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Going for Broke

It's easy to think Dems have a clear shot at both houses of congress next fall, what with Bush at all time low poll numbers (and sinking), Action Jack Abramoff, an "improving" economy nobody but the top tier feels, and an increasingly unpopular war dragging on. But there's plenty of reason to believe this will not only be an uphill battle, but may require a divine intervention to take back the House.


The Republicans enjoy a 30-seat advantage in the House. Jonathan Weisman has an interesting and detailed article about the Dems' chances of taking it back and the lengths they've gone to in order to recruit candidates.

"Last summer, as Heath Shuler mulled a bid for the House, the former Redskins quarterback mentioned his concerns that a return to Washington would not fit with a life built around his family. At [Rahm] Emanuel's direction, congressmen began calling to urge him to run. Wives of congressmen called. Even lawmakers' children were recruited to try to persuade Shuler to run."

The Rothenberg Political Report has a rundown on the most compelling match-ups and shows how Democrats are taking seriously districts that have been out of play for years. He also shows where they fall short on recruiting top-tier candidates, but acknowledges, "no party ever recruits strong challengers in every hypothetically competitive district — and even second-tier Democrats might be good enough to win if the Democrats' midterm wave is large enough."

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