Tag Archives: Patriot Program

House Democrats Release “Frontline Program” Targeting Perceived
Vulnerable GOP CDs

By Jim Ellis

Feb. 12, 2019 — Countering the previously announced National Republican Congressional Committee Patriot Program targeting list, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee released their Frontline Program protection listing late last week.

Since the Democrats are now in the House majority, their list is wholly defensive in nature while the Republicans are the minority challengers, a juxtaposition of roles from the past four election cycles. Of the 44 Frontline defense districts, 43 are also GOP Patriot Program targets. The lone exception is Connecticut freshman Jahana Hayes (D-Wolcott), a former national Teacher of the Year award winner who won a 56-44 percent victory in her maiden general election campaign.

The targeting organizational programs are important because both official political party apparatuses help the candidates with fundraising, a campaign element where Democrats overwhelmed Republicans in the 2018 election cycle. Therefore, it is likely that the Patriot Program is more important to the previously identified GOP members than the Frontline operation is to the Democratic incumbents, most of whom raised multi-millions in their own right.

Comparing the lists, the 43 top Democratic protection members who are also found on the Republican register could more realistically be narrowed to 27 campaigns that should reasonably be placed in the highest vulnerability category.

In 19 of the 27, President Trump carried the district over Hillary Clinton, and four years earlier Mitt Romney topped President Obama in 17 of the CDs. The Republicans had won all three post-redistricting congressional elections (2012, ’14, ’16) in 22 of the 27 districts prior to the 2018 vote.

Additionally, the isolated campaigns below should be the most competitive 2020 districts because the Republicans have won 75.5 percent of the federal political contests (an aggregate 102 of 135: three congressional races and two presidential apiece, but not counting 2018) since the last redistricting (2011) created the current CD configurations. Therefore …

The 27 most vulnerable Democratic protection races are as follows (the number in parenthesis is the member’s 2018 victory percentage):


  • AZ-1 – Tom O’Halleran (54%)
  • CA-21 – T.J. Cox (50)
  • CA-39 – Gil Cisneros (52)
  • CA-45 – Katie Porter (52)
  • CA-48 – Harley Rouda (53)
  • FL-26 – Debbie Mucarsel-Powell (51)
  • GA-6 – Lucy McBath (50)
  • IL-14 – Lauren Underwood (52)
  • IA-1 – Abby Finkenauer (50)
  • IA-3 – Cindy Axne (49)
  • KS-3 – Sharice Davids (54)
  • ME-2 – Jared Golden (50)
  • MI-11 – Haley Stevens (52)
  • MN-2 – Angie Craig (53)
  • NH-1 – Chris Pappas (53)
  • NJ-3 – Andy Kim (50)
  • NJ-7 – Tom Malinowski (52)
  • NM-2 – Xochitl Torres Small (51)
  • NY-11 – Max Rose (52)
  • NY-19 – Antonio Delgado (50)
  • NY-22 – Anthony Brindisi (50)
  • OK-5 – Kendra Horn (51)
  • SC-1 – Joe Cunningham (51)
  • TX-7 – Lizzie Pannill Fletcher (52)
  • UT-4 – Ben McAdams (50)
  • VA-2 – Elaine Luria (51)
  • VA-7 – Abigail Spanberger (50)

 

In the succeeding 10 districts, Republicans have won every federal race with the lone exception of the 2018 congressional contest. These should be considered the first-level targets. They are:

First-Level Targets


  • GA-6 (McBath)
  • IL-14 (Underwood)
  • MI-11 (Stevens)
  • NM-2 (Torres Small)
  • NY-22 (Brindisi)
  • OK-5 (Horn)
  • SC-1 (Cunningham)
  • UT-4 (McAdams)
  • VA-2 (Luria)
  • VA-7 (Spanberger)

 

Under the present political situation, considering the strength of the new incumbent and the district voting history with particular emphasis on its latest trends, the following

Frontline Democratic Representatives should arguably be considered lesser targets at least for right now:


  • CA-10 – Josh Harder (52%)
  • CA-25 – Katie Hill (54)
  • CA-49 – Mike Levin (56)
  • CO-6 – Jason Crow (54)
  • IL-6 – Sean Casten (54)
  • MI-8 – Elissa Slotkin (51)
  • NV-3 – Susie Lee (52)
  • NV-4 – Steven Horsford (52)
  • NJ-2 – Jeff Van Drew (53)
  • NJ-5 – Josh Gottheimer (56)
  • NJ-11 – Mikie Sherrill (57)
  • PA-7 – Susan Wild (53)
  • PA-8 – Matt Cartwright (55)
  • PA-17 – Conor Lamb (56)
  • TX-32 – Colin Allred (52)
  • WA-8 – Kim Schrier (52)

 

New Frontline Program Incumbents

By Jim Ellis

March 9, 2017 — In February, the National Republican Congressional Committee announced the first round of its Patriot Program, the system where GOP House members help raise funds to support those in the most politically marginal districts. Now, the Democrats have countered.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s leadership has included 19 incumbents in their Frontline Program’s first wave, an usually large number.

Of the 19, 10 should be considered truly vulnerable top-tier targets. They are:

• Tom O’Halleran – AZ-1 – 50.7% win percentage – Trump district
• Stephanie Murphy – FL-7 – 51.5%
• Charlie Crist – FL-13 – 51.9%
• Brad Schneider – IL-10 – 52.6%
• David Loebsack – IA-2 – 53.7% – Trump district
• Rick Nolan – MN-8 – 50.2% – Trump district
• Josh Gottheimer – NJ-5 – 51.1% – Trump district
• Carol Shea-Porter – NH-1 – 44.3% – Trump district
• Jacky Rosen – NV-3 – 47.2% – Trump district
• Sean Patrick Maloney – NY-18 – 50.8% – Trump district

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NRCC Announces More Patriots

The National Republican Congressional Committee has released the names of their second round of Patriot Program members, those congressmen who the NRCC believes are its most vulnerable incumbents. Back in April, the Committee publicized the first group of 11 GOP members facing the most competitive political situations.

Yesterday, nine more Representatives became “Patriots.” The program is designed to recruit incumbents in safe political situations to help raise and/or contribute funds to the designated colleagues.

The nine new members are:
• Dan Benishek – MI-1
• Michael Grimm – NY-11
• Bill Johnson – OH-6
• Tom Latham – IA-3
• Gary Miller – CA-31
• Tom Reed – NY-23
• Scott Rigell – VA-2
• Keith Rothfus – PA-12
• Lee Terry – NE-2

Two are rather obvious choices who did not make the first cut when the original Patriots were tabbed three months ago. Rep. Benishek won a second term last November, but with just 48 percent of the vote, outlasting by one point the same opponent he topped in double digits just two years before. Rep. Miller holds the most Democratic seat, at least in terms of the 2012 presidential vote, of any Republican House member.

Rep. Grimm represents the Staten Island seat that generally votes Republican, but did elect a Democrat for a term in the original Obama presidential year of 2008. Announced Democratic candidate Domenic Recchia, a New York City councilman, has already raised more money than Grimm, hence the sophomore congressman being added as a Patriot Program participant.

Representatives Johnson, Rigell, and Terry all hold marginally swing districts. In the majority of political circumstances they, as Republican incumbents, should maintain their seats.

Rep. Reed scored only a 49-46 percent win last November in a district that is more Democratic than his original pre-redistricting 29th CD. Even with the change, the three-point victory was an under-performance.

Rep. Rothfus upset Democratic incumbent Mark Critz in 2012, taking advantage of a favorable Republican redistricting map. The fact that Critz is considering seeking a re-match lands Rothfus in the Patriot Program.

Rep. Latham won a huge victory (52-43 percent) over fellow Congressman Leonard Boswell (D) last November in an incumbent pairing situation, but the district is still very attainable for the Democrats who plan to make the seat a target. It’s unlikely they’ll succeed, but the NRCC action signals that their party will take no chances here.