Democratic Leaders On Offense in '08, GOP Not So Much

Congressional Quarterly has been taking a look at the July campaign donations by the PACs of the two parties' leaders in congress and has found a promising trend. While all ten of John Boehner's expenditures were devoted to protecting endangered incumbents, 4 of 5 of Steny Hoyer's were spent to build up the war chests of Democratic challengers (the 5th went to this week's CA-37 special election winner Laura Richardson.)

Hoyer's AMERIPAC made five donations to Democratic House candidates in July, and four of them are staging serious challenges in the 2008 elections to take over seats currently held by these Republicans: Christopher Shays of Connecticut and Mike Ferguson of New Jersey, who are running for re-election; Ralph Regula of Ohio, who is seriously considering retirement; and Deborah Pryce of Ohio, who recently announced she would not seek re-election next year. [...]

By contrast, Boehner's leadership PAC, known as The Freedom Project, made donations to 10 GOP candidates last month that party leaders have identified as being especially in need of early campaign cash -- and all of them are incumbents, including Shays and Ferguson. The others are James T. Walsh of New York, Mark Steven Kirk of Illinois, Charlie Dent of Pennsylvania, Marilyn Musgrave of Colorado, Dean Heller of Nevada, Vern Buchanan of Florida, Thelma Drake of Virginia and John R. "Randy" Kuhl Jr. of New York.

The Democrat challenging Chris Shays in CT-04, Jim Himes, got a further boost from a visit by DCCC chair Chris Von Hollen who hosted fundraisers for Himes in New York City and Connecticut  earlier this week. CT Local Politics was there (h/t Melissa Ryan in Breaking Blue.)

It's great to see the DCCC throw so much support at Himes, who really does look poised to beat Shays this time. It's clear from the aggressive stance the DCCC has taken going after Shays this time that Von Hollen and Himes are determined not to repeat Emmanuel's and Diane Farrell's mistakes of the past.

From My Left Nutmeg

"This is certainly one of the priority races in the country," Van Hollen said in a telephone interview yesterday. "We look forward to working him (Himes) in any way that we can be helpful."...

Himes took a swipe yesterday at Shays when asked to explain his early fundraising success.

"People are realizing everywhere that Shays has passed his sell-by date and I see that all over the district," said Himes, who called Shays a rubber-stamp for failed White House policies on the Iraq war.

Tags: 2008 Congressional Elections, Chris Shays, CT-04, Jim Himes (all tags)



Re: GOP Not

I'm resisting getting too giddy over signs that CT-04 is in play again this cycle; we've barked our shins against that hope in every recent election.

but I must say it's an intriguing hint that Boehner lavished early cash on Thelma Drake in Virginia-02.  

by Christopher Walker 2007-08-23 05:23AM | 0 recs
Re: Democratics On Offense in VA

Drake won a fairly close one last year. Next year the Democratic ticket should do better in all of Virginia, outrunning Kerry's vote in '04, and with Mark Warner for Senator carrying the flag in the Old Dominion. With Tom Davis's NOVA seat likely to be open, there should be a good fight for VA House seats as well.

by Woody 2007-08-23 04:22PM | 0 recs


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