Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Winners & Losers: Week of May 15-19

By Nathan L. Gonzales


Patrick Murphy (D). This is one Iraq War veteran who actually performed close to the expectations. Murphy defeated former Bucks County Commissioner Andy Warren, who used to be a Republican, 65%-35% in the Democratic primary in Pennsylvania's 8th District. The Philadelphia suburbs are ripe for change this cycle, but Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick (R) is sitting on $1.38 million for the general election.

Anne Northup (R). Though he won a competitive Democratic primary in Kentucky's 3rd District, nominee John Yarmuth's liberal stances and years of published newspaper columns should give the Republican congresswoman plenty of ammunition against him and make her reelection a tad easier, even though her district still tilts Democratic by the numbers.

Washington Nationals. Baseball owners approved the sale of the baseball club to Ted Lerner and Stan Kasten, allowing the Nationals to crawl out of the grips of Major League Baseball. With fate finally in its own hands, the Nationals can now focus on building a real team in preparation for the new stadium a few years down the line.


Don Sherwood (R). The Republican congressman from northeast Pennsylvania squeaked by a nominal candidate, 56%-44%, in the GOP primary. We thought voters in the district had looked past Sherwood's extra-marital affair. We were wrong. It looks like the incumbent will have a real fight against Naval reserve officer Chris Carney (D) in the general election.

Andrew Horne (D). The highly-touted Democratic recruit and Iraq War veteran never raised much money and was trounced by publisher John Yarmuth, 54%-32%, in the Democratic primary. Horne goes the way of other veterans like Tim Dunn (NC 8) and even Tammy Duckworth (IL 6), who have found the campaign trail to be tougher than expected.

Ted Kulongoski (D). The governor of Oregon took only 54% in Tuesday's Democratic primary against two candidates. Republicans probably helped themselves by nominating attorney Ron Saxton, the more moderate of the three major GOPers running in their primary. Kulongoski clearly has problems in his base and even state Sen. Ben Westlund, a Republican running as an independent, could draw some liberal votes on social issues, and make the governor's task more difficult.

This item first appeared on Political Wire on May 19, 2006.