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Monday, September 26, 2005

WV-02: Is Capito Vulnerable?

Posted by DavidNYC

I love this. Everyone is touting Republican Congresswoman Shelley Moore Capito as a possible giant-slaying opponent for Sen. Robert Byrd (D-WV). But not only is Capito looking potentially weak against Byrd (he leads 55-39 in a recent poll), she's also been ignoring her own flank. From Drew at Our Congress:

WV-2 is a naturally Democratic district Capito has been able to hold since 2000 due to some fortunate timing and lack of sutiable opposition. In 2006, with an array of issues cutting against her and facing a viable challenger in former AUSA, WV Department of Environmnetal Protection Director, and state Democratic chair Mike Callaghan, Capito's luck will run out.

We have a chance to flip a rural House seat in a swing state.


Despite recent GOP gains, WV-02 retains a nearly two-to-one Democratic advantage in voter registration. This district, the longest east-to-west this side of the Mississippi, runs from the Eastern Panhandle across the center of the state to the mill towns along the Ohio River. The district is largely rural, with Charleston the only fairly sizable city within its borders.

The district is significantly older, poorer, and more likely to be unionized than national average. This creates serious problems for Capito on several fronts.

WV-02 has a very high percentage of its residents eligible for either or both Medicare and Medicaid benefits. The Bush Aministration's changes in the Medicaid funding formula have caused a funding crisis in West Virginia. The cutbacks in covered services have caused enormous hardship for citizens and generated plenty of publicity in the state. Capito is caught on the wrong side of some crucial votes. On access to affordable health care, Capito is exposed. She pays lip service to expanding access while voting whichever way the insurance industry prefers.

Drew's got more - much, much more. His analysis is very comprehensive, very detailed, and very compelling. I strongly encourage you to check it out in full.

The beauty of the Internets is that there is no reason why we can't have posts like this on every potentially competitive race - and sites like Our Congress are a terrific tool for doing so. If you have anything knowledgeable to offer about any House race throughout the country, Our Congress is definitely the place to do it. You should create an account there if you haven't done so yet.

Posted at 09:39 PM in West Virginia | Technorati

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This is a fantastic article. Callaghan is certainly the most credible challenger Capito has had in her three terms as a Congresswoman. Callaghan has excellent credentials as a former Federal Prosecutor and Department of Environmental Protection secretary, and is a very personable person. This race isn't on anyone's radar right now, so this could be a great pickup for us in 2006.

If you want more information about the campaign, check out www.mikewv.com or call 304-414-2394.

Posted by: Travis Owsley [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 27, 2005 11:52 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment