Like RS’s Erick Erickson and TNR’s Ironman, I instinctively shy from a boycott of the NRCC because they had eight members out of one hundred and seventy eight who flunked a test vote. Some of the names on that list hurt to see, and a couple are exercises in teeth-grinding; but perfect is the enemy of the good, and Congressional Republicans have done a good job in using our lopsidedly minority status to the best effect possible. Nobody’s pretending that this was passed with bipartisan support. Nobody’s even trying. That’s better news for next year’s elections than what I was frankly expecting, back in December 2008.
That being said: this was a test vote, and these eight represent eight ‘Blue Dogs’ that could safely vote No on this bill and keep pretending to their constituents that they believe in fiscal responsibility, and there needs to be some sort of response to that.
LA-03: Cook has it at R+12, and McCain took the district with 61% of the vote in 2008. Its current incumbent Charlie Melancon is widely believed to be planning to challenge Senator Vitter next year, but the NRCC is going to be whaling on this one any which way:
In recent months, the NRCC had been ratcheting up the pressure on the three-term Congressman with a radio and print media campaign challenging his claims of being a fiscal conservative and criticizing him for his votes on issues such as the economic stimulus bill. In addition, the committee has continually promised to put up a well-known, well-funded challenger in 2010 regardless of whether Melancon opts to leave the House behind.
With Melancon’s jump to the Senate race now seen as likely, the committee believes it has an even better shot of flipping a district that Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) won with 61 percent in 2008.
“After months of being confronted with negative ads and hostile crowds, it seems clear that Charlie Melancon has decided he’d rather risk losing statewide than be defeated for re-election,” NRCC spokesman Paul Lindsay said Monday. “This is a district that has trended more conservative while Melancon has become more liberal.”
Fortunately, it won’t go anywhere, so the Democrats will have to try to win this seat back on their own, with no shenanigans. Note that even the AP isn’t buying the ‘ostensible’ reason for this:
NEW ORLEANS — Legal roadblocks will likely doom an effort launched this week to recall U.S. Rep. Ahn “Joseph” Cao, the Vietnamese Republican who scored a surprise December victory in a predominantly black, mostly Democratic New Orleans congressional district.
Still, the petition drive, started by two black ministers only weeks after Cao took office, demonstrates the challenges he’ll face if he seeks a second term in 2010.
“At this point it’s going to be more symbolic than substantive,” pollster and political consultant Silas Lee said Friday of the recall effort, ostensibly launched to protest Cao’s vote against the federal stimulus package. “But symbolism carries a powerful message.”