Saturday, April 29, 2006

Upgraded

Congressional Quarterly has upgraded the level of competitiveness for the district. Here is some of what they had to say in the article:

But despite all of the Walsh’s institutional political advantages, Democrats are convinced that the incumbent is not invulnerable. After passing on challenging Walsh two years ago, Democrats are fielding at least two candidates in the Sept. 12 primary: former congressional aide Dan Maffei and lawyer Paloma Capanna.

The likelihood that Walsh will face a potentially competitive challenge this year, coupled with the terrible political environment facing Republicans nationally and in New York, has prompted CQPolitics.com to change its rating of the New York 25 race to Republican Favored from Safe Republican. The change means that Walsh remains strongly favored to win re-election, but that a Democratic upset cannot be completely ruled out.

Democrats argue that increasing negativity toward President Bush and the GOP House leadership will be a serious liability for Walsh, who has a mostly conservative voting record. On House votes last year that divided the two parties, Walsh backed the majority Republican position 92 percent of the time.

Jen Psaki, a spokeswoman for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, said the 25th District was “ripe for change in November” as a result of dissatisfaction with Walsh and the Republican Congress over the Medicare prescription drug law and rising gas prices.

The Democratic front-runner appears to be Maffei, who reported raising $207,000 with $175,000 in the bank at the end of March. Maffei said that he would be backed by the Democratic organizations in each of the four counties that are wholly or partly in the 25th.

Maffei, who worked for New York Democratic Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan (1977-2001) and then for New York Rep. Charles B. Rangel, the ranking Democrat on the Ways and Means Committee, said he was going to give Walsh a vigorous race.

“There wasn’t anything before, and now all of the sudden this nine-term incumbent — who everybody has assumed is going to be in until he dies — faces a challenge. A strong challenge,” Maffei told CQPolitics.com during an interview in Washington on Wednesday.

“Everybody thinks this is Republican land and then I’m going in and saying, ‘No, it isn’t,’” Maffei said, adding that the 25th “is a very ripe area for change.”

Capanna told CQPolitics.com on Wednesday that she has received support from area labor unions. She also expressed confidence she could beat Walsh in November.

Capanna reported raising $114,000, of which $88,000 came in the form of loans or contributions she made to her campaign, and banked $89,000 as April began. Both Democrats lag far behind Walsh, who had $502,000 in the bank at the end of March.



Of course, Jimbo is doing his usual stick of slinging mud and being abrasive:

“That’s what he does for a living, up until now. I don’t think he has a job now,” Walsh said. “But he really has generated much more press here [in Washington] than in Syracuse.”

“And he hasn’t been in Syracuse since his high school graduation picture was taken,” the congressman added.


If I had Jimbo's position on the issues, I wouldn't want to talk about them. And since he won't talk about issues, we are just going to see more annoying mud slinging from Jimbo and his supporters.

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