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Dodd, Dorgan retiring

Discussion in 'BBS Hangout: Debate & Discussion' started by basso, Jan 6, 2010.

  1. Major

    Major Member

    Jun 28, 1999
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    That would be a disaster of epic proportions.
  2. solid

    solid Contributing Member

    Apr 10, 2001
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    That is what Dodd deserves. He is a poster child for corruption. He has used and abused his power to escape accountability.
  3. Dairy Ashford

    Dairy Ashford Member

    May 20, 2002
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  4. MoonDogg

    MoonDogg Member

    Nov 12, 1999
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  5. Rashmon

    Rashmon Contributing Member

    Jun 2, 2000
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    Republican Retirements Mount in House

    The decision by South Carolina Rep. Henry Brown to retire brings Republican retirements to 14, a number that, if it continues to rise in the coming months, could curtail the expected GOP gains in the House in November.

    While much of the focus for the last month (or so) has been on Democrats' retirement problems -- set off by a quartet of announcements in swing and Republican-leaning districts over the last month -- a broad look at the open seat playing field suggests more parity in terms of the two parties' opportunities and vulnerabilities than conventional wisdom suggests.

    Republicans currently carry 14 open seats while Democrats have 10. Each side has three seats won by the other party's presidential candidate in 2008; for Democrats, that's Louisiana's 3rd district and Tennessee's 6th and 8th districts while for Republicans it's Delaware's at-large seat, Illinois' 10th district and Pennsylvania's 6th district.

    Of the remaining 11 seats for Republicans, Sen. John McCain (Ariz.) won between 50 and 55 percent in three (Florida's 12th, Michigan's 2nd and California's 19th) and between 55 and 60 percent in three more (Kansas' 4th, Oklahoma's 5th and South Carolina's 1st).

    Those numbers are roughly equivalent to Democrats' current retirement lineup with two districts where President Obama took between 50 and 55 percent of the vote (Kansas' 3rd and Washington's 3rd) and two more (New Hampshire's 2nd and Pennsylvania's 7th) where he won between 55 and 60 percent.

    All told, Republicans are defending nine open seats that McCain either lost or won with less than 60 percent of the vote in 2008 while Democrats are on defense in seven seats lost by Obama or won with less than 60 percent. (A full list of open seats and presidential performance is after the jump.)

    The even-ness of those numbers belie the sense in Washington that Democrats are losing altitude rapidly -- the party switch of Rep. Parker Griffith (D to R) being a touchstone in that argument -- and are headed for major losses in November.

    To be sure, Republicans still have history on their side. The first midterm election of a president's first four years in office is traditionally marked by significant House losses for his party. In the last four first term, midterm elections the president's party has lost 26 seats (1982), eight seats (1990), 54 seats (1994) and gained eight seats (2002). (The 2002 midterms were anomalous due in large part to the lingering impact of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.)

    Democrats' ranks have also not been thinned over the last few elections by a series of losses in the same way Republicans experienced, meaning, theoretically, that there are more Democratic members who may be looking for a way out in November as they contemplate a life beyond Congress.

    And, candidate quality does matter so recruitment, which has favored Republicans thanks to the tilt of the national playing field, is important in places like New Hampshire's 2nd district and Pennsylvania's 7th district among others.

    As we wrote this morning, the next month will be critical for House Democrats. If there are only a handful of retirements -- and a majority of those come in non-competitive districts -- then the talk of an avalanche of departures will quiet and the nerves of jangling members may well be calmed.

    What a close examination of the current open seat landscape reveals, however, is that the talk of a doomsday scenario for House Democrats simply hasn't materialized yet. Are they likely headed to double-digit losses come November? Yes. But, talk of a switch in House control is, at least at this point, premature.

    Republican Open Seats (14)
    Delaware's at-large (Obama 62 percent)
    California's 19th (McCain 52 percent)
    Florida's 12th (McCain 50 percent)
    Georgia's 9th (McCain 75 percent)
    Illinois' 10th (Obama 61 percent)
    Kansas' 1st (McCain 69 percent)
    Kansas' 4th (McCain 58 percent)
    Michigan's 2nd (McCain 51 percent)
    Missouri's 7th (McCain 63 percent)
    Oklahoma's 5th (McCain 59 percent)
    Pennsylvania's 6th (Obama 58 percent)
    South Carolina's 1st (McCain 56 percent)
    South Carolina's 3rd (McCain 64 percent)
    Tennessee's 3rd (McCain 62 percent)

    Democratic Open Seats (10)
    Alabama's 7th (Obama 74 percent)
    Florida's 17th (Obama 87 percent)
    Hawaii's 1st (Obama 70 percent)
    Kansas' 3rd (Obama 51 percent)
    Louisiana's 3rd (McCain 61 percent)
    New Hampshire's 2nd (Obama 56 percent)
    Pennsylvania's 7th (Obama 56 percent)
    Tennessee's 6th (McCain 62 percent)
    Tennessee's 8th (McCain 56 percent)
    Washington's 3rd (Obama 53 percent)

    By Chris Cillizza | January 4, 2010; 11:23 AM ET


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