Room to Grow in the West
Western Democrats did well in 2006. Here is a link to some helpful maps. Particularly noteworthy were pickups in Montana for the U.S. Senate and the Colorado for governorship, plus four pick-ups in the House of Representatives. And we won the office of Secretary of State in the swing states of New Mexico and Nevada. (Think Florida in 2000 and Ohio in 2004 for the importance of this). But we could have done better, and in 2008 we can. For the Senate in 2008 think Colorado and New Mexico. There is still room to grow in the West.
But returning to 2006, Senate pickups in Arizona and Nevada were possible. Governor’s mansion pickups were possible in Alaska, Nevada and Idaho. Additional House pickups were possible in California, Colorado, Idaho, Nevada, New Mexico, Washington, and Wyoming. And we didn’t win the election for Secretary of State in Colorado. These races were close enough to be considered competitive. Several of the competitive House districts in 2006 could be just as competitive in 2008.
So while we are still basking in the warm glow of victory, let us ask ourselves, what could we do better? Any campaign can be critiqued, but I think the biggest factor is that we were outspent. Jack Carter was outspent four to one in Nevada. The GOP and the Club for Growth poured a ton of money into ID-1. The national GOP was spending much more in CA-4 than the DCCC was. And so it went in many districts. Meanwhile Hillary Clinton spent $30 million defeating token opposition in New York. Now I understand that each candidate can raise his or her own funds, and the national committees carefully decide where to spend scarce resources, but more seed money in planting season and more money at harvest time would go a long way in the West. Something to think about for 2008.
Leo Brown | November 21, 2006 | Comment on This Post (0 so far)
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