Worksheet for the 2018 Midterms (Democrat Biographies and Backers)

By Lambert Strether of Corrente.

Readers, I am sure that by now you know that I don’t trust reporting on our elections very much. I especially don’t trust story selection (“the narrative”), but I don’t trust horse-race stories or candidate profiles much, either[1]. Yet I also regard the upcoming midterm elections as consequential: Democrat control of the House would at once make impeachment more likely[2] and provide a check on the Adminstration’s power. Moreover, the shape and direction of the slow-moving legitimacy crisis we are experiencing depends crucially on the strength of parties, especially the Democrat Party (since in the triple balance of forces between conservatives, liberals, and an emergent left, the greatest “brand confusion” exists between the latter two, both of whom are (mostly) housed in the Democrat party apparatus, the DSA and the GP excepted). However, to construct my own, presumably more trustworthy, narrative I need to start with coherent data that the press does not provide, so I can “show my work.” Hence this ongoing worksheet.

This week I want to look at two questions, the first of which you will remember from an excellent, but sadly link-free series at the World Socialist Web Site (“CIA Democrats“). For the seats that Inside Elections considers Likely, Tilting, Leaning and Toss-up Democrat — that is, the seats the Democrats must win to have the faintest hope of regaining control of the House — how prevalent are:

1) Military/Intelligence/law enforcement/other (“MILO”[3]) candidates

2) Groups backing candidates, whether liberal or on the left

(I’m limiting the data to the seats listed above on the assumption that, all other things being equal, political operatives will contest the seats that are easiest to win most hotly. In future, I’ll expand Table I deeper into the Red, to seats that lean Republican.) I should emphasize that I’m constructing this worksheet to not to handicap the race, fascinating though that is; rather, I’m seeking to understand and document the obfuscated obscure puzzling institutional structure of the Democratic Party (see here and here), using the candidates who run on the Democrat ticket as a lens, in order to better understand the role of the parties in our legitimacy crisis, which (I would argue) first broke into the open with the “faithess electors” controversy orchestrated by Democrats following election 2016.

So I’ve added a new column, “Democratic Challengers,” to Table I. (The previous version is here.) In this post, I’ll explain the methodology and answer the questions, below the table, but before you skip over it, I encourage you to click on a random assortment of challengers (each candidate name is a link, so I’m showing my work). Not only will this give you a sense of the enormity of the country, and the differences between regions, you may find yourself encouraged by some of the candidates. I like the retired rancher from Arizona, the yoyo salesman from Florida, and the techie with Aspergers from Nevada. There’s also a forensic accountant or two.

So to methodology. Using the Inside Election candidates list to gather the states, districts, names of the challengers, I went through BallotPedia. Each challenger has a BallotPedia page; from that page, I looked for the candidate’s bio, ideally on their campaign site — not all candidates, even electeds, have sites, and some sites are broken — and otherwise in news stories, either linked to by BallotPedia or found in a Google search. (Then, I looked for insurgent backers who had endorsed challengers, from the pages of Our Revolution, Justice Democrats, Brand New Congress, Emily’s List, and (of course) the DCCC[4]. Indivisible has not yet endorsed any candidates). I then keyed all candidates using the notation in the Legend. So here are the results:

Table 1: Worksheet on House Races, Election 2018 (2018-03-14).

State District Party Status Incumbent Status Dem Challengers Notes
AZ 01 D O’Halleran Tilt D Miguel Olivas [DP] Olivas’ website is not encouraging.
AZ 02 R Open McSally Tilt D William Foster, Matt Heinz [DP], Ann Kirkpatrick (more) [EL; DCCC; DP], Billy Kovacs, Mary Matiella (more) [JD; m], Barbara Sherry (more), Bruce Wheeler(more) [DP]
CA 07 D Bera Likely D BallotPedia lists Brad Westmoreland [S], who has withdrawn.
CA 39 R Open Royce Toss-Up Gil Cisneros [m], Sam Jammal [DP], Phil Janowicz (more), Ted Rusk, Cybil Steed, Andy Thorburn (more) [OR], Mai Khanh Tran (more) [EL] Wrap-up CA-39 generally; and another. Local Indvisible not in favor of endorsing.
CA 49 R Open Issa Toss-Up Douglas Applegate [JD; m], Sara Jacobs [EL; DP], Paul Kerr [m],    Mike Levin [DP]
FL 07 D Murphy Lean D Chardo Richardson [BN,JD; m]
FL 13 D Crist Likely D
FL 27 R Open Ros-Lehtinen Lean D Mary Barzee Flores [EL], Kristen Rosen Gonzalez [DP], Matt Haggman, Michael Hepburn [JD], Mark Anthony Person, David Richardson (more) [DP], Jose Javier Rodriguez (more) [DP], Ken Russell [DP], Donna Shalala (more)  [DP] It’s amazing to see how “Shalala” swamps all other results in Google searches for competing candidates; and she doesn’t even have a website! Rodriguez‘s website is defunct.
MN 01 D Open Walz Toss-Up Johnny Akzam [S], Dan Feehan (more; more) [DP; m], Vicki Jensen [DP], Bob Ries [m], Joe Sullivan, Rich Wright (more) [DP; lm] Jensen’s website is defunct.
MN 02 R Lewis Toss-Up Angie Craig (more) [DCCC], Jeff Erdmann Minnesota toss-ups.
MN 07 D Peterson Lean D
MN 08 D Open Nolan Toss-Up Kirsten Hagen Kennedy [DP], Michelle Lee, Jason Metsa(more) [DP], Leah Phifer (more) [i], Joe Radinovich (more) [DP]
NH 01 D Open Shea-Porter Tilt D Mark S. Mackenzie (more) [DP; S], Deaglan McEachern, Mindi Messmer (more), Terence O’Rourke [lm], Chris Pappas (more) [DP], Levi Sanders, (more), Lincoln Soldati [l], Maura Sullivan (more) [DP; m]
NJ 02 R Open LoBiondo Toss-Up Will Cunningham (more) [DP], Sean Thom (more), Jeff Van Drew (more) [DP; DCCC], Tanzie Youngblood (more)
NJ 05 D Gottheimer Tilt D
NJ 11 R Open Frelinghuysen Toss-Up Mitchell Cobert [l], Jack Gebbia (more) [m], Tamara Harris (more), Alison Heslin, Mikie Sherrill (more) [EL; DCCC; lm], Mark Washburne
NV 03 D Open Rosen Tilt D Richard Hart, Susie Lee (more) [EL; DCCC], Jack Love, Guy Pinjuv (more), Steve Schiffman, Michael Weiss (more) [S] Oddly, both Lee’s campaign site and Twitter account (per BallotPedia) are broken (as of March 14, 2018)..
NV 04 D Open Kihuen Likely D John Anzalone(more), Steven Horsford (more) [DP], Allison Stephens [DP], Patricia Spearman (more) [DP; m], Amy Vilela (more) [JD]
PA 05 R Open Meehan Likely D George Badey (more) [DP], Mary Ellen Balchunis (more) [DP], Shelly Chauncey (more) [i], Thaddeus Kirkland [DP], Richard Lazer [DP], Lindy Li, Ashley Lunkenheimer [l], Dan Muroff(more) [DP],Mary Gay Scanlon, Molly Sheehan (more), David Wertime Redrawn districts caused Chauncey, Lunkenheimer, and Muroff to shift from PA-05 to PA-07.
PA 06 R Costello Tilt D Bob Dettore, Chrissy Houlahan [EL; DCCC; m], Elizabeth Moro
PA 07 R Open Dent Tilt D Greg Edwards [JD], Rick Daugherty [DP],  John Morganelli [DP; l], Greg Vitali (more) [DP], Susan Wild (more) Julie Eble and David Weidman are out of the race. Is Scanlon in 7 or 5? Edwards was targeted by the DCCC. See PA-05.
PA 08 R Fitzpatrick Likely D Steve Bacher (more), Rachel Reddick(more) [lm], Scott Wallace [DP]
TX 23 R Hurd Toss-Up Gina Ortiz Jones [EL; DP; lm], Rick Treviño [JD]
VA 10 R Comstock Toss-Up Shadi Ayyas [DP], Julia Biggins (more), Alison Kiehl Friedman (more) [i], Daniel Helmer (more) [m], Julien Modica, Paul Pelletier (more) [l], Michael Pomerleano, Lindsey Davis Stover[DP], Jennifer Wexton (more) [DP; l] Ayyas is on the DNC. Modica is a perennial candiate.
WA 08 R Open Reichert Toss-Up Thomas Cramer, Shannon Hader (more), Robert Hunziker (more), Brian Kostenko, Brayden Olson, Jason Rittereiser (more) [l], Kim Schrier [EL]. Poga Ahn dropped out.

Toss-ups: 10; Tilt D: 7; Lean D: 3; Likely D: 5


Biography: m, i, l, o (“MILO”) Military, Intelligence, Law Enforcement, Other)

Backers: BN, EL, IN, JD, OR; DCCC; DP; S: Brand New Congress, Emily’s List, Indivisible, Justice Democrats, Our Revolution; DCCC; Democrat Party, whether elected, staffer, official, etc.; inspired by Sanders.

  • Bio keys are m, i, l, and o) for Military, Intelligence, Law Enforcement, and Other (except I didn’t find any Others this time[5]). A candidate who worked for the CIA is keyed i. A candidate who worked in Law enforcement and the military is keyed “lm.” “Law Enforcement” is concieved broadly, including not only police but district attorneys.
  • Backer keys are BN, EL, IN, JD, OR, and DCCC, Brand New Congress, Emily’s List, Indivisible, Justice Democrats, Our Revolution, and (of course) the DCCC. In addition, there is a DP key, for members of the Democrat Party network, elected and otherwise, and S, for challengers inspired by Sanders.

Before answering the questions, a little data. By munging the Challenger column in a text editor, I find that by my count — Full Disclosure: They never let me help in the shipping room, because I’m bad at counting — 111 total challengers, who break down as follows:

  • MILO: 26/111 (23%), of which intelligence (3), law enforcement (7), military and law enforcement (5), military (11).
  • DP: 39/111 (35%)
  • DCCC + EL: 15/111 (13.5%)
  • JD + OR+ BN: 8/111 (7%)

So, to answer our two questions:

1) Yes, MILO candidates are prevalent. One quarter of the candidates fall into this bucket, far in excess of their percentage in the population. If I had to speculate, this is not a consequence — barring obvious edge cases, like Mikie Sherrill or Shelley Chauncey — of nefarious elite plotting, but rather a result of career choices in the professional class that is the Democrat’s base, along with militarism in that same class (including militarization of the police).

2) Yes, groups backing candidates are prevalent. Liberal backers (DCCC and Emily’s List) at 15 outweigh Left backers (Brand New Congress, Justice Democrats, and Our Revolution) at 8. Combined, the 23 endorsements are 20% of the total candidates.

We can glean a few other factoids from our figures:

3) Democrat Party electeds, staffers, and officials are prevalent at 35% of the total candidates (unsurprisingly, in a functioning political party).

4) Looking at patterns within the columns, Liberal backers and Left Backers very rarely compete by investing in the same seats.

5) Based on this data, Sanders has not encouraged many people to run for the House. (In this iteration of Table I, I found a single example; my impression from the previous iteration is that there were more. In any case, Our Revolution is endorsing many, many more candidates at lower levels, and that’s probably a wise thing. Running for office is hard!)

* * *
Institutionally, the conclusion I draw — which may, of course, by modified as more candidates enter the race, or as I move further into red territory — is that the left, at the candidate level, isn’t going to be splitting, let alone controlling, the Democrat Party in 2018; they simply don’t have the candidates. If the left is to do either, it will have to be at the voter level, not the party or candidate level. Horrible as it may seem, from an institutional perspective — as in the Iron Law of Institutions — the liberal Democrat establishment might be right: The way to win the next election — and maintain their institutional positions bien sur — is indeed to win over wealthy suburban Republicans, especially women. The left has the policies to deliver universal concrete material benefits to a suffering American people — #MedicareForAll, primarily, though the Jobs Guarantee is coming up fast on the outside — but policies don’t win elections. Candidates do. This says nothing about tactics or strategy; I’m also not asking what victory looks like, in 2018 or 2020. I simply describe the terrain today.

* * *
I’d also be very grateful for more information on these races, and also for corrections — arithmetical and otherwise!


[1] The apparent menage a trois — if, indeed, not open plural marriage — between factions of the intelligence community, opposition researchers, and pliant reporters isn’t a confidence-builder either, particularly when anonymous sources are involved.

[2] Unless leader Pelosi, perhaps calculating that it’s better to leave Trump “twist slowly, twist slowly in the wind,” betrays her base as she did on November 8, 2006, and takes impeachment “off the table.”

[3] “And everybody has a share.”

[4] I used these groups because they showed up in candidate bios or news coverage, unlike MoveOn, DFA, etc. Perhaps I will add those groups, and other groups, at a later date.

[5] I didn’t find any White Walkers, either.

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About Lambert Strether

Readers, I have had a correspondent characterize my views as realistic cynical. Let me briefly explain them. I believe in universal programs that provide concrete material benefits, especially to the working class. Medicare for All is the prime example, but tuition-free college and a Post Office Bank also fall under this heading. So do a Jobs Guarantee and a Debt Jubilee. Clearly, neither liberal Democrats nor conservative Republicans can deliver on such programs, because the two are different flavors of neoliberalism (“Because markets”). I don’t much care about the “ism” that delivers the benefits, although whichever one does have to put common humanity first, as opposed to markets. Could be a second FDR saving capitalism, democratic socialism leashing and collaring it, or communism razing it. I don’t much care, as long as the benefits are delivered. To me, the key issue — and this is why Medicare for All is always first with me — is the tens of thousands of excess “deaths from despair,” as described by the Case-Deaton study, and other recent studies. That enormous body count makes Medicare for All, at the very least, a moral and strategic imperative. And that level of suffering and organic damage makes the concerns of identity politics — even the worthy fight to help the refugees Bush, Obama, and Clinton’s wars created — bright shiny objects by comparison. Hence my frustration with the news flow — currently in my view the swirling intersection of two, separate Shock Doctrine campaigns, one by the Administration, and the other by out-of-power liberals and their allies in the State and in the press — a news flow that constantly forces me to focus on matters that I regard as of secondary importance to the excess deaths. What kind of political economy is it that halts or even reverses the increases in life expectancy that civilized societies have achieved? I am also very hopeful that the continuing destruction of both party establishments will open the space for voices supporting programs similar to those I have listed; let’s call such voices “the left.” Volatility creates opportunity, especially if the Democrat establishment, which puts markets first and opposes all such programs, isn’t allowed to get back into the saddle. Eyes on the prize! I love the tactical level, and secretly love even the horse race, since I’ve been blogging about it daily for fourteen years, but everything I write has this perspective at the back of it.


    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      I’ll add Blue America in another iteration (though again, if it had come up in any of the news stories I read, I would have added it, as I did with Emily’s List (which you would know if my previous, pre-crash iteration was visible to anybody)).

    1. dcblogger

      Truly, I can’t thank you enough. I know it must have been exhausting, just collecting the links. And really throws the struggle within the Democratic party into relief. Interesting that Our Revolution is mostly staying out of the congressional races.

      1. Rebecca

        The field of candidates is really, really crowded in so many of these races. An official OR endorsement requires a nomination from a chapter in the district. Most congressional districts contain multiple chapters. If two chapters nominate different candidates, OR won’t endorse in the primary. So there is a lot of work to be done at the grassroots level of identifying and agreeing on a candidate to support (among both individuals and groups), especially when multiple candidates are running on a Bernie-like platform.

        Justice Dems is not chapter based, so they are able to choose more easily (for better or worse). Personally, I prefer the bottom-up approach even though actual small-d democracy, well, takes time! There is of course a risk that the left vote will be split if an endorsement is not made early on. But if multiple candidates support your platform, waiting to see which candidates do well in petitioning, volunteer sign-ups, etc. (as well as doing more background research) before choosing a candidate makes a good deal of sense.

  1. James O'Keefe

    Nicely done. Thanks.

    When I clicked on Miguel Olivas site I got:

    The owner of has configured their website improperly. To protect your information from being stolen, Firefox has not connected to this website.

    So they didn’t setup https right. Clearly not a good start.

  2. Socal Rhino

    If I were Applegate (CA, 49th) I’d play up Trump’s tax “cut”, since in targeting Hillary supporters it caused collateral damage among affluent Republicans that kept Issa in office for multiple terms. Issa barely survived the last election and chose not to re-rerun. Heck, if he came out against the newest toll road boondoggle (local issue) I think some republican soccer moms would campaign for him!

  3. XXYY

    Hi, Lambert. Thanks for the beautiful and amazingly-researched info. Super valuable to the whole community.

    I’m sure this train has left the station by now, but (re. your rant in today’s Water Cooler), I believe the above table would actually have been straightforward to do in MS Word. I’ve been using it heavily since the early 90s and routinely make tables similar or more complex than this. Any formatted text (including bullet lists and so on, and even other tables) can be included in Word table cells, and, in particular, links can be put behind any text, whether in or outside a table. (AFAIK in MS Excel it’s only possible to have one link per spreadsheet cell.) I actually started using Word when I saw the beautiful table support compared to what was available at the time; IMO it’s still the best around though has become somewhat overcomplicated in places in more recent Word versions.

    It’s another question whether Word would be able to export the doc in the HTML format you need for posting. I have little experience with this. It’s always been a fantasy of mine that Word would become the gold standard as a web content editor since the writing experience is so beautiful, but it doesn’t seem like it’s been a priority of the Word team at MS and I’m not sure what the current state of things is here.


    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      I have used Word’s table editor and vehemently hate it. Sorry! (Also, I vehemently hate Word’s new interface, with those idiotic ribbons. Not spending the money!) I liked Word 1.05 a lot…

    1. a different chris

      Are we going to have “new” districts? That particular fight got suspended or at least obscured by the Lamb/Saccone duel, but I didn’t think it had been concluded.

      The Rethugs should probably lay down their arms on this one — the whole problem with heavy gerrymandering is that the worm eventually turns and you lose bigly. Take the mild maps the court gave you.

    2. Lambert Strether Post author

      I don’t know if the district is in play; see paragraph 2 for how I’m scoping the races to track.

      I did notice a lot of scientists running for the first time, which is interesting; I also want to do a breakdown of the professions represented, STEMs as opposed to MILOs, as it were.

      Adding, I’m just going to let the Pennsylvania redistricting thing play out. It’s wild.

    3. Charles Browning

      This comment by HopeLB allows an opening for me to share a comment I left on the WSWS article Lambert references in his introduction:
      I don’t buy the equating of service in the intelligence agencies or military with being representatives of or even adherents to the policies and practices of those agencies.
      Mr. Martin states, for example, “This ‘retired’ status is, however, purely nominal. Joining the CIA or the Army Rangers or the Navy SEALs is like joining the Mafia: no one ever actually leaves; they just move on to new assignments.” Where is the proof of that? Further, how about these people as clear exceptions to your inference:
      Andrew Bacevich
      Danny Sjursen
      Chelsea Manning
      Daniel Ellsberg
      Ray McGovern
      William Binney
      Tulsi Gabbard
      The experience of these individuals in intelligence or military organizations gave them the inside knowledge on which to actually challenge or oppose those organizations, rather than “represent” them. I’d consider that a good quality for a political candidate.
      So, another example: Tom Prigg is an army vet and the progressive candidate.

  4. Rebecca

    Lambert, thanks so much for putting this all together.

    Perhaps of related interest: an in-depth breakdown of Medicare for All support among incumbent Democrats running in congressional primaries:

    There are 561 non-incumbent Democratic candidates running in Congressional primaries who raised at least $1,000 by December 31, 2017.

    271 candidates proudly support M4A or Single-Payer Healthcare; they say the words clearly on their website, in ads, at public forums and in media interviews

    290 candidates do not support M4A; they say some combination of

    “universal access to ‘affordable’ coverage,”

    “public option,”

    “strengthen Obamacare,”

    “allow Medicare to negotiate drug prices,”

    and “foster competition and innovation in the healthcare marketplace”

    The Pro M4A Candidates Have Total Receipts of $55M, Total Disbursements of $21M
    The Non M4A Candidates Have Total Receipts of $70M, Total Disbursements of $23M

    Their source spreadsheet is here:

    Also, it’s worth noting that Our Revolution nominations filter bottom-up from chapters. Many, many districts have large numbers of candidates running, and often multiple candidates supporting Medicare for All. So the absence of OR candidates at this time may have something to do with that –– I know that in NY-19 (leans R), it is a tough choice. Furthermore, if multiple chapters in the same district nominate different candidates, OR will withhold an endorsement until after the primary. Ideally chapters will come together to agree on an endorsement but there is not a clear process for doing so at this time. So the number of candidates running on a Sanders-like platform (if we can use M4A as a proxy) is substantially greater than the number of candidates who have received an official endorsement.

    1. DonCoyote

      Because of Lambert’s prologue on this (and the discussion on the JD endorsement in AZ-02), I wrote to JD asking them to elaborate on their selection process. Here is the response I received:

      “We only have one candidate on our slate per district. We never will endorse more than one since we provide many of the services that a campaign needs to win. I’ll send you the links to the two articles in our knowledge base that will answer your questions even better than I can. First the criteria of how we choose a candidate can be found here: Link 1

      We also have an article about who we are and what we do for candidates here: Link 2

      To answer your question in #2, we have often had more than one progressive candidate in a race. We endorse who requests our endorsement. We have an application and from that we begin our process. We think we’ve been rather successful so far in picking great candidates. In Texas we had 3 wins, 2 in run off elections in May and 2 losses out of 7 candidates. “

    2. Lambert Strether Post author

      Thanks, that’s very useful. The next iteration I want to add keys for:

      1) Medicare for All support and

      2) Money!!!!!

      Climbing up the mountain toward the summit of Ferguson’s industrial sectors.

      1. Rebecca

        Lambert, have you given Airtable a look? I am loathe to recommend, as its cloud-based, and also because literally moments after going to their website, a banner ad for them appeared on this site. But that said, the UI is really excellent, and it’s “looks like a spreadsheet, acts like a database” would come in very handy — you can link records within different spreadsheets.

        I’ve been meaning to check it out so I imported the M4A spreadsheet and started adding in the data from your table. VERY incomplete, but here’s a feel:

        And here is a link to what is probably the most “useful” view — the candidates grouped by district, filtered only for competitive races:

        (ps. if you are rightfully wary of relying on the cloud to protect all your hard work, you could regularly export the .csv files from airtable and track them locally in git… )

  5. DonCoyote

    Excellent work. I will have more to say later, although probably I will have to smear Shalala first–trying to fight it, but the force is strong in this one…

    AZ-02: The (more) link for Bruce Wheeler doesn’t work for me, in Chrome or FireFox. In Chrome, it registers as:


    Looks like it is front-truncated.

  6. Big River Bandido

    …the left, at the candidate level, isn’t going to be splitting, let alone controlling, the Democrat Party in 2018; they simply don’t have the candidates.

    The number of left challengers among the nominees is disappointing, but the signs have been there — in all the DNC and ballot battles of the last several months, the corporate donors have won just about every fight. I think the left had more and better candidates available, but the party and the consultants (pardon the redundancy) have acted to keep progressives outside the door.

    The left has the policies …but policies don’t win elections. Candidates do.

    And that indicates that Democrats will spend this entire year and a toilet full of money “fighting” for something, to end up in November about where they already are. There is a sort of silver lining here (or if you’re Glenn Gould, a cloud): rebuilding a corrupt party is much more difficult while it is holding power.

    Thank you for writing this and doing the worksheet…I’ve only begun perusing the charts and I find the detail mind-boggling. The thought of how much work it is to put something like this together, exhausts me.

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      I don’t view the efforts of left challengers as hopeless at all. Their efforts are not likely to be decisive in the 2018 House midterms, that’s all.* (I just hate cheerleading for anything by anyone, so one of my motivations for this series of posts is to do my own assessments.

      * For example, it’s excellent that Lee Carter was elected in Virginia against the opposition of the DNC (and their horrid fundraising requirements). But one seat doth not a party takeover make, let alone governing.

  7. Altandmain

    I agree that at this point, it is best to focus on the local level for any Berniecrats. The issue is that it will take years before we see any serious shift toward the left at the Congress level.

    At some point, I would like to see mayors like Rahm Emanuel in Chicago primaried out by Berniecrats.

    The state level should be the next target once Berniecrats have a solid hold on municipal bases.

    That said, I think that if a Democratic President is so dry like Hillary, another Bernie might someday have a serious shot. There will be even higher numbers of Generation Y voters by then and regardless of whether another Trump or an Establishment hack wins, we will not see real economic benefits for the majority of the American people. The main bottleneck will be the sabotage of the DNC.

    I suspect that once said candidate wins the Primary, the Democratic Party will be in self sabotage mode to prove that a left wing candidate is not electable. The media will be in a frenzy attacking and trying to get the other party elected. Finally even if the candidate wins, there is the matter of overcoming the extremely corrupt Congress.

    1. move left

      I agree- the levels below US congress are important for the long run. And I don’t think anyone will (or can!) do a spreadsheet like this for all the state leg races. In Iowa, we’ve got a Bernie-inspired candidate running for Gov and yes, TPTB are supporting someone else.

      1. Altandmain

        What will have to happen is Berniecrats in each states will have to make this type of work for state and county level races.

        There are some good candidates – Dennis Kucinich for Governor of Ohio (I used to live in Toledo before moving to Canada) is a good example. Would he win? It’s a very long shot, but still worth it. Having a Berniecrat in charge would be a good morale boost, even if there is the matter of overcoming a corrupt state legislature.

  8. makedoanmend

    Excellent spreadsheet. Fascinating stuff from an outsider’s perspective.

    FWIW. When looking at the links for JD candidates, Greg Edwards PA 07 links to the Daugherty site.

  9. UserFriendly

    good. As far as MN goes MN-7 is a really GOP district that Peterson (D) has had no problem holding onto in the GOP wave years of 2010 and 2014. He will be fine if there is the faintest D wave.

    MN-3 is even more D leaning than MN-2 (you should add it instead of MN-7) but has a slightly more popular incumbent.

    IMO if Dems have a good night they take MN-3 and lose MN-1 and MN-8, a great night and they take MN-2 as well, and an amazing night if they hang onto either 1 or 8.

    1. UserFriendly

      Also, Peterson is a straight up blue dog. He was married to the FL (R) SOS that stole the election for Shrub.

    2. Lambert Strether Post author

      Good information.

      I was struck by the presence of DFL (“Farmer-Labor”), another example of how enormous the country is and how states and precincts really do differ. Doe DFL have real power?

  10. move left

    This is amazing Lambert, thank you!

    I’ve only clicked a few links, but some glitches already came up:
    PA-O5: Lindy Li links to an article aboutThaddeus Kirkland; Thaddeus Kirkand links to a page for Brian Joseph Kirkland.

    And a question: Why are BL, JD etc in red, while DP is in blue?

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      1) Candidates differ in how easy it is to document their bios. (If they have a candidate site, I alway use that bio. Otherwise, I have to go with a news story. The stuff I could find on Lee was thin, and I used this link because it mentioned she worked for Morgan Stanley.

      2) Ballotpedia got the wrong Kirkland, and I picked it up. I changed the entry.

      BL, etc., are red for outside, DP (and DCCC) are blue because Democrat branding is blue. Perhaps I should have picked another color than red but I also need bright colors that show up on a quick visual scan.

      1. move left

        I should have figured out the color difference given your explanations. And I think red and blue are fine. They really are the only colors that show up well.

  11. mtnwoman

    Thank you for this. I don’t see NC represented.

    This guy is running against Tea Partier McHenry in NC10: He’s an IT consutant.
    “We should seek to improve the Affordable Care Act, with an eye to transitioning to a universal, single payer option. I will fight to ensure that every American receives quality healthcare. The goal is Medicare for all.”

  12. mtnwoman

    A bit off topic but tied into how few Berniecrats seems to be running for Congress; Did you see the video of the teenager’s who were protesting at the Capitol in DC today when they saw Bernie Sanders walk amongst them? He was swarmed with love and attention by the TEENS as if he was a rock star. THese kids get who will fight for them. That gives me hope.

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      Yes. This is a post about institutions. I haven’t gotten this metaphor straight in my mind, but it strikes me that the “shape of power” on the left (bear with me, anybody spluttering about Sanders not being on the left) is shaped like an hourglass: The left has a broad top, with the enormously popular Sanders. And the left has a broad base, since Sanders has popular programs (plus all the original thinking on policy is being done on the left*). But the left has a very, very narrow middle — the class of people who can run for office.

      By contrast, the liberal Democrat “shape of power” is more like a diamond: They have a narrow apex, with no really Presidential contenders at the top. (If you disagree, show me the liberal Democrat who can routinely draw a million YouTube viewers for town halls with bullet points on policy. Biden? I don’t think so. Harris, Booker, Kennedy? Only with the most enormous, concerted propaganda effort, and I don’t think even then.) However, the liberal Democrat middle is very broad, drawn from the professional classes as you see in the table. But the liberal Democrat “shape of power” tapers toward a narrow base, since the professionals are (roughly speaking) 10% of the population.

      Not sure this is the right way to think about it, but maybe it will help. And I’m not sure how Sanders broadens his “middle,” especially since so much professional credentialism is next door to corruption.

      * Stoller might disagree.

      1. johnnygl

        I think an analogy with plants works better. Sanders is a large old oak tree towering over the rest, after a trumpian forest fire burned down the other big trees.

        Now there’s light penetrating down and the soil has gotten a boost. Let’s hope new saplings are able to take root while we have this big oak to oversee them.

  13. The Rev Kev

    I’m sorry Lambert, but for publishing all this online you have now found yourself as an entry on Clinton’s enemies Excel sheet.

  14. Oregoncharles

    Makes me appreciate how boring Oregon Congressional politics are. I wish I thought any of our incumbents are in danger, but I don’t. The closest might be Blue Dog Schrader, who isn’t really in keeping with his districts. We can try, but not likely.

    And the huge east-side district 2 is just as deeply Republican as the west side is Democrat.

  15. Larry Y

    Thanks for the info. I live in NJ-11, and only know of two of the candidates.

    I’ve already got a phone call from the Tamara Harris campaign.


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