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Leading Off:

PA-12, PA-17: The biggest news from Pennsylvania's primaries on Tuesday night may be the losses of two different Blue Dog Democratic House members: Jason Altmire in PA-12 and Tim Holden in PA-17. Altmire lost to fellow member Mark Critz by a 54-46 margin; the two of them were forced into the same southwest Pennsylvania district by a Republican-drawn map. The majority of redrawn PA-12 is on Altmire's turf, but Critz managed to eke out the victory thanks to aggressive labor backing and huge turnout in his own smaller portion of the district (in the Johnstown area). Critz is no liberal either, but is considered more labor-friendly than Altmire.

The other loss was Holden in the 17th, which was redrawn dramatically to be a Democratic vote sink for the cities of northeastern Pennsylvania. Holden has had great success fending off Republican challengers in GOP-leaning districts for the last few decades, but ran out of luck when put into a Dem-leaning district and facing an opponent from the left. (Also a big problem for Holden: less than a quarter of his new constituents were in his old district, so he was effectively a blank slate to most of them. His opponent, Matt Cartwright, is a well-known local trial lawyer in the Scranton area, and may have actually had the name rec advantage despite not having an incumbency advantage.)

Other highlights from last night: Rich guy Tom Smith, as expected, was the winner of the Republican Senate primary. He's a serious underdog against Democratic Sen. Bob Casey Jr. in November. State Rep. Scott Perry won the open seat primary in the safely-GOP PA-04 (vacated by retiring Todd Platts), and is a shoo-in in November. Rep. Tim Murphy easily turned back a tea party-fueled challenge from Evan Feinberg in the GOP primary in PA-18. And in the Democratic primary for the Pennsylvania Attorney General's race, netroots fave and former Rep. Patrick Murphy lost to prosecutor Kathleen Kane, ending his comeback bid.


FL-Sen: I really have a hard time believing this.  Connie Mack was interviewed by Chuck Todd, who thought it'd be a good idea to get Mack on the record on the student loan bill that's currently being debated.  Mack had other ideas.

Connie Mack: Well, look, again, I think what is happening in the state of Florida, if you don’t mind, Chuck, I want to talk about what’s happening here in the state of Florida.

CM: Wait, wait, wait, what I’m telling you in the state of Florida during this Senate campaign people are concerned about their homes and jobs. That is the issue …

CM: Well, we’ll take it – when the vote comes up, we’ll cast that vote, but I’m telling you that people who are watching your program today and if they’re in Florida, what they’re concerned about is jobs…

CM: We will absolutely be able to cast a vote, and when that happens we’ll be happy to do so.

Yes, he declined to respond when asked four times about it.  One may wonder what state his campaign is in while he flails about under questioning from Florida Republicans.
Mack didn't specifically answer a question about whether character should matter including his own past run-ins with the law decades ago.

"Raise your hand who wrote that?" Mack joked. "The mudslinging and name calling and dividing of the party we are beyond that. This is a distraction away from our real goal which is to beat Senator Nelson."

And there’s one more area where Mack doesn’t want to be answering questions: Facing a question at that same Broward County GOP event, Mack defensively refused to release his travel logs.
Mack, who is married to California Rep. Mary Bono Mack, was asked how much time he spends in California and whether he’d release travel logs.

“You think this is a loaded question?” Mack began. “Look, first of all, I’m very proud of my wife. She serves in the United States Congress and she does it very, very well. And this isn’t the first time I’ve heard this question. But I’ll tell you this. Typically — not all the time — typically this comes from my political opponents who would like to try to make an issue about where I live. I know it drives people crazy but I was born and raised right here in the state of Florida. This is my home. When I’m not in Washington I come back home. This is where I live. This is where my parents are. This is where my kids are. So this is an attempt by political opponents to try to make an issue that just doesn’t exist.”

(James Allen)

IL-Sen: Republican Sen. Mark Kirk's office released the first photo of the senator since his serious stroke several months ago, and he is looking pretty good.

Here is the full release from Richard L. Harvey, medical director of the institute:

"Sen. Kirk remains fully engaged in all aspects of his rehabilitation program. He is mentally sharp, and meets with his staff nearly every day to discuss policy issues and global current events. Sen. Kirk is working very hard in daily therapy sessions to increase his strength and mobility, and has walked more than 10 miles in total since his arrival at RIC. In addition he is climbing stairs and getting in and out of vehicles. We are quite pleased with his ongoing recovery."

Get well soon, Senator. (SaoMagnifico)

ME-Sen: Olympia Snowe may finally be coming to the rescue for Democrats, at least indirectly.  The Maine Senator has said she'll use her reported $2.36 million in the bank

to support "like-minded" candidates, a center to give "a national voice" to the "sensible center" and an institute to promote Maine women leaders.
She did not commit to donating her funds to Republican candidates in Maine running to succeed her or for other offices.  For his part, the state Republican Party chair Charlie Webster says he understands why she wouldn't want to give her money to her party, as many of her donors "would not necessarily give to the Republican Party." (James Allen)

MO-Sen: Democratic incumbent Claire McCaskill only narrowly won in the Democratic wave year of 2006.  On paper, this should be a big pick-up opportunity for Republicans, but the GOP hasn't seemed to settle on a candidate between Rep. Todd Akin, ex-Treasurer Sarah Steelman, and "businessman John Brunner."  But the latter just got what might be a very big endorsement: The United States Chamber of Commerce, which (via the A.P.) "said Tuesday it's backing Brunner because his private-sector experience in cutting spending and balancing a budget could provide the greatest contrast with Democratic U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill."  

McCaskill's demonstrated significant fundraising advantages so far.  According to the FEC, she has $6,083,099 on hand, while Akin (the closest Republican) has $1,400,639 and Steelman has $599,073.  Brunner, meanwhile, raised $2,639,748, almost entirely from his own pocket ($2,242,614)--and spent most of it already, leaving him with only $225,173 on hand.  According to the Hill's story on the endorsement, "Polls show him running in third place."  Still, it’s unlikely that Brunner, or whoever the Republican candidate ends up being, will lack for the direct or indirect financial support necessary to be viable: According to the A.P. story, "The chamber already has been running TV ads against McCaskill and has vowed to remain involved through the November election."

So, it's unlikely the eventual Republican nominee in this race will be wanting for cash, which might incline some Republicans to cheer for former State Treasurer Sarah Steelman (who looks good on paper aside from her underwhelming fundraising). Just one problem: she's a complete and total doofus. When asked for her position on the Violence Against Women Act, Steelman fumbled bigtime, replying, “I’m not sure what that is because I’m not serving right now." (Here's a hint, Sarah: it has to do with violence against women.) That's a great sales pitch right there. "Vote for me or else I won't tell you my positions on the issues!" (Xenocrypt & sapelcovits)

NE-Sen: I have to admit, Nebraska Atty. Gen. Jon Bruning is a pretty impressive guy. The frontrunner for the Republican nomination to contest the seat of retiring Democratic Sen. Ben Nelson is demonstrating some amazing clairvoyant powers in his newest ad. Sure, the Supreme Court isn't expected to rule on the constitutionality of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (a.k.a. Obamacare) for another two months, but Bruning has seen into the future and divined for himself that the law is indeed unconstitutional. The ad doesn't mention Bruning's likely Democratic opponent, ex-Sen. Bob Kerrey, even once. Seems Bruning is perfectly content to run against President Barack Obama in blood-run Nebraska, at least for now.


NM-Sen: PPP finds little change in New Mexico's Senate race over the last half a year, with Democratic Rep. Martin Heinrich now leading Republican ex-Rep. Heather Wilson 48-43 (instead of 47-40). Wilson's considerably better-known than Heinrich, though, leaving her very little wiggle-room to break through to 50. Click the link for our full analysis of the poll. (David Jarman)

OH-Sen: More he-said she-said, this time in Ohio.  Tween idol and Ohio state treasurer Josh Mandel says he doesn't accept gifts, yet the Brown campaign notes that he's disclosed accepting many gifts over the years.

The Brown campaign notes that Mandel has listed more than 800 gifts in disclosure statements going as far back as 2005 -- a lot of gifts for a politician who says he doesn't take them.
The Mandel camp says the Brown camp is being ridiculous, the Brown camp says Mandel's claim is itself ridiculous.  I love politics. (James Allen)

UT-Sen: In a big disappointment for Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch, insurgent ex-state Sen. Dan Liljenquist managed to hold him below 60% at the Utah Republican Party convention on Sunday, forcing him into his first primary since 1978. And now Hatch's partner in the Beehive State's senatorial delegation, faux-libertarianish Republican Sen. Mike Lee, is declaring he won't endorse either Hatch or Liljenquist, nor will he publicly predict a winner in the race. If Lee's refusal to get in line behind his Senate colleague seems surprising, recall that Lee took the same path to the Senate that Liljenquist is now attempting -- though in 2010, he defeated then-Sen. Bob Bennett outright at the Republican convention, avoiding a primary against the senator. (SaoMagnifico)


FL-Gov: The Tampa Bay Times reports that Rick Scott not only reaffirmed his commitment to run for re-election, but said he'd not need to self-fund this time around.  Scott, who spent $73 million of his own funds on his 2010 campaign, has a 527 which raised $910K in the first quarter from a few big donors, including the Florida Optometric Association and Blue Cross Blue Shield.  Perhaps that shouldn't be surprising given Scott's background in health care. (James Allen)

NC-Gov: Looks like we finally have word on the size of the ad buys from Walter Dalton and Bob Etheridge as they head into the Democratic primary.  "Under the Dome" reports that Etheridge put up $188,000 for a buy first in Raleigh and Greensboro, then hitting Charlotte and Wilmington in the last week.  Dalton's spending $406K, though, "with most concentration in Wilmington and Greensboro."

And in the epic clash between Dalton and Etheridge, a new poll from PPP finds Dalton pulling into parity with the former congressman. Dalton now leads Etheridge 26-25, a statistically insignificant amount -- but a dramatic change from last month's Etheridge lead of 11 points. State Rep. Bill Faison trails at 5% in the poll. (James Allen & SaoMagnifico)

WA-Gov: I find the he-said she-said nature of this article hilarious.  So Democrats accuse Rob McKenna of trying to push reforms during the legislative session, that they say delayed the budget process.  This is how the article sums up what happened:

McKenna supported the maneuver by all 22 Republicans and three breakaway Democrats late in the regular session that pushed through an alternative budget. Murray questioned how McKenna, who has called for increased spending on education in his capacity as a gubernatorial candidate, could support a budget that cut public schools and colleges.
McKenna's camp denies the accusation, which may make sense, because as the article says, the delay in ending the session also delayed when he could begin fundraising again, since he couldn't raise money during the session.  And in fact, the McKenna camp accuses Democrats of holding up the session for that very purpose.  Ah, shenanigans. (James Allen)

WI-Gov: Tom Barrett has picked up an endorsement from the Wisconsin Professional Police Association, via the A.P./Wausau Daily Herald, which adds that "He and primary rival Kathleen Falk have been wrestling over union support. Falk has had the upper hand, winning endorsements from the AFL-CIO, the largest statewide public workers union, and the state’s largest teacher’s union." (Xenocrypt)


DCCC: Click through for 14 new additions to the DCCC's Red-to-Blue program. I won't list them all here, but it is worth pointing out that they have taken sides in AZ-01 (where they endorsed former Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick over Wenona Benally Baldenegro), CA-31 (Pete Aguilar over Justin Sungsup Kim), and NY-19 (Julian Schreibman over Joel Tyner). Granted, these were mostly pretty establishment picks to begin with.

In addition to the 12 candidates they endorsed, they also added two districts: AZ-09 (featuring a three-way primary between Kyrsten Sinema, David Schapira, and Andrei Cherny) and NY-18 (where Sean Patrick Maloney, Matt Alexander, and Rich Becker are competing for the right to take on freshman Rep. Nan Hayworth). (sapelcovits)

AZ-04: Oh boy, Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu's employees really love their boss! Or at least they appear to in Babeu's new ads, which you can see below:

The problem is, the Hatch Act slaps some serious limits on just how government workers can be involved in political campaigns, and the Office of Special Counsel is calling a supervisor's use of subordinates to mug for him in campaign ads "inherently coercive". Kinky!

Babeu, of course, is denying any wrongdoing, and a bunch of the people who were in the ads backed him up at a news conference. Of course, just because they agreed to do the ads doesn't mean the sheriff didn't potentially break the law if he asked them to help out. The Office of Special Counsel is investigating the matter, and Daily Kos Elections will keep track of this story. (SaoMagnifico)

CA-21: This one's about a week old, but the Fresno Bee managed to get a few quotes from Fresno City Councilman Blong Xiong, one of two Democrats vying for this open swing district in the Central Valley, on his first-quarter fundraising. Xiong nearly matched Republican rival David Valadao's fundraising despite only kicking off his campaign early last month, but much of his cash came from Hmong groups both in and out of the state. A fundraising excursion to Minnesota netted Xiong $25,000, and the candidate himself acknowledged he's picked "the low hanging fruit". I probably don't need to give advice, as Xiong has been to this rodeo before, but he's going to have to look beyond the Hmong-American network and start using some of those Spanish language skills to raise cash in the district if he wants to catch up with Valadao's overall cash edge. (SaoMagnifico)

FL-26: The good folks at Daily Kos Elections have been updating you on the saga of this South Florida district for a while now. Our fearless leader David Nir was happy to report earlier this month that Democrats found a candidate to take on ethically challenged Republican Rep. David Rivera in the personage of Gloria Romero Roses, a real estate developer from Southwest Ranches.

But with Roses barely in the race, angry rumbles are already surfacing from a frequent Democratic ally: the Service Employees International Union, which clashed with a condo development group while Roses was working on the group's behalf back in 2004. Now the director of the SEIU Local 32BJ is saying his union has "deep concerns about her candidacy." Maybe Roses and Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, whose recent entry into the Wisconsin gubernatorial recall race similarly elicited grumbling from local unions, can grab a beer together sometime. And seriously, can't we all just get along until after the election? Sheesh. (h/t ndrwmls10) (SaoMagnifico)

HI-02: Tulsi Gabbard got a nice nod for a Democratic primary: the Sierra Club, which also endorsed Mazie Hirono for Senate and Colleen Hanabusa in HI-01, via Hawaii News Now.  Meanwhile, "[Mufi Hannemann] received labor endorsements Sunday from the International Organization of Masters, Mates & Pilots and IBEW Local 1357. Hannemann has received endorsements from 22 labor organizations in the race." (Xenocrypt)

KY-04: Lewis County Judge-Executive Thomas Massie -- no relation to 1994 Democratic lieutenant governor nominee and 2012 blink-and-you-missed him Senate candidate Bob Massie of Massachusetts -- is getting a bit of good news in the form of a possible endorsement from Sen. Rand Paul. The famously contrarian Paul -- direct relation to libertarianish Rep. Ron Paul of Texas, who is the senator's father -- wasn't planning on endorsing, but evidently yesterday's endorsement of Massie rival Alecia Webb-Edgington by his predecessor in the Senate, Jim Bunning, is causing him to reconsider.

Even if the Paul endorsement isn't quite a fait accompli, Massie does have a new internal poll to smile over. Republican polling firm Wenzel Strategies gave Massie a 32-22 edge over Webb-Edgington in a survey conducted on behalf of the judge-executive. (SaoMagnifico)

MD-01: This race is probably well out of reach for us, since Republican Rep. (and Milhouse Van Houten lookalike) Andy Harris was strengthened considerably by redistricting, but Sen. Barbara Mikulski stumped for small business owner Wendy Rosen this past weekend at the Eastern Shore Democratic Summit. (SaoMagnifico)

MO-01: Russ Carnahan just got a boost in his primary against fellow Democratic Rep. Lacy Clay: two firefighters' unions (Local 73 in St. Louis City and Local 2665 in St. Louis County) have thrown their backing to Carnahan. (Carnahan, of course, elected to run here after Clay successfully lobbied for a map eliminating Carnahan's district.)

Despite these endorsements, Carnahan still faces an uphill battle here: not only does Clay have labor endorsements of his own (including AFL-CIO), but Clay also has a large advantage in currently representing 70% of the new district (to only 29% for Carnahan). Still, perhaps Carnahan's response to the firefighters' endorsements says it best:

"I'm not one to run away from a fire, either."

NC-08: Via the News and Observer's "Under the Dome" blog, Democratic incumbent Larry Kissell "was once again endorsed by the National Rifle Association." (Xenocrypt)

NC-11: You might recall that David Nir had some fun with 26-year-old Republican candidate Ethan Wingfield and his "hand-drawn" campaign ad. About a week ago, Ethan gave a response via his campaign's FB:

It’s too bad the folks over at Daily Kos would rather pick a fight over the stylistic elements of my ad than actually talk about the issues I’m raising. None of their angry rhetoric is going to make our $15 trillion debt go away or get 12 million unemployed people their jobs back. And if they want to pick a fight because my Christian faith makes me concerned about these issues, I say bring it on!
While picking fights with Daily Kos might not be the worst thing in a primary election, Ethan!  This is Daily Kos Elections.  Our job isn't to discuss policy, but (in part) to analyze the efficacy of campaign strategies, and your strange decision to go back to kindergarten-level technology in your ad seems relevant to that.  Also, David didn't go after your Christian faith--just your selective quotation thereof.  (Xenocrypt)

NJ-09: PolitickerNJ's Morning News Digest linked to a couple of long pieces that might be of interest.  This one's on the primary in NJ-09, and an interesting registration trend:

The neck-and-neck primary war between North Jersey's two entrenched Democratic congressmen has triggered an early explosion in new Passaic County voters to a level not seen since Barack Obama's 2008 presidential run spurred the highest turnout in election history….

The sudden spike traces to vigorous registration drives by the Pascrell campaign and a Newark-based Obama advocacy group.

In March, the congressman's aides brought in so many signed registrations — averaging several hundred a week — that staff at the county's elections office was forced to clock overtime to file what amounted to 3,567 new voters. That accounts for almost half of all new Passaic County registrations so far this election year. It's also about 1,000 more than in the March lead-up to the historic presidential election four years ago, according to voter records. An additional 1,553 have arrived this month, and about 3,300 still need to be processed.

Click through for still more, including counterarguments from one of Rothman's people. (Xenocrypt)

NJ-10: Powerful Assembly Speaker Sheila Oliver, the first black woman to lead New Jersey's lower house, has just formally thrown her backing to Donald Payne Jr. in his quest to succeed his late father in Congress. The two are buddy-buddy, and this endorsement doesn't come as a huge surprise, but it's especially significant not only due to Oliver's post but also the fact that she represents the same legislative district as another NJ-10 candidate, State Sen. Nia Gill. (In New Jersey, each legislative district elects one senator and two assemblypeople.) Gill, already somewhat of an underdog, could find herself in further trouble if Oliver flexes her political muscle on Payne's behalf. Nevertheless, whoever wins the Democratic primary is sure to go on to victory in November in this majority-black district. (sapelcovits)

NY-01: Ex-SEC prosecutor George Demos is playing the "electability" card against 2010 loser Randy Altschuler in the Republican primary for this Long Island swing seat. He's dropping $100,000 on a cable ad that, amazingly, revives an argument used by Democratic Rep. Tim Bishop to stave off Altschuler amid 2010’s Great Bloodletting -- outsourcing by Office Tiger, Altschuler's old company. (SaoMagnifico)

NY-06: Hey, remember Reshma Saujani? Tried to primary Democratic Rep. Carolyn Maloney from the right in 2010, lost by an embarrassingly massive margin despite (or perhaps because of) having Wall Street backing? Well, she's endorse Grace Meng, who is increasingly looking like the establishment favorite in the Queens seat being vacated by retiring Democratic Rep. Gary Ackerman.

Other Meng endorsers mentioned at the link include the presidents of the Alliance of South Asian American Labor, the New American Democratic Club, and the Saul Weprin Democratic Club. Hey, doesn't that name "Weprin" ring a bell? Why yes it does -- David Weprin, who ran a special election campaign for NY-09 last year that would have been funny if it didn't mean right-wing Republican Rep. Bob Turner took over a Democratic district in the heart of New York City, is the aforementioned Saul Weprin's son. And David Weprin is one of the Saul Weprin Democratic Club's executive members, so how 'bout dat? (h/t ndrwmls10) (SaoMagnifico)

NY-23: Rep. Tom Reed is taking the lead among Republicans in an effort to "bring back earmarks", according to Politico, but the issue seems to be specifically related to tariffs.  This could become a broader reaching issue, as it says not just Reed, but 65 freshmen Republicans are pushing the issue. (James Allen)

NY-24: After Tea Partier Ann Marie Buerkle pulled off an upset in NY-25 against Democratic Rep. Dan Maffei in 2010, many observers assumed that she would be a one-termer. After all, she was an anti-abortion activist with no experience in elected office, and her fundraising was unimpressive (albeit supplemented with ample support from Karl Rove's Crossroads GPS super PAC). Furthermore, the Syracuse-based district had a decided blue tint to it, with Maffei having won the open seat by double digits in 2008.

Now, however, a 4/16-4/17 poll by GOP firm McLaughlin & Associates actually shows Buerkle leading Maffei in their rematch in NY-25's successor district. It's a relatively small lead (42-38), and the pollster's partisan affiliation as well as the survey's bulky margin of error (4.9 points) make the results somewhat suspect. Still, it's worth noting that this district had been held by a Republican since the 1980s before Maffei won it. While this area has strayed from its Republican roots, this poll serves as a reminder that Democrats can't rest on their laurels if they want to dislodge Buerkle. (sapelcovits)

SC-07: Well, well -- state Rep. Ted Vick (D-Chesterfield), a candidate in this new open seat, has decided to call it quits with the American Legislative Exchange Council, saying it has "steadily drifted to the right" and has become "too partisan and too extreme". ALEC, one of the many shadowy arms of various pro-Republican corporate interests, has seen a mass exodus of clients lately due to its lobbying work on behalf of, among others, the "stand your ground" law that now forms the basis of George Zimmerman's defense in the Trayvon Martin shooting case in Sanford, Florida. Obviously, all that is outside the purview of Daily Kos Elections, but it is interesting that a Democrat in a Republican-leaning district would leave ALEC with such a pointed statement. He may be feeling some heat from Democratic rival trial lawyer Preston Brittain, who outraised Vick last quarter. (SaoMagnifico)

WA-01: Another day, another endorsement for Democrat Suzan DelBene in this vacant seat. State Rep. Marko Liias (D-Edmonds), who briefly sought this seat before redistricting dumped him into WA-07, is backing the businesswoman over leading rivals Darcy Burner and state Sen. Steve Hobbs (D-Lake Stevens), his fellow Snohomish County legislator. (SaoMagnifico)

WA-01, WA-08: A couple points here. First, the committee of the King County Democrats apparently decided on Sunday after reviewing Democratic candidate Darcy Burner's infamous tweets dissing President Obama that they would withdraw their endorsement of her. They previously endorsed all of the Democrats in the race, because apparently they're all special snowflakes.

But King County Democratic Party Chair Steve Zemke called the move "meaningless"...and then he went on to say something else that is kind of bizarre -- namely, he encouraged Ohio Democratic Rep. Dennis Kucinich, who got flattened in the OH-09 primary last month, to move to Washington, as he has been threatening to do, to be the Democrats' white knight against faux-moderate Republican and political survivalist Rep. Dave Reichert. As David Jarman says, it's not likely this story is much more than empty talk, but if Kucinich packs up his flying saucer and parachutes down into WA-08, at least it won't come totally out of left field. I think this is also the first time a Democratic Party leader in Washington has publicly called for Kucinich to run for Congress in the Evergreen State -- correct me if I'm wrong. (SaoMagnifico)

Grab Bag:

Crossroads: Crossroads GPS is putting up $1.2 million in 5 senate races, those in Missouri, Montana, Nevada, Virginia, and North Dakota.  According to the Hotline, Americans Crossroads & Crossroads GPS have raised $100 million this cycle and Crossroads GPS has spent $8.3 million on "issue ads" against Democratic senate candidates since last summer. (James Allen)

House of Representatives: I thought I would throw this in.   Using jeffmd and David's invaluable post-redistricting table of Presidential results by CD, and assuming a "no-change" KS map, I've sorted the new districts by Obama percentage.  Some thoughts:

1. The 217th-best district for the Democrats is 51% Obama, and the 218th-best is 50% Obama (which aren't uniquely defined, since that's rounded to the nearest integer).

2. There are 32 districts that are either 50% or 51% Obama, which would a priori seem to be the critical districts for control of the House.  Democrats only hold 3(!!) of these districts right now--IN-02 (held by Joe Donnelly, stepping down to run for Senate), MN-01 (held by Tim Walz) and NY-01 (held by Tim Bishop).  Another, AZ-09, is a new district, but also doesn't really belong, thanks to the McCain home state effect.  Republicans hold the remaining 28 districts:

CA-07    Lungren
CA-10    Denham
CA-36    Bono Mack
FL-13    Young, Bill
FL-18    West
FL-26    Rivera
IL-06    Roskam
IL-14    Hultgren
IL-16    Kinzinger
KS-03    Yoder
MI-01    Benishek
MI-03    Amash
MI-04    Camp
MI-07    Walberg
MI-11    McCotter
MN-02    Kline
MN-03    Paulson
NE-02    Terry
NJ-03    Runyan
NY-02    King, Peter
NY-23    Reed
PA-07    Meehan
PA-16    Pitts
TX-23    Canseco
VA-10    Wolf
WA-03    Herrera Beutler
WA-08    Reichert
WI-01    Ryan, Paul
Obviously, those aren't all going to be battlegrounds/crucial districts, but I thought it was an interesting list, now that we can be "big picture" post-redistricting.

3. Was there a redistricting/population change effect?  Maybe!  The median districts used to be a bit better for Democrats, at 52% Obama--but even then, 216 districts were at 51% Obama or below, and given the strong but imperfect relationship between Presidential and House results, I'm not sure how significant a change that is. (Xenocrypt)

MI-St. Sen.: State Sen. Randy Richardville (R-Monroe) appears to have cheesed off some of his colleagues in Lansing. He is now facing his second recall attempt in just two years, with state Sen. Jeff Andring (R-Newport) attempting to file a recall petition against him. As if I actually need to explain why this is, because I think y'all are pretty smart people and have figured it out by now, it's because Richardville is insufficiently conservative. Andring, who is actually the former chairman of the Monroe County Republican Party, went so far as to call Richardville a "liberal Republican" because -- gasp -- Richardville cosponsored right-to-work legislation that would only affect public school teachers' unions, among other staggering apostasies.

The big date to watch here is May 2, when the Monroe County Elections Commission will issue a thumbs-up or thumbs-down on Andring's petition language. Then Andring will need to scrounge up more than 22,000 signatures from Richardville's Senate district. Needless to say, that's not very easy to do, which is probably why Richardville survived last year without even facing a recall election. This seat, SD-17, is a pretty securely Republican district in Detroit's southern exurbs, unfortunately, but it's always fun to watch the cat fud fly. (SaoMagnifico)

NYC-Mayor: A bit down in the weeds, but since it is the largest city in the English-speaking world, we'll cover it. Speaker Christine Quinn, leader of the New York City Council, appears to be in the driver's seat for the Democratic primary, according to a Marist College poll conducted on behalf of NY1 (the news station, not the Long Island congressional district). Quinn leads ex-Comptroller Bill Thompson, her closest rival, 32-12 in the primary race. (SaoMagnifico)

OR-AG: This race, which may be resolved in less than a month on the day of Oregon's primary elections, seems to be coming down to law & order issues, unsurprisingly.  The Oregonian, the state's most circulated newspaper, had a piece today on how medical marijuana and mandatory minimum sentencing have both become top issues in the race between two Democrats, with US Attorney Dwight Holton coming down to the right of Judge Ellen Rosenblum on both issues.  Medical marijuana has gotten a lot of press in this race, including this recent piece at BlueOregon penned by "the chief petitioner of IP-24, a measure to legalize and regulate marijuana in Oregon. He is also the director of Citizens for Sensible Law Enforcement, leading the anti-Holton campaign by marijuana activists."

Generally an issue like this may play well for the more liberal candidate in the Democratic primary, but raise electability concerns that may benefit the more conservative candidate.  There's less cause for concern here, since Republicans failed to file a candidate for the office for the second cycle in a row.  In fact, while discussing the last Republican candidate for Attorney General, who ran in 2004, Chris Lehman at Captiol Currents mentions that it's been since 1992 that Republicans have had more than one candidate file for the office, though they still lost that race badly to some dude named Ted Kulongoski.

Meanwhile, Oregon’s outgoing Attorney General John Kroger will be appointed President of Reed College.  I am responding to this both positively and negatively, as I was a supporter of his from nearly the beginning in 2008, and want to see him go on to do great things, but as an entering law student at Lewis & Clark this fall, I was hoping he'd return to his old job as a law professor there.

This also means that he will almost certainly have to resign before his term ends, and if I recall my Oregon constitution correctly, the governor will appoint a successor to fill out his term.  I doubt this would happen before the primary election determines the Democratic nominee, but we shall see how this plays out. (James Allen)

Redistricting Roundup:

Kansas redistricting: I don't think we're on schedule anymore, Toto. Due to a stalemate between moderate Republicans and Democrats on one side and conservative Republicans on the other, Kansas will not only become the last state in the nation to finish congressional redistricting, but is also behind on state legislative redistricting as well. Secretary of State Kris Kobach, a Republican, is complaining that some legislators believe that the Kansas Supreme Court can step in if the legislature fails to do so, even though the state's constitution contains no such provisions. Now Kobach is warning of chaos if the state doesn't deal with redistricting by May 10 - a failure to meet that deadline would push the candidate filing deadline from June 1 to June 11, a mere twelve days before the state is supposed to send out military ballots. This, in turn, could necessitate postponing the primary, which is already late (August 7).

To add to the mayhem, Attorney General Derek Schmidt is now saying that the state will have to pay plaintiffs' legal fees if redistricting goes to court, pointing to a 1982 redistricting case as precedent. This whole situation is fast going down the yellow brick road to hell for Kansas legislators. (sapelcovits)

NH redistricting: And that's a wrap! To no one's surprise, Democratic Governor John Lynch signed the Granite State's new congressional map, officially leaving Kansas as the nation's redistricting straggler (although some states, such as West Virginia and Florida, technically still face litigation).

However, it wouldn't be politics if there weren't a twist: the city of Manchester, pissed off about losing several districts in the new State House map, has filed suit against the state, which could possibly delay State House elections (although it's unclear if that would have ramifications for other offices). In the cat fud department, the Republican legislative leaders are slamming GOP Manchester mayor Ted Gatsas (himself a former state senator) for deciding to "waste taxpayers' resources," even though the city is being represented pro bono in court. (sapelcovits)

Originally posted to Daily Kos Elections on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 05:00 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Keep in mind that Mark Critz is probably... (0+ / 0-)

    more of a Blue Dog than Jason Altmire.

    How about I believe in the unlucky ones?

    by BenderRodriguez on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 05:11:56 AM PDT

      •  Here's how so... (3+ / 0-)

        Their National Journal scores are largely interchangeable, but you'll see that on social issues, such as abortion and civil rights, Altmire tends to be more liberal, though no one would mistake him for Barney Frank.


        Americans for the Arts Action Fund - Positions

        American Civil Liberties Union - Positions

        2011    National Journal - Conservative on Social Policy Score 42%
        2011    National Journal - Conservative Composite Score 44%
        2011    National Journal - Liberal on Economic Policy Score 57%
        2011    National Journal - Liberal Composite
        Score 56%
        2011    National Journal - Liberal on Foreign Policy Score 52%
        2011    National Journal - Conservative on Economic Policy Score 43%
        2011    National Journal - Liberal on Social Policy
        2011    National Journal - Conservative on Foreign Policy Score 48%

        2010    American Conservative Union - Lifetime
        Score 23%

        League of Conservation Voters - Lifetime Score 79%

        Gun Owners of America - Positions on Gun Rights

        American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) - Positions 90%

        Human Rights Campaign - Positions 70%

        2011    Family Research Council - Positions 30%
        2010    Liberty Central - Positions on Conservative Issues "F"

        2007-2008  National Family Planning & Reproductive Health Association Positions    50%

        2009 National Right to Life Committee Positions    50%

        2008 Planned Parenthood Positions    67%


        2009-2010 American Civil Liberties Union - Positions

        Human Rights Campaign - Positions 0%

        American Family Association - Positions 50%

        2011    NARAL Pro-Choice America - Positions 20%
        2011    National Right to Life Committee - Positions
        2010    Planned Parenthood - Positions 0%

        2009-2010    National Right to Life Committee - Positions 100%

        2009-2010    American Civil Liberties Union - Positions 25%

        2011    National Journal - Liberal on Economic Policy Score 59%
        2011    National Journal - Conservative on Foreign Policy Score 38%
        2011    National Journal - Liberal on Foreign Policy Score 62%
        2011    National Journal - Conservative on Economic Policy Score 41%
        2011    National Journal - Conservative on Social Policy Score 42%
        2011    National Journal - Liberal on Social Policy 58%

        How about I believe in the unlucky ones?

        by BenderRodriguez on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 08:14:00 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Well regardless, its great for moralle (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Pescadero Bill

          You realize we have lost all of the primaries, which few we had.
          We need to keep pushing the narrative that there is no room for republicans in our party.

          Especially our blue states.

          Its also sweet to see revenge primaries for congressmen who betrayed our party and party platform.

          Voting against health care bill, so you can save your seat?

          The chickens come home to roost.

          And you know who is probably next, Claire McCaskill.
          Remember how googoo she was for Obama, the DNC platform, etc circa 2009?
          Over the last 2-3 years she is trying to pitch right, and her poll numbers drop along with it.

          Dems never learn.

        •  Blue Dogs *can* be social liberals (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          What unites them is hard-assed-ness on fiscal policy.

        •  National Breast Cancer Coalition (0+ / 0-)

          Critz has no rating for their issues, he needs to respond to them.  


          Critz worked for John Murtha, who was a legendary supporter of NBCC's agenda.  

          "We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty." Edward R. Murrow

          by Betty Pinson on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 10:30:35 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  critz (0+ / 0-)

          I kept track of Critz's voting in congress - with the new redistricting, i don't think he will represent me anymore, i wasn't even given a choice in the primaries, but nevertheless, i never saw him vote anything that i found repugnant, and i am pretty liberal. altmire was AWFUL - way before the redistricting we had a big problem with him. i was happy to see him gone. he actually had campaign commercials calling out Critz for NOT signing the "Balanced Budget Amendment!" i wanted to scream out, "THAT'S BECAUSE IT IS TEA PARTY CRAP!!!" Critz's office was always very receptive to my calls. i didn't track every vote he made, but the ones that were important to me, i saw nothing wrong, and certainly, not anywhere near as wrong as altmire. he is just scum mascarading as a democrat because he is in pittsburgh, which is largely dem.

    •  Mark Critz is more of a team player (9+ / 0-)

      As we saw when the 2 were forced to face against each other. I'm glad Critz won.

      •  A Vanishing Breed (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        exNYinTX, bumiputera, stevenaxelrod

        There were 54 Blue Dogs in the last Congress, but only 26 at the start of this one. With Jane Harman's retirement, the defeat of Altmire and Holden, and five other retirements, they'll be down to eighteen; less, if Boswell, Matheson, or Kissell is defeated.

        And of the other 15, six are from California or Oregon, and two are African-Americans from Georgia. So they could easily form a majority of the caucus next year, if anyone sees any point in continuing it.

    •  Don't think so (7+ / 0-)

      And don't look for Critz to appear on Fox dissing his own party, the way Altmire did a number of times.

      "We calmly accept our uncertain position." Joey Rathburn.

      by Paleo on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 06:42:04 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Which begs the question (0+ / 0-)

        Why is there no DNC money flowing into these primaries.

        What is wrong with our party, we will fund blue dogs, but won't fund against them when  they break ranks and run propaganda against our party.

        DNC should be disbanded, and the DLCC should stop making me taste vomit in my mouth everytime they try and send me an email.

        •  I don't think any money did go in here. (0+ / 0-)

          "Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind." -Theodore Seuss Geisel

          by KingofSpades on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 09:18:19 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  For one thing (5+ / 0-)

          the DNC's job isn't to spend money on congressional primaries. That's the DCCC.

          And if the DCCC spent money on defeating Democrats in a primary rather than propping them up in the general, only bad things would result.

          22, male, RI-01 (voting) IL-01 (college), moving to Japan in July, hopeless Swingnut

          by sapelcovits on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 09:41:48 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  That makes no sense at all (0+ / 0-)

            So primaries are left up to private citizens who care and special interests?  
            Are you listening Koch brothers, you can buy your way into our party, get one of your goons elected and he is a magic incumant!  The Establisment will protect you till you retire or die.

            Wow what tough guys we are.

            And if the DCCC has to "prop" up traitorous dems, only to see them fail, then there you go why there isn't a SINGLE member on this site that donates to the DCCC.
            Its the saddest excuse for a slush fund.

            The job of these committees are to win, thats there job.
            The DNC should allows propagate our platform and agenda, something they magically put a stop to in 2009.

            Now speaking of the genius DCCC, does anyone know if they gave Grayson a dime in 2008, or in 2012?

    •  There is no downside to ousting a Blue Dog (6+ / 0-)

      The sooner Democrats get the message that there will be no salvation in chasing the right, the sooner we might see a revival of two-party government.

      Shirley Chisholm was right. Our Republic is in deep trouble.

      by Big River Bandido on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 06:44:38 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  No downside (6+ / 0-)

        Except for perpetual minority status. You need candidates that can win in the districts the run in. Period. End of story. If youre happy with 190 seats in congress every election, then you're on the right track. I prefer winning, personally.

        •  Exactly -- the 218th District is R+3 (0+ / 0-)

          (or is it R+4?)

          By definition, you need blue dogs to win such districts on a consistent basis.

          "I hope; therefore, I can live."
          For SSP users, see my Tips for Swingnuts diary

          by tietack on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 08:04:34 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Not really (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            Plenty of members hold seats as red or redder than that who arent' Blue Dogs.

            There's a difference between moderates and Blue Dogs. If you're using them synonymously, then I agree with your broader statement if not your terminology.

            Obviously, we can't run someone who's a loud and proud progressive in every district in the country. But there are plenty of districts where a Democrat can be loud and proud about the aspects of the progressive agenda that are a good fit for their district. Tester and Schweitzer are good models of that. They talk about how progressivism and Democrats can work for Montana (not in those words necessarily). That builds the party up.

            Blue Dogs, on the other hand, complain about how Democrats are liberal and terrible for their district, and basically tear the party down and run away from their values.

            •  Can you name them? (esp in the House) (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              Tester is not well liked here at DK, and Schweitzer has never had to take a congressional vote.

              Furthermore, I think there are plenty of Blue Dogs who don't diss the "progressive agenda," especially here on the west coast.

              "I hope; therefore, I can live."
              For SSP users, see my Tips for Swingnuts diary

              by tietack on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 09:10:40 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  A few examples from the House (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                Off the top of my head, Bruce Braley, Dave Loebsack, & Gabby Giffords do/did well. Steve Kagan was good too. He lost in 2010, obviously, but so did lots of people.

                Anyway, my broader point is that they chose to be Democrats for a reason, despite disagreeing with a lot of the platform. They should talk about why they made that choice, instead of all the reservations they have with the rest of the platform. When disagreements with the party come up ("How can you support Nancy Pelosi when she's a gay abortion lover who wants to take our guns?" etc.) they can talk about the big tent and how they work together on the issues they agree with.

                And since I accused you of using "Blue Dog" and "moderate" synonymously more than was called for on the merits, I'll cop to using "Blue Dog" and "ConservaDem Asshole" synonymously the same way.

            •  (Yes, I'm using "moderate" and "blue dog" (0+ / 0-)

              somewhat synonymously, but think it would be worth the trouble to list examples of Ds who do win in such districts.)

              "I hope; therefore, I can live."
              For SSP users, see my Tips for Swingnuts diary

              by tietack on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 09:11:42 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  Not true (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Pescadero Bill

          The conservative-biasing center since the late 60s is not an eternal verity.  It ends around 2020 when there are enough culturally post-1968 voters for a majority.

          As it is, the House seems to be switching partisan control every midterm these days, and the turnover is such that in general it's a smaller set and somewhat better kind of Blue Dogs- liberal in one more area, and conservative in one less- each roughly eight year partisan cycle.

          Why I hate your argument is that Tom Perriello and Allan Grayson disprove it, as do the wipeouts of Dem Congressfolk who run to the right, and yet I see SSP/DKE diehards insist on it.  Relatively conservative districts will vote in liberals when they seen the need to change control of the House, from Republicans and they won't spare conservatives when they see need to flush Democrats out again.  There is some substructure there about particular issues, admittedly, but the general hypothesis of "needing" Blue Dogs assumes a loyalty to incumbents at bottom that once existed but has eroded almost everywhere.  

          I'd rather have freshmen Blue Dogs than long term incumbent ones, though the advantages incumbents once used to have are eroding to not that substantial.  The Kristin Gillbrands and Bill Owenses and Melissa Beans do shift left/liberal along with their constituents; the older ones not so much.

          •  Grayson and Perillio are no longer in the House (0+ / 0-)

            ergo, they do not prove your hypothesis.

            "I hope; therefore, I can live."
            For SSP users, see my Tips for Swingnuts diary

            by tietack on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 09:12:45 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Please read (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              what I actually claimed.  I said they got elected.  Which they did.  Not that they would be able to hold the seats in adverse elections.

              The claimed advantage of Blue Dogs is that they would both get elected in favorable elections, which liberals supposedly couldn't in those districts.  And then, additionally, survive adverse ones.    I'm saying both prongs of this argument are looking weak and getting weaker all the time.

              •  I do not accept your premise (0+ / 0-)

                But even if true, that means legislation that is enacted in one congress is repealed in the next. No progress.

                "I hope; therefore, I can live."
                For SSP users, see my Tips for Swingnuts diary

                by tietack on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 09:50:39 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  I see you don't accept (0+ / 0-)

                  some premise, I just can't identify which one(s).  

                  There is a legislative one way ratchet mechanism in Congress in the form of the Senate requirement of 60 votes for cloture and 67 for some other things.   Neither Party can get to 60 or 67 with only its loyal caucus members; that hasn't been the case since iirc 1976-78 if it was even the case then.   I don't see one Party getting beyond 56 or 57 Senators max in the next couple of elections with the current electorate and trends in it.

                  Fundamentally I believe we have an electorate that is facing the question of becoming a modern social democracy, and whether that is the only viable thing to do, and at a roughly 45-45 deadlock about it.  With a small trend in favor.  And a frantic opposition.

        •  The Democrats acted like a minority in 2009-10 (3+ / 0-)

          when they had a majority.  The tired old "but the Republicans are WORSE" argument doesn't hold any water, when the Democrats don't try to push back, even when they hold the political cards.

          Shirley Chisholm was right. Our Republic is in deep trouble.

          by Big River Bandido on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 08:54:24 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Mike Lee said he wouldn't endorse back in Feb (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    atdnext, MartyM, jncca

    From February 11, 2011

  •  NH-Gov: I wonder why there (7+ / 0-)

    hasn't been much national attention. Barring a complete collapse from the Obama campaign, it appears as if we are favored. Ovide Lamontagne has twice the name rec as Maggie Hassan and he is down 5 points to her.

    20, Dude, Chairman DKE Gay Caucus! (College IN-09) (Raised IL-03, IL-09) Tammy Baldwin and Elizabeth Warren for Senate!

    by ndrwmls10 on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 06:08:51 AM PDT

    •  Glad to see that Dems can hold the seat (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bumiputera, dc1000

      even after Lynch retires.

    •  When they got saddled with Ovide (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      dc1000, 4Freedom

      I knew we at least had an even chance of holding the seat.  He's basically "generically conservative R" in a swing state, with little personal appeal beyond that.

      If New Hampshire is in a conservative mood this fall, Ovide might win.  Otherwise, this is probably a hold.

      •  He's not "generic" conservative, he's extreme (5+ / 0-)

        At least, his public image has always been far right, because that's how he's always postured in primaries in attacking slightly less conservative Republicans.  That was true as recently as 2010!

        A generic conservative always can win a purple state, as can a generic liberal.

        And there are circumstances in which Lamontagne can win, if Hassan proves a bad candidate or runs a bad campaign, and Obama doesn't help (or, if things go south, even hurts, though that's not so likely).

        But we have an advantage because Ovide is pretty far out there.

        44, male, Indian-American, married and proud father of a girl and 2 boys, Democrat, VA-10

        by DCCyclone on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 06:30:38 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  His numbers tanked when the GOP legistlature (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          started going all hard right on social issues. Most independent voters in NH don't trust what would happen if he was Gov and there was no one to veto the GOP legislature.

          -1.63/ -1.49 "Speaking truth to power" (with snark of course)!

          by dopper0189 on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 07:55:18 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Ovide is a religious fundie (0+ / 0-)

          In the Santorum mold, i.e. a Catholic fundamentalist.

          This in one of the nation's least religious states.

          Labor is prior to, and independent of, capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration. -- K.Marx A.Lincoln

          by N in Seattle on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 03:35:46 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  I'm sad Murphy lost (6+ / 0-)

    He has so much promise and potential.  I thought he was a favorite to win this race.  I'm wondering what happenned.  

    Check out my new blog:

    by SoCalLiberal on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 06:18:18 AM PDT

  •  NY Mayor (0+ / 0-)

    I am surprised about Bill Thompson being second. I had forgotten all about him.  

  •  Between Sapel and I last night we counted (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bumiputera, 4Freedom, Odysseus, killjoy

    We're up to 52/435 new house members for 2014.  That counts the 41 retirements, 5 incumbent losses in the primary so far, and 6 guaranteed losses in the primary and general brings us to 11.954% of the US House will be new.    

  •  NV-02: Finally, something to hang on Amodei? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tietack, 4Freedom, askew

    Now don't get too excited yet... He still has no "A-List" opposition, and no Dem in Reno or DC is taking this race seriously. However, another issue has (re)emerged that should make his political career more difficult going forward.

    Last spring, Nevada didn’t have anyone in Congress who was open to the idea of bringing nuclear waste to the state. Now, it has Republican Rep. Mark Amodei — and he says he’s ready to take on the pro-Yucca enthusiasts and try to work out a compromise.

    It’s the first specific test of how far he’s willing to push his party on Yucca, and when they push back, whether he’ll fall into party line or object with his vote, as several Nevada representatives have before him.

    “I have said I think we need to talk about it. This gives us an opportunity to talk about it,” Amodei said Tuesday. “Once people get over the, ‘Oh my God, you said [Yucca]’s not dead,’ part, I think the focus goes to, 'OK, if it’s not dead, what is alive?'

    “If it’s a nuclear landfill, then obviously nothing has changed and the game’s on,” Amodei said. “I don’t know of anybody who thinks we ought to have a nuclear landfill.”

    Even if doesn't hurt Amodei this year, it may come back to haunt Joe Heck in NV-03, as he's also tried to have it both ways on Yucca Mountain. And since Clark County is most opposed to Yucca, any sign of capitulation by Heck will just make his political life that much more miserable.
  •  NC-Gov - I'm voting for Etheridge (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Paleo, Odysseus

    I hate seeing Dalton pull even with Etheridge in that PPP poll. Dalton is a big friend of big business, and no friend of the environment or state-level regulators.

    I personally know of an instance where, as Lt Gov., he called a state agency and asked them to back off on enforcement of food safety regulations on a business in his hometown. It would be a huge mistake for Democrats to vote for Republican-lite Dalton for Governor.

    Find out more about Bob Etheridge and contribute to him here:

  •  UT/National Journal Poll: Obama +8 (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tietack, drachaCRO, itskevin, askew


    They didn't push undecideds, so it's Obama 47, Romney 39. African-Americans and Latinos go strongly for Obama, while white dudes go strongly for Romney.

    •  not on the island of Rasmussen (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      atdnext, askew

      He has Romney up by 5 and closing in on 50%. Have to give the guy credit he doesn't care how foolish he looks.

      •  LOL (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        atdnext, dopper0189, itskevin

        When you have a model with 4% more Republicans than Democrats voting, you can get such results.

        "We calmly accept our uncertain position." Joey Rathburn.

        by Paleo on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 06:40:33 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Polling early in the year (0+ / 0-)

        had Republicans polling up to 47-48%, so that's probably Romney's floor for the election.  Obama's is 48%.

        My model for this election is that Obama has a national hard baseline of 44% cultural liberals plus 4% culturally conservative black voters.  Romney has a hard baseline of 43% cultural conservatives/Rightists.

        About 1% of the people who go the polls in Presidential elections vote for irrelevant third parties.  That leaves 8% of the electorate to decide the election, a bloc of people who in my assessment of 2008 almost all voted for Obama in November 2008 and stepped back from him after the passage of the ACA.  They're generally white, older, culturally moderate/conservative, economic conservative leaning, liberalish about race relations, live south of the Potomac or between the Appalachians and Rockies, and tended to vote for Blue Dog candidates.  (Not so much in November 2010.)

        Around half of them seem to lean Romney softly, generating that 3-5% variation in his support numbers.  He needs over 80% of their votes to prevail.   And he's begun to target them already, though crudely.  Since he's already got half leaning his way, he may have an easier task ahead of him than Obama does.

    •  Adults polled (0+ / 0-)

      So not worth all that much.

      "We calmly accept our uncertain position." Joey Rathburn.

      by Paleo on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 06:41:02 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  MO-Sen update (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Steelman is a doofus.  But her fundraising is better than anyone thought.  It was just revealed that she has a Super-PAC in her corner called the Now or Never PAC.

    The pac has over 300k in it, all raised from 4 donors.  

    So, although she can't think on her feet and has little knowledge of federal issues, Steelman does have more money than expected.  

    The robb'd that smiles steals something from the thief. -- Shakespeare

    by not2plato on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 06:31:04 AM PDT

    •  Well, right (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Odysseus, KingofSpades, itskevin

      People have pointed out that Steelman's weak fundraising doesn't make her a desirable opponent by itself for the reason you suggest. But if she develops a habit of making stupid mistakes like that, it will damage her campaign at a level that super PACs can't completely mitigate.

      22, male, RI-01 (voting) IL-01 (college), moving to Japan in July, hopeless Swingnut

      by sapelcovits on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 06:50:25 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Question for crowd on Critz in November (0+ / 0-)

    DKEer jmartin is apoplectic on Twitter that Critz winning is a bad outcome for us because he's weaker than Altmire in November.

    I haven't followed this, I thought either was a likely winner?


    44, male, Indian-American, married and proud father of a girl and 2 boys, Democrat, VA-10

    by DCCyclone on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 06:55:50 AM PDT

    •  Altmire lived in the reddest part of the district (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Englishlefty, atdnext, itskevin, jncca

      So I think there's something to it.

      This isn't exactly a blue district. But it's mostly ancestrally Democratic, so I wouldn't write it off.

      Ok, so I read the polls.

      by andgarden on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 07:04:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Lean R (0+ / 0-)

      The district is like R +8 or something.  Rothfuss is not a great candidate but the district is decidedly red.

      31/D/M/NY-01/SSP: Tekzilla

      by Socks The Cat on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 07:04:38 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  R +8? (0+ / 0-)

        I'm not sure that's correct.

        "We calmly accept our uncertain position." Joey Rathburn.

        by Paleo on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 07:08:26 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Rothfus couldn't win in 2010 (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        KingofSpades, itskevin, Englishlefty

        Granted, that was against Altmire, but Critz does have his home base in Johnstown and he shouldn't have problem appealing to ancestral Democrats scattered around the district.

        26, Male, CA-24 (new CA-26), DK Elections Black Caucus Chair.

        by DrPhillips on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 07:15:38 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  It's R+6 (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Odysseus, Christopher Walker

        The same as the previous district, but it's a different R+6 due to losing Lawrence County and replacing it with Somerset and more of Westmoreland.

        Altmire was able to win because of popularity with R voters in Lawrence and Beaver counties.  He ran 14-16 points ahead of Obama in 2008 and Onorato in 2010 in these two counties.  There won't be as many Obama/Critz ticket splitters as there would have been Obama/Altmire.

        Keith Rothfus is indeed from the western part of the district, which should help him with voters in Beaver and Allegheny.  This is going to be a very difficult district for Critz to win.  Tossup at best right now, maybe even Lean R.

        •  Shouldn't Critz Appeal To Beaver County Too..... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          ....since he's also a conservative Democrat?  I think Altmire's base in northern Allegheny County will be Critz's biggest problem, meaning he needs to get Murtha-sized numbers out of Johnstown to have a prayer.

          •  No doubt (0+ / 0-)

            Some of the ancestral labor Democrat voters in Beaver County will vote Critz, but probably not in the numbers that supported Altmire.  I think Altmire specifically appealed to those voters.  I don't think sticking any conservaDem in there will yield the same result; Critz being from Johnstown may also hurt him in that respect.

            Also not to be overlooked is the fact that Lawrence County is gone and the new areas in Westmoreland and Somerset are more traditional Republican without as many crossover voters.

            •  Doesn't make sense (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              N in Seattle

              Critz is much better on labour issues than Altmire and less socially liberal. Why would culturally conservative labour Dems therefore prefer Altmire?

              •  Altmire was popular (0+ / 0-)

                because he stood up to Pelosi, who is hated here.  He was seen as a Joe Lieberman-type Dem - which is what people want in western PA.  I live here, I know.  People here voted for Ronald Reagan.  They are culturally conservative ancestral-labor Dems.  Problem is:  none of them belong to unions anymore, as western PA's manufacturing base has eroded.  The only unions people around here really know are public sector unions and the teachers unions.  Public sector unions are viewed skeptically, and teachers unions are reviled.

                Dems in this area "feel" more like republicans, but their party association/loyalty (most grew up with ardently Dem parents) keeps them from freely associating as republicans - they would feel too guilty doing it.  Altmire was a perfect fit for this group - basically a socially moderate republican with a "D" next to his name.  Critz will be viewed as a Murtha Dem from Johnstown.  It will come down to how the Pres election goes.  If Romney runs strong nationally, and is at least competitive in PA, Critz loses.  If it's an Obama landslide, then Critz will probably survive.

              •  It's not an 'issues' issue (0+ / 0-)

                Altmire built a lot of good will in western PA during his years in business.  Being well liked and with a voting record was 'sufficiently' moderate, many McCain voters were happy to support him.  He is also from the 'right' area geographically to have Beaver and Lawrence County voters vote for him.

                All I'm saying is that there will be a fair number of Romney/Critz voters.   Just not as many as there would have been Romney/Altmire.

                Note that I erred earlier in this thread when I said Obama/Altmire and Obama/Critz.  I was talking Romney/Altmire and Romney/Critz.

              •  localism (0+ / 0-)

                19, D, new CA-18 (home) new CA-13 (college). Economic liberal, social libertarian, fiscal conservative. -.5.38, -3.23 Check out my blog at

                by jncca on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 10:29:53 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

    •  While I haven't really followed it either (6+ / 0-)

      I did notice this bit from last night's election thread, which may serve as a partial refutation:

      Dave Wasserman that underscores what I was just talking about: Critz's old portion of PA-12 is only 27% of the voters in the new 12th, but it accounted for 40% of the turnout tonight. That's some pretty amazing home-turf GOTV.

      "I hope; therefore, I can live."
      For SSP users, see my Tips for Swingnuts diary

      by tietack on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 07:04:39 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  It's not like PA 17 (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      KingofSpades, savvyspy, itskevin

      It will be a competitive race.  But one Critz will win, especially in a presidential year.  

      "We calmly accept our uncertain position." Joey Rathburn.

      by Paleo on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 07:05:32 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I'm sure there is probably polling... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Pandoras Box

      And Critz won the primary largely on turning out his smaller old-district chunk of voters, but Critz seems to win against the odds.  He'll have to work to get Altmire supporters on his side - and it would be easy for them to vote GOP candidate out of spite thinking Altmire could then run again in two years - but 6 mos is a long time and most will come around - Critz has a hard scrabble charisma to him.  

      If GOP is running a well known Repub from the old Altmire district (ie the bulk of the new district) they could start off with ground they wouldn't have otherwise had vs Altmire.

    •  I doubt it (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      KingofSpades, itskevin

      It wasn't like Critz won leaning on out of the mainstream support. He basically had the backing of Clinton and some major unions. Those are going to play big in November too.

      Critz is a good candidate. I think he wins solidly.

    •  It's Tilt D with Critz (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      and would have been Lean D with Altmire.

      "Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind." -Theodore Seuss Geisel

      by KingofSpades on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 09:16:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Let me revise a bit: (0+ / 0-)

        I'm using the Rothenberg scale, so the rating I give is Tossup/Tilt D.  It's tossup, but Critz has the eastern part locked down and needs to make further inroads in the western part.

        "Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind." -Theodore Seuss Geisel

        by KingofSpades on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 09:40:37 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Critz (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      KingofSpades, itskevin, jncca

      I think Altmire would have been close to a lock to beat Rothfus, because he beat him in 2010 when the district was even more red. Critz is a question mark. He has a rural conservadem voting record that may not go over well in the burbs. I'd put this one at tossup for now.

      SSP poster. 42, CA-5, -0.25/-3.90

      by sacman701 on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 09:16:49 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Totally wrong (0+ / 0-)

      Altmire is going to lose the North Hills anyway. It's the difference between Altmire losing them by 10 and Critz losing by 25. Critz will win Cambria by huge margins.

      Both are about the same, according to a Democrat active in local party politics. That doesn't mean they are likely winners though.

  •  We lost a state senator in my county in Vermont (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    last election cycle. That means we are cursed with an R in that spot for years. He's a former tax commissioner and general good old boy who is a friend my county's former Democratic chair.

    The chair didn't push hard enough for the Democratic candidate. After the election there were unused Democratic yard signs in his garage that weren't put out. There was also a town with a former House whip that could have provided pivotal votes, but the chair didn't push campaigning there.

    Compared to the complexities and conflicts cited here, this is tepid stuff at best. But living with the consequences of the election could mean another roadblock on the way to single payer for Vermont.

    Elections count. Everywhere.

    If you want to sleep well at night, it's best to avoid watching the making of sausages or politics. ~ Otto von Bismarck

    by 4Freedom on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 07:25:45 AM PDT

  •  so does this actually mean NO Altmire (0+ / 0-)

    in the general election?  he's out?!?

    he has been a DINO for - well, forever really

  •  NC-Gov (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Odysseus, Christopher Walker

    The Independent endorsed Dalton which is a huge endorsement in a Democratic primary.

    Switched my vote and those of some people I know.

    Bob "Trans-Vaginal" McDonnell...just saying...again ... and again....

    by NCJim on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 07:36:28 AM PDT

  •  Woo Hoo! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Englishlefty, Celtic Pugilist

    I used to live in Pennsylvania and I can tell you the blue dogs there wreak havoc on the entire state. I'm so happy to see two of them go down in flames. Thank you for posting this, you've made my day!

    Well behaved women rarely make history.

    by IamNotaKochsucker on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 09:15:50 AM PDT

  •  WA-01: Those tweets... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    were posted by the same Darcy Burner who scolded me here:

    But I'd observe that the one way that Dems could lose in WA-01 would be for folks to attempt to destroy the person who ultimately wins the Dem nomination, damaging them as they go into the general. Focus attacks on the Rs. Promote your candidate. Keep it positive -- and then we all win

    There are five democratic candidates in WA-01. In the primary, I will be considering one person - Nancy Pelosi. So I will have only one question for our candidates: What makes you think you can beat John Koster, the Republican candidate, in the new swingy district. The difference in their positions on issues, across the Ruderman-Burner spectrum, is small potatoes if their candidacy is something that keep the speaker's gavel in John Boehner's hands.

    Use every man after his desert, and who should 'scape whipping?

    by UncleDavid on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 10:55:14 AM PDT

  •  Glad to see those Blue Dogs losing primaries! NT (0+ / 0-)

    "The true strength of our nation comes not from the might of our arms or the scale of our wealth, but from the enduring power of our ideals." - Barack Obama

    by HeyMikey on Wed Apr 25, 2012 at 02:25:02 PM PDT

  •  yes, Lord, yes!! (0+ / 0-)

    let the blue dogs go the way of The Republicans this year - to everlastingly forgotten ignomy. like the teas to The Republicans, the blue dogs to The Democrats are infections just as lethal.

    please give President Obama the working Congress he deserves, please let america work again....


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