Sunday, December 24, 2006

Louisiana analysis (12/24/06)

Still nothing new in the world, so how about some analysis? Let us look to the Pelican State, where Mary Landrieu (D) seeks her third term in office. She's never had an easy election, and 2008 will be no exception. She won by just 4000 votes in 1996 and 40000 in 2002. Anti-Landrieu sentiment seems to have cooled down (she was at a 49% disapproval/46% approval in 2/06), but her 54% approval rating isn’t too confidence inspiring. Then again, neither are the potential Republican candidates. Secretary of State Jay Dardenne isn’t an imposing figure, but right now he seems to be one of the leading GOP contenders. Congressman Bobby Jindal is the Republicans’ dream candidate, but he seems poised to defeat Governor Kathleen Blanco in 2007 and would, therefore, be unavailable to run. But if he loses that race, you can count him in (and dangerous) for 2008. Other possible Republican candidates are Congressmen Jim McCrery and Richard Baker, both fairly conservative, boring candidates. However, poor black Democrats (and there are a lot of them) displaced by Hurricane Katrina in 2005 might not vote in Louisiana in 2008, and with them goes Landrieu’s key bloc of supporters. The Louisiana GOP is on the upswing since electing a Republican senator, David Vitter, in 2004, the first time that happened in over a century. I am, right now, predicting a Landrieu hold, but that will almost assuredly all change over the next year. As I said earlier, Landrieu will have another really close election.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Virginia analysis (12/17/06)

Two days ago, John Warner announced that he was "leaning in favor" of running for a sixth term in the U.S. Senate. While this doesn't surprise anybody, it does give pundits (such as myself) more of a grip on the race at hand. With Warner now presumably not being challenged by anybody in his own party's primary, let us look to the Democratic side. The obvious frontrunner, if he so chooses to run, would be Ex-Governor Mark Warner. His October announcement that he is not going to run for President set off a firestorm of predictions for his future, including a possible run for either the Senate in 2008 or a second term in the Governor's mansion in 2009. Lesser known, but probably more likely, candidates include Congressman Rick Boucher, State Senator Creigh Deeds, and Congressman Bobby Scott. If it's Warner v. Warner, in a rematch of 1996, look for (Mark) Warner to be favored. Otherwise, this is a toss-up. George Allen's surprising 2006 Senate loss thrust Virginia into the solidly-purple column, and it will show in this race as well as the 2008 presidential race.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

News (12/3/06)

Not much has changed recently, so it seems silly to do updated analyses or anything. But here, as always, are some news articles:
  • Ex-Senator Max Cleland (D-GA) has announced that he will not challenge Senator Saxby Chambliss (R-GA) in a potential rematch of their 2002 race:
  • Senator Wayne Allard (R-CO), who had promised to retire after his current term is up, is in the process of making a decision on whether he will choose to run for reeleection (and thereby renege on his pledge) or not:
  • And, finally, another senator (John Warner; R-VA) is also deciding on whether he will run for reelection. Unlike Allard, Warner would retire because he is old (he will be 81 in 2008):