Thursday, November 09, 2006

5th Congressional District: Mapping a Landslide



Usually Nancy Johnson is on the giving end of one of these. See the map of 2002 and 2004 for those.

Not this time. Chris Murphy won the 5th District by 12%, or about 27,000 votes. He won all but six towns.

An absolutely convincing, astonishing win, provoked by a negative campaign on the part of Johnson, national trends and a strong, smart challenge by Murphy. Just remarkable.

More maps over the next few weeks!

34 comments:

Anonymous said...

remarkably Murphy ran considerably better this year in Wolcott and Cheshire than he did against an unknown in 2002...go figure

Anonymous said...

Outside of New Britain and Meriden, which no Republican will win (or need to win) look at the darkest blue towns - they are all in the Northwest corner. Andrew Roraback can beat Murphy in these towns - he and his family are beloved in the Northwest corner. He is the only real threat to Murphy's re-election.

Anonymous said...

You forgot about the $500K in MoveOn.org attack ads.

MikeCT said...

A tribute to the Murphy campaign's grassroots organizing skills and positive, reform-minded message.

Anonymous said...

what message?

"I do not socialize with drug dealers"

Anonymous said...

I second Mikect. This was an absolute and sound victory as a result of the Murphy campaign's grassroots efforts and positive vision for the future. It is astounding that cynics and political manueverers are already scrounging to find flaws in a practically flawless campaign that thrived on having an outstanding candidate and having momentum and energy from the people of the 5th CD who worked hard across the district for change. I have read these blog entries from day 1 of this political campaign season and have been disgusted by the personal attacks and cynicism that is here. Now that Chris Murphy will be representing the 5th CD in Congress, it is time to stop the distortions and recognize his ability to spearhead succussful bi-partisan legislation in the General Assembly and hope that he brings that spirit of bi-partisanship to D.C., where it is desperately needed.

Wolcottboy said...

Anon 10:28 - Johnson won new Britain in 2004 (though against a weak opponent).

I still don't understand Cornwall. Why is Cornwall still (and always seems to be looking at the maps) an enclave of Demorcatic bliss?

Wolcottboy said...

I got back from the Murphy party at around 11:30 pm election night. I was only there briefly, but wanted to tell him he ran a very good ground campaign. He looked worn the first time I saw him and he gazily shook my hand before going to a back hallway. He came back a few minutes later looking more refreshed and taking in the room.

The room was full of college kids and a fairly young crowd of Working Family supporters, Lamont backers, and local and imported college kids (as well as quite a few locals I spoke to). Media was prominent and the air was full of happy festivities, balloons and confetti on the ground. At 11:30, the party continued strong and into the lobby.

His supporters really earned that night and the next two years. Chris has been known locally for a hard ground campaign, though it was usually a single man and family job. This proves he can expand it to a full army full of spirit.

Johnson came out with one or two very good commercials- on Saturday. Way too late and after any voter had already shut out any information from the negative ads over the past two months. Before Saturday, it was clear Johnson would repeat her message over and over. Murphy didn't say anything about her (although some of his compatriots did early-on) and didn't mention where he stood on most issues. Neither candidate said ANYTHING about themselves on the issues. The voters could not tell a lick of difference between the two except for style.

Knowing their records, I was hard pressed on who to vote for. I voted for Johnson, but will accept Murphy (ugh!) for two years (but that's it).
His group did a superbly commendable and classy job that simply built momentum to sucess. Any future Republican opponent should have their cards in order and be prepared to fight a frustrating but clean campaign.

Murphy deserves accolades for a well fought success.

To the voters: Keep an eye on him.

Mmmm Jodi Rell said...

It's two days after the election. Can we wait a while to discuss the next one Anonymous 10:28?

I'm sure Andrew Roraback's family is 'beloved' in those towns - but Nancy Johnson was supposed to be after 24 years, right?

Republicans in the 5th and 2nd are terrified that they may never have a shot at these seats again.

Anonymous said...

"recognize his ability to spearhead succussful bi-partisan legislation in the General Assembly and hope that he brings that spirit of bi-partisanship to D.C."

Yeah voting for your caucus position 97% of the time in a near veto proof legislature will make Murphy the new Joe Lieberman or John McCain.

Folks. The election had virtually nothing to do with Murphy. It was a reaction to Washington DC. In a blue state being perceived as being part of GOP House leadership was fatal. Any other reason Jim Leach lost in Iowa?

Anonymous said...

Maybe part of it is that voters finally got sick of Nancy Johnson's viciousness in election campaigns...while masquerading as a nice, little grandma in public.

She certainly went over-the-top in the nastiness this year.

Or, maybe they finally realized that Newt Gingrich's ol' protector was also an enabler and supporter of the likes of Delay and Boehner and other detestable reactionaries.

Good riddance - of CT's three Republican Congressmen, she was the most odious and will be the least missed, at least by me.

Anonymous said...

Nancy Johnson has been a scourge on Connecticut for far too many years. It's a good thing she lost. She was sent home.

Anonymous said...

" ... his ability to spearhead succussful bi-partisan legislation in the General Assembly." He voted with the party bosses 97 percent of the time, for God'd sake. The only reason the legislation was successful in CT is the GOP had no votes to stop it.

Murph is a career politician. The Danbury News Times is already promoting him. Did you see his picture side by side with Chris Dodd the other day?

Actually, I would vote for Murph for Senator to get him out of CT-5. I've lived here 25 years and Dodd has never stepped foot in my Town.

Anonymous said...

Andy Roraback actually works for his district, rather than himself, and is too much of a gentleman to go to Congress. He has never missed a vote in the state legislature. He knows his constituents and they know where he stands on every issue. No dodging or evading by Andy.

Anonymous said...

I am no fan of Rell's as a party leader, but I predict that she will soon change and adopt the Reagan line, "Give me a Legislature I can work with." Admittedly, she played defense this election. Now that she is elected in her own right, she can start re-building the GOP from the ground up. Regaining CT-5 and some state Rep. and Senator slots will be a top priority. I just hope that McCain doesn't cut this effort short by picking her to run with him. The CT GOP needs focus and support and she will provide it.

ctblogger said...

GC:

As a side note, Murphy beat Johnson on EVERY voting machine in Danbury.

I caught up with Murphy yesterday and asked him about the role blogs played in CT politics this election cycle.

Anonymous said...

Chris Murphy ran an excellent campaign, but let's not whitewash the "red handed" ads that Move ON ran pasting Johnson, and his own negative attacks.

Chris got to be "nice" because the damage had been done. It was a shrewd, calculating campaign, and it worked.

The Johnson camp overreacted to be sure, and the "Dude" ad was the capper...

Murphy has a chance to make something happen. He has a golden opportunity. But let's not get too carried away, gang.

Anonymous said...

One thing I noticed on election day was the droves of Firefighters out in support of Murphy. Were they behind him all the time like Lieberman, or was this a fluke? If they were behind them, they appear to be a major force in politics.

BrassBoy said...

Stop, stop, stop, stop...

This was a race that the Johnson campaign lost plain and simple. They reverted to a playbook that had been successful for them in the past, but as the weeks dragged on and the success was not forthcoming, the Johnson camp only pushed harder, rather than adjust their strategy. People were open to a change, and when the Johnson campaign keep hammering away with negativity it pushed voters over the edge.

Obviously Mr. Murphy had his base and did a good job of winning over a lot of undecided voters, it's impossible to win otherwise. But let's hold off on the fawning reviews for at least a little while. The fact of the matter is he did not even have the unanimous support of his own party (Waterbury Dems) and he is by no means known as being some great, bi-partisan legislator in Hartford. Please, name me one Republican state legislator that has good things to say about him or would describe him as someone who brought a spirit of bi-partisanship to the General Assembly. You can't.

Did he run a good race? Yes. Were the stars in many ways aligned for him to win? Yes. Sometimes politics is all about timing and it's up to the candidate to take advantage of that timing. Congratualtions to Congressman-elect Murphy for taking that advantage. Do I, as a resident of the 5th CD hope that he actually sheds his tax & spend liberal tendencies and gets something done in Washington? Yes.

But as a resident of the 16th state senate district, I'm not holding my breath.

BrassBoy said...

mmmmm jodi...

Republicans are certainly not terrified of never getting the 5th back. The 5th might be the one district with too many qualified people who are potential candidates. Boughton, Stewart, Roraback, Caligiuri... This seat will be contested.

Rell no Reagan said...

I am glad we have finally seen that Rell has no coat tails. She was fortunate to have a weak John DeStefano and is lucky not to have faced Dan Malloy. Her inabilities to get anybody else elected prove she is a flash in the pan. The GOP is dead. Unless the Republicans can bring Ronald Reagan back from the dead, The Democrats will control and add on to their control in the next election. Rell is a nice lady but doesn't have the charisma, knowledge and potentially desire to energize her party. Democrats need to act on their promise of universal health care and real property tax reform. Their failure to take action would be the only thing that could resurrect the GOP.

Genghis Conn said...

If either Boughton or Stewart are re-elected in 2007, they look like great candidates for 2008.

Something to watch next November.

Anonymous said...

I just hope that McCain doesn't cut this effort short by picking her (Rell) to run with him.

Now that's hillarious. Rell will self destruct before our eyes.

Anonymous said...

Rell is no governor. She lucked into this job. 'Miss Transportation' is a republican with all the republican baggage that goes along with that.

Why did Connecticut vote republican?
When did Connecticut become republican?

Anonymous said...

"Democrats need to act on their promise of universal health care"

Took them 12 years to recover from trying to do that nationally

Anonymous said...

Murphy was a great candidate it was pretty obvious how strong a candidate he was after he easily trounced Paul Vance. It wasn't even a fair fight. Murphy deserves credit for that.

Anonymous said...

Rell is no governor. She is also no Republican. She signs off on the bills the Democrats put on her desak as long as the Hartford Courant says they are good bills. And she didn't even get the Courant's endorsement for that.

Anonymous said...

I am a Democrat But I do believe if Andrew Roraback decides to run in 2008 He would give Chris Murphy a run for his money. Roraback is popular in Litchfield County and Western part of state.Andrew would need to get better known in the bigger places Meriden, Danbury, Waterbury and elsewhere.

That would open the 30th Senatorial District up where the GOP could run State Rep Clark Chapin of New Milford or Torrington Mayor Ryan Bingham would be possible successors.

The Democrats have a lot of potential candidates should the 30th SD become an open seat. I think State Rep Roberta Willis would be a strong candidate Also other possibilitys:Washington 1st Selectman Richard Sears,Former 30th District State Senate Candidate Rod Wyant III,
Matthew Brennan who ran against Roraback this year who did well with little money and finished respectable and Torrington Councilman Andrew Slaiby would all be faubulous candidates.

I think If Roraback decides to go he would be the best one GOP could run. I dont think Tim Stewart or Mark Boughton would play well in Litchfield County and Andrew Roraback has worked his way to this point and would be a great choice.

Anonymous said...

The R's should run a Mayor since we can;t part with more legislative seats

CC said...

The Fifth District has just voted in the Rosa DeLauro of the West. (In fact, Murphy recently stated that she was his mentor and he would look to her for guidance on his votes.) He won on an "anti" vote and it will be interesting to see the way the voters in the district react to his upcoming liberal votes. However, Meriden and New Britain are lib towns, and I agree that it will be tought for the GOP to take the seat back.

Anonymous said...

Y'all can refuse to give the Murphy camp credit, but the fact remains:

A "no vote" on Nancy means maybe a 2% or 4% margin. Murphy won by 14%.

In a year when Farrell and Courtney made poor showings after being touted as definite pick-ups for the Dems, Murphy completely destroyed an incumbent who spent twice as much as he did -- EVEN IF YOU COUNT the Move On ads, which aired way back in May.

There's more to this than an anti-Nancy vote. He did everything right to take advantage of the mood and the situation, but he's also a strong candidate and his campaign was extremely effective.

It's going to be near impossible to beat him.

Jed said...

Consider the fact that Farrell lost by 2% and Courtney won by less than 150 votes, and yet Murphy won by over 20,000, 12% of the vote? Murphy is clearly an incredibly deft, compelling candidate.

I think the folks here already forcasting Murphy's demise need to pause and remember just how impossible unseating Johnson was supposed to be, and how stunningly Murphy managed it. Sure, he had anti-Bush, anti-incumbent energy on his side, but he nurtured a spark into a wildfire. He's not going anywhere anytime soon.

Anonymous said...

Like it or not Murphy is now the 5th Congressional district rep. I'm certainly willing to give him a chance to bring the change he spoke of, but I won't hold my breath. With no malice intended, I am glad he has been replaced in the 16th senate district.

For sure he won't be in the 5th for long, as he probably runs for U.S. Senate as soon as Dodd or Lieberman hang it up. Sadly, at present he is just another career politician who is a great talker, and self promoter. Obviously he is also a highly skilled campaigner.

I do hope now that he has reached one of his real career goals, he will now place as much emphasis on what is best for his district, as he does on what is best for his career. If he learns to do that he will be a great Congressman while he is passing through.

Anonymous said...

I think the anomoly has to be atributed to the campaign. The last poll had a 11% undecided. It appear they all broke one way. Sometimes that happens. Simmons and Shays hadn;t been as scorched earth and didnt risk this sort of backlash.