Tag Archives: Colorado

GOP VP Polling Results; CO-8 GOP Nomination; Bowman Trails Badly in NY-16; Washington Governor’s Race

By Jim Ellis — Monday, April 8, 2024

President

South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott (R) leading the VP pack in polling.

YouGov Poll: Tests Enthusiasm & Trump VP Choices — International online pollster YouGov, again polling for the Economist publication as they do on a regular basis, included questions about enthusiasm for President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump, as well as favorability rating for eleven potential Republican vice presidential choices.

On the enthusiasm questions, as we have seen from primary turnout numbers across the country, President Biden has a major problem. Among self-identified Democrats in the latest YouGov national survey (March 30-April 2; 1,813 US adults; online) only 38 percent responded affirmatively that they are enthusiastic about Biden’s candidacy. Another 21 percent said they are dissatisfied with the president’s candidacy, with an additional six percent of Democrats confirming they are “upset” with the status of his campaign. A final 37 percent said they are satisfied with Biden, but not enthusiastic.

Compared with former President Trump, 57 percent of Republicans said they are enthusiastic about his candidacy, six percent dissatisfied but not upset, eight percent upset, while 26 percent say they are satisfied but not enthusiastic.

On the vice presidential front, 11 prospects were tested. They are (alphabetically):

  1. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott
  2. former HUD Secretary Ben Carson
  3. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis
  4. ex-Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard
  5. former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley
  6. South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem
  7. former presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy
  8. Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders
  9. Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC)
  10. Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY)
  11. Sen. J.D. Vance (R-OH)

Rating the candidates equally on their favorability indexes and awarding individual points for standing in the high favorable, low unfavorable, and best ratio between the two scores, the top finishers were Sen. Scott and Dr. Carson. Finishing dead last among the group, and the only candidate viewed with an upside-down favorability index, is Haley. Though Gov. DeSantis is ineligible to serve as vice president because both he and Trump reside in the same state, he was still included in the poll and fared well, placing just behind Scott and Carson.

CO-8: GOP Nomination Virtually Secured — Colorado Republicans from the Denver suburban 8th Congressional District met in caucus and advanced state Rep. Gave Evans (R-Westminster) into the general election with 62 percent delegate support.

The other qualifier is state Rep. Janak Joshi, but he resides all the way south in Colorado Springs, far from the 8th District. Health insurance consultant Joe Andujo is now disqualified since he failed to reach the 10 percent threshold at the party convention. He was also circulating petitions to qualify, but those efforts are now discarded because he failed to reach the minimum delegate support threshold. Andujo then endorsed Rep. Evans at the convention.

Very likely, we will now see Evans advancing from Colorado’s June 25 primary election, where he will become the general election candidate to oppose freshman Rep. Yadira Caraveo (D-Thornton). The congresswoman, first elected in 2022 in what is Colorado’s newest congressional seat, scored only 48.4 percent of the vote, defeating her Republican opponent by less than a full percentage point. Count on this race becoming a major national GOP offensive target.

NY-16: Rep. Bowman Trails Badly in New Dem Primary Poll — Justice Democratic Congressman Jamaal Bowman (D-Yonkers), who unseated veteran Rep. Eliot Engel in the 2020 Democratic primary, appears to be in trouble as he seeks renomination for a third term. A new Mellman Group survey (March 26-30; 400 likely NY-16 Democratic primary voters; live interview & text) conducted for the George Latimer campaign finds the challenging Westchester County Executive leading Rep. Bowman by a whopping 52-35 percent margin as the June 25 primary comes into view.

Rep. Bowman aligns himself with the group that calls themselves “the Squad” that comprises the far left of the Democratic Conference. Latimer, prior to his election as county executive, served in both the New York Senate and Assembly. This race is now becoming another key primary campaign as several incumbents from around the country face stiff competition in their quest for renomination.

Governor

Washington: Ex-Rep. Reichert (R) Takes Lead in New Gov Poll — An Echelon Insights survey finds Republican former US Rep. Dave Reichert leading Democratic Attorney General Bob Ferguson in the open race for governor, thus providing more evidence that the Washington race is becoming much more competitive than originally projected.

Echelon Insights tested the Evergreen State electorate (March 18-21; 600 registered Washington voters; online, text & live interview) and sees Reichert grasping a 39-30 percent advantage over AG Ferguson in what is one of the most Democratic states in the country. Some suggest that the poll skews more Republican since Sen. Maria Cantwell (D) claims an underperforming 44-36 percent margin over physician and 2020 gubernatorial candidate Raul Garcia (R), and President Biden posts only a plurality number over Donald Trump, 48-37 percent.

While a skew may well exist, the poll is in the realm of other research findings and confirms that Reichert is a Republican candidate with staying power and capable of becoming a viable challenger.

Trump Stirs Controversy in Florida; Fong Saga Continues in California; Republicans Choose CO-4 Candidate; New Jersey Primary Challenge

By Jim Ellis — Monday, April 1, 2024

House

Florida Rep. Laurel Lee (R-Tampa)

FL-15: Rep. Lee’s New Opponent — Former President Trump may have ignited a hornets’ nest when he called for a MAGA candidate to come forward to oppose GOP freshman Rep. Laurel Lee (R-Tampa). While that has yet to happen, the controversy within the Republican base may have encouraged a new Democrat to come forward in what is a competitive district. Hillsborough County Commissioner Pat Kemp (D) announced on Friday that he will enter the Democratic primary and immediately becomes the favorite for the party nomination.

Trump targeted Rep. Lee because she was the only member of the Florida Republican delegation to endorse Gov. Ron DeSantis against the former president in this year’s national campaign. Florida’s 15th District carries an R+7 rating from the FiveThirtyEight data organization. However, Trump won the district by only a 51-48 percent margin in the 2020 presidential election.

CA-20: Appellate Court to Hear Fong Ballot Status — The Vince Fong ballot saga is not yet over. You may remember because former Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R) resigned from the House at the California candidate filing deadline, the Secretary of State disqualified Fong from running for Congress because he was already certified as a candidate for state Assembly to remain in his seat there. California election law prohibits candidates from running for more than one office simultaneously and the withdrawal deadline had already expired.

Fong sued over the decision and the court awarded him the congressional ballot line. Secretary of State Shirley Weber (D) appealed the ruling, however, and arguments will be heard this week. Therefore, though Assemblyman Fong has qualified for both the special and regular general elections for the congressional seat, an adverse appellate court ruling could send this succession election into political chaos.

CO-4: Republicans Choose Caretaker Candidate — Late last week, the local Republican committee formed to choose a special election nominee for Colorado’s 4th Congressional District special election to replace resigned Rep. Ken Buck (R) chose a candidate who agreed not to run for the regular term. The move is a break for US Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-Silt), switching over from District 3, and the 10 other candidates in the regular Republican primary.

The committee chose former Parker Mayor Greg Lopez as their special election candidate. He will be favored to win the upcoming special election which is held concurrently with the regular primary on June 25.

Lopez, a former state director for the Small Business Administration, will be favored against the Democratic nominee who will be chosen later today. The FiveThirtyEight data organization rates CO-4 as R+26. Former President Donald Trump won the seat 58-39 percent in the 2020 presidential election.

States

New Jersey: Court Rejects Party County Line Balloting — New Jersey is one of the few remaining states where the county political parties have substantial power. What makes them strong is endorsing candidates in the primary and providing them extremely favorable ballot placements to the point where opponents are listed on separate ballot pages.

Rep. Andy Kim (D-Moorestown), running for the Senate, filed suit against the practice and the federal judge granted a preliminary injunction to halt the practice. While Kim is now becoming the prohibitive favorite to win the Democratic Senate nomination since First Lady Tammy Murphy exited the race and Sen. Bob Menendez announced that he is not seeking the party nomination, his legal move will likely create a more even playing field for down-ballot races. This will probably become a major factor in changing how New Jersey primaries are run.

Rep. Gallagher to Leave in April;
A Squeaker in CA-16; Party Chair Advances in Colorado;
Santos Leaves GOP

By Jim Ellis — Monday, March 25, 2024

House

Wisconsin Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-Green Bay)

WI-8: Rep. Gallagher to Resign in April — In February, four-term US Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-Green Bay) announced that he would not seek a fifth term this year. On Friday, Gallagher reiterated his plan to leave Congress, and will do so earlier than expected. The congressman indicated he will resign from the House on April 19.

Leaving at that point in April does not allow the state to replace him with an early special election to fill the balance of the term instead of waiting until the November election. Therefore, Republicans will be another seat down until the regular general. Gallagher becomes the sixth House member to resign during this session of Congress in addition to Rep. George Santos (R-NY), who was expelled from the body.

CA-16: 1, 2, 3, & 4 — The battle to claim the second general election position in California’s open 16th Congressional District continues to drag on, and now the election officials are determining if provisional and late arriving ballots should be added to the aggregate count. An estimated 400-plus ballots are in this category.

The current standing finds San Mateo County Supervisor and former state Sen. Joe Simitian (D) now leading Assemblyman Evan Low (D-Campbell) by a mere four votes — 30,222 to 30,218. This small number is an increase for Simitian from his previous one-vote edge. Previously, Low held two and three vote leads from a pair of released counts.

Former San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo (D) has already clinched the first general election finalist position. The Secretary of State has until April 12 to certify all March 5 primary elections and it is likely determining the second place finisher here will consume the entire time allotment. Whoever is declared the loser once all ballots are tabulated will obviously call for a recount. Should the race for second place end in a tie, both contenders would advance into the general election against Liccardo. Incumbent Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-Atherton) is retiring.

CO-5: State Chairman Advances to GOP Primary — Local Republican delegates in Colorado’s open 5th District met over the weekend in their nominating convention. With Rep. Douglas Lamborn (R-Colorado Springs) retiring, the seat becomes open for the first time in 18 years. Counting his time in the state legislature, Lamborn will leave elective office at the beginning of next year after serving 30 consecutive years.

The delegates, with a 70.4 percent vote, propelled Colorado Republican Party chairman Dave Williams into the general election. A candidate must receive at least 30 percent of the vote to automatically advance. Falling below the lower threshold requires a candidate to access the ballot by submitting 1,500 valid petition signatures. Therefore, the only other announced GOP candidate for the seat, radio talk show host and former two time congressional candidate Jeff Crank, must circulate petitions in order to compete in the June 25 Republican primary.

The FiveThirtyEight data organization rates CO-5 as R+18. Then-President Donald Trump carried the seat in 2020 with a 53.2 – 43.1 percent majority vote. Therefore, the eventual Republican nominee will become a definitive favorite for the general election. With the candidate filing deadline fast approaching on April 1, seven Democrats are announced contenders.

NY-1: Santos Leaves GOP — After declaring earlier this month that he would challenge freshman Republican Rep. Nick LaLota (R-Suffolk County) in the GOP primary, on Friday the expelled Congressman George Santos announced he would leave the Republican Party and campaign for the 1st District congressional seat as an Independent.

In a written statement, Santos said, “The Republican Party continues to lie and swindle its voter base. I, in good conscience, cannot affiliate myself with a party that stands for nothing and falls for everything.” It is unlikely that Santos will be a factor in the general election for the Independence Party, or any other ballot line. Any votes he does attract, however, would likely come from LaLolta’s base, thus allowing the eventual Democratic nominee, either 2020 congressional nominee Nancy Goroff or former CNN news anchor John Avlon, to potentially gain support from these disaffected Republicans.

Conflicting Polls in Ohio; Boebert Won’t Run in Special; Ranked Choice Toss-up Result in Alaska; California General Election Becoming Clearer

By Jim Ellis — Monday, March 18, 2024

Senate

Ohio businessman Bernie Moreno (R)

Ohio: Conflicting Polls — Late last week, we reported on an Emerson College poll of the Ohio Senate Republican primary that posted state Sen. Matt Dolan (R-Chagrin Falls) to a 26-23-16 percent edge over businessman Bernie Moreno and Secretary of State Frank LaRose, respectively. Now we see a Survey USA study (March 6-11; 1,241 registered Ohio voters; 533 likely Republican primary voters; online) that projects Moreno holding a 22-18-16 percent lead over Sen. Dolan and Secretary LaRose. The closeness of both polls suggests any of the three still has a chance to win this coming Tuesday.

House

CO-4: Boebert Won’t Run in Special — Colorado US Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-Silt) announced late last week that she will not compete in the special election to replace resigning Rep. Ken Buck (R-Windsor) but will remain in the race for the full term. Colorado Republican Party chairman Dave Williams, who is himself a congressional candidate in open District 5, announced that he will be assembling a committee of party leaders and elected officials to choose a 4th District special election nominee within “the next several weeks.” Gov. Jared Polis (D) has already said he will schedule the special election concurrently with the state’s June 25 primary election. The Democrats have a selection committee of more than 200 members, and the party leadership says a special vote to choose their nominee will occur on April 1.

The move not to enter the special makes sense for Boebert. It is highly unlikely that she would be chosen as the committee’s nominee, since she currently represents another district. Therefore, if the congresswoman wins the regular primary election it is irrelevant as to who would hold the seat for the remainder of this term. Unless the special election winner also wins the regular primary on the same day, then said person will not compete in the general election.

AK-AL: New Poll Shows Ranked Choice Toss-up Result — A new Data for Progress survey (Feb. 23-March 2; 1,120 likely Alaska general election voters; web to text) finds a very tight impending at-large congressional race with no clear leader after several hypothetical rounds of Ranked Choice Voting. Rep. Mary Peltola (D-Bethel) leads the original field of businessman and former congressional candidate Nick Begich III (R), Lt. Gov. Nancy Dahlstrom (R), and Libertarian Chris Bye by a 44-35-10-2 percent break. In Ranked Choice Voting, the primary sends four candidates to the general election and the pollsters project these individuals would be the eventual finalists.

Since no one receives majority support in the initial round, RCV begins, and Bye is eliminated. In the second round, Rep. Peltola would lead 48-41-12 percent over Begich and Dahlstrom. This result would lead to Dahlstrom’s elimination. The third round finds Peltola and Begich in a dead heat at 50-50 percent. Though Rep. Peltola has a 10-point personal favorability spread, the best of all the tested politicians, it appears the electoral system makes this race a toss-up.

California: General Election Becoming Clearer — More vote totals are being released from the long California ballot counting process, and congressional general election matchups are now becoming cemented. In preparation for Tuesday’s special election to replace resigned House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, it is now likely that we will see a double-Republican regular general election between Assemblyman Vince Fong (R-Bakersfield) and Tulare County Sheriff Mike Bourdeaux.

To the Democrats’ benefit in open Districts 30 and 31, Democratic-Republican general elections appear to be the final result. Such pairings would almost assuredly elect state Assemblywoman Laura Friedman (D-Burbank) to replace Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Burbank), and former Congressman Gil Cisneros (D) returning to the House to succeed retiring Rep. Grace Napolitano (D-Norwalk) also appears to be a certainty.

The closest race is occurring in open District 16 where Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-Atherton) is retiring. Former San Jose Mayor Sam Riccardo (D) has secured the first general election position, but the battle for second place is still undecided. San Mateo County Supervisor and former state Sen. Joe Simitian (D) has yielded second place to Assemblyman Evan Low (D-Campbell). The razor-thin margin is only 59 votes between the two according to the secretary of state’s official count. An unspecified number of ballots remain uncounted. District 16 will definitely send two Democrats to the general election, but the second finalist position is still undecided.

Last Night’s Primary Results; Rep. Buck to Resign; California Projections; Close Polls in North Carolina

By Jim Ellis — Wednesday, March 13, 2024

President

Primary/Caucus Results — Primaries were held in three states last night, and even without results from the Hawaii caucuses, both President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump exceeded the bound delegate vote requirement to score first ballot nominations. Therefore, both men become their party’s “presumptive nominee,” meaning they will become the official standard bearer at the respective party conventions in July (Republicans) and August (Democrats).

The Georgia, Mississippi, and Washington primaries went as expected with both Biden and Trump winning with landslide totals against opponents who appear on the ballot but who have withdrawn from the race.

Mississippi was the state that held its full ballot primary last night. Sen. Roger Wicker (R) won renomination against two opponents with just over 60 percent of the vote. Wicker won all but 10 counties in the state from a total universe of 82. All four Magnolia State US House incumbents were either unopposed for renomination or easily won. Freshman Rep. Mike Ezell (R-Pascagoula) had two GOP opponents, and still surpassed 73 percent of the vote. All four: Reps. Trent Kelly (R-Saltillo/Tupelo), Bennie Thompson (D-Bolton), Michael Guest (R-Brandon/Jackson), and Mr. Ezell, now become prohibitive favorites to win again in November.

House

Rep. Ken Buck / Photo by Gage Skidmore

CO-4: Rep. Buck to Resign — Colorado US Rep. Ken Buck (R-Windsor), who had previously made public his intentions not to seek a sixth term later this year, announced yesterday that he will resign much sooner — on March 22. The move initiates the calling of a special congressional election — the fourth in the country prior to the regular general election. Gov. Jared Polis (D) responded that he will schedule the special vote concurrently with the state’s June 25 primary election.

In Colorado, special election nominations are handled through vacancy committees that the local political parties construct. This means the voters will go to the polls only once to fill the balance of the current term.

This system likely plays to Rep. Lauren Boebert’s (R-Silt) detriment. It is highly unlikely that the District 4 vacancy committee members will choose her as the party nominee considering she is still the District 3 incumbent. This also means the dozen announced candidates already vying to replace Rep. Buck will see one of their colleagues likely chosen for the special.

California: More Finalists Projected — As the California ballot counting process moves laboriously along, the Associated Press is projecting that three more candidates will qualify for the general election from the top-two jungle primary. In the Los Angeles-anchored 34th District, both incumbent Rep. Jimmy Gomez (D) and movie executive David Kim (D) will again advance into the general election. This will be the third consecutive election in which the two have faced each other in a double-Democratic contest. In 2022, Rep. Gomez registered only a 51-49 percent general election win over Kim, so another close race is expected later this year.

In the open South San Francisco Bay seat from which veteran Rep. Anna Eshoo (D- Atherton) is retiring, former San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo (D) is assured of advancing to the November election, but his eventual opponent has still not been decided. In second place is San Mateo Supervisor and former state Sen. Joe Simitian (D), who is only 749 votes ahead of Assemblyman Evan Low (D-Campbell) with approximately 26,000 ballots remaining to be counted.

Whoever wins the special will have a major advantage in the subsequent November regular election if the primary electorate chooses someone in the regular primary other than whom the vacancy committee decided upon. Another option the committee may have is to select someone who agrees not to seek a full term. Therefore, we will see more political drama occurring in Colorado as the campaign to replace Rep. Buck continues to unfold.

Governor

North Carolina: Two More Close Polls — Now that Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson (R) and Attorney General Josh Stein (D) are the official gubernatorial nominees of their respective political parties after last Tuesday’s primary vote, Survey USA and the Cygnal firm went into the field to test the general election between the two new official nominees.

The S-USA poll, conducted for WRAL-TV in Raleigh (March 6-9; 850 NC adults; 736 registered North Carolina voters; 598 likely North Carolina general election voters; online), sees AG Stein leading Lt. Gov. Robinson by a tight 44-42 percent margin, which is in the consistent realm of previously released surveys. When asked about presidential preference, the sampling universe would favor former President Trump over President Biden by a 50-45 percent margin in this most critical of swing states.

The Cygnal survey was conducted during the March 6-7 period (600 likely North Carolina voters; live interview & text) and produced a slightly different outcome. While projecting a similarly close result as Survey USA, Cygnal sees Lt. Gov. Robinson leading the gubernatorial race with a 44-39 percent spread. The latter firm also finds former President Trump holding a five point lead over President Biden but with a slightly different 45-40 percent count.

DCCC’s Initial Targets

By Jim Ellis — Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2024

House

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) released their first targeting list entitled “Red to Blue,” though the group of 17 House districts actually contained one already in the Democratic column.

In alphabetical order by state, the list of 17 includes 16 Republican districts where the DCCC has endorsed a Democratic candidate:

STATE DISTRICT INCUMBENT DCCC CANDIDATE
Arizona 13 DUARTE, JOHN ENGEL, KIRSTEN
California 6 CISCOMANI, JUAN GRAY, ADAM
California 22 VALADAO, DAVID SALAS, RUDY
California 27 GARCIA, MIKE WHITESIDES, GEORGE
California 41 CALVERT, KEN ROLLINS, WILL
Colorado 3 OPEN FRISCH, ADAM
Iowa 1 MILLER-MEEKS, M. BOHANNON, CHRISTINE
Iowa 3 NUNN, ZACH BACCAM, LANON
Michigan 7 OPEN HERTEL, CURTIS
Michigan 1 ZINKE, RYAN TRANEL, MONICA
Nebraska 2 BACON, DON VARGAS, TONY
New York 3 SPECIAL ELECTION SUOZZI, TOM
New York 17 LAWLER, MIKE JONES, MONDAIRE
New York 19 MOLINARO, MARC RILEY, JOSH
Oregon 5 CHAVEZ-DeREMER, L. BYNUM, JANELLE
Texas 15 de la CRUZ, MONICA VALLEJO, MICHELLE
Virginia 2 KIGGANS, JEN SMASAL, MISSY COTTER

The Michigan district included in the above list is that of Democratic Rep. Elissa Slotkin (D-Lansing). Her run for the Senate leaves her central Michigan seat open, but the Democrats winning here in 2024 would not result in a party division gain.

President Joe Biden carried only six the 16 Republican districts, and the FiveThirtyEight data organization provided a numerical rank so as to consider lean Democratic in those same six districts. Therefore, on this list, the half-dozen names below should be viewed as the most achievable targets, which, as you will see, are California and New York dominant.

They are:

  1. CA-13 (Duarte)
  2. CA-22 (Valadao)
  3. CA-27 (Garcia)
  4. NY-3 (Special election; Santos)
  5. NY-17 (Lawler)
  6. OR-5 (Chavez-DeRemer)

This underscores that the key states to determine the next House majority are the Golden and Empire States.

Most of the endorsed Democratic candidates (12 in the 16 Republican held seats) previously ran and lost their race in 2022. A total of 10 unsuccessfully opposed the current GOP House incumbent, while two lost other races (Tom Suozzi, Governor; Mondaire Jones, NY-10).

Curiously, some other vulnerable districts were excluded from this first release. Likely, this is due to one of three reasons: the DCCC has not yet endorsed a candidate; they don’t see a sufficiently competitive challenger within the current field; or, they perceive the Republican incumbent as being too strong.

They are:

DISTRICT CANDIDATE
AZ-1 David Schweikert
CA-40 Young Kim
CA-45 Michelle Steel
FL-13 Anna Paulina Luna
FL-27 Maria Elvira Salazar
MI-10 John James
NJ-7 Tom Kean Jr.
NY-4 Anthony D’Esposito
NY-22 Brandon Williams
PA-1 Brian Fitzpatrick
PA-10 Scott Perry
WI-1 Bryan Steil

Most of the members included within this latter group will be added to later target lists. The fact that Rep. Steil’s name is not yet appended to the “Red to Blue” listing suggests that the Wisconsin State Supreme Court may not order a redraw of the congressional map this cycle. Keeping Rep. Steil’s congressional district intact would give him little incentive to launch a statewide campaign against Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D).

At this point in the new redistricting process, Republicans are likely gaining a net one seat, but the New York redraw hasn’t yet occurred.

The GOP is assuredly gaining three seats from North Carolina, while the Democrats look to increase by one each in Alabama and Louisiana. Since the Georgia and Florida maps will not likely change for the 2024 election portends good news for Republicans; likewise for the Democrats in New Mexico.

Chaos in CO-4 Helps Boebert; LA-6 Candidate Announcement; Ashcroft Leading in Open Missouri Race;
Big Lead for Spanberger in Virginia

By Jim Ellis — Friday, Jan. 26, 2024

House

Colorado Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-Silt) / Photo by Gage Skidmore

CO-4: Brewing Chaos Likely Helps Rep. Boebert — Colorado’s open 4th District Republican primary featuring 11 announced candidates is beginning to deteriorate, which could favor Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-Silt). Boebert is moving into this open district to seek re-election instead of facing the most well-funded congressional candidate in America from her original District 3.

Two of the more prominent candidates are embroiled in controversy. State Rep. Mike Lynch (R-Ft. Lupton), as now comes to the forefront, was arrested in 2022 on suspicion of driving while intoxicated in addition to possessing a firearm while intoxicated. Lynch pled guilty to the charges and is serving a probationary sentence. His congressional candidacy has obviously brought the arrest to the forefront, and the publicity surrounding it has caused a movement within the state House Republican caucus to remove Lynch as Minority Leader. Not wanting to face a vote, Lynch quickly resigned from his leadership position.

Pro-life State Rep. Richard Holtorf (R-Akron), another District 4 candidate, who in urging a “No” vote on an abortion-related piece of legislation, stated that he had helped finance a girlfriend’s abortion and further said having the procedure helped her “live her best life.” He, too, is at the center of a media storm and his inconsistency will clearly diminish his prospects as a congressional candidate. Though other credible candidates, such as former state legislator Ted Harvey, are in the crowded GOP primary, Rep. Boebert is now in better position thanks to two of her main opponents being forced to navigate rough political waters.

LA-6: Ex-Congressman Announces for New Seat — Originally being elected to Congress in 1992 and serving only two terms after a mid-decade court-ordered redistricting map changed the political landscape thus forcing him to retire, state Sen. Cleo Fields (D-Baton Rouge) announced that he will enter the race to fill the new court-ordered revamped 6th Congressional District that stretches from Baton Rouge to Shreveport. Therefore, Sen. Fields will attempt a long-awaited return to the US House, a body from which he departed 28 years ago.

We can expect a spirited open-seat campaign among Democrats who will be competing to win the new district later in this year’s regular election. The seat is designed to elect an African-American Democrat. Current 6th District incumbent Rep. Garret Graves (R-Baton Rouge) will look to run elsewhere, probably in the new 5th District where he will be forced to challenge fellow GOP Rep. Julia Letlow (R-Start).

Governor

Missouri: Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft Leading Open Governor’s Race — The Remington Research Group, the usual pollster for the Missouri Scout political blog, went into the field to test the open Republican gubernatorial primary to be decided in early August. The survey (Jan. 17-18; 806 likely Missouri Republican primary voters; interactive voice response system) sees Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft (R), son of former Missouri senator and US Attorney General John Ashcroft, leading the field for the GOP nomination.

According to the Remington results, Ashcroft posts a 34-20-4 percent advantage over Lt. Gov. Mike Kehoe, and state Sen. Bill Eigel (R-Weldon Spring), respectively. The eventual Republican nominee will be a clear favorite to win the general election. Gov. Mike Parson (R) is ineligible to seek a third term.

Virginia: Rep. Spanberger Opens With Big Lead for ‘25 — Though the next open Virginia governor’s race isn’t until November of 2025, candidates are already building war chests and developing campaign strategies to succeed Gov. Glenn Youngkin (R) who is ineligible to seek a second term.

As a result of the early activity, Christopher Newport University included a Democratic primary question on their latest statewide survey (Jan. 11-17; 1,000 registered Virginia voters; live interview). The results project US Rep. Abigail Spanberger (D-Glen Allen) opening with a big lead over Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney. On the ballot test, Rep. Spanberger posts a 52-8 percent advantage and already leads Stoney in fundraising $3.6 million to $750,000. While the congresswoman is off to a fast start, many months remain before this primary and general election are decided.