Today’s announcement by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee of 11 new additions to its “Red to Blue” campaign showed signs of weakness and desperation.
Most notably, most of the newest additions are candidates for Democrat-held seats. How does a seat that’s already blue qualify for “Red to Blue?”
And one of the five newly targeted GOP districts is the Hawaii seat that quarreling Democrats just handed to the GOP in a special election last month.
Furthermore, the “new” additions aren’t really all that new, but are just recycled news. Back in January, the DCCC released a list of “Races to Watch” which already included all four of the other targeted GOP seats, all but one in the “Top Races” category. It’s not so much “Back to the Future” as “looking forward to the past.”
Bigger news than the 5 GOP seats that are targeted are the 10 others mentioned in the January press release which didn’t make the cut. One of them (Joseph Cao’s seat in LA-2) will probably be added after Democrats pick their nominee in late August, but the DCCC has clearly given up on the others. The most conspicuous omission is the AZ-3, the open GOP seat being vacated by Rep. John Shadegg. The Democratic primary isn’t until August, but the DCCC had already picked its candidate in the January press release.
The viability of the challengers who didn’t make the cut is highlighted by the long odds faced by one who did. In a real head-scratcher, the DCCC gave its priority imprimatur to Tommy Sowers’ challenge of Rep. Jo Ann Emerson in MO-8. While Sowers’ out-of-district fundraising among the Washington and Hollywood elite has been surprisingly successful for a rural district in the middle of what the donors regard as “flyover country,” it is puzzling why Democrats would waste their money in that district. Emerson is tremendously popular in a very Republican (Cook Partisan Voting Index R+15) district. In the district’s current boundaries Emerson has never gotten less than 71% of the vote. She ran 9 points better than the Republican presidential ticket in each of the past two presidential elections. While some Republican incumbents are vulnerable this year, Emerson is not. Her relative independence makes her a borderline RINO (Republican In Name Only), but the pro-abortion, pro-gay Sowers is challenging Emerson from the Left. That appeals to the liberal areas from which Sowers is raising his cash, but not in the 8th District.
At least southeast Missouri media outlets will benefit.