Friday, September 23, 2005

Open Forum

Summer has come and gone, with no indication from the governor about next year's election. One has to wonder what she's waiting for.

Municipal elections are starting to gear up. I've seen yard signs sprout here and there. I do love election season.

What's happening in Connecticut today?


Anonymous said...

Although I don't live in Connecticut, I must admit I do enjoy following your politics.

I have a question - why do the three Republican Congressional districts seem to be so red, whilst the Democratic ones are so blue. Is it the result of gerrymandering?

MVD said...

Democrats in the 2nd Congressional District are trying to bring some campaign money into Connecticut by urging everyone to vote for Joe Courtney in DFA's selection of their "Grassroots All Star" candidate:

Dems in 06 said...

One has to wonder what she's waiting for.

Well, most people have accepted that our AG is simply waiting for the Gov to announce she's in, then he'll be out. In the meantime many people are waiting for him (read: holding their contributions) and hurting other Dems, and she knows it. She might also just like torturing Dick, I don't think there is any love lost there.

SouthingtonDem said...

Does anyone know what Connecticut is getting out of the recently passed Transportation bill? I'm wondering if there's anything on the "porky" side that our delegation could consider giving up, in order to show Connecticut's willingness to approach "Operation Offset" with common sense and compassion.

Quinn said...

Connecticut is a very interesting state politically.

The 5th District is not rural, exactly, but is massivly suburban. It has several very socially conservative towns, such as Watertown, and several rich suburbs that are fiscally conservative or country club Republicans- Litchfield, Avon, etc.

2nd District is the Gold Coast, obviously, and these people want to keep their money. Country Club Republicans all.

5th District is the most rural. I don't have to tell you that rural areas across the nation trend Republican, largely because of traditional values and a feeling that the Democratic Party is all about taking care of the city poor and not about caring about them.

Mainly, the districts are so heavily Republican because the Congresspeople representing those districts are moderate Republicans, just right for towns that might have voted for John Kerry as opposed to the more right Bush, but still like Republican ideals more than Democratic ones.

MikeCT said...

Chris Murphy, candidate for Congress in the 5th Congressional District, has launched his campaign Web site. It includes the beginnings of a blog. A July news release describes just how much a creature of Washington Johnson is:

" Amazingly, Johnson reported receiving not one single contribution from a Connecticut resident during the first quarter of the year among her 66 reported contributions. During the recently completed second quarter, only 27% of Johnson’s money came from Connecticut, as opposed to 87% of Murphy’s contributions. Johnson received money from 117 Washington PACs, accounting for 52% of the money she raised, while the Murphy campaign raised only 5% of its funds from non-Connecticut based PACs."

Murphy has a fairly progressive record but in an article posted on his site he wimps out on equal marriage.

Diane Farrell, candidate in the 4th CD, has also launched her 2006 site. She is fundraising, though I don't recall that there was ever a formal announcement or kick-off.

As MVD pointed out, you can vote today for Democracy for America (which emerged from the Dean campaign) to endorse Joe Courtney for Congress. The DFA blog features a statement from the Courtney campaign.

Anonymous #2 (please take any old handle), if you look at Genghis' excellent maps in the right column, you can see that the 2nd CD (eastern half of CT) is not particularly red when it comes to any other level of candidates besides the U.S. Congress. It is, as a staff person for the Republican incumbent has said, "the most Democratic district in the country held by a Republican." Thus, the excitement about Joe Courtney's campaign.

And Quinn, I think you mean that the 2nd CD is the most rural, and the 4th is the Gold Coast?

CTObserver said...

You know what? No one cares where Nancy J gets her $$s. She spends enough time in district, and has the history with her constituents, that no one will event look at where her money comes from. (Hate to dangle that participle!)

CT05 Admin said...

Perhaps nobody cares where Johnson gets her money now. But then again, this will be the first time (the perfect storm of 1996 notwithstanding) that Nancy Johnson has faced a serious challenge, and it is quite possible that - given her utter sellout to the out-of-state HMO's and undeniable ownership of the fiscally disasterous and overwhelmingly confusing Medicare Modernization Act of 2003 (another perversely misleading moniker for legislation that does nothing of the sort) - the fact that large percentages of her walking around money comes from people who are benefiting directly in the form of taxpayer dollars and control over too many people's medical spending, will matter a great deal.

Her record in Washington and how it diverges with the way she portrays herself back here demonstrate that she knows very well just how vulnerable she is - once people learn the truth.

And this time around, they will.

Quinn said...

MikeCT, I did indeed mean that. What a silly mistake.

Anonymous said...

Nancy Johnson will have no real challenge in 2006. She will win in a landslide. Why?

1) She spends a ton of time in the district.
2) She represents the fiscal conservative, social moderate reflection of CD-5
3) Assuming Jodi Rell runs, she will be a strong force for Nancy.

Both of the Dems who are running are smart, however. If they run a good campaign they gain credibility and exposure for 2008, when Nancy reitres and the seat becomes a swing seat.

Ebpie said...

Johnson is certainly the favorite going into the 5CD race. That being said, this will undoubtedly be a tough race. It looks like Chris Murphy will have a decent sized warchest and will be able to get his message out so money won’t be an issue on either side. I don't think Vance will go very far, given his fundraising, as the party seems to be rallying behind Murphy. He can start attacking Johnson ASAP.

Johnson is a tough campaigner and does spend a lot of time in the district (I was an intern in her office a few summers ago and can attest to this). She is no stranger to strong challengers (96, 02). Unless Murphy can find a particular issue that really hits hard (like Simmons did in 2000 with Gejdenson and "the gate") I don't think he will win. The “too close to Tom Delay/George Bush/Evil Corporation” line won’t work in the 5th. People know Johnson and generally like her. Tired and old Democratic attacks will fall flat.

CTObserver said...

And the democratic DC dollars will go to Courtney. I don't think they'll split it up between two CT races.

Genghis Conn said...

There are two very vulnerable Republicans in Connecticut: Rob Simmons and Chris Shays. Simmons is less vulnerable because of the BRAC commission's decision to keep the sub base open, but his district still has a lot of Democratic voters and will be a close race most election years.

Shays faces the same sort of problem. However, statistics favor both of them right now, and not just because of the incumbent rule.

Both are facing opponents they've defeated before. Statistically speaking, the surest marker of losing a congressional race to a specific candidate is having lost to that candidate before.

Outside forces played a part in both previous defeats. This is good for Courtney, but bad for Farrell.

Farrell, while popular, almost defeated Shays in 2004. However, this was the year that John Kerry was on the ballot and interest in the election was high. If Farrell couldn't defeat Shays during a presidential election year, the chances of her winning in 2006 aren't good.

Courtney is in a bit better shape, since his (close) loss came in the Republican banner year of 2002. Simmons, however, is stronger than he was last year. He has a better chance of defeating Simmons than Farrell does of defeating Shays.

At this point, though, I wouldn't bet on either.

You can find this interesting statistic in Steven Levitt's fascinating book Freakonomics, by the way.

MVD said...

RE: Nancy Johnson representing the "fiscal conservatives". How can any Republican who votes for George Bush's budgets be considered a fiscal conservative? I just don't get it. The Republicans have not been the fiscally conservative party for a long time. In 2005 they are the fiscally reckless party. Anyone who is fiscally conservative (i.e.likes to balance budgets) should be voting Democratic.

Anonymous said...

all three connecticut GOP seats rated in the top 20 targets for Democrats nationally.