Note that these three are hardly Democratic apostates; all have voted with their party more than 70% of the time. What has marked them out in the public’s mind is their vocal opposition to those bills that most characterize the Obama agenda of bigger spending and bigger government. On those all-important issues, they are the anti-Obamas, and it is why they hold out hope of winning.
Note, too, that all three remain at risk for a reason bigger than their records. Conservatives may like these fellows, but they also know that a vote for any one is a vote for a continued Democratic majority. If this November shapes up as a wave rebuke of the party, even their voting records may not save them.
For now, however, the three incumbents—in red districts, with the burdens of a poor economy and history—are beating the odds. There’s no question as to why.