November House rankings: How many more Republican retirements?

Just when the GOP is starting to catch some small breaks in the Senate, the situation in the House is rapidly deteriorating. As many had predicted, a growing number of Republican representatives do not find the prospect of life in the minority appealing and are calling it quits. Unfortunately for Republicans, a large majority of them represent competitive districts. The latest retirement were particularly shocking because they were completely unexpected -- especially Rep. Ferguson's in NJ-07. Democrats have golden opportunities to pick-up all of these seats, especially if the environment continues to favor them. But this also means Republicans will be forced to play defense and will not be able to contest that many Democratic-held seats, no matter how vulnerable they might be.

The full ratings is available here, at Campaign Diaries.

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Republican disarray now extending to the House (OH-18, GA-8, GA-12, VA-11, CA-4, CT-4)

Senate Republicans have not been doing well for a while now. But the GOP's disarray is now extending to the House! The series of Republicans congressmen (Pryce, Hastert, LaHood, Peckering, ...) declaring their intention to retire in August started the wave of bad news, but this past week shows the GOP's House problems go much deeper than these open seats.

Read full analysis here,  on Campaign Diaries.

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Fundraising for Freshman Democrats: The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly

The Hill published an article highlighting some of the fundraising efforts of freshmen Democrats in the House.  Apparently, many are doing quite well.  David Loebsack (IA-02) has raised about $71,000.  Kirsten Gillebrand (NY-20) has raised $65,000 in PAC money alone.  Earl Perlmutter (CO-07) has raised $79,000.  Charlie Wilson (OH-06) has raised $34,000.  Paul Hodes has raised $35,000.  Jason Altmire (PA-04) and Patrick Murphy (PA-08) have both raised $50,000 in PAC money alone.  Zack Space (OH-18) and Steven Kagen (WI-08) have both raised $35,000 in PAC money.

As far as simple financial numbers go, this is good news.  All of these candidates are vulnerable to some degree.  So, if all of these House members are already off to good starts, they may be able to force out potentially strong challenges early on.

But the article also has some worrying relevations.  For one thing, Nancy Boyda (KS-02) has raised only $13,000.  Considering the presidential vote in her district (Bush won it by 20 points), Boyda is probably one of our top five most vulnerable Democrats.  Plus, she will not have Sebelius' coattails helping her and will instead have to contend with the Republican tide at the top of the ticket from the eventual Republican nominee and Senator Pat Roberts. Finally, she will possibly face a rematch against Jim Ryun. More over the flip...

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ActBlue: Reward the Dems surging in the new blue wave!

As a result of the Democratic surge in polls announced today, I've set up a page on ActBlue to reward all the Dems who are surging ahead:

ActBlue: Blue Wave

As I write on the page, I left off people who are currently behind because I wanted to give folks an easy way to reward those who are surging ahead. That doesn't mean you shouldn't help others join the blue wave! It just seemed like we should reward those who have been doing good.

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OH-18: Another Likely Dem Win?

The NRCC has already all but conceded two House seats to Democrats, TX-22 and AZ-08. In both cases, the NRCC was unable to get a credible candidate on the ballot. Now, in OH-18, they seem to be suffering from the opposite problem--actually getting their preferred candidate on the ballot. Check out this internal poll from the Space campaign (from polling report): Cooper & Secrest Associates for Zack Space (D). Sept. 17-18, 2006. N=504 likely voters districtwide. MoE ± 4.4.

Trial Heat
Zach Space: 45%
Joy Padgett: 31%

Space: 50% favorable, 17% unfavorable
Padgett: 41% favorable, 34% unfavorable So, Space is leading despite lower name ID. He holds a commanding lead in favorables. Then, there is the money situation:

Cash on hand
Space: $205.6K as of 6/30
Padgett: $13.1K as of 8/25

Remember, last month Space was leading in an independent poll against a generic Republican, so even though this is an internal poll, it isn't actually surprising that he leads by far more against a specific Republican. That is just the way these things work, as people are allowed to imagine their ideal Republican in a generic ballot. Since Padgett already lost the Republican primary for Lt. Gov. this year, I think it is safe to say that Padgett is not the ideal Republican according to voters in the district.

The NRCC is still spending money in this district--mostly on mail. However, right now, all signs point to a victory by Zach Space. I think many of us had worried that this campaign would turn into a replay of CA-50, but it now seems that this is turning into the mirror universe version of TX-22 instead. That works for me.


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