race, but find Republican AG Tom Corbett leading his remaining rival, state Rep. Sam Rohrer, 23-5 in the primary.)

UT-Sen: The Mason-Dixon poll that gave us some (not so good) gubernatorial results also threw in some vague questions about the Senate race too. Incumbent Bob Bennett leads a Generic R in the primary, 46-27, and a Generic D 53-26 in the general. Nevertheless, Bennett drew yet another primary opponent, albeit someone seemingly of the Some Dude variety: local businessman Christopher Stout.

WI-Sen: Wherever there’s a vacillating Republican needing convincing to get into a Senate race, there’s Rasmussen. (Whaddya wanna bet they have a Patty Murray/Dave Reichert poll in the field right now?) Contrary to PPP’s view of the race, Rasmussen finds ex-Gov. Tommy Thompson leading incumbent Dem Russ Feingold, 47-43. They find Feingold with a perplexingly low 47/48 approval.

CT-Gov: Is ex-Rep. Chris Shays looking to get into the Governor’s race? Suddenly, it sounds like he’s at least thinking about it, saying he’d like to do it but not sure if it’s feasible. He’s currently in Washington as head of the Wartime Contracting Commission, meaning he’d need to re-establish his Connecticut residency, but given his long-time popularity in his district (which eventually got too blue for him to hold) he might have a leg up on the so-so GOPers already in the field.

FL-Gov: Quinnipiac released the gubernatorial half of its Florida poll yesterday, finding that Republican AG Bill McCollum has a somewhat bigger lead on Democratic CFO Alex Sink, 41-31 (McCollum led 36-32 in October). Sink leads state Sen. Paula Dockery 35-29, but considering that McCollum leads Dockery 44-6 in the GOP primary, that configuration doesn’t seem likely.

MI-Gov: Two guys who had been unlikely candidates for the Democratic nomination for Governor both announced they wouldn’t run. Rep. Bart Stupak is the big name to say “no,” which is good as far as the DCCC is concerned, as he’s needed to hold down the fort in his R+3 district. The other is Detroit Pistons head of basketball operations Joe Dumars, who probably realized he’d get pretty banged up out there without Bill Laimbeer to run interference for him. One other interesting rumor of who might run, though, is ex-Rep. Joe Schwarz, the GOP moderate who got bounced out in a 2006 Club for Growth-fueled primary by Tim Walberg. And get this… he’s talking about running as an independent. Could he actually peel off enough center-right votes for the Dems to salvage this race?

NY-Gov: Research 2000’s New York poll also looked at the Democratic gubernatorial primary, finding AG Andrew Cuomo defeating incumbent David Paterson, 63-19. Paterson is laboring under 34/54 approvals. The GOP primary to see who gets flattened by Cuomo is looking pretty uneventful: Erie Co. Exec Chris Collins, who continued to express vague interest despite having gaffed his way out of contention several months ago, finally pulled the plug on his exploratory committee. That leaves ex-Rep. Rick Lazio as the only major GOPer in the race, to few people’s enthusiasm.

TX-Gov: Looks like Gov. Rick Perry isn’t much of a fan of the librul media, or at least he realizes that his key demographics aren’t really the newspaper-reading types. He’s decided not to sit for editorial board interviews prior to their pre-primary endorsements.  

The 2010 mid-term elections, part 2: A hypothetical prediction model

I want to thank everyone for voting on my January 25th diary.  I’ve received 28 votes (and counting), and without your help my current prediction model couldn’t have been created.  So thank you all for voting!

Results from my January 25th Diary as of January 28th, 2:15 pm EST:

Which past mid-term election is most similar to the 2010 mid-term election?

10 votes for 1982

9 votes for 1978

4 votes for 1966

2 votes for 1938

2 votes for 1994

1 vote for 1946

Interestingly, 1982 was the only mid-term election above where the sitting President was a Republican!  Not sure if this is significant, but would love to hear other opinions.

Creation of Tarheeman1993’s 2010 mid-term election model

I decided to base my formula on the results received from this survey.  Each vote gets treated in the same manner as the results for the respective past mid-term election.  At first glance, the model would look like:

2010 mid-term model predictor= (10/28)*(1982 mid-term election results) + (9/28)*(1978 mid-term election results) + (4/25)*(1966 mid-term election results) + (2/25)*(1938 mid-term election results) + (2/25)*(1994 mid-term election results) + (1/25)*1946 mid-term election results).

However, this in itself could be unreliable.  I first had to see what the weighted average of seats up for re-election that were held by the current President’s party before the mid-terms took place in each given year.  Note: except for 1982, the President in office for the respective year was a Democrat:

Seats up for re-election in past mid-term elections held by that President’s party on the given mid-term election:

Year      House          Senate

           Seats              Seats

1982        192               13  

1978        292               18

1966        295               20

1938        334               30

1994        258               22

1946        242               24

Using my model, the average # of seats can be computed as follows:

House avg=(10/28)*192 + (9/28)*292 +(4/28)*295+(2/28)*334 + (2/28)*258 + (1/28)*242=255.50 seats.  Currently the Dems will have 257 seats up for re-election, a difference of 1 1/2 seats!

Senate avg=(10/28)*13 + (9/28)*18 +(4/28)*20+(2/28)*30 + (2/28)*22 + (1/28)*24=17.86 seats.  Currently the Dems will have 18 seats up for re-election in the senate, a difference of .14 seats.

Since I was satisfied with the above results, I decided to look at the seats that were lost by the President’s party in each given mid-term election.  Here are the actual numbers of seats lost:

Year      House       Senate

           Seats           Seats

1982        27               0  

1978        15               3

1966        48               3

1938        72               7

1994        54               8

1946        55               12

Using my model, the average # of seats lost by the President’s party in the mid-term election (net) can be computed as follows:

House seats lost prediction=(10/28)*27 + (9/28)*15 +(4/28)*48 + (2/28)*72 + (2/28)*54 + (1/28)*55= 32.29 seats.  

Senate seats lost prediction=(10/28)*0 + (9/28)*3 +(4/28)*3 + (2/28)*7 + (2/28)*8 + (1/28)*12=2.89 seats.  

Obviously this model has flaws (specifically that I’m creating it and that I’m only asking fellow SSP members their opinion).  However, since the 2010 election is complex, I’m asking whether the end result, 32 seats lost in the House and 3 seats in the Senate is accurate.

Please vote on this survey and give me your feedback.  I’d appreciate it!

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MN 8 and 7 seats compromise maps

First the 8 seater.

So Ive done MN several different ways now, so here’s  a new one, the compromise version, that creates several swing districts within the metro area of Minneapolis/St Paul and does a better representation for Greater Minnesota.  Peterson is given an even more Republican district to give the GOP representation in central MN and giving the DFL a Safe DFL district in Northern MN.   I decided the “make compact districts” thing is crap because it’s all just packing, so instead I made just one central one and spread out the remaining 4.  They all do adhere to major metro areas dictated by the transit and freeway systems used.  There is a southern, northwestern, western, and northeastern.  

The 8 seater is projected at 1 Safe DFL, 1 Safe GOP, 2 Likely DFL, 1 Lean GOP, 1 Lean DFL, 2 Swing if they were all open.  

MN-1  Rep. Walz

I did do a little gerrymandering up the NW part of the state to make the district to creep north.  I wanted to keep MN-7 as a central MN district, as that is one complaint of Republicans and would give it a better shot of going GOP, at the expense of MN-1 going a point more Democratic.  Nonetheless this is still only like D+1 and is a good swing district.  

MN-2  Rep. Kline

Kind of the same configuration, but shifted over to the east a bit and now contains all of Dakota county.  The districts shifts a bit further into Walz’s district, which makes way for CD3.  This is the other swing district, and it barely went for Obama.  It is quite the hybrid district of it being minutes outside of downtown St. Paul to being far out into some of the best farmland in the country.

MN-3  Rep. Paulsen

This district no longer includes any northwestern metro portions and strictly goes straight west from Minneapolis and also includes the two southern burbs of Richfield and Bloomington.  It’s a slight bit more Democratic, which reflects how the western burbs have changed.

MN-4  Rep. McCollum

A touch more Republican and CD-5 does cut into McCollum’s Ramsey county base.  The district still includes all of St Paul and is more of a NE suburb district+ St. Paul.  It evens out to a pretty solid DFL seat.  And some of the suburbs given to CD5 out of Ramsey county are barely DFL anyway.  

MN-5  Rep. Ellison

Still a compact district.  Minneapolis is still the major anchor, and then it expands going north and east.  CD4 has usually had all of Ramsey county but this was the best way to achieve a compact central district for MN-5 and to make CD-4 more like the others..

MN-6  No incumbent

This is the suburban GOP district.  This seat is trending our way and will be ours by the end of this decade (2020) as many people are moving here and turning it more swingish, or at least not quite 60-40.  But for now, it’s a St. Cloud/Nw suburbs seat and is a very quickly growing corridor (the one I’m from.)  This version has more suburbs and less teabagger territory, which is given to MN-7.  Clark maybe be able to win this one, but it’s still quite Republican on the local level, save for the a couple of the suburbs.

MN-7  Rep. Peterson

His seat becomes much more Republican.  The current seat was a McCain by 2%, the one I propose McCain won by 12%.  Peterson may still win, but this is the compromise and this is very Republican area and they should get a solid Greater MN seat in this compromise.  But, a DFLer may always still win.  We’ve got a pretty even number of DFL and GOP state legislators and someone like Peterson can certainly win.

MN-8  Rep. Oberstar

This district is now an entirely Northern Minnesota district.  I put it as likely DFL but it’s pretty much a solid seat.  We control a very large majority of the state legislative seats and these areas still have a heavy tradition in progressive politics.