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Sunday, January 29, 2006

WV, KY & FEC: Some Filing Deadline Notes

Posted by DavidNYC

• WV's deadline was yesterday - 1/28. Two additional Dems have filed to run against Shelley Moore Capito. One, Mark Hunt, gave the Raelian cult half a million bucks to try to clone his son. The other, Richie Robb, just switched from the GOP - in fact, when you Google him, the first result is a campaign site which calls him a "Republican with Results." I'm sticking with Mike Callaghan on this one.

• WV's two Democratic reps, Alan Mollohan and Nick Rahall will have GOP challengers, but I'm not sure how serious either effort is. Sen. Robert Byrd also has a challenger, wealthy businessman John Raese, whom some people seem to think presents a credible foe. However, Raese is legally a resident of Florida and has also lost two statewide races before.

• Kentucky's filing deadline is Tuesday the 31st. The KY Secretary of State has a very good website, including a page which lists all candidates who have filed in a nice, clean, readable format. Mark Nickolas is hinting that Ken Lucas will file on Monday - if he doesn't, we may not have a candidate in KY-04. On the flip-side, no Republicans have filed to run against the popular Ben Chandler in KY-06. If Chandler is unopposed, that would be quite a statement - Bush won the district by 17 points. I personally think Chandler should consider taking on Fletcher again in 2007.

• The FEC filing deadline is also the 31st. The fourth quarter in an off-year is typically slow (winter holidays and all), but campaigns which did well will probably release some preliminary figures tomorrow or Tuesday (ie, before they are obligated to do so). In any event, the FEC will be cranking out the official figures before long.

Posted at 04:29 PM in 2006 Elections - House, 2006 Elections - Senate, Kentucky, West Virginia | Technorati

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I would have thought the Bush advantage was much smaller in Ben Chandler's district. I know that Bush won the district's most heavily populated counties, Fayette and Franklin, but both by single digits. Chandler running unopposed would really be a coup in a 17-point red district. How good is (or isn't) Chandler anyway? I know he's a Blue Dog, but some Blue Dogs are far better than others.

Posted by: Mark [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 29, 2006 10:30 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Mark: According to CQ, in 2005, Chandler votes with the Dems 80% of the time. That's pretty low (overall), but comparable to other Dems in similarly red districts (Earl Pomery has the same rating), and a lot better than some others (such as Gene Taylor, who only voted with the caucus 65% of the time).

However, all of those guys are way better than, on the Senate side, Ben Nelson, who voted with the Dems a mere 46% of the time.

Posted by: DavidNYC [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 29, 2006 11:03 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Mark and David -- I rather like Ben Chandler. Yes, he does take positions to the right of the party at times, especially on guns (but then so do a lot of moderate and even some more progressive-leaning people in this part of the country). He's far from a DINO, though. I believe he is largely pro-choice (although don't quote me on that), and has been far from lock-step on Bush's Iraq policy.

For some reason, the GOP in Kentucky seems to have given up on this seat. After throwing everything but the kitchen sink at him in the special election in early 2004 (Mitch McConnell can't stand him, by the way), they did absolutely nothing to support his challenger in November when he won his first full term. It seems like this year, the Republicans in Kentucky are going to focus on defending Anne Northrup (and hopefully battling Ken Lucas!!).

Anyway, I get the sense Chandler is very ambitious, and will certainly make another run for statewide office, probably for Governor again.

Posted by: IndianaProgressive [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 29, 2006 11:23 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

As a follow-up on my above post, according to the website http://www.draftkenlucas.com it looks like indeed Ken Lucas is going to run for his seat back, and make announcements today and tomorrow. If indeed true, this is very good news for us, in that he is the only person who could even come close to putting this seat in play. As has been said here before, this is a VERY conservative district, and Lucas is going to need to win a huge margin in Ashland/the Appalachian part of the district. But it moves another seemingly safe Republican seat back onto the battleground.

Posted by: IndianaProgressive [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 30, 2006 09:58 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

That is HUGE news, IP. While Lucas may not win back his old seat, this certainly does expand the battlefield. And if no one files an opponent against Chandler, we can shift resources in KY against Davis and Northup. KY will be explosive in 2006!

Posted by: HellofaSandwich [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 30, 2006 02:17 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Richie Robb is certainly well known in Capito's district, but I've got to think that Mike Callaghan remains the guy to beat.

And note to everyone - that is very much a winnable race if it gets the attention it deserves. Callaghan has the right connections and style to win that district, and with the supposed national Democratic tide approaching this fall this is a superb opportunity to blow WV's #1 Republican star out of the water. And that's something that should be a top national priority as Robert C. Byrd and Jay Rockefeller aren't getting any younger and the Republican bench is otherwise very thin.

I don't know much about the Rahall race, and the voters in that district would be nuts to bounce Rahall given his seniority on committees vital to that desperately poor district (the Democratic caucus in the House being where seniority really still counts in DC). But people might want to investigate that race a little. I'd think a challenger who's the Cabell Cnty. sheriff, well, that's more of a challenger than Nick Joe usually faces.

Posted by: ArmandK [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 30, 2006 03:12 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment