Thursday, November 02, 2006

Thursday Thirteen #6-Politico

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Thirteen Races toWatch Election Day

If you knew me, you would know that I am totally a politcal junkie, a wonk even. I watch Hardball, I donate money, I can recite the Daily Show word for word from the last major election. Heck, I even have Frank Rich and Bill Maher's books. So you can see why next week is like a mini Super Bowl to me. So as a way of helping, here are the 13 races I will be paying some sort of attention too next week, so you can have your own Sparky Cheat Sheet

1. Rick Santorum* (R) vs Bob Casey Jr (D)-
PA Senate Race- As things have gone along, Casey has opened up a decent lead and has never really been threatened. The debates two weeks ago pretty much sealed the deal. Santorum now is being Santorum. A combined look at the latest polls has Casey up by 11.

2.George Allen* (R) vs James Webb (D)--VA. Senate Race. This has been an interesting race, heavily covered by cable news. Alot of people think of Allen as a stand in for Bush, so if he loses, its will be an indication of how the country feels about our president. The race has pretty much submarined any chances of Allen running for president 2 years from now. Latest polls pretty much has it at a statistical tie.

3.Bob Menendez* (D) vs Tom Kean Jr (R)-NJ Senate Race-Menendez has been a fixture in NJ politics. That can be seen as a good thing or a bad thing, since NJ politics is one of the most corrupt in the country "allegedly". Kean is also helped by the name recognition of his father, a former Governor, who was popular with Dems and Repubs alike. Somehow, and I still dont know how, its seems Menendez right now is holding on, up by 4.

4.Jim Talent* (R) vs Claire McCaskill (D)-Missouri Senate Race-another interesting Senate race, because Missouri is considered a bellweather state. How Missouri goes, is usually how the country goes. Two virtual unknowns, Talent is an incumbent, but only after being in office for 4 years. Right now, shockingly, the say its a tie.

5.Jim Gerlach* (R) vs Lois Murphy (D)-PA Congress 6th District-One of the 3 congressional races that seems to be surrounding me in my lovely little home. Gerlach barely one last time, by about 4000 votes, in a very purple district. Murphy is back to try again, and Gerlach has seemed to have alot less footing this year. Plus, it doesnt seem that he has alot of money, I have seen both positive and negative ads from Murphy, while Gerlach has just gone negative, I dont even know what this man sounds like. Latest poll was the 29th, with Murphy up 5.

6.Mike Fitzpatrick* (R) vs Patrick Murphy (D)-
PA Congressional District 8-OK, I am going to admit I am alittle biased on this one. Not only is the race for my congressional seat, but I also know people working for the Murphy campaign. Plus, I have that lovely little button off to the right there, so I am just going to say that Murphy seems very green still and Fitzpatrick, well I have no way to form an opinion on him since I never hear him speak or see positive ads of his. Latest poll had Murphy up by 3, but that poll seemed a little wacky, so Im still thinking this one is a dead heat.

7.Curt Weldon* (R) vs Joe Sestak (D)
-Pa Congressional 7- And this one I am biased on because I was briefly involved with the Sestak campaign. But, I really have to wonder if Weldon forgot how to run in a close election. He was a 2 term mayor in his hometown in Delaware County, and now he is looking for his 10th term in Congress. This is the first time he has been seriously challenged in 25 years, and this has shown in some of his missteps, like complaining about Sestak's daughter not being treated in Philadelphia for a brain tumor, instead of where she was treated at Walter Reed in DC. The problem with that statement was that was where her doctors already were, and since her father was a Admiral in the Navy at the time, it made sense to stay where she was with doctors that knew her. I think the main factor in this race is change, and how many times Weldon can put his foot in his mouth. The latest independent poll was 2 weeks ago and it had Sestak up by 8.

8.Charles Taylor* (R) vs Heath Shuler (D)-N.C. Congressional 11-Ok, I admit, I only find this race interesting is because Heath was a well known NCAA and NFL Quarterback. And while he was famous in Tennessee, his district hes running in in NC is close enough to the Blue Ridge Mountains for him to be remembered. Zogby has Shuler up by 5.

9.J.D. Hayworth* (R) vs Harry Mitchell (D)-AZ Congressional District 5-Well, this one was not on my radar until today actually. A new poll came out today that had Mitchell ahead by 2, for the first time in this entire race. Hayworth is well known, a popular guest on talk shows, and for being a Republican he is not that bad. He also won by 22 points last time. I have no idea who Harry Mitchell is, but I also know that Arizona is changing, especially since I think this district is near Phoenix, where alot of Californians are moving too. Honestly this number shocks me.

10.Christopher Shays* (R) vs Diane Farrell (D)-CT Congressional District 4. Shays has been around for a while as well, but he never struck me as that great a campaigner. He is now getting swept up in the fact that alot of Democrats are going to come out for the Lieberman/Lamont fiasco and surely will push alot of the Dems along with them. Latest poll has Farrell up by 8

Speaking of...

11.Joe Lieberman* (I) vs Ned Lamont (D) vs Alan Schelsinger (R)-CT Senate Race-Yep, one of those very weird races. Lamont ousted Lieberman from the primaries, but Lieberman kind of knew it was going to happen and got the signatures together to run as an independent. Now, Joe is up by 9, one of the biggest mistakes was Lamont taking a 2 week vacation after winning the primary, giving Joe two weeks to get his Jomentum back. Schelsinger is a sacrificial lamb in this liberal state.

12.Bill Nelson* (D) vs Katherine Harris (R)
-Florida Senate Race-This one is on the list for strictly comedic purposes. There are many *cough* including me *cough* that blame Katherine Harris for the loss of Gore in 2000. Ok maybe not full blame, but she is a great spokesmodel for the 2000 election debacle. She cant lose by enough points, and right now accoring to polls she down by 26!

13. Bob Corker (R) vs Harold Ford Jr (D)-Tennessee Senate-A very dirty race, with negative ads flying all over the place, centering on themes of incompetence, porn, white/black race relations. Its been very very enterntaining if you like watching this stuff, but if I lived there I would have been sickened a long time ago. Right now, Corker seems to be up by 2. Oh and it looks like Frist made the right call, retiring to run for President as opposed to staying in office and having to absorb two elections in 2 years.

Honorable Mentions

I would have paid more attention to the Governor Race in Pennsylvania, but it hasnt been a race, Swann is a horrible candidate. Rendell will win easily. I also thought the Minnesota Senate Race would be close too, but Klobuchar is a great campaigner and I still havent heard a straight thought from Kennedy that wasnt muddled in some way. I am looking at the race to replace Foley in Florida. I even feel sorry for the guy who is the Republican replacement, since Foley's name will still be on the ballot. Explains why the Democrat is up by 8. Im also going to keep an eye out of Rush Holt in NJ, though I dont think he is running against anyone strong.

There ya go, a long list, you know what I will be doing Tuesday now!

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Tug said...

I just can't wait until the "make the other guy look bad" ads are OV.ER.

Happy TT!

Brony said...

Wow, you are very informed. That's great. I'm sure many will appreciate this information.

Happy TT!

Jay said...

Wow, I guess that does qualify as full-on obsessive. Good for you though, it's nice to know that someone's thinking things through.

amy said...

Hope my hubby reads this. He would like this.

Mines up! Dont forget to vote on a name at

kailani said...

I'm not much into politics but at least I'll now recognize some names on election day! Thanks!

Stephanie said...

Sorry, I am totally NOT the political junkie. Thanks for the TT visit!

Anonymous said...

Great list...and I only know about one of the races.

As you can guess by my TT (thanks for stopping by!), I'm a republican, and I live in JD Hayworth's district. I will probably vote for JD, but Harry Mitchell is a formidable opponent. He was mayor of Tempe for a while, and I met him a couple of times during his tenure as a state representative. He struck me as a hard-working, smart, and congenial gentleman.

It will be a tight race, but all bias aside, I would be highly shocked to see Harry win. And not too disappointed, either.

You may also want to check out our governor race as well...although I see Janet winning this one in a landslide. She's done a pretty decent job.

Happy TT!

Haley-O said...

I'm Canadian....But, happy TT! Very informative list.... :)

Anonymous said...

I can't wait for the election to be over. I live in Kansas City, and I cannot watch that Michael J. Fox ad one more time!

Annamary said...

I loved working on political campaigns. Such a rush!

Anonymous said...

we're actually surprised down here that katherine harris was even nominated! thanks for stopping by! happy tt! and happy election day!

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

I never figured out how Santorum keeps getting elected. Maybe this year?

And, yes Swann has been the "sacrificial Lamb" to the Rendell machine.

Anonymous said...

This is better than football!

Cheysuli said...

Ah-no wonder you love me! A fellow politco after my own heart!

Anonymous said...

Well, being Canadian and living in Germany, I'm not closely following the U.S. elections, although I am interested in the big picture, since the U.S. is Canada's neighbour.

Thanks for stopping by and have a good day. :)

Anonymous said...

I'm afraid I don't know the majority of the names, but it was interesting nevertheless!
Thanks for stopping by!

Anonymous said...

I'm totally lost when it comes to American politics. I guess that's because I live in Canada. I'm lost when it comes to Canadian politics too. The other day I had to actually stop and really think about who our Prime Minister is. That's sad I know. I swear I'm not always that dumb. LOL

Carmen said...

Thank goodness the VA election will put a bit of a kabash on George Allen running for president. Whether you're republican or democrat, the man's an idiot (and he's a UVA grad, so that's hard for me to say!) He was an awful governor. :) You'd never guess I had such strong feelings about it, huh? ;) And the ads here are SOOOOOo bad.

Darla said...

We don't get a lot of the political news on TV over here (Germany)--except for frequent reminders that servicemembers aren't supposed to talk politics--but I've been following several of these races online. Super Bowl indeed.

tiggerprr said...

It will be interesting to see how some of these turn out for sure. I am certainly not as well versed in the political area as I would like to be. Great list and very informative!