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The news is out on Swing State Project: Raul Martinez and Joe Garcia have made the list of South Florida candidates-to-back by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. Read it here.
MORE in the body. Crossposted from

Now, what does this mean? They will raise more money to continue waging strong campaigns against the Diaz-Balart brothers, Lincoln in FL-21 and Mario in FL-25, facing Raul Martinez and Joe Garcia, respectively.

And once again it will put the spotlight on our invulnerable Democratic U.S. Reps. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (FL-20) and Kendrick Meek (FL-17) as to whether they will get wholeheartedly on the team and campaign for their fellow Democrats. (If you don't know the background on this, pop back to some of the posts starting in March on this blog and read up.)

This Red-to-Blue development was entirely predictable when this all started, so I'm wondering still why the Democratic incumbents were so categorical in their refusals to be on the team.

I also suspect that Garcia and Martinez are doing well partly because Barack Obama is doing better and better in Florida -- the coattail effect already showing up. See this morning that Obama is leading McCain in Florida in a fresh Quinnipiac poll -- and that was probably taken before McCain started talking about drilling for oil spills off Florida's coast.

   With strong support from women, blacks and younger voters, Illinois Sen. Barack Obama, the apparent Democratic presidential contender, leads Arizona Sen. John McCain, expected to be the Republican candidate, among likely voters in Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania, according to simultaneous Quinnipiac University Swing State polls released today.

This is against all received wise opinion a few months ago. Open your minds, folks.

Now we have to keep working to get Annette Taddeo (FL-18) on the Red to Blue list and take out my congresswoman, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen.

Originally posted to Larry Thorson on Wed Jun 18, 2008 at 07:40 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Time to donate (4+ / 0-)

    to these fine Democratic candidates, Annette Taddeo, Joe Garcia and Raul Martinez.

  •  Florida is going BLUE (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    and these candidates may have some reverse coattail effects on the presidential race.

  •  Some notes on these districts (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    District: FL-18
    Location Miami and a narrow strip along the Atlantic north and south of there
    Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R)
    First elected  1989
    2006 margin 62-38
    2004 margin 65-35
    Bush margin 2004 54-46
    Notes on opponents Neither recent opp raised $100K
    Current opponents Annette Tadeo
    Demographics 16th most Latinos (62.7%)
    Assessment Vulnerable.  Taddeo should give Ros-Lehtinen a run for her money.

    District: FL-21
    Location This one is shaped like a ?.  Folks, to appreciate southern FL districting, you really have to look at a map.  Gerry would be proud of these guys, but the Republicans may have overdone it, as they now have several vulnerable seats.
    Representative Lincoln Diaz-Balart (R)
    First elected  1992
    2006 margin 59-41
    2004 margin 73-27 (against a Libertarian)
    Bush margin 2004 57-43
    Notes on opponents No money
    Current opponents :
    Raul Martinez (obviously not a finished web site)
    Richard Allbriton
    Demographics 8th most Latinos (69.7%)
    Assessment Vulnerable.  From all accounts, Martinez makes this one highly competitive

    District: FL-25
    Location Southern end of Florida
    Representative Mario Diaz-Balart (R)
    First elected  2002
    2006 margin 58-42
    2004 margin unopposed
    Bush margin 2004 56-44
    Notes on opponents no money
    Current opponents Joe Garcia
    Demographics 17th most Latinos (62.4%), 16th fewest veterans (6%)
    Assessment Vulnerable

  •  Blue Florida! Yes We Can... (0+ / 0-)

    This means I might be able to live in a progressive state...


  •  Changing Miami-Dade (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    This is going to help bring changes at all levels.

    Thank you, DCCC, for realizing that these districts can be won and for putting money into parts of Miami-Dade where many Democrats have felt abandoned.

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