Friday, August 12, 2005

Campaign Battlefield May Grow

Campaign Battlefield May Grow

Blogging from the road this weekend in MinneSOta (say that with a Fargo accent like my great uncles). Playing catchup on the news after a day on the road, but the latest blogosphere vs. Beltway story caught my eye:

With Democrats needing to capture 15 seats to regain a majority in the House, party leaders in Washington have argued that it is most efficient to focus money on the districts most evenly balanced between the parties. Gersh said that in the last decade, each side had won only a single district where, in previous elections, more than 55% of the voters leaned to the other party.

Internet activists see Hackett's 52% to 48% loss to Republican Jean Schmidt in Ohio's 2nd District as proof that Democrats can compete in districts outside those guidelines. President Bush twice won more than 60% of the vote in the Ohio district.

Rep. Rahm Emanuel of Illinois, chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, has responded to the pressure from liberal activists by saying he intends next year to fund Democratic challengers for 50 Republican-held seats, about double the number the campaign committee backed in 2004.

But the committee, and many leading Democratic strategists, say that funding a wider circle of challengers in heavily Republican areas would divert money better spent on districts more closely balanced between the parties...

Maybe there are 218 winnable districts after all, though there's always the prospect of re-gerrymandering...

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