Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
September 3, 2014

DCCC Promotes Nine Candidates to ‘Red to Blue’ Program for 2014

DCCC Promotes Nine Candidates to Red to Blue Program for 2014

The DCCC Chairman is Israel. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee announced Friday its latest round of candidates in “Red to Blue,” a program that targets open-seat races and districts held by Republicans.

House Democrats must pick up 17 seats to win control of that chamber — a daunting task in a midterm election. Offensive opportunities, like those in the Red to Blue program, are vital to the party’s mission. The DCCC released its first round of 35 Red to Blue candidates earlier this year.

“All of these candidates have met and surpassed demanding campaign goals, and shown they have a path to victory and have what it takes to win,” DCCC Chairman Steve Israel said in a statement. “I look forward to working with them through November to build campaigns that give voice to all the middle class voters left behind by this Republican Congress.”

The following Democratic candidates have been added to the Red to Blue program:

  • Arkansas’ 4th District: Former FEMA Director James Lee Witt is running in an open-seat race. (Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call Race Rating: Safe Republican)
  • California’s 10th District: Bee farmer Michael Eggman is challenging GOP Rep. Jeff Denham (Rating: Favored Republican)
  • California’s 31st District: Redlands Mayor Pete Aguilar is running to replace retiring Republican Rep. Gary G. Miller. (Leans Democratic)
  • Iowa’s 1st District: State Rep. Pat Murphy is running in an open-seat race. (Rating: Safe Democrat)
  • Iowa’s 4th District: Veteran Jim Mowrer is challenging Republican Rep. Steve King. (Rating: Safe Republican)
  • Nebraska’s 2nd District: State Sen. Brad Ashford  is challenging Republican Rep. Lee Terry. (Rating: Favored Republican)
  • Pennsylvania’s 6th District: Physician Manan Trivedi is running in an open-seat race. (Rating: Leans Republican)
  • Pennsylvania’s 8th District: Veteran Kevin Strouse is challenging Republican Rep. Michael G. Fitzpatrick. (Rating: Favored Republican)
  • West Virginia’s 2nd District: Former West Virginia Democratic Party Chairman Nick Casey is running in an open-seat race. (Rating: Leans Republican)

Some — but not all — of the districts on the list were included in a major DCCC television advertising reservation announced last week. But those reservations are subject to change and expand as the races evolve this fall.

Rep. Donna Edwards, D-Md., chairs the Red to Blue program.

The committee also added five Democratic candidates to its “Emerging Races” initiative. The DCCC defines this designation of challengers as candidates “that are making themselves competitive by running smart campaigns which are becoming increasingly competitive.”

  • Indiana’s 2nd District: University of Notre Dame professor Joe Bock is challenging Republican Rep. Jackie Walorski.  (Rating: Favored Republican)
  • Kentucky’s 6th District: Education advocate Elisabeth Jensen is challenging Republican Rep. Andy Barr. (Rating: Safe Republican)
  • Minnesota’s 2nd District: Former state Rep. Mike Obermueller is challenging Republican Rep. John Kline. (Rating: Safe Republican)
  • North Dakota’s At-Large: Democratic state Sen. George B. Sinner is challenging Republican Rep. Kevin Cramer. (Rating: Safe Republican)
  • West Virginia’s 1st District: Democratic West Virginia State Auditor Glen B. Gainer III is challenging Republican Rep. David B. McKinley. (Rating: Safe Republican)

Correction: An earlier version of this report had incorrect race rating for Minnesota’s 2nd District. 

  • Mr. G. G. Garcia

    What I am interested in is when and why did the parties change their colors? In 1980, Ronald Reagan campaign colors were Navy blue. Carter bore green. Then states somehow emerged with red and blue to indicate party dominance.

    • ChouChou

      In the ’80 campaign NBC assigned Red to Carter and Blue to Reagan on election night. As the states were called for the candidate who won that state NBC would change the color from gray to either red or blue. I remember Tom Brokaw saying towards the end of the evening that the map looked like a blue swimming pool because of Reagon’s win.

      Then in ’84 the colors were reversed – not sure why. I heard that the Republicans wanted red because red was Nancy’s favorite color – but not sure if that isn’t apocryphal. However, since ’84 the Democrats have been blue on the map and the Republicans red. HTH.

      • rangerider

        One would just have to think that the leftist would be uncomfortable with Red as a description:-)

      • Brian J.

        In 1984, ABC said it was a simple mnemonic- Red, Reagan, Republican.

        Even after that, the colors were not consistent. Time magazine, for instance, assigned blue to Bob Dole’s states in ’96. It wasn’t until 2000, and all those days of post-election coverage showing the deadlocked national map, that red became the Republican color.

    • rangerider

      Surely you do not think the reds want to be identified by the color red:-)

  • Ryan

    I fail to see how Pat Murphy, running for Bruce Braley’s seat, can be put in the Red to Blue program.

    • nathanlgonzales

      A valid question.

    • BillBuckley

      Looks like a way to funnel money to Murphy after a hard fought primary depleted most of his resources.

    • teapartyidiots

      Me too – a tree stump with a D next to it could win that district.

  • Rick Turner

    The way Obama is torpedoing the Democrats with one blunder after another I don’t see anything turning blue. If the IRS does not bother folks the military abuse of the Obama Administration should seal the deal.

    • BlueJoubert

      Turn off Fox and learn the facts, because nothing you said is accurate.

      The reich wing calls ‘blunders’ those concepts they agreed with for months and years but run from once Obama has taken the lead (the hostage swap, including the names of the 5 taliban have been public since 2011 – not a different 5, but the same exact ones, named and with photographs, became public record via CNN, Reuters, NYT, WaPo and others 3 years ago.)

      Re: VA – This is once again, left over from Shrub. Admittedly the situation is horrible, but since Obama’s inauguration, wait times have gone down. Don’t forget the GOP blocked a $27 billion cash infusion that would have built 25 new VA hospitals. And it is a simple fact that W took us into unnecessary wars without a single plan for how to deal with all the wounded US soldiers that would unquestionably be flooding the VA system on their return home.

      And the IRS investigated more “Progressive” groups than “Tea Party” groups. The only difference is that all but one TP group received tax exempt status, while almost no progressive groups did.

      You must feel so morally superior to be able to substitute facts for fiction.

      • NymRod

        Another liberal liar.
        How much do they pay you to be 0bot troll?

        • tom0063

          There are plenty of us Dems here in Omaha. Let’s not forget Obama took the district in 2008 before the Unicameral switched Papillion for Bellevue.

          Obama saved us from another Great Depression, got us out of madness in Iraq (which caused the surge in Veterans needing care that republicans need to pay for), delivered major health care reform, and now he is finally taking action to save our children and grandchildren from climate disaster.

          His mistakes pale in comparison to these major achievements.

          Wingnuts think liberals don’t even exist, and that by calling the facts lies, they will win. The reality is much different.

        • BlueJoubert

          You girls just can’t handle the truth. You really shouldn’t be here because it’s gonna be slappin you on the butt daily.

      • rangerider

        Ah! The lies are strong in this one :-) Silly “useful idiot” troll:-)

        • BlueJoubert

          ‘useful idiot’ I LOVE THAT! In fact, I’ve been called that a lot, even by friends, but never from a ‘useless idiot’ like yourself! Cheers!

          • rangerider

            The “useful idiot” troll points put that even his friends identify him as a “useful idiot” and says I are smart:-)

      • teapartyidiots

        Errr, the VA problem goes back to Nixon and post Vietnam, actually.

        • BlueJoubert

          Errr, yeah, true that. Thanks for pointing that out.

          • teapartyidiots

            I just want to make the point that it’s not party or even generation specific. Still appalling.

  • sidray

    The midterms are going to be clear and concise proof of which party the American people blame for our troubles. Think about that statement a moment…

    • tom0063

      Or it will be another muddle …. we seem to be very good at creating muddles over the past few years.

      • teapartyidiots

        I vote muddle.

  • coffeeHouse1982

    Whereas liberty offers freedom for all, collectivism offers freedom only for those deemed, by the collectivists themselves, to be “the good and the wise”.

    • tom0063

      Cries of “liberty” without equality are just an empty phrases which mean actually freedom for the few and slavery for the many. This is the actual history of our country, which we must never forget.

  • Yonatan YONATAN

    The Republicans & Democrats, have both Failed, the More Than 2.6 Million Unemployed Families, still Without an Extension Of Unemployment Benefits, since Late Last December. For the past Five And A Half Months, these families have had to face Evictions, Home foreclosures, Bankruptcy, and Homelessness, while these two political parties played “Party Politics” in the senate, Delaying and Postponing the vote. The Republicans in particular, have held the Extension Bill “Hostage” in the senate, never truly planning on passing the bill. When Billions of Tax Payer Dollars have been Approved for the Ukraine, and More spent on Military aid for Europe, the poor & Unemployed in this country are left alone to struggle and suffer economically. We have Representatives that are No Longer Representing the interests of the average American, but are answering to Corporate America and Special Interest Groups instead. These career politicians need be voted out of office in the coming election.

    • rangerider

      Look! It is the one message “useful idiot” troll:-) Such a silly person

  • Evergreen Fields

    When we apply the term liberty to nations, we are referring to a people’s desire to determine their own way without foreign control.

  • Yonatan YONATAN

    THE REPUBLICANS AND THE DEMOCRATS HAVE FAILED THE MORE THAN 2.6 MILLION UNEMPLOYED FAMILIES WITHOUT AN EXTENSION OF UNEMPLOYMENT BENEFITS SINCE LATE LAST DECEMBER. OVER THE PAST FIVE AND A HALF MONTHS, MANY FAMILIES HAVE FACED EVICTIONS, HOME FORECLOSURES, BANKRUPTCY, AND HOMELESSNESS, WHILE THE SENATE HOLDS THE EXTENSION BILL HOSTAGE, REFUSING TO PASS THE BILL. ALTHOUGH BILLIONS HAVE BEEN RECENTLY APPROVED FOR THE UKRAINE, THE REPUBLICANS FEEL THAT THESE AMERICAN FAMILIES DON’T DESERVE THE HELP. THEY’VE CALLED THESE WORKERS “LAZY” AND HAVE BLAMED THEM FOR THEIR CIRUMSTANCE. THESE POLITICIANS HAVE SHOWN LITTLE COMPASSION AND COMMON DECENCY TOWARDS THESE FAMILIES IN DIRE FINANCIAL NEED. WE NEED TO VOTE THESE CAREER POLITICIANS OUT OF OFFICE

    • rangerider

      Again the the “useful idiot” troll shouts his message,again and again and again:-0 No one listens to his shouts, but shout he must:-) To silly:-)

  • Charlene Weshley

    Collectivism’s fatal flaws force socialist governments into downward spirals where they must support themselves with plunder and injustice.

  • teapartyidiots

    I think that Nebraska 2 is actually the best shot here besides the “duh” ones like Iowa 1 and CA 31.

  • Bo Tye

    The liberty school realizes that those quacks who exploit democratic processes for their own purposes may destroy liberty and prosperity.

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