Tuesday, December 1, 2009

It's Beginning to Look a lot Like 1994

Politico reports Republicans are winning the recruiting battle for the coming 2010 midterms while Democrats see candidates dropping out of tough races. Democratic members of Congress who thought themselves assured reelection are finding themselves facing tougher prospects for reelection.
But in 2010, defense is the name of the game for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, which is defending several dozens vulnerable freshmen and second-term members, while also protecting veteran members who could find themselves in newfound trouble. It will be a lot more challenging for a first-time candidate running in a tough district to get financial support from the DCCC when the party is worried about defending its own.
Politico cites examples of strong candidates who might be poised in a more favorable political environment to give Democrats a few choice pick-ups, who chose instead to withdraw:
Over the last week, three Democratic candidates touted by national strategists abruptly withdrew from their races: Solano Beach Councilman Dave Roberts (running against California Rep. Brian Bilbray), state Rep. Todd Book (running against Ohio Rep. Jean Schmidt) and Tennessee Commerce and Insurance Commissioner Paula Flowers (in the seat held by retiring Rep. Zach Wamp).

In a neutral political environment, the seats held by Bilbray, Schmidt, and the open Tennessee seat would be enticing targets for Democrats. Democrats aggressively contested the first two seats in both 2006 and 2008, and experienced unexpected success in Southern open seats over the last two elections.
 The political winds have indeed changed.  Locally I can add Patrick Murphy (D, PA-8) has Republicans coming out of the woodwork to oppose him in 2010.  Recently a former Bucks County prosecutor and Marine reservist Dean Malik announced he would seek the GOP endorsement.  A moderate Warrington PA resident Jeffrey Schott had already announced his intentions to seek the GOP nomination.  The two candidates are not alone according to the Morning Call:
Malik and Schott may have competition for the coveted GOPendorsement. Patricia Poprik, vice chairman of the Bucks County Republican Committee, said at least eight people have contacted party leaders about running.
Though Murphy is not on the NRCC targeted list, the current political mood suggests there are no safe seats and Murphy should know this better than anyone.  In 2006 he unseated incumbent Mike Fitzpatrick (R) when the tides had clearly turned against Republicans.  Consider the eight hoping to challenge Murphy a sign of the times.

UPDATE- Linked at by Beth Hegedus "Montgomery County Republican Examiner"  Thank you and welcome Examiner readers!

Update II:  Via Memeorandum  Hotline on Call reports that a second leading Blue Dog is retiring.   This second retirement in a matter of days is a harbinger of some bad times ahead for Democrats:
Indeed, Hotline's Amy Walter wrote last week that, of all potential Dem retirements, a Tanner announcement would send the biggest shockwave through the party. After all, the thinking goes, if a longtime leader of the Blue Dogs decides now is the time to hang it up, what does that say for others in his position (like MO's Ike Skelton, AR's Marion Berry or WV's Alan Mollohan)? They've all skated to re-election in recent cycles, yet all saw their CDs go quite strongly to McCain.
 Karl in The Greenroom has an excellent post on this topic citing recent polling from PPP ( a Democratic pollster) that shows a large bloc of  Democratic voters think the party is too liberal:
In fact, it is larger than the bloc of Democrats think their party’s too conservative. Yet there remains a body of opinion on the Left that thinks going Left is somehow going to help the party in the 2010 midterms. It turns out that it may not help them with Democrats, let alone Independents.


  1. Murphy is a clown .... a marble mouthed clown who acts like a woman (no offense women) who can't make up her mind what shoes to wear.

  2. Well, he can make up his mind when Nancy Pelosi makes it up for him. The idea he is a moderate is patently absurd; his voting record betrays him.


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