House Republicans Forced to Play Defense
by Jonathan Singer, Tue Dec 15, 2009 at 03:48:55 PM EST
I'm trying to figure out how the Republicans are supposed to have a legitimate shot at retaking the House in 2010 but am still getting stuck on the math. As I noted last month, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee was, as of the latest numbers, sitting on a net 5.5 times more money in the bank than the National Republican Congressional Committee, with the NRCC holding roughly enough money to competitively play in -- no joke -- one or two congressional districts. And where is the NRCC spending money right now? Not on offense but on defense.
The National Republican Congressional Committee is up on radio airwaves with a spot blasting Bethlehem Mayor John Callahan (D), who announced earlier this year that he is challenging Rep. Charlie Dent (R) in the eastern Pennsylvania 15th district.
The NRCC would not divulge the size of the buy, but their early purchase signifies that this is likely to be one of the top targeted races of the 2010 cycle. The radio spot, "It's a Callahan Christmas," follows Dent's 10,000 robocall "offensive" against Callahan earlier this month.
If the Republicans need to pick up more than 40 seats in order to retake the House, their campaign arm only has enough money to play in a couple of races, and at present the place where the NRCC is spending its cash is in a district with a vulnerable GOP incumbent -- a defensive rather than an offensive move -- how, again, are Republicans supposed to regain the majority?