One of the problems with organizations like EMILY's List is that they focus too much on the won/loss equation. Their funders expect a winning record, so they have abandoned their "early money is like yeast" model to fund only the safest of bets.
I swore early on that my model would be different, and made that clear from the beginning. I had three criteria, which I made crystal clear. Candidates would be chosen if they met two out of the three:
1) They could tie up an incumbent and keep that incumbent from campaigning and fundraising for other candidates, 2) were from a swing state, and 3) had a chance of winning.
So given that criteria, fifteen candidates were chosen. We had a nice geographic spread. Some were competitive candidates, some were longshots. All of them were challengers (read: unlikely to win) and all of them were competing in Red territory (read: even more unlikely to win).
Here's how they fared:
Morrison started out as a fringe candidate with no money when he was adopted by the Daily Kos community. He raised $60K, which he then turned into a real campaign, one that actually threatened DeLay.
DeLay garnered only 55 percent of the vote, his lowest total ever. He opened up campaign offices in the district and ran television commercials for the first time since his initial House victory. He remained in the district when he could've been out campaigning for other at-risk Republicans. He spent nearly $2 million to defend himself.
We pinned down DeLay in his home district. Mission accomplished.
Hatemonger Marylin Musgrave was headed to an easy, unchallenged victory, when Stan Matsunaka stepped up to the plate. We raised $44K for him. He lost 52-44.
Musgrave sweat this one. Not only did Musgrave spend $3 million of her own money, but the NRCC also threw in another $2 million to back her up. Matsunaka spent close to $600K and forced Republicans to spend $5 million that could've gone to other races -- all in a district that was almost uncontested.
Tony Knowles, Brad Carson, Nancy Farmer
The three Senate candidates all failed, but that was the case for just about all our Senate candidates in battleground races. Mission not accomplished.
More on the Kos Dozen coming later today or tomorrow.