washington, dc

The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

How ‘Northeast Strategy’ Can Benefit Dems

My DD’s Chris Bowers concludes his three-parter “Building a Real House Majority” with a strong case for “the northeast strategy.” As Bowers explains it:

The “Northeast strategy,” as I propose it, entails looking at potential 2006 Democratic pickups in the House, and weighting their order of value based upon the degree of difficulty in holding the seat once we take it…Now, I am not writing about this strategy to in any way diminish my personal commitment to the fifty-state strategy. I still believe 100% in competing everywhere, in challenging Republicans everywhere, and on staying away from selective targeting of races and states as much as possible. I feel, instead, that this is another strategic layer to an overall theory of retaking the House…Specifically, I am advocating for the full-scale targeting of every Republican held seat with a partisan voting index of +1.5% Democratic or more in every election. While I believe that every Republican in Congress should face a democratic challenger with at least $40K to run a campaign, I also believe that every Republican in a district with a Democratic PVI of 1.5 or more should face a challenger with at least $400K and a strong, complimentary grassroots / netroots operation. This should be the target for every election cycle.

Bowers discusses specifics in key districts and makes a strong case for using his numerical guidelines in developing a flexible Democratic resource-allocation strategy for winning back the House. While most of the states meeting his p.v.i. guidelines are in the northeast at this time, there are some districts in other regions that meet the criteria. All in all, it seems a reasonable approach, provided exceptions can be made for strong Dem candidates in other districts that may fall short of the +1.5 standard.