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True Size of GOP Wave Still Developing
CQ Politics ^ | 9/20/10 | CQ-Roll Call Staff

Posted on 09/21/2010 6:14:49 AM PDT by randita

CQ POLITICS NEWS

Sept. 20, 2010 – 11:24 p.m.

True Size of GOP Wave Still Developing

By CQ-Roll Call Staff

With the primary period concluded and independent expenditure spending now fully under way, party strategists face the difficult task of figuring out which races to fund, which incumbents to cut lose and how much debt to incur to try to secure a majority in the House.

It also means that it is time for CQ Politics to do a sweeping assessment of the current House playing field and update our race ratings to reflect a battleground that is still tilted heavily toward Republicans but coming into clearer focus by the day. Will Republicans pick up the 39 seats needed to take back the House and install Minority Leader John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) as Speaker? We just don’t know yet. But Republicans are clearly well-positioned to make significant gains.

This round of race rating changes is major in that it marks the first time this cycle that we are moving Democratic incumbents into the Leans Republican category — meaning the odds are greater that they will be defeated, rather than re-elected, in November. With two notable exceptions, the bulk of changes to our ratings are positive for Republicans.

The re-election races of seven Democratic incumbents have been moved to the Leans Republican category. Six of the incumbents were first elected in 2008. Three were elected in districts that supported President Barack Obama in 2008 but President George W. Bush in 2004: Reps. Debbie Halvorson in eastern Illinois, Steve Driehaus in southwestern Ohio and Mary Jo Kilroy in central Ohio.

Without a doubt, the most difficult rating change to make was our decision to move veteran Texas Rep. Chet Edwards , a Blue Dog first elected in 1990, into the Leans Republican category. Edwards is a tough, smart and seasoned campaigner who has been targeted by the GOP cycle after cycle, but who always held on to win another term. He now represents the district that Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) carried by the largest margin in 2008, a testament to his campaigning skills in previous cycles. While we find it hard to bet against Edwards, the mood of the electorate in his staunchly conservative district, combined with the strength of his Republican opponent, businessman Bill Flores, make him more likely to lose than to win. Polling in the contest — both public and private — backs that up.

Also moving from Tossup to Leans Republican are three Democratic-held open seats — two of which are being vacated by House Members running for Senate. It’s getting harder by the day to see how Democrats could hold Indiana’s 8th district, which Rep. Brad Ellsworth (D) is vacating to run for the Senate. Surgeon Larry Bucshon (R) has clearly gained momentum over state Rep. Trent Van Haaften (D) in the race, and it doesn’t help Van Haaften’s efforts that Ellsworth isn’t gaining any traction in the Senate contest.

Republicans also clearly have momentum in Tennessee’s 8th district, where Rep. John Tanner (D) is retiring, and in New Hampshire’s 2nd district, which Rep. Paul W. Hodes (D) is leaving behind to run for the Senate. The demographics of the New Hampshire district favor Democrats a lot more than those of the Tennessee seat. However, New Hampshire is a more expensive state, and Republicans got the strongest possible nominee in former Rep. Charlie Bass, who was ousted in the Democratic wave in 2006. Democrats have made significant gains over the past two cycles in New Hampshire, and this is likely to be a cycle where we see some political realignment in the state.

Six districts held by Democratic incumbents are moving from the Leans Democratic category to Tossup. One of those Members, Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick (Ariz.), was elected in 2008, and four were elected in 2006. McCain carried four of the districts in 2008, and Bush easily carried all of them in 2004.

Kirkpatrick won her seat in the conservative eastern Arizona district in the wake of the retirement of Republican Rep. Rick Renzi, who had ethics problems. She faces dentist Paul Gosar in what appears to be an increasingly uphill battle for her. In the races against Kirkpatrick and Rep. Harry E. Mitchell (D-Ariz.), Republicans are boosted by the fact that McCain is up for re-election and will again be at the top of the ticket in November.

Mitchell faces David Schweikert, the 2008 Republican nominee, under very different circumstances this November. Republicans are targeting the Blue Dog with criticism of his votes for health care reform and for Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) as Speaker.

Farther down the line, three more Democratic incumbents inch closer to the Tossup category. Reps. John Salazar (Colo.) and Rick Larsen (Wash.) move from Likely Democratic to the more volatile Leans Democratic category, and Rep. Phil Hare (Ill.) moves from Safe Democratic to Leans Democratic. Each change is a reflection of the national mood and a Republican nominee who is surging in polls. The Hare race is especially one to watch, as this race has developed more quickly than most in recent weeks.

There are two ratings moving in favor of Democrats. In Delaware, Democrats were already projected to win the seat being vacated by Rep. Michael N. Castle (R), but after last week’s primary the party is all but guaranteed to pick it up. Republican hopes of making this race more competitive lay in the prospect that wealthy businesswoman Michele Rollins would help self-fund her bid. But Rollins was upset in the GOP primary by tea party candidate Glen Urquhart, who is not viewed as a viable general election nominee.

Finally, we are moving one Republican incumbent into the Tossup category: California Rep. Dan Lungren .

Aside from GOP Reps. Anh “Joseph” Cao (La.) and Charles K. Djou (Hawaii) — both of whom represent heavily Democratic districts — there are three Republican Members whom Democrats believe they have a chance of defeating in November. They are Lungren and Reps. Dave Reichert (Wash.) and Charlie Dent (Pa.). Of the three, Lungren appears to be the easiest target for Democrats to paint as a politician who has been in office too long, a message that is certainly resonating with voters this cycle. Lungren’s Democratic opponent, physician Ami Bera, has the resources to get that message out to voters, and his first TV ad was a direct salvo at Lungren, who is in his second stint in Congress.

There appears to be little doubt that Lungren will have to fight to hold his seat. We’re monitoring the Reichert and Dent races, too, but we can’t see justification for moving them at this point given the overall climate that favors the GOP.

Moved from Tossup to Leans Republican:

Colorado’s 4th — Rep. Betsy Markey (D)

Florida’s 24th — Rep. Suzanne M. Kosmas (D)

Illinois’ 11th — Rep. Debbie Halvorson (D)

Indiana’s 8th — open seat

Maryland’s 1st — Rep. Frank Kratovil Jr. (D)

New Hampshire’s 2nd — open seat

Ohio’s 1st — Rep. Steve Driehaus (D)

Ohio’s 15th — Rep. Mary Jo Kilroy (D)

Tennessee’s 8th — open seat

Texas’ 17th — Rep. Chet Edwards (D)

Moved from Leans Democratic to Tossup:

Arizona’s 1st — Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick (D)

Arizona’s 5th — Rep. Harry E. Mitchell (D)

Georgia’s 8th — Rep. Jim Marshall (D)

New York’s 19th — Rep. John Hall (D)

Pennsylvania’s 10th — Rep. Christopher Carney (D)

Wisconsin’s 8th — Rep. Steve Kagen (D)

Moved from Leans Republican to Tossup:

California’s 3rd district — Rep. Dan Lungren (R)

Moved from Likely Democratic to Leans Democratic:

Colorado’s 3rd — Rep. John Salazar (D)

Georgia’s 2nd — Rep. Sanford D. Bishop Jr. (D)

Washington’s 2nd — Rep. Rick Larsen (D)

Moved from Leans Democratic to Likely Democratic:

Delaware at-large — open seat

Moved from Leans Republican to Likely Republican:

Kansas’ 3rd — open seat

Move from Safe Democratic to Leans Democratic:

Illinois’ 17th — Rep. Phil Hare (D)


TOPICS: Government; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: khr; republicans; ushouse
CQ has been behind the eight ball compared to other expert predictors. They're finally catching up.

Key House Races - Supporting Conservative U.S. House Candidates in 2010

1 posted on 09/21/2010 6:14:51 AM PDT by randita
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To: InterceptPoint; Impy; Clintonfatigued; AuH2ORepublican; Political Junkie Too

CQ’s finally catching up. This should help move the Key House Races closer to the aggregate toss up range.


2 posted on 09/21/2010 6:16:23 AM PDT by randita (Visit keyhouseraces.com to find GOP House candidates who need your support to knock off a DEM.)
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Comment #3 Removed by Moderator

To: randita

KEY CONGRESSIONAL RACE IN CALIFORNIA!

Due to the partisan gerrymandering by both parties, most of the California Congressional seats are not in play this year. But a few are and the most notable possible Republican pickup is in the Stockton area where David Harmer is running against Jerry McNerney.

I recently visited with Harmer during a stopover in San Francisco. He is compelling, conservative, articulate, and charismatic! The polling shows him tied with McNerney, a freshman Democrat who has voted down the liberal line for Stimulus, Obamacare, cap and trade, Card Check and the entire Obama agenda.

Harmer has a real chance to win and he can be a crucial building block in our efforts to retake the House.

He needs funds! The Democrats are pouring money into the district because they sense how vulnerable McNerney is. We need to counter their efforts. Please take a moment to write a check to Harmer or go online to give him funds.

Thanks very much.

Dick Morris

Give online — Go here!

Physical mail to:

Friends of David Harmer
6920 Koll Center Parkway, Ste. 219
Pleasanton, CA 94566

Thank you!

Dick

THANK YOU!


4 posted on 09/21/2010 6:20:04 AM PDT by Ev Reeman
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To: randita

Later


5 posted on 09/21/2010 6:20:38 AM PDT by I_be_tc
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Comment #6 Removed by Moderator

To: randita
Without a doubt, the most difficult rating change to make was our decision to move veteran Texas Rep. Chet Edwards , a Blue Dog first elected in 1990, into the Leans Republican category.

The sweet taste of liberal tears...

7 posted on 09/21/2010 6:22:40 AM PDT by Crichton
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To: randita
We still need to fight and give every day. It isn't over until the last hanging chad has been severed.
8 posted on 09/21/2010 6:25:35 AM PDT by mad_as_he$$ (Playing by the rules only works if both sides do it!)
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To: randita
True Size of GOP Conservative Wave Still Developing
9 posted on 09/21/2010 6:26:00 AM PDT by OrioleFan (Republicans believe every day is the 4th of July, democrats believe every day is April 15.)
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To: randita
True Size of GOP Wave Still Developing

That is misleading.

It is not a GOP wave.

It is a Tea Party tsunami that is casting out much of the deadwood, and it is impacting both parties.

If the 'moderate' GOP fails to recognize that, they may find themselves on the outs, if the Tea Party continues its momentum into 2012 and beyond.
10 posted on 09/21/2010 6:26:11 AM PDT by TomGuy
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To: randita

Pubbies need to stop counting chickens and run like they’re still five points behind...


11 posted on 09/21/2010 6:28:42 AM PDT by Little Ray (The Gods of the Copybook Headings with terror and slaughter return!)
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To: Ev Reeman

NY Post is excerpt only, do not make full-text posts of exerpt-only articles in comments.


12 posted on 09/21/2010 6:30:44 AM PDT by Admin Moderator
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To: randita

Well, it’s not a GOP wave - it’s an anti-Establishment wave. And if things don’t get better by 2010, the GOP is going to get tossed right back out again.


13 posted on 09/21/2010 6:30:49 AM PDT by Mr. Jeeves ( "The right to offend is far more important than any right not to be offended." - Rowan Atkinson)
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To: randita
Well, it's not a GOP wave - it's an anti-Establishment wave. And if things don't get better by 2012, the GOP is going to get tossed right back out again.
14 posted on 09/21/2010 6:31:18 AM PDT by Mr. Jeeves ( "The right to offend is far more important than any right not to be offended." - Rowan Atkinson)
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To: randita

bookmark


15 posted on 09/21/2010 6:34:08 AM PDT by mamelukesabre (Si Vis Pacem Para Bellum (If you want peace prepare for war))
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To: randita

Tsunami or Mega-Tsunami?


16 posted on 09/21/2010 6:34:30 AM PDT by reg45
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To: randita

how much debt to incur


You can slide over that if you aren’t paying attention.


17 posted on 09/21/2010 6:38:58 AM PDT by PeterPrinciple ( Seeking the truth here folks.)
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To: randita

So we should give money to Lungren to deny the Dems their target?


18 posted on 09/21/2010 6:41:26 AM PDT by JSDude1 (Battle Ground Vermont..if we make Leahy a toss-up then all Dems are in trouble..)
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To: randita

There’a lot of danger in a GOP blowout this November. If the GOP ignores the will of the people (again) and reverts back to politics as usual, it will hand Obama a propaganda victory that he will use to secure a second term.

We have to hold the GOP’s feet to the fire after election day and let them know in no uncertain terms that we’re watching them.


19 posted on 09/21/2010 6:42:07 AM PDT by reagan_fanatic (Obama, Pelosi and Reid - the Trio of Twits)
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To: Mr. Jeeves

No it’s an anti-Big government/progressive wave!~


20 posted on 09/21/2010 6:44:25 AM PDT by JSDude1 (Battle Ground Vermont..if we make Leahy a toss-up then all Dems are in trouble..)
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To: randita
Without a doubt, the most difficult rating change to make was our decision to move veteran Texas Rep. Chet Edwards , a Blue Dog first elected in 1990, into the Leans Republican category. Edwards is a tough, smart and seasoned campaigner who has been targeted by the GOP cycle after cycle, but who always held on to win another term

Golly, you dont hide your bias very well, CQ, do you? Quite pathetic, actually.

21 posted on 09/21/2010 6:44:54 AM PDT by Nonstatist
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To: randita
We REALLY should keep our expectations low for the November election. Never underestimate the ability of the GOP to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory: the caterwauling of the establishment over the Delaware Senate race is a prime example.

With that said, I will crawl over broken glass to vote for Tom Corbett, Pat Toomey, and Dee Adcock (PA-13) on 11/2.

22 posted on 09/21/2010 6:45:42 AM PDT by bassmaner (Hey commies: I am a white male, and I am guilty of NOTHING! Sell your 'white guilt' elsewhere.)
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To: randita

Life, liberty and the pursuit and destruction of totalitarians and RINOS.


23 posted on 09/21/2010 6:47:26 AM PDT by PGalt
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To: Mr. Jeeves
"Well, it's not a GOP wave - it's an anti-Establishment wave.."

Really? Who says so? Oh right, the lame stream media says so. Listen, I got a couple of acres of prime ocean front property just outside Reno, Nevada and I can let you have them for just $10,000 per acre. Interested?

24 posted on 09/21/2010 6:47:55 AM PDT by 101voodoo
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To: reagan_fanatic

No matter what happens the next Congress is going to be a lot more Conservative. That is a very good thing even if the GOP does not control that Congress.


25 posted on 09/21/2010 6:48:34 AM PDT by MNJohnnie (The problem with Socialism is eventually you run out of other people's money. Lady Thatcher)
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To: reg45
Tsunami or Mega-Tsunami?

My bet is 8 Senate and 60 house so Tsunami. Of course there are a lot of seats in the toss up that might all go at once if we have a good print at the end. So while 8/60 should be seen as a minimum we could see 11/80. And in that case it would be an Asteroid impact crustal tsunami*. Not terribly likely, but something to tell the grand kids about.

*A crustal tsunami is an event in which an abnormally large asteroid collides with another planet, and not only the water on the surface of the planet is thrust up in a swell so high that it could be seen from space, but also any of the surface of the planet (crust, on the Earth, hence the word "crustal") would also be thrust up in the form of a wave.
26 posted on 09/21/2010 6:51:03 AM PDT by GonzoGOP (There are millions of paranoid people in the world and they are all out to get me.)
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To: JSDude1

It’s an anti-career politician wave. I’d just as soon toss the people who win in November out in another two years.


27 posted on 09/21/2010 6:51:13 AM PDT by dfwgator (Rangers Magic Number - 6)
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To: PGalt
Life, liberty and the pursuit and destruction of totalitarians and RINOS.

Well that would make me happy at least :)
28 posted on 09/21/2010 6:52:28 AM PDT by GonzoGOP (There are millions of paranoid people in the world and they are all out to get me.)
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To: randita

It is a tea party or rather tea party principles, wave. RINOS are just going along for the ride (as usual).


29 posted on 09/21/2010 6:54:52 AM PDT by DManA
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To: randita

I knew the RINO squad would try to associate themselves with the tea party. Their pathetic attempt the hijack the leverage and momentum that us hard working Conservatives have painstakingly put together, is just astounding to say the least.

For months, they and the media have suppressed the magnitude and strength of this movement, they ignored the millions who have showed up in one place repeatedly and denied that it was actually happening, fully believing that their efforts would make it go away.

Instead, the very opposite has happened. Their attempts to ignore us has ignited a fuse to nuclear outcomes. It has only strengthened our resolve and caused millions to join us in just a few short months. Our cause is based entirely on the Constitution and TRUTH.

Their baseless cause is rooted in lies and propaganda. WE WILL WIN and it scares them to death. Which is why they are claiming it for themselves. What is amazing is, we will not let them get away with it.


30 posted on 09/21/2010 7:00:59 AM PDT by PSYCHO-FREEP ( Give me Liberty, or give me an M-24A2!)
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To: randita
Reacting purely to the title, I have to say that the GOP may be the immediate beneficiaries of this election, but if they do not act quickly to repeal Obamunism, get the gov’t out of the car (GM) business, Health Care, & reduce spending, then the “WAVE” is gonna wash out the GOP wasters in the next election cycle.
31 posted on 09/21/2010 7:22:45 AM PDT by Mister Da (The mark of a wise man is not what he knows, but what he knows he doesn't know!)
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To: PeterPrinciple
You can slide over that if you aren’t paying attention.

I was paying attention. My reaction was something between a head-shake and a snicker.

32 posted on 09/21/2010 7:41:19 AM PDT by MissNomer
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To: All

GOP Wave?

Tea party wave...


33 posted on 09/21/2010 8:10:15 AM PDT by WAW (Which enumerated power?)
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To: dfwgator
It’s an anti-career politician wave. I’d just as soon toss the people who win in November out in another two years.

Bingo! How many YouTubes have we seen with pompous, self-important politicians dismissing constituents who challenge them with facts and truth? How many polls have we seen where the majority of the folks do not support legislation such as bailouts and government takeovers, yet the career elites just ignore their views and vote for them anyhow.

Politicians of both parties are being put on notice that they're not going to be able to get away with ignoring the will of the people any longer.

34 posted on 09/21/2010 9:13:12 AM PDT by randita (Visit keyhouseraces.com to find GOP House candidates who need your support to knock off a DEM.)
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To: GonzoGOP
Well that would make me happy at least :)

Thanks for understanding the implications and ramifications of such ACTION, GonzoGOP! BTTT!

35 posted on 09/21/2010 9:33:36 AM PDT by PGalt
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To: Nonstatist; randita; AuH2ORepublican; BillyBoy; fieldmarshaldj

LOL sounds like whoever wrote that would like to marry Edwards.

Edwards has one of the most GOP districts held by a rat, I can’t see him surviving the stiff challenge he is facing.

I wonder how much trouble Congress’ least liberal rat Gene Taylor (D-MS) is in. Looks like we have a quality nominee in State Rep. Steve Palazzo.


36 posted on 09/21/2010 10:39:43 AM PDT by Impy (Don't call me red.)
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To: dfwgator

Yeah, I am sure you would really like to lose people like Jim DeMint and Mike Pence, Tom Coburn, Michelle Bachmann..


37 posted on 09/21/2010 12:35:23 PM PDT by JSDude1 (Battle Ground Vermont..if we make Leahy a toss-up then all Dems are in trouble..)
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To: Mr. Jeeves
Well, it's not a GOP wave - it's an anti-Establishment wave.

Really? How many GOP incumbents in the House do you think are going to lose? I put it at no more than 2.

And if things don't get better by 2012, the GOP is going to get tossed right back out again.

Probably. I do expect extreme volatility in 2012, anything can happen.

38 posted on 09/21/2010 12:38:46 PM PDT by NeoCaveman (I can see November from my house. Christine turned me into a Newt. I got better.)
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