GOP making inroads in Democrat WA, OR House districts

posted at 2:15 pm on October 14, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

Two House races in the Northwest may define the upper reaches of the Republican wave expected to crest nationwide on November 2nd. Both districts have been in the hands of Democrats for decades, with only a couple of exceptions.  Both districts, one in Washington and the other in Oregon, look to be within the GOP’s grasp on Election Day.

Let’s look at WA-03 first.  This district, rated even by Cook, has only had two terms of GOP representation, 1995-1999, in the past half-century.  The current Democratic incumbent, Brian Baird, is retiring, which should give Democrats a boost in avoiding the anti-incumbent mood of this cycle. Yet the Democratic nominee, Denny Heck, now finds himself nine points back of the Republican candidate Jaime Herrera in yesterday’s Survey USA poll of likely voters:

In an election for US House of Representatives in Washington State’s 3rd Congressional District today, 10/13/10, Republican Jaime Herrera defeats Democrat Denny Heck 53% to 42%, according to this latest SurveyUSA poll conducted exclusively for KING-TV Seattle.

Compared to an identical SurveyUSA poll released 1 month ago, little has changed: Herrera is up a nominal point; Heck is down a nominal point. Herrera has led by 13, 9, and now by 11 points in 3 SurveyUSA polls. There is some volatility among women, where Herrera had led by 6, then trailed by 2, now leads by 5, and among the oldest voters, where Herrera had led by 14, then trailed by 2, and now leads by 6. Other demographic groups show less movement, and Herrera maintains double-digit leads among men, voters under age 50, and independents. Heck has some momentum among lower-income voters.

The chances for a big shift were apparent in the primary, which in Washington is non-partisan, with everyone running and the top two vote-getters going to the general election.  Heck edged Herrera by three, but Republicans outpolled Democrats overall by twelve points.  Little has changed since then.  If anything, it demonstrates that a wave similar to what put the first Republican in this seat in over thirty years in 1994 may be at least as strong in 2010.

In fact, it could be even stronger.  In Oregon’s 4th CD, a poll commissioned by the conservative group Concerned Taxpayers of America (CTA) and performed by Wilson Research Strategies shows the Republican challenger Art Robinson “within striking distance” of incumbent Peter DeFazio.  The sample is on the smaller side (300 likely voters) and has a relatively high margin of error at 5.6%, but in this D+2 district, it’s a bombshell.

  • Generic ballot – 45/44 Republican.
  • Overall ballot poll: Defazio 48%, Robinson 42%.
  • For those who have an opinion on both candidates: Robinson 50%, DeFazio 46%.
  • Recognition: DeFazio 99%, have opinion 93%; Robinson 88%, have opinion 70%
  • Favorability of Nancy Pelosi: 35/56

Wilson says there is “no doubt” that this is a toss-up race.  I’d like to have seen the partisan split in their sample of likely voters, and perhaps a somewhat larger sample to reduce the margin of error somewhat.  However, considering that OR-04 contains Eugene, a major college town, and that the last time a Republican was elected here was 1972 in the Nixon landslide, these results are certainly encouraging.  Not even the 1994 wave made this seat competitive, and since the closest race DeFazio has had was his 61/37 win in 2004, it gives the sense that we’re looking at something even greater than 1994 in less than three weeks.


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And let’s not forget Dino Rossi.

John the Libertarian on October 14, 2010 at 2:21 PM

Not even the 1994 wave made this seat competitive, and since the closest race DeFazio has had was his 61/37 win in 2004, it gives the sense that we’re looking at something even greater than 1994 in less than three weeks.

Oregon has had some of the highest unemployment rates in the country the past few years. The massive Dem wave the past four years hasn’t helped matters but, instead, made them worse.

Much like the stories I’m hearing from Massachusetts, it seems that people in deep blue territory are looking at a change because they’re sick of what the Dems have gotten them into.

teke184 on October 14, 2010 at 2:21 PM

Wasn’t Murtha’s old seat supposed to be red 6 months ago? Just sayin…

angryed on October 14, 2010 at 2:22 PM

Hang ten dude

cmsinaz on October 14, 2010 at 2:23 PM

Pacific Northwest turning red?

Dare to dream. That would be so frigging sweet.

visions on October 14, 2010 at 2:23 PM

To follow up on my post, these are the 10 states with the highest unemployment as of August:

Illinois and Ohio at 10.1%
Indiana at 10.2%
Oregon at 10.6%
South Carolina at 11%
Florida at 11.7%
Rhode Island at 11.8%
California at 12.4%
Michigan at 13.1%
Nevada at 14.4%

The only state in that list which went red in 2008 was South Carolina.

teke184 on October 14, 2010 at 2:25 PM

Anyone know where Washington’s 3rd district is?

LASue on October 14, 2010 at 2:25 PM

I don’t get why some struggle? The choice is easy. Be a life long slave to government, and recieve what they deem suitable to you, if anything at all, or….. freedom, liberty, and the right to pursue life on your terms. To be what you want, make what you want, and not be threatened by the government that you make to much, and because of that, must have your wealth taken away, and given to those who choose not to work for themselves.

So what’s so hard about that?

capejasmine on October 14, 2010 at 2:28 PM

You should dig into how the WA state initives are lookin’. We’ve got a state income tax, liquor privitization, and a whole host of other important issues at stake.

Even in the heart of Seattle, I’m seeing TONS of Rossi signs. The needle on my pessimism meter is about to break off.

RachDubya on October 14, 2010 at 2:28 PM

Anyone know where Washington’s 3rd district is?

LASue on October 14, 2010 at 2:25 PM

It’s in the Southwestern corner of the state, from Olympia to the Oregon border.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WA-3

teke184 on October 14, 2010 at 2:28 PM

The only state in that list which went red in 2008 was South Carolina.

teke184 on October 14, 2010 at 2:25 PM

But it’s Bush, and Republican obstructionism, and DeMint, and unclean spirits fault!

capejasmine on October 14, 2010 at 2:30 PM

This is probably the most promising development. If we ever hope to role back the unfettered power of the federal government. It will be through an article V convention. We will need 2/3 of the states legsilatures to call for an article V. Without the article V, get used to Obamacare, and the Cap and Tax that is coming next year through fiat by the EPA.

paulsur on October 14, 2010 at 2:30 PM

I’ll believe it when I see it, especially in Oregon.

jwolf on October 14, 2010 at 2:30 PM

please, please, please, please, please

Of course it would take an act of God to remove Norm Dicks, but I’m willing to believe.

29Victor on October 14, 2010 at 2:32 PM

Wasn’t Murtha’s old seat supposed to be red 6 months ago? Just sayin…

angryed on October 14, 2010 at 2:22 PM

It was supposed to be close, but I think the tight Democrat primary between Sestak and Spectre killed Burns. If Corbet and Toomey come close to winning by the margins they are polling, I think Burns will be swept along and take PA-12 this time.

forest on October 14, 2010 at 2:33 PM

There are a lot of Robinson signs in the Brookings, SW coast, area.

Senate incumbent Ron Wyden has been running ads on TV that he saved the taxpayers $1.6 billion (!!!!) by riding herd on the Pentagon and Halliburton (boo !).
Yea… No mention of the trillions of dollars we’re putting our kids into debt for stimulus (jobs!) and ObamaCare (TM).

silverfox on October 14, 2010 at 2:33 PM

John the Libertarian on October 14, 2010 at 2:21 PM

I’m starting to worry about that one. Silver said Ras and SUSA overestimate GOP support in WA. It’ll be utterly awful if he loses to that idiot.

TimTebowSavesAmerica on October 14, 2010 at 2:33 PM

Anyone know where Washington’s 3rd district is?

LASue on October 14, 2010 at 2:25 PM

LASue: I hope this helps!
===========================================================

Washington’s 3rd congressional district

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Washington's_3rd_congressional_district
—————————————

Washington’s 3rd Congressional District & Map
(Drag the mouse over the map to identify the district)

http://www.govtrack.us/congress/findyourreps.xpd?state=WA&district=3

canopfor on October 14, 2010 at 2:33 PM

It was supposed to be close, but I think the tight Democrat primary between Sestak and Spectre killed Burns. If Corbet and Toomey come close to winning by the margins they are polling, I think Burns will be swept along and take PA-12 this time.

forest on October 14, 2010 at 2:33 PM

Maybe. But I think what happened more likely is life long Dems voted for a Dem. Maybe they entertained thoughts of voting Rep and may have told a pollster they would. But when they were in the booth and looked at the D vs R choice, they went with what they know.

Which is why I am very skeptical of these kinds of stories. WA? OR? CA? These people are just not going to vote Republican. We may wish they would. We can’t for the life of us figure out what they keep voting for their own demise. But at the end of the day, some things just don’t change.

I hope I’m proven wrong in 2.5 weeks.

angryed on October 14, 2010 at 2:36 PM

DeFazio was there when I left over 20 years ago!

Lanceman on October 14, 2010 at 2:37 PM

Oregon’s 4th congressional district

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oregon%27s_4th_congressional_district
———————————

Oregon’s 4th Congressional District & Map
(Drag the mouse over the map to identify the district)

http://www.govtrack.us/congress/findyourreps.xpd?state=OR&district=4

canopfor on October 14, 2010 at 2:40 PM

Peter DeFazio needs to go.

The Whole state of Oregon is Bright Red with a blue line running up and down the I-5 Corridor.

I see a whole lot of Chris Dudley signs, so that is a good thing.

portlandon on October 14, 2010 at 2:40 PM

I lived in WA when it was already under invasion from Californians.
Bcs they thought cow poop & farms were stinky (only AFTER they built their fancy homes in the country to escape the city), they forced out the poor little farmer guys hanging on & the few trendy farms went ‘organic’ & stuff & so stayed to amuse the rich liberals that had taken over.
So I got away from Bellevue, & then Carnation & Fall City & Monroe & Bothel to flee to the Sultan area & finally left for WY.
These people made it absolutely impossible for middle class & poor to live here.
I still have friends that live there & probably always will bcs they are generational natives. But they sure hate it.
I have long weeped for the Puget Sound area.
E. WA & E. OR are where the normal people mostly lived.
I don’t know if that’s changed so much, but I hope OR & WA go red again. It will be such a nice place to live if that happens.

Badger40 on October 14, 2010 at 2:42 PM

Hmm. Conservatives doing well (or better than expected) in blue states. I thought that never happened?

/s

alwaysfiredup on October 14, 2010 at 2:43 PM

Which is why I am very skeptical of these kinds of stories. WA? OR? CA? These people are just not going to vote Republican. We may wish they would. We can’t for the life of us figure out what they keep voting for their own demise. But at the end of the day, some things just don’t change.

I hope I’m proven wrong in 2.5 weeks.

angryed on October 14, 2010 at 2:36 PM

There’s a lot more conservatives up here than one might think, but if there’s one thing that Rossi’s two “losses” have taught us, it’s that the Pac NW has got a touch of the Chicago Machine in it.

RachDubya on October 14, 2010 at 2:46 PM

Be still, my beating heart.

mankai on October 14, 2010 at 2:46 PM

The Whole state of Oregon is Bright Red with a blue line running up and down the I-5 Corridor.

portlandon on October 14, 2010 at 2:40 PM

True, but that corridor is where most of the people are, unfortunately.

jwolf on October 14, 2010 at 2:55 PM

The Tea Party Political assets,and arsenal continues
the Voter Build-up,and it appears at the current pace,
D-Day should go off November 2!!!(snark).

Operation Desert Sh*t Storm!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

canopfor on October 14, 2010 at 2:56 PM

Man, I hope Art Robinson wins. His faceoff with Rocky Madcow the other night on MSDNC was epic.

Doughboy on October 14, 2010 at 3:01 PM

Living in OR-1. Unfortunately, looks like Wu is going to win here but I’ve been seeing a lot of Dudley signs. And in Portland that says a lot…

unrealcitizen on October 14, 2010 at 3:01 PM

The people in Oregon can’t even pump their own gas. Each gas station has an attendant(s) to do that per state law. They even have a person meet each charter or commercial fishing boat to tally and measure each fish. No word on whether they get to wipe their own azzes or not.

Kissmygrits on October 14, 2010 at 3:03 PM

Living in OR-1. Unfortunately, looks like Wu is going to win here but I’ve been seeing a lot of Dudley signs. And in Portland that says a lot…

unrealcitizen on October 14, 2010 at 3:01 PM

Dudley is one guy who can win as a Republican in Oregon. He used to play for the Blazers(I used to enjoy watching Hakeem school him), so his name recognition is high.

Doughboy on October 14, 2010 at 3:05 PM

Dudley is one guy who can win as a Republican in Oregon. He used to play for the Blazers(I used to enjoy watching Hakeem school him), so his name recognition is high.

Doughboy on October 14, 2010 at 3:05 PM

True. Plus the Democrat is was already the Oregon Governor during the 1990′s and ran the state into the ground, giving complete control to the Unions. Kitzhaber even tried to pass a law in Oregon that had every family in Oregon who had a newborn baby receive a visit within 3 days of birth from the Oregon DHS in order to make sure you were a good parent.

portlandon on October 14, 2010 at 3:12 PM

Ridin’ the Obama Wave!

Shiny_Tiara on October 14, 2010 at 3:12 PM

DeFazio was there when I left over 20 years ago!

Lanceman on October 14, 2010 at 2:37 PM

It’s amazing to me that libs want the fresh, vital, exciting leadership of these fossils that have been marking time in DC for decades.

Look at what we’ve got in California. Boxer, in DC for 28 years, in the Senate for 17 years. Jerry Brown – the Democratic candidate for governor – has been in CA politics for 40 years and was governor in the ’70′s. It’s horrible. I feel like I’m living in a time machine. Hey, let’s bring back disco!

Django on October 14, 2010 at 3:12 PM

Badger40 on October 14, 2010 at 2:42 PM

My collie says:

Trust me, Badger, you are WAY, WAY better off in Wyoming.

I’m envious. You found your way to Wyoming, while collie and I are still suck here in Washington state. If you have ANY lingering doubts that you made the right decision, read this.

CyberCipher on October 14, 2010 at 3:17 PM

It’s amazing to me that libs want the fresh, vital, exciting leadership of these fossils that have been marking time in DC for decades.

Look at what we’ve got in California. Boxer, in DC for 28 years, in the Senate for 17 years. Jerry Brown – the Democratic candidate for governor – has been in CA politics for 40 years and was governor in the ’70′s. It’s horrible. I feel like I’m living in a time machine. Hey, let’s bring back disco!

Django on October 14, 2010 at 3:12 PM

Don’t forget Kitzhaber’s attempted return from the political grave to wreck Oregon even further.

And, since it hasn’t been said enough… DINO ROSSI FOR SENATE. Let’s increase the IQ of the upper house by firing Patty Murray!

fiatboomer on October 14, 2010 at 3:23 PM

Portlandon

He’s right on! Oregon is a red state except for the I-5 corridor. Unfortunately they majority of the population is within that corridor.

Defazio’s loss would be a fabulous 1st step and a loud message to the other lefties in this State. We can certainly hope for his demise.

Dudley signs are more prevalent than Kitzhaber’s … that too is a good omen for OR.

ORrighty on October 14, 2010 at 3:35 PM

I live in Oregon Dist 1 and the GOP candidate Rob Cornellius has signs up EVERYWHERE.. I never see WU signs.

I think Wu is going to lose, he is worthless.

magic kingdom on October 14, 2010 at 3:37 PM

Dick Muri is only 3 points back of the ultra liberal Adam Smith.

Latest SurveyUSA poll shows a 46% 49% lead for Adam Smith; however, the Republican base is very energized. A little money would really make a difference in this race.

Adam Smith actually has a more liberal voting record that Jim McDermott in the last two years.

Donate to Dick Muri here.

The Rock on October 14, 2010 at 3:38 PM

While I get to vote for Dino Rossi come November (yes Yes YES!!!) my House Rep will be… ta da! Jim McDermott. Yeah… Baghdad Jim. No Republicans ran in the Primary, and the only guy running against him is an Independent Candidate who promotes the Carbon Tax as his main reason to get elected.

In other words, we were Red when Red was Socialist… and THAT is the only way my District will be considered Conservative. :sigh:

Mr Michael on October 14, 2010 at 3:42 PM

Anyone know where Washington’s 3rd district is?

LASue on October 14, 2010 at 2:25 PM

This district serves: Clark.Skamania and Cowlitz counties.
This district was the most conservative county in the 04 election.

hawkman on October 14, 2010 at 3:48 PM

Oh, and anyone swimming in cash might send some to James Watkins running against slicky-boy lefty Jay Insleeeeeeeeee in WA-1. Inslee hasn’t had a real challenger in a long time and is trying to win by ignoring Watkins.

fiatboomer on October 14, 2010 at 3:51 PM

Watch OR 1, OR 4, and OR 5.

All are competitive.

Go Chris!

kakypat on October 14, 2010 at 4:23 PM

Mr Michael on October 14, 2010 at 3:42 PM

Ugh, I noticed that. Someone should run just to have a (R) option on the ticket. I’d bet money that they’d take at least 10%, even if they were a complete no-namer. If Alvin Greene can do it in DeMint country…

RachDubya on October 14, 2010 at 4:40 PM

I GOT POLLED IN THIS POLL!
I hope that’s not rude to write that in caps but it is very exciting that for once I know who they polled.

I didn’t get asked about this congressmen just about Rossi, Murray and a couple liquor licensing changes.

The caller id said it was for King TV, which I couldn’t find on my cable…

We just moved here and they were probably trying to call whoever had this number before… which could be any number of names because I keep getting calls for about three different people…

Anyway I was afraid it was the stupid Elway poll but nope it was SurveyUSA I guess.

It was actually a little confusing… it’s like they had a pattern of press 1 for yes, 2 for no, 3 for no opinion or I don’t know, then when ever the question was about Rossi/Murray they switched it. I think people could get confused and answer backwards on some of the questions.

petunia on October 14, 2010 at 6:08 PM

I lived in WA when it was already under invasion from Californians.
Bcs they thought cow poop & farms were stinky (only AFTER they built their fancy homes in the country to escape the city), they forced out the poor little farmer guys hanging on & the few trendy farms went ‘organic’ & stuff & so stayed to amuse the rich liberals that had taken over.
So I got away from Bellevue, & then Carnation & Fall City & Monroe & Bothel to flee to the Sultan area & finally left for WY.
These people made it absolutely impossible for middle class & poor to live here.
I still have friends that live there & probably always will bcs they are generational natives. But they sure hate it.
I have long weeped for the Puget Sound area.
E. WA & E. OR are where the normal people mostly lived.
I don’t know if that’s changed so much, but I hope OR & WA go red again. It will be such a nice place to live if that happens.

Badger40 on October 14, 2010 at 2:42 PM

I just moved back to WA after 20 years of being away… Where I am it’s still very conservative… and wonderfully so, the people are so nice here. Anyway the town I grew up in is in the Cascades and there are now so many many many laws and rules about every outdoor activity you feel like big brother is watching if you throw a line in the river.

The freedom of my youth is gone forever, because of the stupid Californians.

petunia on October 14, 2010 at 6:12 PM

DeFazio is running a radio attack ad, approved by him not an independent group, calling Robinson a tool of BIG OIL !!!
Apparently oil derricks will pop up like mushrooms along the OR coast if Robinson wins ( OMGs !!!)

silverfox on October 14, 2010 at 7:13 PM

A native of Oregon’s Bay Area I can only pray for oil derricks to pop up like mushrooms along our coast. There IS oil out there, as well as a LOT of natural gas. The mineral and timber wealth of the southern Coast Range has barely been tapped in the past half-century.

I say ‘Go, DeFazio, Go! Go wherevertheheckitis you came from and leave my beloved Orygun home alone!!!’

Ballots are being mailed out tomorrow. I hope to have my vote cast before Wednesday.

Scribbler on October 14, 2010 at 8:25 PM

Oregon has an unemployment rate at around 25% based on the number of families on Food Stamps. as I was driving around today on 217, 5, 405 in the Portland, Oregon area there are lots of billboards with Nancy Pelosi with David Wu and Nancy Pelosi with Kurt Schrader, and Nancy Pelosi with … and in BIG RED LETTER?? Where Are the JOBS.

mathewsjw on October 14, 2010 at 8:55 PM

I’m starting to worry about that one. Silver said Ras and SUSA overestimate GOP support in WA. It’ll be utterly awful if he loses to that idiot.

TimTebowSavesAmerica on October 14, 2010 at 2:33 PM

If that were true WHY would they have sent Biden here twice? Once in Feb. at the Westin in Seattle and in Tacoma last Fri. the 8th. AND President Man-child (little ‘o’) was here Aug.17, election day when he got all wee weed up over a float plane. and scheduled for a “Get Out The Vote” rally on the 21st at the UW. I’m hoping for an “All Float Plans Unite” rally on that day just outside the airspace safe zone! THEN there’s Mr. Bill (Clinton) in Everett at Paine Field for the same GOTV rally on the 18th @ 2pm. AND Mrs. Little o on the 25th in Seattle!!! I KNOW they are all wee weed up! Or they would NOT be sending in so much Donkey Power. Your tax dollars at work. I am having fun watching this circus.

sweet pea on October 14, 2010 at 9:18 PM

please, please, please, please, please

Of course it would take an act of God to remove Norm Dicks, but I’m willing to believe.

29Victor on October 14, 2010 at 2:32 PM

Dick’s finally agreed to a debate with Doug Cloud but very far away from the masses. A little town on the farthest tip of the Olympic Penninsula called Sequim last night and we were ready for him. 250 – 300 people showed up most carpooled to get there. http://tinyurl.com/27awdho. I’ve met Doug a couple of times and what a nice man! And very knowledgeable on the issues.

sweet pea on October 14, 2010 at 9:28 PM

Badger40 on October 14, 2010 at 2:42 PM

The Tea Party and many many other groups up here in Wa. have been working very hard for these 2 years and our numbers have grown large and continue to do so. We have them scared I know.
See my comment at 9:18PM for confirmation. Go Doug Cloud!! (running against Norm Dicks). Go Dino Rossi!! (running against Patty Murray)

sweet pea on October 14, 2010 at 10:10 PM

Donate to Dick Muri here.

The Rock on October 14, 2010 at 3:38 PM

A video Dick Muri did with core members of the Pierce county Tea Party.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HElWhRFalac
And one of Doug Cloud with the “Fire Nancy Pelosi” bus with Other core members at the beginning of the video.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n__mOEdWMRY&feature=player_embedded#!

sweet pea on October 14, 2010 at 10:54 PM

I guess this is the end. I did all this for…….

sweet pea on October 14, 2010 at 11:02 PM