The Republican Party has been the one notably playing offense on this election cycle, but that isn’t stopping Democrats from targeting a few races here and there. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee just designated 11 more candidates as members of its Red to Blue program. However, some of the targeted races are actually defensive in nature.
“These candidates being named to our Red to Blue Program are running strong campaigns and demonstrating their commitment to being independent leaders who will make job creation back home their top priority,” said DCCC Chairman Chris Van Hollen (D-MD). “The Red to Blue Program will give these strong candidates the financial and structural edge they need to win in November and become strong advocates in Congress for middle class families back in their districts.”
The addition of 11 new candidates to the club brings the total membership to 26, representing a considerably less ambitious agenda than DCCC’s counterpart Republican National Congressional Committee, which has just over 100 possible candidates under consideration for its Young Guns program, with 50 having achieved Young Gun or Contender status.
The new Democrats include Chad Causey (AR-1), Tarryl Clark (MN-6), Joyce Elliott (AR-2), Colleen Hanabusa (HI-1), Denny Heck (WA-03), Julie Lassa (WI-7), Gary McDowell (MI-1), Mike Oliverio (WV-1), Tommy Sowers (MO-8), Manan Trivedi (PA-6) and Trent Van Haaften (IN-8).
According to Washington Post blogger Chris Cillizza’s The Fix, five of the 26 Democrats in the program are vying for open seats being abandoned by Republicans, and 11 are attempting to unseat incumbent Republicans. The other ten are trying to hang onto open seats being abandoned for one reason or another by a Democrat, which is technically a defensive campaign.
RBR-TVBR observation: Any time a Congressional district gets on a list like this, it almost invariably means that national money is going to be flowing to local media, and usually from two directions. If one party is there, the other likely will go there too. The only thing that will change it is if one candidate gets such an obvious upper hand that the national groups withdraw in search of races where the polling is closer.