Tuesday, September 25, 2012

DCCC Targeting And Expediture Strategies Just Do Not Add Up


Chances are slim that you saw Shira Toeplitz's Roll Call post yesterday, Triage Looms Over Campaigns. Pure Beltway hackishness... from someone who can do better. The idea is that the all-knowing and all-powerful heads of the NRCC and DCCC take on their shoulders the onerous task of deciding who's going to win and who's going to lose and then make the tough decisions about who to back financially. Like so much of Roll Call it sounds like it was put together by the publicists of the DCCC and NRCC. Very large sums of money are already being allocated and reallocated but, according to this story, only for the purest and most mathematical of reasons.

In the coming weeks, the national party committees will decide which races are deemed winnable and merit their resources-- resources Members themselves donated and helped raise-- and which should be abandoned.

...Last week, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee shifted a week's worth of airtime from Rep. Larry Kissell's (D-N.C.) uphill re-election bid to target Rep. Mary Bono Mack (R-Calif.). House Democrats did not cut off Kissell completely, but the move signals that the DCCC believes its funds are better spent on other races.

There's more of that to come in October, and it won't be pretty.

The DCCC reserved $61.7 million in airtime across 41 districts through Election Day. The NRCC reserved less airtime, $43.8 million, and is currently on the air in 35 districts.

Those reservations will shift frequently between districts as parties cross non-competitive or hopeless races off their lists.
Currently, committee staffs are poring over data daily, including polling, finance reports and media buys, to determine the state of every race in lengthy "around the world" meetings.

"The overriding question is, 'Can we win?'" said Rep. Chris Van Hollen (Md.), a former Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee chairman in 2008 and 2010. "You have to allocate resources to maximize the number of seats you win-- and that does require some tough decisions."

In the 2010 cycle the DCCC spent $163,582,280. These were the big bets these dispassionate statisticians made-- the 29 races where they spent a minimum of a million dollars on Independent Expenditures. These were all for TV and radio ads opposing the following Republicans:
Rick Crawford (AR-01) on behalf of Blue Dog challenger Chad Causey- $1,771,179

Robert Dold (IL-10) on behalf of  New Dem challenger Dan Seals- $1,746,826

Jaime Beutler (WA-03) on behalf of New Dem challenger Denny Heck- $1,728,127

Harold Johnson (NC-08) on behalf of Blue Dog Rep. Larry Kissell- $1,705,393

Tim Burns (PA-12) on behalf of ultra-reactionary Rep. Marc Critz-,$1,609,853

Keith Fimian (VA-11) on behalf of New Dem Rep. Gerry Connolly- $1,605,028

Andy Harris (MD-01) on behalf of Blue Dog Rep. Frank Kratovil- $1,529,305

Bob Gibbs (OH-18) on behalf of Blue Dog Rep. Zach Space- $1,512,697

Jim Renacci (OH-16) on behalf of Blue Dog Rep. John Boccieri- $1,449,105

Jeff Perry (MA-10) on behalf of challenger Bill Keating $1,433,412

David Rivera (FL-25) on behalf of challenger Joe Garcia- $1,422,235

Martha Roby (AL-02) on behalf of Blue Dog Rep. Bobby Bright- $1,411,243

Tim Walberg (MI-07) on behalf of New Dem Rep. Mark Schauer- $1,388,063

Joe Heck (NV-03) on behalf of New Dem Rep. Dina Titus- $1,382,353

Todd Young (IN-09) on behalf of Blue Dog Rep. Baron Hill- $1,376,745

Dan Benishek (MI-01) on  behalf of conservative challenger Jason Allen-$1,319,440

Rep. Charles Djou (HI-01) on behalf of New Dem challenger Colleen Hanabusa- $1,304,284

Randy Hultgren (IL-14) on behalf of New Dem Rep. Bill Foster- $1,303,014

David McKinley (WV-01) on behalf of rabid Blue Dog challenger Mike Oliviero- $1,264,732

Vicky Hartzler (MO-04) on behalf of New Dem Rep. Ike Skelton- $1,247,956

Scott Bruun (OR-05) on behalf of Blue Dog Rep. Kurt Schader- $1,247,472

Scott Tipton (CO-03) on behalf of Blue Dog Rep. John Salazar- $1,192,722

Mick Mulvaney (SC-05) on behalf of New Dem Rep. John Spratt- $1,124,027

David Schweikert (AZ-05) on behalf of Blue Dog Rep. Harry Mitchell- $1,094,545

Bobby Schilling (IL-17) on behalf of progressive Rep. Phil Hare- $1,067,806

Paul Gosar (AZ-01) on behalf of New Dem Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick- $1,056,845

David Harmer (CA-11) on behalf of Rep. Jerry McNerney- $1,031,192

Sean Duffy (WI-07) on behalf of New Dem challenger Julie Lassa- $1,017,175

Richard Hanna (NY-24) on behalf of New Dem Rep. Michael Arcuri- $1,008,039

There were another 26 Republicans the DCCC spent between half a million and a million on and the patterns are identical to the ones above-- as are the catastrophic rates of losses. They spent an awful lot of money and won 7 of the 29 top races, a dismal performance. Of the 29 races by the end of the cycle Cook, Rothenberg, Sabato and Real Clear Politics had all rated the #1 race the DCCC spent on, Blue Dog Chad Causey's "Leans Republican." Of the 29 races, Real Clear Politics had rated 17 Leans Republican" and 12 as "Tossup." Perhaps Roll Call should have asked the DCCC to justify that kind of spending on that kind of record of losers. And if they claim they just do it by the math... maybe some remedial courses are in order... for addition, subtraction, multiplication and division.

At nine this evening (PT) we're going to take one of those contested districts from 2010 and catch up with the DCCC and check their math this cycle. It's not this race in NY though, the one that saw Chris Gibson beat conservative New Dem freshman Scott Murphy. (The New Dems gave Murphy $20,000 and the Blue Dogs gave him $15,000.) This year New Dem Julian Schreibman is trying to win the seat back for the Democrats by taking on Gibson. Redistricted (and renumbered the 19th CD from the 20th), it's a district in which Obama would have beaten McCain 53-45%. Although things are looking up for more and more Democrats across the country, that isn't the case here. A brand new Siena poll shows Schreibman losing by a massive 16 points. Gibson is backed by 52% of the voters, Schreibman 36% and 11% are undecided. Obama leads Romney 49-45% in the district. The DCCC, which is aggressively ignoring progressives who are running for far more winnable seat, started running this expensive ad this week:

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At 9:28 PM, Anonymous me said...

Please get rid of that goddamn "Share This" popup.


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