News for House Dems: ‘Worse, worser, and worst’

The news this morning for Democrats? To take a page from Keith Olbermann’s book, it’s “Worse, Worser and Worst.”

WORSE: Kristi Noem, the Republican challenger Rep. Stephanie Herseth Sandlin, D-S.D., raised $1 million in the quarter that just ended. Not only does this mean that Republicans might have a new Sarah Palin who isn’t a knucklehead, but it also means they’ll probably outspend Herseth-Sandlin until Election Day.

WORSER: The Hill has released polls of ten open House districts (One of them isn’t actually “open,” but it was just recently filled in a special election). A few takeaways:

  • Democrats are getting killed in AR-1, the district of retiring Rep. Marion Berry, D.
  • Despite heavy spending by the DCCC, they appear doomed in WI-7, retiring Democratic Rep. David Obey’s Wisconsin as well. Republican Sean Duffy leads by 9 points.
  • They are getting killed in Davy Crockett’s old district, TN-8 (open, Tanner).
  • Democrats are doing much better in IL-10, Mark Kirk’s district, than anyone seems to think. On the other hand, they look set to lose in HI-1, one of their expected pickups, as Rep. Charles Djou, R, has posted a surprising four-point lead and both candidates have plenty of name recognition.
  • Democrats hold a slim 42-39 lead, with lots of undecideds, in WV-1, where Democrat Mike Oliverio and Republican David McKinley are fighting over who is more conservative. It’s a dogfight, but here’s one ominous cross-tab: Independent voters are breaking for the Republican, three to one.
  • Republicans lead, although more narrowly than you might expect, in the open WA-3, PA-7, NH-2 and MI-1 seats.

WORST: If you’ve been waiting for the dam to break, here’s a hint about how it’s going to happen.

An alliance of Republican groups is launching a $50 million advertising blitz this week in a final push to help the GOP win a majority in the House, representing the biggest spending blitz ever by such groups in a congressional election campaign…It is aimed at the few dozen competitive races where Democratic candidates have significantly more money in the bank than their Republican opponents, eating into one of the Democrats’ last financial advantages…

In the 40 races deemed toss-ups by the Cook Political Report, a political handicapper, Democratic candidates had a combined $39.3 million of cash on hand as of June 30, the most-recent filing deadline. Republican candidates had $16.5 million in the bank.

This effort — led by American Crossroads, Crossroads GPS, American Action Network, and the Commission on Hope, Growth and Opportunity, could put a lot more races on the map. Think, for example, of MI-3, where Democratic Rep. Gary Peters is poll-poor but cash rich. Or Joe Donnelly, D, in IN-2. Or Sanford Bishop, D, in Georgia. Or Melissa Bean, D, in IL-8. Or Ed Perlmutter, D, in Colorado. Or Tim Waltz, D, in Minnesota. Or any of the House races in Connecticut or Washington State that haven’t been getting much attention lately.

Sure, there will be plenty of new whining about undisclosed donors, but unions — which only have to disclose large donations (over $5,000), and need do so only annually, months after the election is over — have been bringing hundred-million-dollar political slush funds to the table for years on behalf of Democrats, leaving the GOP at a structural disadvantage. We could all do with more disclosure by everyone, but the Democrats’ problem is that the playing field is level and the electorate doesn’t need much of a push to throw them out of power.

Beltway Confidentialelection 2010pollsUS

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

San Francisco Police Chief Bill Scott listens at a rally to commemorate the life of George Floyd and others killed by police outside City Hall on Monday, June 1, 2020. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Will the Biden Administration help SF speed up police reform?

City has struggled to implement changes without federal oversight

Lowell High School (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Students, families call for culture shift at Lowell after racist incident

District to explore changes including possible revision of admissions policy

Alan Wong was among California National Guard members deployed to Sacramento to provide security the weekend before the presidential inauguration. (Courtesy photo)
CCSF board member tests positive for COVID-19 after National Guard deployment

Alan Wong spent eight days in Sacramento protecting State Capitol before Inauguration Day

Due to a lack of votes in his favor, record-holding former Giant Barry Bonds (pictured at tribute to Willie McCovey in 2018) will not be entering the National Baseball Hall of Fame in the near future.<ins> (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)</ins>
Ex-Giants star Barry Bonds again falls short of Hall of Fame

After striking out yet again in his bid to join Major League… Continue reading

San Francisco firefighter Keith Baraka has filed suit against The City alleging discrimination on the basis of race and sexual orientation.<ins></ins>
Gay black firefighter sues city for discrimination

A San Francisco firefighter who says he was harassed and discriminated against… Continue reading

Most Read