Skip to comments.Steve King for Senate in 2008 (Iowa editorial)
Posted on 06/23/2007 11:26:31 AM PDT by Clintonfatigued
David Yepsen's column this weekend suggests that Republicans do not have a credible challenger to Harkin for 2008. Yepsen points out:
Yet so far, no big-name Republicans seem to be making the moves needed to challenge him. Only obscure names are heard. Could the ghosts of Bill Scherle (1974), Roger Jepsen (1984), Tom Tauke (1990), Jim Lightfoot (1996) and Greg Ganske (2002) be scaring off credible GOP challengers? Could 2008 be the year that Harkin, finally, gets the same sort of free ride from Republicans that Democrats have been giving Chuck Grassley for 20 years?
Of course in Republican circles the buzz has been that Congressman Steve King was preparing to run against Harkin in '08. Yepsen suggests that since King has a safe house seat (in western Iowa were Dems are as rare as buffalo) that he would be content to hold the seat indefinitely.
I agree with Krusty! I am one who believes, or maybe it is simply hope, that King will take up the challenge. Unlike Grassley, Harkin has had close races. Conservatives in Iowa are itching for this fight. King vs Harkin would rally the base like never before. King is no lightweight (I mean Lightfoot). He is charismatic and controversial but he would mobilize conservative Republicans across the state.
(Excerpt) Read more at hawkeyegop.com ...
Amen. I hope that Steve King runs against Harkin in 2008, since he would probably be our strongest candidate and would be make a great Senator.
Retaking the IA-01 will be tough, since it only gave President Bush 46% in 2004 and its freshman member is a pro. I think we need Jim Nussle to reclaim his seat for us to have a chance.
The IA-02 gave President Bush 44% in 2004, and taking it back would be very difficult even against the moonbat incumbent. Cal Eldred would at least have some name ID and connections to national contributors, but that seat was held by the RINO Leach in spite of, not because of, his GOP affiliation.
The IA-03 gave President Bush 50% in 2004 (he actually carried it by a couple of hundred votes), and, as you said, Boswell is quite old and not in the best of health. Rather than freshman state senator Brad Zaun, I think that Boswell’s 2004 challenger (Lombardo?) should take another crack at it. The IA-03 should be an easier target for us than the IA-01 and IA-02.
The class of ‘74 was very politically savvy. They used incumbency quite effectively; also knew how to present themselves to conservative voters. The political climate of ‘76 (post-Watergate, Nixon pardon, etc.) also helped them. In addition, it may have been hard to find strong Republicans to run against these people in ‘76.
Unfortunately, the same factors may well apply next year to the new Rats elected in ‘06.
As you suggest, a district that voted 44 percent for Bush in ‘04 is not competitive for the GOP, absent an incumbent. 44 percent is what Bush got in CALIFORNIA, too!
We won’t know for sure whether they are more like the ‘64 class or ‘74 class until next November. But this President and the leadership aren’t making it easy to send these folks packing (but I think we’ll send a few back, at the very least). I still don’t believe, either, that the people in these rural Iowa districts will be comfortable in the long run with members that vote for San Francisco extremists over local values.
It’s possible for Iowans (or anyone else) to be uncomfortable with a congressman but still vote for him.
Definitely Bush and the Senate leadership (I feel somewhat better about the House guys and some of the presidential candidates) are making it hard for us.
I assume we’ll take out Mahoney in Florida and Lampson in Texas — but those were freak winners with almost last-minute opponents, running against a background of sleaze (in Foley district) or alleged sleaze (in the DeLay district).
After those near-”gimme” districts, I’d say we have a relatively good chance to take back the former seats of:
Jeb Bradley in NH, Don Sherwood in PA, Melissa Hart in PA (only IF Lynn Swann runs AND campaigns competently), Bob Ney in OH, and Mark Green in WI.
In addition, we have a shot at 2 or 3 seats that the Rats already had: Marshall and Barrow in GA, and, if he retires, Boswell in IA.
That still leaves us several short of a majority. Even if, against the odds, we hold every seat we have now.
We badly need to expand the field. And make sure we have excellent candidates for even the most vulnerable Rat seats.
Actually, scratch the Bradley seat in NH. New England is probably gone in ‘08.
Add to competitive list:
the former Jim Ryun seat in KS.
Also, we’d have a shot in SD IF Johnson retires from the Senate and Herseth vacates the House seat in order to run as his replacement.
New Hampshire hasn’t had 2 rodents occupying both its House seats since 1912. They both lost after a single term in 1914. Carol Shea-Porter is a major league moonbat, and she is toast. But I’d prefer someone other than Jeb Bradley to run. Paul Hodes has a better chance in the 2nd, but Democrats are not natural fits for office in NH. They won total control of the legislature, too, for the first time since about 1922, and I don’t expect that to last, either.
Even in Maine, we’re only one seat down from controlling the State Senate (and it is, momentarily, the most heavily GOP legislative state in New England). I don’t know if we’ll be particularly competitive with Allen’s 1st district open House seat, but we did win it in 1994. A nice ugly ‘Rat primary battle would help us immensely.
The implication with uncomfortable would mean they’d vote them out, despite Dubya’s subpar performances in those districts.
It’s not just freshman we should be targeting, but other ‘Rat incumbents in 45%+ Bush districts. Why should we cede them without challenge ? They certainly haven’t with ours in solid GOP seats. If we dismiss so many out of hand, we don’t deserve to win back a majority.
Who do I think should be targeted in the House ? Here’s a list of 87 (!) potentials:
AL - Bud Cramer (he should switch parties)
AZ - Freshmen Harry Mitchell & Gabrielle Giffords (those are GOP districts)
AR - Vic Snyder (too liberal for his Little Rock seat)
CA - Jerry McNerney (toast)
CO - Udall Open Seat (difficult, but not impossible); John Salazar; Ed Perlmutter
CT - Freshmen Joe Courtney & Chris Murphy
FL - Allen Boyd (GOP district); freshmen Tim Mahoney & Ron Klein
GA - Jim Marshall & John Barrow
HI - Neil Abercrombie (targeted in the ‘90s, and still too moonbat for this seat)
IL - Melissa Bean and freshman Phil Hare
IN - Freshmen Joe Donnelly, Brad Ellsworth & Baron Hill and ill moonbat Julia Carson
IA - Freshmen Bruce Braley, Dave Loebsack; ailing Leonard Boswell
KS - Freshman Nancy Boyda; too-liberal Dennis Moore
KY - Moonbat freshman John Yarmuth
LA - Charlie Melancon
ME - Open Allen seat
MI - Bart Stupak (too liberal for the UP)
MN - Freshman Tim Walz; Collin Peterson (GOP district)
MS - Erratic Gene Taylor
MO - Ike Skelton (GOP district, in office too long)
NV - Shelley Berkley (formidable, but we did hold the seat in the ‘90s)
NH - Freshman ultramoonbat Carol Shea-Porter & Paul Hodes
NJ - Moonbat Rush Holt (this was still a GOP district until recently)
NY - Long Island’s rodent troika of Tim Bishop, Steve Israel and moonbat Carolyn McCarthy; moonbat freshman John Hall; Kirsten Gillibrand; Maurice Hinchey (formidable, but I think he should be targeted); Mike Arcuri & Brian Higgins
NC - Bob Etheridge & Mike McIntyre (both GOP districts); Heath Shuler; and Brad Miller’s seat (if he vacates it)
ND - Earl Pomeroy (this is STILL a Republican state)
OH - Freshmen Charlie Wilson (historically GOP district) and Zack Space
OK - Dan Boren (pressure him to switch parties)
OR - David Wu (an embarrassment); Peter DeFazio (that it still a competitive area with a strong candidate); Darlene Hooley (who has no business in that GOP seat)
PA - Freshman Jason Altmire (fluke win); Joe Sestak (moonbat embarrassment); Patrick Murphy; Chris Carney (fluke win); Paul Kanjorski (too liberal for a competitive seat); John Murtha (biggest embarrassment in PA); Tim Holden (GOP seat)
RI - Patrick Kennedy (quixotic, maybe, but the GOP held the seat before him)
SC - John Spratt (leadership, too liberal for GOP seat)
SD - Stephanie Herseth-Sandlin (even if she doesn’t vacate)
TN - Lincoln Davis (pressure to switch parties); Bart Gordon (rapidly increasing GOP district); John Tanner (just plain needs to go)
TX - Chet Edwards (heavily GOP seat, too liberal); Nick Lampson (fluke win); Ciro Rodriguez (GOP district, fluke win)
UT - Jim Matheson (heavily GOP district)
VT - Peter Welch (still a freshman)
VA - Rick Boucher (chronically too liberal for previous GOP seat)
WA - Jay Inslee (prior GOP seat); Rick Larsen (ditto); Brian Baird & Adam Smith (tough, but they’ve not faced substantial challengers in a decade)
WV - Alan Mollohan (crook in GOP trending district); Nick Rahall (GOP trending district, in office 32 years)
WI - Ron Kind (prior GOP seat); Gwen Moore (formidable, but she is too liberal for this seat, and it’s not majority Black); Dave Obey (approaching 40 years in a historically GOP seat); Steve Kagen (fluke win)
I don’t believe in “ceding” anything “without challenge.” I believe in competing vigorously and aggressively in every district. But since we’re talking prognostication, I’m giving my honest view of the probabilities, which in my humble opinion, are not very promising. You’re right to this extent: We should be careful how often we make gloomy predictions. It’s important to keep spirits up. Actually, to raise them much higher than they are now in the GOP.
To be honest, I’ve not been too thrilled about our chances as of late, far down from last November when I was quite sanguine that we would easily take back Congress from this moonbat uprising, but mine above was simply to list what we should aggressively target. You’re a smidge more gloomy than I am, but not quite Torie category. It’s too bad the source of the gloom is coming from the President’s appalling actions, along with leadership.
You’re right that we should make serious efforts in most, if not all, of these races.
You’re on drugs if you think we can possibly win more than a small fraction of them in ‘08. Rats won most of these seats under significantly worse (for them) circumstances in ‘02 and ‘04. And these incumbents are now more entrenched.
A few comments on the seats we have a better (or less-bad) chace of taking on this list:
Mitchell (AZ) — We need an anti-immigration candidate who also has the support of the fat cats and RINOs. A tall order.
McNerney (CA) — We seem to have a credible challenger, but he will be swimming against the presidential tide. A Republican presidential candidate can no longer win California, period. In addition, the Bay Area Rats, having no other seats to worry about, will focus like a laser on saving McNerney — just as they focused like a laser on defeating Pombo.
Ellsworth (IN) — Very Republican districts, but very Republican districts, unlike strong Rat districts, sometimes elect Rats. At the end of the day, many of what should be our base voters are less partisan than almost any of the Rats base. That’s how you get a Brad Ellsworth, or, to take a more obnoxious example, a Jon Tester from Montana. Ellsworth did have the advantage of running against a cranky incumbent who didn’t believe in raising money and relied completely on Christian activists. But he’s also a former sheriff and probably votes relatively conservative. Indiana does have voting machines with a straight-ticket option, so I’ll say yes, we have a chance to beat Ellsworth. But not a probability.
Hill (IN) — Most of the above applies. If Mike Sodrel, the previous incumbent, runs, he has a slight chance. I doubt anyone else does. Hill was the congressman for quite a while before Sodrel beat him in ‘04, thanks to straight-ticket voting in (what was) a strong Bush state.
Shea-Porter (NH) — Far-left, but NH has been moving left. There was a GOP meltdown there in ‘06 for serious (not momentary) reasons. No recovery in ‘08 unless I’m badly mistaken.
Hall (NY) — see NH analysis. Hall is flaky enough to be somewhat more endangered than most Rat freshmen, but I’d still call him the favorite.
Mollohan (WV) — well, maybe if he’s indicted or resigns or retires. Otherwise, I think the ‘06 result (Mollohan won easily despite the scandal) will be repeated. Suspected corruption is not a big liability in WV.
The president sucks. We need to put him behind us.
All we have to win is less than 20 to get a majority. Even a modest upturn in our fortunes (and that ghastly approval rating of 14% for Congress) should not put the House out of reach (I'm not analyzing the Senate races).
"A few comments on the seats we have a better (or less-bad) chace of taking on this list:
Mitchell (AZ) We need an anti-immigration candidate who also has the support of the fat cats and RINOs. A tall order."
I'd actually think that if J.D. Hayworth sought a rematch or we reached into the legislature for a candidate, we could get back the seat. Mitchell is pushing 70, and this was his last hurrah after decades in politics.
"McNerney (CA) We seem to have a credible challenger, but he will be swimming against the presidential tide. A Republican presidential candidate can no longer win California, period. In addition, the Bay Area Rats, having no other seats to worry about, will focus like a laser on saving McNerney just as they focused like a laser on defeating Pombo."
It's precisely why McNerney IS in trouble. This district is Republican on the Presidential level, and he'll be swimming against the tide. Pombo, who had some issues, was specifically targeted, both in the primary, where the senile RINO leftist traitor Pete McCloskey sought to maximize damage to him, doing the bidding of his rodent masters, and then allowing them to go for the kill in an awful year for us. The rodents can focus all the attention they like, but we will have a top tier candidate, and short of a complete meltdown at the top, McNerney will be a one-term wonder. I'm actually more worried about John Doolittle's seat. His ethics problems will cost us his safe GOP seat if he doesn't step aside. Rodents can put up criminals election after election and they'll win, but we can't put up anyone with questionable ethics or dubious affiliations, no matter how distant.
"Ellsworth (IN) Very Republican districts, but very Republican districts, unlike strong Rat districts, sometimes elect Rats. At the end of the day, many of what should be our base voters are less partisan than almost any of the Rats base. Thats how you get a Brad Ellsworth, or, to take a more obnoxious example, a Jon Tester from Montana. Ellsworth did have the advantage of running against a cranky incumbent who didnt believe in raising money and relied completely on Christian activists. But hes also a former sheriff and probably votes relatively conservative. Indiana does have voting machines with a straight-ticket option, so Ill say yes, we have a chance to beat Ellsworth. But not a probability."
I put him out there, but he's the least likely of the 4 rodents targeted in IN to be ousted (I think we have a better shot with a Black Republican against the ailing Julia Carson), but that's no excuse to not go after him. He still votes for Pelosi for Speaker, and that should be an issue, no matter however else he votes. Evansville isn't San Francisco.
"Hill (IN) Most of the above applies. If Mike Sodrel, the previous incumbent, runs, he has a slight chance. I doubt anyone else does. Hill was the congressman for quite a while before Sodrel beat him in 04, thanks to straight-ticket voting in (what was) a strong Bush state."
The Sodrel upset was one of the nicest surprises of the '04 cycle, one a lot of us weren't paying attention to. Hill had been sitting in a GOP district for some time (one reason why Lee Hamilton got out was because of that), and had survived close shaves, but he was really too liberal for the seat. Absent the '06 fiasco, Sodrel would've held on, but I think we will take it back again in '08. There was some mention that Hill might even retire before the election, tired of these close calls. Sodrel would win easily in that instance.
"Shea-Porter (NH) Far-left, but NH has been moving left. There was a GOP meltdown there in 06 for serious (not momentary) reasons. No recovery in 08 unless Im badly mistaken."
I still stand on the historic trends. We get it back, but Bradley isn't the best we can put up. 2006 is 1964 redux.
"Hall (NY) see NH analysis. Hall is flaky enough to be somewhat more endangered than most Rat freshmen, but Id still call him the favorite."
The 'Rats are overrepresented in the state in GOP districts. This moonbat caught a RINO asleep at the wheel. I think we get this one back, too, but I'm not nearly as certain about it as NH. I'd say I'm 75% sure we get the Shea-Porter seat, 65-70% sure we get back the Hall seat (unless we put up an odious or lackluster GOP opponent).
"Mollohan (WV) well, maybe if hes indicted or resigns or retires. Otherwise, I think the 06 result (Mollohan won easily despite the scandal) will be repeated. Suspected corruption is not a big liability in WV."
This isn't the bad old WV that turned a blind eye to rampant corruption, they're getting with the program. WV is finally moving our way again after being a backwater for so long (until Watergate, the GOP was on track to winning control of the legislature in the '70s). Every single endangered rodent in '06 was saved by the anti-GOP tide, and Mollohan was a premier example. The Democrat officials in the state, save the Governor (who isn't so bad as an individual), are becoming moribund, and we need to be ruthlessly aggressive in challenging them. It's too bad that Byrd had to run in such a great year for his party, otherwise someone like Shelley Moore Capito should've been able to end his 60-year reign of error for good. I expect Byrd to probably be carried out feet-first before the end of his current term expires. I don't think he'll be around at 95 (2012) to run again (and he certainly won't have the faculties that Strom had when he ran for his final term at 94 in 1996).
That’s going to be hard to do until he leaves office. :-\
OK, McNerney might lose, depending on how Republican the district is. You caught me out on that one! I’d add a cautionary note, however: There are lots of disloyal, soccer-mom type Republicans on the more affluent side of the district.
I’m afraid your points on the other districts are unpersuasive. :(
Talk about mixed feelings. Steve is not stupid and he won’t do it unless he thinks he has a very good chance of unseating Commie Tommy.