Election Day November 2009: five things to watch
Look at the margins of victory, among other things, as the returns for Election Day November 2009 come in.
(Page 2 of 2)
If that happens, watch the national GOP kick itself for not putting more money into that race – and the Democrats worry that apparently safe seats in 2010 aren’t so safe.Skip to next paragraph
Subscribe Today to the Monitor
4. How independent candidate Chris Daggett fares in New Jersey
Much has been made of the third-party candidate – Conservative Doug Hoffman – in NY-23. He's now effectively the Republican in the race, after the actual Republican nominee, Dede Scozzafava, dropped out this past Saturday. But the New Jersey race also features an independent candidate, onetime moderate Republican Daggett, who could well swing the outcome of the race – probably toward Governor Corzine.
Typically, third-party candidates fade by Election Day, as some voters decide not to “waste” their vote or swing the race to a candidate they don’t like. But if Daggett holds onto a significant portion of voters, say, above 10 percent, that could embolden independents to run in next November’s elections.
5. The winning margin in NY-23
If Mr. Hoffman, the Conservative candidate, wins by a wide margin, that’s a bad sign for Democrats trying to hold onto seats in Republican-leaning districts that they won in the sweep elections of 2006 and 2008. If the race is close – or if the Democrat, Bill Owens, even wins – then Democrats can heave a sigh of relief (or celebrate, in the latter case). Democrats went into the contest with a decent shot at winning.
A year ago, Obama won this congressional district by 5 percentage points. And even though most of the territory in the district has been represented in Congress by Republicans since the 19th century, it is not viewed as hard-line conservative turf. The last person to hold the seat, newly minted Army Secretary John McHugh, is a moderate Republican.
If Hoffman does win the seat, one key question will be whether he fights to win earmarks for the district. Historically, this district – located in New York’s North Country, bordering on Canada – has relied on congressional largess to stay afloat economically. But earmarks go against the grain of fiscal conservatism. Hoffman will face a choice.
Follow us on Twitter.