House 2010: Staying on the Offense

As most readers of this site are probably aware, I'm not yet sold on the notion embraced by some that the House has already been all but lost by the Democrats. Part of the reason is that it's still very early, and we do not know how the political environment -- and even more so the economic climate -- will change in the next eight months. Part of the reason is that election prognosticators in recent cycles have fairly consistently underestimated Democratic performance. And part of the reason is that the Democrats do have some opportunities to stay on offense.

The DCCC is rolling out their roster of promising challengers, determined to stay on offense amid a harsh national political climate.

The party will target 7 GOP incumbents and 4 GOP-held open seats this year, armed with prominent challengers who have demonstrated their ability to raise money and build effective campaign organizations.


Inaugural Red-to-Blue members:

Candidate            Incumbent         District 
Ami Bera             Dan Lungren         CA03
Paula Brooks         Pat Tiberi          OH12
John Callahan        Charlie Dent        PA15
John Carney          Open (Castle)       DEAL
Suzan DelBene        Dave Reichert       WA08
Lori Edwards         Open (Putnam)       FL12
Raj Goyle            Open (Tiahrt)       KS04
Bryan Lentz          Open (Sestak)       PA07
Rob Miller           Joe Wilson          SC02
Steve Pougnet        Mary Bono Mack      CA45
Dan Seals            Open (Kirk)         IL10
Tom White            Lee Terry           NE02

The list is a good one, and the Democrats have legitimate shots at winning in a number of them, particularly the open seat races.

But one incumbent target worth mentioning is Mary Bono Mack, who has never faced a genuine challenge during her time in Congress. Representing a district anchored in the Palm Springs-area of Southern California that backed Barack Obama by a 52 percent to 47 percent margin in 2008 and which backed Al Gore's 2000 Presidential bid with 51 percent of the vote, Bono Mack might be more vulnerable than many think -- particularly considering that her challenger is the popular mayor Palm Springs, Steve Pougnet.

Bono Mack has quite a bit more money in the bank than Pougnet does at present -- but Pougnet has shown decent fundraising chops, bringing in more than $550,000 through the end of the year and holding $400,000 in the bank. With new fundraising support from the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, these numbers could come closer to equalizing in the months leading toward the election, and this could be a real race.

Tags: House 2010, California, CA-45, dccc (all tags)



I suspect we'll win at most 5 red districts

We should have no trouble in LA-02 and DE-AL, but beyond that we don't have a lot of great chances. I agree with staying on offense, but if we won even half the seats on that list I would be shocked. Too bad Gerlach decided to scurry back to PA-06.

by desmoinesdem 2010-03-10 12:52PM | 0 recs
good post at Down With Tyranny

about the DCCC's red to blue list:

by desmoinesdem 2010-03-10 05:32PM | 0 recs
Don't write off Goyle

Raj Goyle is someone to watch. He has a legit chance to win this seat, but he really wants to finish the job Kathleen Sebelius started and remake the Dem party in KS. And if it can be done, then he is someone who can. He's been a state rep from the Wichita area, lived there his whole life, and really, really, smart. Watch him.

by alicel 2010-03-10 09:20PM | 0 recs


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