VA St. Sen. Howell Districts in Dave’s App

[Ed. note: This is impressive work. I took the liberty of moving the list of demographic & political info into a table. – David]

There was a request for the .drf file that I created for the Howell proposal of the VA State Senate, so why not make a diary.

For the .drf file, click here.

Caution: the Howell plan splits precincts, which I don’t think Dave’s App allows for. On some districts, it’s a judgement call, like on the borders of the 15th & 20th districts or the 7th & 14th districts. The non-ability to split precincts is also why districts will have the variances in population.

And yes, the numbers correspond to the Howell numbers, i.e. District 1 below is District 1 in the Howell plan.

Data table below the fold.

District Obama McCain White Black Hisp. Asian W VAP B VAP H VAP A VAP 2000-09 D 2000-09 R
1 58% 42% 55% 31% 8% 3% 59% 29% 7% 4% 52% 48%
2 70% 30% 38% 51% 5% 3% 41% 50% 4% 3% 65% 35%
3 38% 62% 81% 13% 3% 2% 82% 12% 2% 2% 39% 62%
4 39% 61% 77% 15% 4% 1% 78% 15% 3% 1% 38% 62%
5 74% 26% 35% 55% 5% 3% 38% 53% 5% 3% 69% 32%
6 57% 43% 60% 26% 8% 3% 62% 25% 7% 3% 54% 46%
7 52% 48% 55% 28% 8% 7% 59% 24% 7% 7% 52% 48%
8 63% 37% 53% 30% 10% 5% 57% 28% 9% 5% 56% 44%
9 75% 25% 38% 55% 3% 2% 41% 52% 2% 2% 71% 29%
10 39% 61% 76% 15% 3% 3% 78% 16% 3% 3% 37% 63%
11 42% 58% 68% 25% 4% 1% 70% 25% 3% 1% 40% 60%
12 41% 59% 77% 11% 4% 7% 78% 11% 3% 6% 39% 61%
13 43% 57% 66% 21% 4% 6% 68% 21% 4% 6% 43% 57%
14 37% 63% 81% 9% 4% 3% 83% 9% 4% 3% 38% 62%
15 37% 64% 74% 22% 2% 1% 76% 21% 2% 1% 37% 63%
16 72% 29% 35% 53% 8% 2% 38% 52% 7% 2% 64% 37%
17 51% 49% 70% 17% 8% 2% 72% 17% 7% 2% 47% 53%
18 64% 36% 42% 52% 3% 1% 44% 51% 2% 1% 61% 39%
19 37% 63% 91% 4% 2% 1% 92% 4% 2% 1% 39% 61%
20 49% 51% 66% 28% 4% 1% 69% 27% 3% 0 49% 52%
21 57% 43% 73% 16% 4% 4% 76% 15% 4% 4% 55% 45%
22 51% 49% 65% 9% 10% 13% 67% 9% 9% 13% 46% 54%
23 37% 63% 80% 14% 2% 2% 82% 14% 2% 1% 39% 61%
24 36% 64% 88% 6% 3% 1% 89% 7% 3% 1% 35% 66%
25 58% 43% 81% 10% 4% 3% 82% 9% 3% 4% 56% 44%
26 41% 59% 86% 3% 7% 1% 88% 3% 6% 1% 38% 63%
27 43% 57% 83% 6% 7% 2% 85% 6% 6% 2% 40% 60%
28 44% 56% 71% 16% 7% 3% 73% 16% 6% 3% 41% 59%
29 61% 39% 41% 20% 28% 7% 45% 20% 25% 8% 52% 48%
30 66% 34% 62% 13% 16% 6% 64% 12% 14% 7% 64% 36%
31 62% 39% 68% 5% 12% 12% 69% 5% 11% 12% 60% 40%
32 61% 39% 68% 5% 9% 14% 71% 5% 8% 14% 59% 41%
33 59% 41% 48% 9% 20% 20% 51% 9% 19% 19% 52% 48%
34 57% 43% 61% 5% 11% 19% 63% 5% 10% 19% 54% 46%
35 66% 34% 42% 12% 26% 16% 45% 12% 25% 16% 63% 37%
36 64% 36% 42% 25% 22% 8% 46% 24% 20% 8% 59% 41%
37 57% 43% 52% 7% 15% 23% 54% 7% 14% 23% 52% 48%
38 41% 59% 94% 4% 1% 1% 94% 4% 1% 1% 47% 53%
39 59% 41% 54% 17% 13% 13% 57% 16% 12% 13% 54% 46%
40 33% 67% 95% 2% 1% 0 95% 2% 1% 0 38% 62%

Under the Howell lines:

21 Senate districts voted for Obama and have a history of voting Democratic

2 Senate districts voted for Obama but have a history of voting Republican

17 Senate districts voted for McCain and have a history of voting Republican

Virginia Redistricting: Legislature’s Proposed State Senate Maps

Discussion is already underway on the new maps for Virginia’s state House and Senate that the legislature just proposed. Fortunately, map guru jeffmd extracted much more readable maps from the shapefiles provided by the state. There are actually two Senate proposals, one from Sen. John Watkins (R) and the other from Sen. Janet Howell (D).


Click for full-size version


Click for full-size version

Detail maps of Northern Virginia and the Hampton Roads areas (including versions which show aggregate political performance from the 2009 Gov., Lt. Gov., and AG results, plus the 2008 presidential results) are below the fold.

Howell Northern Virginia:

Watkins Northern Virginia:

Howell Hampton Roads:

Click for full-size version

Watkins Hampton Roads:

Click for full-size version

SSP Daily Digest: 1/12

MA-Sen: Vicki Kennedy has pretty much ruled out a Senate run, if her comments to the Boston Globe are any indication. She says “the Senate is not my future;” poignantly, she recounts having received Ted’s encouragement to run before his death but responding “You’re Senator Kennedy, and that’s it.” Another Kennedy made some news yesterday, though, in fact generating his own little boomlet of Senatorial speculation: Joe III (son of the ex-Rep. and grandson of RFK) gave a mightily well-received speech in front of state legislators decrying the noxious turn in the nation’s political discourse. The 30-year-old is currently a prosecutor in Barnstable County and has turned down previous attempts to get him to run for office. Finally, some of the more cogent members of the local tea party seem to have made peace with the fact, despite their discomfort with his voting record, that Scott Brown isn’t going to be successfully challenged in the GOP primary in 2012, and are dissuading others from that line of thought. The article mentions recent House race losers Jeff Perry and Jim Ogonowski as possible names, but in the context of even them not likely to be able to gain any traction against Brown in a primary.

PA-Sen: PPP released Republican primary numbers as part of their Pennsylvania package today, and as with many of their recent primary polls, it’s quite the collection of people who aren’t going to run. They try doing it both with-Santorum and without-Santorum. (Yes, yes, I know that sounds gross.) The Santorum-covered version, thanks to his high name rec (81% of GOPers have an opinion about him, while Schweiker comes in second at 33%), finds him way in the lead, at 45, with Rep. Jim Gerlach at 9, ex-Gov. Mark Schweiker and Rep. Charlie Dent both at 8, Rep. Tim Murphy at 7, state Sen. Jake Corman at 3, and state Sen. Kim Ward and actual announced candidate Marc Scaringi both at 1. The Santorum-free version gives the edge to Schweiker at 18, Gerlach at 14, Murphy at 13, Dent at 10, Corman at 9, Ward at 2, and Scaringi at 1.

TX-Sen: This story may be better filed under “Dallas mayor” since it points to a somewhat unexpected vacancy that’s going to need to be filled in November. The mayoral candidacy of city council member Ron Natinsky, a key ally of Republican mayor Tom Leppert, makes it pretty clear that Leppert isn’t going to run for a second term as mayor. Leppert has often been cited a potential wild card in the GOP Senate primary against Kay Bailey Hutchison, and this may mean he’s moving toward that race.

MS-Gov: Hattiesburg mayor Johnny DuPree made it official today, filing his papers for a gubernatorial run. He’ll face off against businessman Bill Luckett in the Democratic primary, and if he wins there, most likely against Republican Lt. Gov. Phil Bryant in the general.

IL-14: A new profile of ex-Rep. Bill Foster has him sounding pretty uncandidate-ish in the future. He says he’d like to explore business opportunities in green energy and would consider an executive branch position if asked, but there’s nary a suggestion of a rematch.

PA-Auditor: Allegheny Co. Exec (and 2010 gubernatorial loser) Dan Onorato says he won’t run for a third term as county executive; this is widely assumed to mean that he’ll be pursuing a bid for state Auditor in 2012. (I’m wondering if Jack Wagner, whom you also remember from the gubernatorial race, can run for a 3rd term as Auditor, and, if so, if he’s ruled it out? Anybody know about that?) At any rate, Onorato seems to be looking at lower statewide office as a better stepping-stone for his ambitions; he’s young enough that he’s probably thinking down the road to a 2016 challenge to Pat Toomey or even the 2018 open seat gubernatorial race (which, if history is any guide, will go to a Democrat).

Special elections: As expected, last night’s special elections in Virginia went to the Republicans with totals over 60% (letting them hold both of the red districts up for grabs). Gregory Habeeb is taking over for Robert Hurt in SD-19, while William Stanley takes over for Morgan Griffith in HD-8. Also, in Mississippi, Nancy Adams Collins won in SD-11 to succeed Alan Nunnelee; I can’t find any confirmation that she, in fact, was the Republican in the race, but I have dim memories (correct me if I’m wrong) from the myriad MS-01 special elections that special elections in Mississippi don’t include party labels on the ballot.

2010: You’re probably all familiar with the gender gap, but Michael McDonald shows in pretty dramatic fashion just how significant the “age gap” has become, with a 16-point gap in 2010 between the parties between the 18-29 set and the 65+ set, the largest that’s ever been. The unfortunate flipside, which does a lot to explain the 2010 results, is that young voter falloff in midterm elections (25% in 2006, 51% in 2008) is much greater than among older voters (63% in 2006, 71% in 2008), boosting Republican odds thanks to their increased strength among seniors.

Demographics: I suppose we don’t need any hints about where people are moving since we just got reapportionment data, but here’s some more in-depth data from the Census Bureau, based on what states people are moving into and out of. Long-distance moves hit a record low in 2009, thanks in large part to the sluggish economy disproportionately hitting young adults. Housing bubble/service-sector cities like Phoenix, Las Vegas, and Orlando had drops in migration, while more knowledge-sector places like Austin, Raleigh, and Portland were gainers among young adults.

Redistricting: I’m hesitant to heap praise on one particular Dave’s Redistricting App map diary here, because, really, they’re all fantastic and an important part of the site and the community; I learn something new from most of them and they’re all time-consuming works of art, so thanks to everyone who posts them. But silver spring’s Illinois diary is worthy of some extra attention, in the hopes that the powers-that-be (in this state that’s probably the Dems’ single best shot to run up the redistricting score) might see this diary and take its basic ideas into account. It’s a map that takes the almost-unthinkable and makes it plausible: a map that’s 15-3 in favor of Democrats based on 2008 presidential data, and even creates a second Hispanic VRA district for good measure.

SSP Daily Digest: 1/11

ME-Sen: The attempt to primary out Olympia Snowe by the state’s various fractious Tea Party factions seems to be sputtering, partly for lack of a credible challenger to rally around (with Some Dude Scott D’Ambroise the only one officially in the race right now) but also as the various Judean People’s Front and People’s Front of Judea wings of the ‘baggers start to increasingly turn their fire on each other rather than on Democrats and alleged RINOs.

MI-Sen: Joining a major law firm after an electoral loss isn’t, in itself, dispositive of future political runs a few years down the line. But observers are taking the decision by former AG Mike Cox (who lost last year’s GOP gubernatorial primary) to join a Detroit law firm as an indicator that he isn’t considering the 2012 Senate race.

MO-Sen: There are increasing signals that Jim Talent may not run for Senate in 2012, after all. Dave Catanese talks to various Show Me State insiders who say that Talent hasn’t been doing the behind-the-scenes reaching-out that one usually does at this point, and they point to him not only having got caught off guard by Sarah Steelman’s abrupt early entry into the primary but also his close relationship with Mitt Romney. Talent is currently traveling with Romney in an advisory role in Afghanistan, and there’s speculation his 2012 plans may involve hitching his wagon to Romney in the hopes that he’s the next President and that a Cabinet role (SecDef?) may be in the offing.

OH-Sen: With Mike DeWine having passed on a rematch against Sherrod Brown, the speculation has turned to newly-elected Lt. Gov. and former Auditor Mary Taylor. It sounds like she’s game; local insiders are saying she’s at “90%” in terms of likelihood of running. She may not have the field to herself even if she does, though; another newly-elected statewide GOPer, 33-year-old state Treasurer Josh Mandel has been impressing the local GOP in his first week on the job and is starting to attract some buzz for a quick promotion.

WY-Sen: Wyoming promises to be the least dramatic state in the 2012 election, so PPP’s decision to poll here this early seems a little odd. At any rate, they find Wyomingites love their politicians: outgoing Dem Gov. Dave Freudenthal gets a 71/18 approval, making him the nation’s most popular governor, while the state’s two GOP Senators, John Barrasso (69/25) and Mike Enzi (63/24) are the nation’s two most popular Senators. Despite his popularity (and, well, despite the fact that he’s never expressed any interest in running for federal office), Freudenthal loses a hypothetical 2012 matchup against Barrasso, 56-36, thanks to the GOP’s huge registration advantage here.

RI-Gov: There’s already one Dem reportedly gearing up for the 2014 Governor’s race: state Treasurer Gina Raimondo, who’s build a war chest and getting friendly with DC consultants. (Alternatively, she could also be running for Senate in 2014 instead, if Jack Reed isn’t running again.) No mention of whether she’d be challenging new indie Gov. Lincoln Chafee (last seen more or less declaring war on local talk radio) from the left or the right (as Frank Caprio tried to do, and failed).

FL-14: With Rep. Connie Mack IV looking like one of the House’s likeliest retirements right now (in order to pursue a Senate bid against Bill Nelson), speculation has already begun about who’ll fill his seat. One thing is pretty predictable, given the Fort Myers-area district’s R+11 bent and lack of any Dem tradition or bench: it’ll be a Republican. GOP names to watch include ex-state Rep. Dudley Goodlette and Lee Co. Commissioner Ray Judah. The most prominent name, though, may be former Lt. Gov. Jeff Kottkamp (though he might have trouble getting out of a GOP primary unless he can find a way to wash the stank of the Charlie Crist administration off his suit). State Sen. Garrett Richter (whose district closely overlaps the 14th) says no thanks to the race.

HI-01: GOP ex-Rep. Charles Djou, seeming a bit testy after the abrupt end to his very short tenure in the House, seems to have thrown all that feel-good ohana crap out the window in his exit press conference, blaming Dem successor Colleen Hanabusa in advance for expected future failures. He may feel free to speak his mind as he also says he has “no plans to run for any political office ever again.”

NM-01: Rep. Martin Heinrich has already drawn some seemingly-credible Republican opposition for 2012, although he has the kind of district that seems much safer for a Dem in a presidential year than last year’s narrow win. Republican Albuquerque city councilor Dan Lewis has formed an exploratory committee.

State legislatures: Two state House speaker elections are in the news today. The big one may be in Texas, where an expected coup from the right against GOP speaker Joe Straus didn’t ever seem to materialize. He got the support of 70 of 100 GOP House members in a pre-vote caucus, and then was easily elected to another term by the whole House. Meanwhile, in Oregon, an unusual power-sharing arrangement was cobbled together with a surprising degree of civility and equanimity, as the parties figure out how to grapple with a never-before 30-30 tie. GOPer Bruce Hanna and Dem Arnie Roblan will be co-speakers, handing the gavel to each other on alternating days.

Special elections: Two southern states have special elections scheduled today, although there should be very little drama in any of the elections, as these are Republican-leaning districts replacing promoted Republican legislators in lightly-contested races (and icy conditions should reduce turnout to microscopic levels). In Mississippi, the races are to replace Alan Nunnelee in SD-6 and Steven Palazzo in HD-116. (With a recent party switch by state Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith, the GOP is poised to tie the state Senate with today’s election.) In Virginia, the races are to replace Robert Hurt in SD-19 and Morgan Griffith in HD-8.

Primaries: In a nice bit of symmetry, two states are going in very different directions with their primary election rules. In Idaho, where the GOP seems fearful of meddling in its primaries by the state’s Democrat (I think his name is Jerry), the state GOP is pushing to change from open primaries to closed primaries. Meanwhile, in Louisiana, after a period of closed primaries for federal-level offices (which was extremely confusing, since they kept using open primaries for state offices), they’re expecting federal approval of a switch back to all open primaries this month. The state legislature has already approved it, but as a VRA state, they’re waiting for DOJ preclearance.

Redistricting: Finally, here’s some redistricting news. Bob McDonnell has thrown a bone to fans of redistricting reform with the creation of a new redistricting commission with 11 members. It’s not a very interesting bone, though, since the commission’s role is purely advisory and the commission doesn’t even have a budget. Meanwhile, the Hill looks at what might happen to the House districts in New Jersey, a state where the hard work is actually done by commission (which has traditionally focused on incumbent protection, but has to eliminate one seat this year). For now, everyone is waiting for more complete Census figures to see if the population stagnation was more concentrated in the state’s north (which would probably hit the Dems) or the state’s middle (which would hit the GOP).

SSP Daily Digest: 1/12

CA-Sen, CA-Gov: There have been rumors about this before that didn’t pan out, but based on the amount of chatter out there, it’s seeming very likely all of a sudden: ex-Rep. Tom Campbell sounds poised to drop his gubernatorial bid (where he’s been polling well, but is way financially outgunned) and move over to the Senate race. He sounds likely to announce this on Thursday, seeing as how he has said he will be appearing at a Los Angeles County GOP event then, but “not as a candidate for Governor.” Weirdly, this could wind up helping Assemblyman Chuck DeVore in the Senate primary, as Campbell was one of three ostensible moderates (with no right-winger) in the Governor’s race, but now Campbell and Carly Fiorina will be splitting the moderate vote in the Senate primary, potentially letting ultra-conservative DeVore crash the gate.

FL-Sen: Marco Rubio has been winning his fair share of county GOP straw polls lately, but this one was more eagerly awaited than most, because it’s Charlie Crist’s home county. Rubio continues his winning streak, winning the straw poll in moderate-leaning Pinellas County (home of St. Petersburg) by a 106-54 margin.

IL-Sen: This seems like a good get for David Hoffman, as he seeks to make up some ground on Alexi Giannoulias in the Senate primary: he got the Dem primary endorsements of both Chicago’s major papers, the Tribune and Sun-Times (although getting the endorsement of the more conservative and anti-machine Tribune doesn’t seem odd for Hoffman, given his reformist message). On the GOP side, Rep. Mark Kirk got an endorsement from one of his fellow moderates from the state delegation, downstate Rep. Timothy Johnson.

MA-Sen: If you were thinking, in the wake of a couple good polls in Massachusetts, that it was safe to unbuckle your seatbelt and resume walking around the cabin, guess again. Republican state Sen. Scott Brown, taking a page from the Paulists, used the one-day “moneybomb” technique to good effect, raking in $1.1 million and basically ensuring he’ll be able to stay on the air up until Election Day. Brown has yet another TV spot up on the air, in response to Coakley’s first negative ad; Brown‘s firing back with the ol’ “tsk, tsk on you for going negative” approach. Between the contradictory polls, Brown’s fundraising, and other signs of life (like a Boston Herald endorsement for Brown – although that’s not a surprise from the conservative Herald), the Beltway Dems have decided to leave nothing to chance, and are getting more involved, as the DNC is sending in some ground troops, and the DSCC is ponying up for $567K for more ad time for Coakley – meaning, in its own way, that the GOP already won a moral victory here by getting the DSCC to pry open its checkbook.

NH-Sen: I don’t know if anyone really cares one lick about what former Vice-President Dan Quayle is up to these days, but he popped up long enough to endorse Ovide Lamontagne in the GOP Senate primary in New Hampshire. Meanwhile, wealthy businessman Bill Binnie is tapping his own personal money to get a head start on the ad wars in the NH primary, with an introductory bio spot.

NV-Sen: For a while there, it was looking like Harry Reid was even starting to have some trouble within his caucus, as Russ Feingold publicly criticized Reid yesterday over his insensitive language regarding Barack Obama, wondering out loud if he should continue as Majority Leader. Feingold dialed it back a little today, though, saying that he supports Reid staying on it that role. With Chris Cillizza today joining many other pundits in wondering if the fork is ready to be stuck in Reid, there comes word (buried in a longer Politico story), via anonymous sources, of a “a whisper campaign in Nevada that it would be possible for him to step aside and find someone else who could win.”

NY-Sen-B: Ex-Rep. Harold Ford Jr. is beating the Senate drum a little louder today, saying in a New York Post (interesting choice of venue) that he’s “strongly considering” the race. In an interview with Chris Mathews, he also had his version of the “Ich bin ein Berliner” moment, enunciating that “I am a New Yorker, I am a New Yorker.” (Although I believe, in the local dialect, that’s pronounced “Hey! I’m a fuggin’ New Yorker here already, now step off!”)

MA-Gov (pdf): Hot on the heels of the MA-Gov poll from the Boston Globe comes another one from PPP, part of its MA-Sen sample. Their sample finds incumbent Dem Deval Patrick in slightly worse position than the Globe (with an awful 22/59 approval), although he’s still in the lead. Interestingly, this poll also sees the Republicans in much better shape than the Globe did, as independent candidate Tim Cahill slouches into third place here. Patrick leads GOPer Charlie Baker and Cahill 29-27-21, while in a Patrick/Cahill/Christy Mihos three-way, Cahill moves into second with a 28-25-21 outcome. (This certainly points to the composition difference between the PPP sample, which may have overweighted Republicans, and the Globe/UNH sample, which may have overweighted Democrats. The Senate special election results may give us a clue which of these MA-Gov polls is closer.) PPP also tested Democratic SoS William Galvin as a replacement for Patrick, finding little difference, with a 26-26-18 race among Galvin, Baker, and Cahill, and a 26-22-20 race among Galvin, Cahill, and Mihos.

MN-Gov: The Republican field in the Minnesota governor’s race may actually be dwindling down into the single digits, as things sort themselves out. Former Auditor Pat Anderson is dropping her gubernatorial bid, and instead is looking at a return to her old job. She’ll be running against Democratic incumbent Rebecca Otto, who unseated Anderson in 2006.

RI-Gov: Things are getting pretty dire for the Reupblicans in Rhode Island, where former Cranston mayor (and 2006 Senate primary candidate) Stephen Laffey decided for the second time that he isn’t going to run for Governor. With businessman Rory Smith’s dropout, the GOP still has nobody here, although salvation may be coming in the form of current Gov. Don Carcieri’s communications director, John Robitaille, who is filling the gap by filing as a candidate. (Robitaille’s only political experience is losing a state Rep. race in 2006.) Meanwhile, Josh Goodman has been wondering if independent candidate Lincoln Chafee, while a former Republican, might actually run to the left of the Democrat in this race (telegraphed by his statements on possible tax hikes). A local consultant tells Goodman that Chafee may in fact get labor backing on the race, perhaps depending on which Dem Chafee faces. (Chafee might get labor support if he’s against Treasurer Frank Caprio, although the more liberal AG Patrick Lynch would probably have a lock on labor support if he survives the Dem primary.)

LA-02: The prospect is lessening for a free-for-all Democratic primary in New Orleans for what’s likely to be an easy race to defeat GOP incumbent Rep. Joe Cao. State Rep. Cedric Richmond seems to be locking down establishment support as a consensus candidate here, and that was underscored by an endorsement from former Sen. John Breaux. Fellow state Rep. Juan LaFonta is still in the primary, but state Rep. Karen Carter Peterson (who took Bill Jefferson to a runoff in 2006) is running for state Senate instead of LA-02, and none of Richmond’s 2008 primary opponents seem to be getting in the race.

PA-06: After earlier vows that he wouldn’t get out the GOP primary in the 6th despite the re-entry of incumbent Rep. Jim Gerlach, yesterday state Rep. Curt Schroder saw the fundraising-related handwriting on the wall and got out of the race. With former Revenue Secretary Howard Cohen and Lower Merion Twp. Commissioner Scott Zelov already having stood down, that leaves only self-funder Steven Welch and several some-dudes in Gerlach’s way.  

RI-01: Maybe he’s been comparing notes with Jim Traficant on how to restart your political career after spending several years in prison. Republican former Providence mayor Buddy Cianci, fresh off of four and a half years in jail over criminal acts while mayor, is now considering a challenge to Rep. Patrick Kennedy.

VA-09: Despite having dodged a bullet with state Del. Terry Kilgore deciding against a run, Rep. Rick Boucher may still have to avoid some incoming fire in November. The state House’s majority leader, Morgan Griffith, said he’s “considering” the race and may get in if someone stronger doesn’t. (Since the only other person who’s probably stronger is state Sen. William Wampler Jr., and it doesn’t sound like he’ll run in the 9th, as he’s probably banking on a Republican takeover of the state Senate soon, in which case he’d become Finance chair, it may in fact fall to Griffith.) Griffith does have one slight problem: he doesn’t live in the 9th, although he’s apparently within walking distance of the district lines.

FL-CFO: Florida Democrats finally found a CFO candidate to help round out their slate of candidates: former state Rep. Loranne Ausley, who decided on a CFO run and ended her state Senate bid. The bigger implication is that state Sen. Al Lawson – who’s flirted off and on with a CFO bid – is probably staying for good in the FL-02 primary now. (Interestingly, Ausley, like Lawson, hails from the Tallahassee area.)

OH-Auditor: Buzz in Ohio is that incumbent Mary Taylor (the only statewide Republican right now) is going to drop a bid for another term as Auditor and run as John Kasich’s running mate for Lt. Governor instead. This probably strengthens Kasich’s bid against incumbent Dem Ted Strickland… but an open Auditor seat is also good news for the Dems, as Hamilton Co. Commissioner David Pepper was already running a strong race against Taylor. Remember that the Auditor is one of the seats on Ohio’s state legislative redistricting board, so an Auditor pickup would compensate there for a loss at Governor or SoS (but not both).

MT-St. Sen.: The Missoulian has a very early look at prospects in the state legislature in Montana. Because of the open seat situation in the Senate, Democrats might have a shot at retaking that body (the GOP controls 27-23). Of the 25 seats up this year, 16 are held by Republicans and 9 by Democrats, with a total of 15 of the 25 being open seats.

VA-St. Sen.: Two special elections are on tap for tonight, one of which is very interesting. The 37th, a swingy area in suburban Fairfax County, was left vacant by new Republican AG Ken Cuccinelli; it’s being contested by Democratic Del. Dave Marsden and Republican former Fairfax Co. School Board member Steve Hunt. There are echoes of the gubernatorial race here, as Marsden is running a moderate-enough campaign that he may be at risk of losing the base’s interest, while Hunt is trying to downplay controversial social conservative remarks from his past. Hunt has an internal poll showing him up, and Dem enthusiasm may still be down thanks to the post-Creigh Deeds hangover, so the GOP seems poised to eke this one out, helping them to keep holding the Dems to a narrow 21-19 edge in the Senate. The other race is in the solid-red 8th in Virginia Beach, where GOP businessman Jeff McWaters should have little problem beating Democratic Bill Fleming to replace Republican Ken Stolle, who just became Virginia Beach Sheriff.

NRCC: The NRCC bumped up four more challengers in their “Young Guns” framework today, most prominently a move to “Contender” (the 2nd of three tiers) for Jim Renacci, challenging Rep. John Boccieri in OH-16. Also entering at the lowest level (“On the Radar”) are former FBI agent Mike Grimm, running in NY-13, state Sen. Dan Debicella, running in CT-04, and state Rep. John Loughlin, running in RI-01 against Rep. Patrick Kennedy. That last entry may seem like the longest of long shots; it may in fact be more of a deterrent by the NRCC to keep Buddy Cianci (see above) from running here, and the accompanying bad PR that would go with that.

Redistricting: Martin Frost’s former CoS, Matt Angle, is the center of Democratic efforts to un-gerrymander Texas’s House map after the 2010 census. Roll Call looks in depth at how he’s built a complex fundraising network that’s primarily aimed at Democratic gains in the state House (where they are down only 77-73), so Dems can get a better share of the four seats Texas is expected to add.

Grant money: People with a professional interest in studying Congress might want to apply for research grants available from the Dirksen Congressional Center. It sounds particularly oriented toward graduate students and fellows, but I’m sure some of SSP’s readership fits that bill.

SSP Daily Digest: 12/1

MA-Sen: Rep. Michael Capuano picked up several more endorsements in the special election primary to succeed Ted Kennedy, although the clock is ticking loudly on trying to make up that last bit of ground against AG Martha Coakley. He got the endorsement of the Boston Herald (Boston’s smaller daily) and also fellow Rep. Ed Markey, who had seemed a likely candidate initially.

NJ-Sen: With a Republican moving into Drumthwacket (sorry, I just like saying “Drumthwacket”) for four years and Sen. Frank Lautenberg not getting any younger (at 85), Democratic Assembly whip John McKeon has introduced legislation that would change the way that Senate vacancies are filled in New Jersey. Under current law, a governor can opt either to make a temporary appointment or call a special election. The proposed law, however, would require the governor to appoint a replacement within 30 days and it would need to be someone from the same political party as the departed officeholder. The temporary appointment would continue until the next general election.

IA-Gov: His entry to the race provoked a lot of interest back when the rest of the field was just assorted wingnuts, but with the entry of ex-Gov. Terry Branstad, there wasn’t much room for young businsessman Christian Fong. He suspended his campaign today.

MI-Gov: Lansing mayor Virg Bernero has been on some people’s wish list for a gubernatorial candidate, in light of the rather underwhelming Democratic field in Michigan. It sounds like Bernero has been hearing those calls (and noticing the polls showing Lt. Gov. John Cherry not only badly losing the general but not even summoning up much interest in the Dem primary), as now he says that he’s switching from “very unlikely” to “seriously considering” a race in the last few weeks.

OR-Gov: This is the kind of thing that can put a big crimp in your newly-launched gubernatorial campaign. Initiative kingpin (and 1998 gubernatorial loser) Bill Sizemore just got charged with tax evasion for failure to file state tax returns for the previous three years. Although the state has known about this failure for more than a year, the timing may have more to do with the recent expiration of Sizemore’s amnesty period to file rather than his announcement last week of his intention to run for governor again.

PA-Gov: Allegheny Co. Executive Dan Onorato isn’t well-known outside the Pittsburgh area, so he’s been focusing his early efforts on the Philadelphia area. He’s gotten a boost with endorsements from several prominent Democratic legislators in Montgomery and Chester Counties: state Sens. Daylin Leach and Andy Dinniman, and just yesterday, state Rep. Michael Gerber.

CA-03: The once-crowded Democratic field in the 3rd, to go up against vulnerable GOP Rep. Dan Lungren, has gotten whittled down to one. Bill Slaton, an executive with Sacramento’s municipal public utility, dropped out and endorsed Ami Bera. With Elk Grove city councilor Gary Davis also having dropped out a few months ago, Bera has a clear shot; Bera, the former Sacramento County Chief Medical Officer, has been going gangbusters on the fundraising front, sitting on $586K (more than Lungren has). Slaton had loaned himself $300K but hadn’t seemed to make much progress beyond that.

FL-10, FL-12: Two Democratic challengers who have favorable circumstances (an aging incumbent who’s barely fundraising in the 10th, an open seat in the 12th) but haven’t gotten far at fundraising yet are getting a boost on the money front. Iowa Rep. Bruce Braley is hosting a Tampa fundraiser for state Sen. Charlie Justice, while Debbie Wasserman Schultz and Allen Boyd are hosting a DC fundraiser for Polk Co. Elections Supervisor Lori Edwards (although perception-wise, it’s probably not good that it’s being held in a lobbyist’s office).

MN-01: Another Republican challenger showed up to take on sophomore Rep. Tim Walz in Minnesota’s rural 1st. Unlike former state Rep. Allen Quist (who was at his peak in the 90s), Randy Demmer is a current state Rep.

NH-02: State Rep. John DeJoie, who’s been expected to run, made official that he’s getting into the open seat race for the 2nd on the Democratic side. DeJoie has been a firefighter in Concord for 14 years; he joins attorney Ann McLane Kuster and may also be joined by Katrina Swett.

NJ-03: Jon Runyan might want to be spending the next few months working on his message discipline instead of playing for the Chargers. Runyan, shortly after announcing that he’d be running against freshman Democratic Rep. John Adler after the football season, turned around and told San Diego reporters that he hadn’t committed to the race yet and was exploring his options. Runyan’s spokesperson then corrected Runyan, saying he’s definitely in the race, and bafflingly said that the latter comment was made “in jest.”

PA-06: The Republican field in the open seat race in the 6th just keeps growing; the fifth entrant is Patrick Sellers, a former Republican committeeman. Sellers is apparently a Paulist, and made his announcement at a Philadelphia “End the Fed” rally. He joins state Rep. Curt Schroder, pharma exec Steven Welch, Chester Co. Recorder of Deeds Ryan Costello, and long-ago state Revenue Secretary Howard Cohen.

PA-19: It’s not clear yet whether Rep. Todd Platts is even going to get chosen as head of the GAO, but Republicans are already lining up to take over his dark-red seat if he does. Roll Call lists a bunch of ’em, starting with state Rep. Scott Perry, who’s already making his interest public. Eyes are also on one of Platts’ 2000 primary opponents, York County Commissioner Chris Reilly. The article also lists a slew of other possible state legislators and county officials.

NH-St. Sen.: Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty really, really wants to do lots of favors for the good people of New Hampshire, and he’s starting by hosting a fundraising event for Republicans in its state Senate, who are currently down 14-10 in that chamber. Interestingly, ex-Rep. Jeb Bradley (who downshifted to the state Senate) is on the host committee and a key recipient of the help, which may lead to the question of whether he’s looking for leverage for trying something bigger again in the future.

KY-St. Sen.: Here’s a positive tea leaf as we head into the home stretch on the special election in the Bardstown-based SD-14 next week (one of the two seats strategically excised of its Republican occupants by Democratic governor Steve Beshear): Democratic former state Rep. Jodie Haydon has raised more than four times the funds as Republican state Rep. Jimmy Higdon ($546K for Haydon, including in-kind contributions from the state Dems, vs. $131K for Higdon). Much of Haydon’s money is coming from the horse industry, which has fallen squarely behind the Dems in recent months as state Democrats seek to allow video slots at horsetracks (something Higdon and most local GOPers oppose). A Dem pickup here would cut the GOP advantage in the state Senate to 19-18 (with one GOP-leaning indie).

VA-St. Sen.: The special election to fill two vacant, formerly GOP-held state Senate seats has been set for Jan. 12. The race to take over the heavily Republican SD-8 in Virginia Beach (vacated by new Virginia Beach Sheriff Ken Stolle) doesn’t look to be very interesting; only two Republicans have signed up for it so far. Dems may have a shot at a pickup in the swingy SD-37 in Fairfax County, vacated by new AG Ken Cuccinelli. Democratic state Del. David Marsden has confirmed that he’ll run for the promotion. Dems have a narrow 21-19 edge in the Senate, which they’d like to pad in case incoming Gov. Bob McDonnell attempts any Beshear-style poaching.

Mayors: The Atlanta mayoral runoff is tonight, between white city councilor Mary Norwood and African-American former state Sen. Kasim Reed. (The one public poll of the race gave Reed a small edge.) Norwood’s final ad, and the final debate, point to how the runoff has gotten racially fraught as it comes to a close. There are also four legislative runoff elections scattered around Georgia tonight, although two are Dem/Dem and one is GOP/GOP. The remaining one, in HD-141 in Milledgeville, is between independent Rusty Kidd and Democrat Darrell Black.

Redistricting: Dave’s Redistricting App is starting to add partisan political data (the 2008 presidential election results). First up is Maryland. Give it a whirl, and leave your feedback in Dave’s diary. (D)

Redistricting fans may also want to head over to CQ today, where long pieces by both Bob Benenson and Greg Giroux give an overview of where the fireworks will be in the coming few years.

SSP Daily Digest: 11/13

FL-Sen: Here’s a big score for Marco Rubio, who’s quickly cementing himself as darling for the conservative movement. He got the keynote address at CPAC’s 2010 gathering, the conservative movement’s version of Lollapalooza. Charlie Crist‘s response? Re-flip-flop on the stimulus! Today he said it was “pretty clear” he did support it at the time. The civil war in Florida is also resulting in a larger spotlight being shone on state party chair (and key Crist ally) Jim Greer, who’s the subject of an interesting (and very critical) Miami Herald piece.

KY-Sen: A strange kerfuffle erupted in the GOP primary in Kentucky, when Rand Paul earlier this week declined to promise to support Mitch McConnell for minority leader in the face of a hypothetical leadership challenge by Jim DeMint. Paul’s rival, SoS Trey Grayson, pledged fealty to McConnell and attacked Paul for being more beholden to his “Libertarian donor base” than his fellow Kentuckians. Then, yesterday, Paul met privately with McConnell in Louisville, and after having had his brain implant installed a productive conversation, emerged filled with praise for McConnell and saying he had “no reason not to support him.”

MA-Sen (pdf): Another poll from local pollsters Suffolk give a big lead to AG Martha Coakley, who’s pulling in 44% of the Democratic primary vote. She’s trailed by Stephen Pagliuca at 17, Rep. Michael Capuano at 16, and Alan Khazei at 3. (Coakley was at 47 and Capuano at 9 in September according to Suffolk.) Also, there appears to be one route to victory for Republican state Sen. Scott Brown: make sure that Alan Khazei somehow wins the primary. Brown beats Khazei 33-30, while losing 58-27 to Coakley, 48-29 to Capuano, and 49-27 to Pagliuca. (Brown leads perennial candidate Jack E. Robinson 45-7 in the GOP primary.)

Meanwhile, Capuano got another endorsement from among the ranks of his House colleagues, this one pretty high-profile: Nancy Pelosi. Pagliuca, on the other hand, is trying to dig out of his self-created hole, when he “misunderstood” a debate question and said that he supports reinstating a military draft.

AL-Gov: Agriculture Commissioner Ron Sparks seems to have hit on an issue that differentiates him from Rep. Artur Davis in their Democratic gubernatorial primary fight: health care reform. Davis voted against it (seemingly earning him the sudden enmity of the entire netroots), and now Sparks has been loudly touting the public option, as he did at an appearance before the Madison County Democratic Women yesterday.

CO-Gov: State Senate minority leader Josh Penry thumbed his nose rather unsubtly at ex-Rep. Scott McInnis as he departed the governor’s primary race, saying in a recent interview that not only was he not endorsing McInnis, but also that he still felt that he would be the better candidate. Is he heading for a Tom Tancredo endorsement instead? (After all, Tancredo did a lot to boost Penry’s campaign.) We can only hope.

IL-Gov: State GOP chair (and would-be Mark Kirk antagonist) Andy McKenna got a substantial boost in his quest for the GOP gubernatorial nomination. He got the endorsement of Tom Cross, the state House minority leader.

MD-Gov: Republican ex-Gov. Bob Ehrlich seems to be giving more weight to the idea of a rematch against Martin O’Malley, if recent comments to the press are any indication. The Republican gubernatorial victories in Virginia and New Jersey may be giving him some added incentive.

TX-Gov: A new Rasmussen poll finds Gov. Rick Perry opening up a big lead over Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison in the Republican gubernatorial primary: 45-36, with 4% to Paulist Debra Medina. This is a big reversal from September’s Rasmussen poll, which gave KBH a 40-38 edge. Hutchison is still racing to the right, as she said that she’d be likely to try to opt out of the public option as governor, but Perry is leading that race too, cheerfully let us know that Barack Obama is “hell-bent on taking America towards a socialist country.”

DE-AL: State Rep. Greg Lavelle, one of the names dropped by Rep. Mike Castle as suggestions for a successor, said that he won’t take on the uphill task of trying to hold Castle’s seat. Businessman Fred Cullis is the only Republican running so far.

NC-11: Rep. Heath Shuler’s role in a 2007 land swap has the potential to hurt him next year. The Tennessee Valley Authority’s inspector general cleared him of wrongdoing in the matter (as did the House Ethics committee), but the TVA is saying that Shuler wasn’t honest to the press about it, when he said that there hadn’t been any contact between himself and the TVA.

NY-23: Although there’s nothing to suggest that Doug Hoffman is in a place where he can catch up to Bill Owens, it’ll still be a while till the election can be certified — possibly not till early next month. (Unfortunately, this means putting off the final results of our predictions contest from last week! We’ll keep you posted.)

SC-04: Republican Rep. Bob Inglis keeps backing away from his party’s right wing (and probably away from his job, in his dark-red district). He said that he can’t “identify” with what we called the “hard right.” Interestingly, he still identifies as “religious right,” but seems to counterpose that against the teabaggers’ movement, also saying: “As a religious right guy, I’m thinking there was a guy named Jesus who had some things to say about these kinds of concepts. And I don’t want to live in a society that lets a few test cases die on the steps of the hospital. I can’t go there.”

VA-St. Sen.: The Democrats still control the Virginia state Senate (thanks to none of its seats being in the balance in the election last week), but it’s a fragile 21-19 edge. Especially troublesome: 83-year-old Charles Colgan only reluctantly ran for reelection in 2007, Ralph Northam considered flipping to the Republicans earlier this year, and now Bob McDonnell seems interested in taking a page from Steve Beshear and Eliot Spitzer by appointing Senate Dems to cushy jobs in his administration. On the plus side, though, there are two special elections coming up, to replace Republicans who were elected to other positions last week. The seat of Ken Stolle (new Virginia Beach sheriff) is pretty Republican-leaning, but new AG Ken Cuccinelli’s seat in Democratic-leaning Fairfax County is a potential pickup.

Redistricting: This is interesting; Republicans keep pushing to make redistricting fairer in Indiana, despite that they’ll control the process coming out of the next census. SoS Todd Rokita has already pushed for laws to make it a more neutral process, and now state Senate President Pro Tem David Long is pushing for an independent commission to draw legislative boundaries.

Votes: Here’s a first: Republicans actually regretting doing something wrong. They’re privately saying that they “failed to anticipate” the political consequences of a no vote on the Franken amendment, that leaves them exposed to charges of insensitivity to rape victims and hands ammo to Democrats. (Well, maybe that’s more regretting getting caught, rather than regretting doing something wrong…)

OFA: Organizing for America is firing up the Batsignal, summoning volunteers on the ground in 32 districts that were won by Obama but are held by House Republicans. The plan is for the volunteers to visit the Reps’ offices and demand support for health care reform.