Tags: Paul Kanjorski

So Why Did Obama Go to Pennsylvania This Week?


Rep. Jason Altmire, Democrat of Pennsylvania, tells Chuck Todd, “statewide the polls have shown [Obama]‘s not doing well right now.”

Former congressman Paul Kanjorski, another Pennsylvania Democrat, tells CBS News, “If the election were held today, I don’t have any doubt he would lose [his former] district and the state.”

This sounds like good news to me. *Ahem*. “To me.” Hint, hint.

Tags: Barack Obama , Jason Altmire , Paul Kanjorski , Pennsylvania

The DCCC’s Ad Offensive Shrinks Again



The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s television ad reservation adjustments have hit northeastern Pennsylvania, where Reps. Christopher Carney (D) and Paul Kanjorski (D) will see a little less air cover from the national party in the final weeks of the campaign than originally expected.

The DCCC has withdrawn half a week’s worth of their original five-week reservation in the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre media market that covers most of Carney’s 10th district and Kanjorski’s 11th district. It’s unclear if the draw down was meant for just one or both races.

Democratic officials insist the reservation adjustment in Pennsylvania was done from a position of strength.

Brian Faughnan wonders if this is a side effect of Toomey leading, and perhaps running away with, the Pennsylvania Senate race. (Republican Tom Corbett is running away with the governor’s race.) If that’s the case, one has to wonder whether the scheduled DCCC ad buys in Pittsburgh, Erie, Wilkes-Barre and Johnstown, Pennsylvania will stick around. 

Tags: Christopher Carney , Pat Toomey , Paul Kanjorski , Tom Corbett

Who’s the Most Vulnerable House Incumbent?


Democrats currently hold 35 of the 40 seats deemed most likely to flip on this list assembled by the good folks at National Journal.

Charles Djou, the newest House Republican, is ranked 13th, which is farther from the top than I expected. Put another way, he’s one spot “safer” than Betsy Markey of Colorado, who’s getting a ton of outside help from liberal groups.

Also lower than I expected: Paul Kanjorski’s got money, but that’s about it, and he’s ranked 14; Carol Shea Porter, Democrat of New Hampshire, at 34. Higher than I expected: Ohio Democrat Mary Jo Kilroy jumped from 17 to 7; Democrat Harry Teague of New Mexico is now at 11.

The most vulnerable incumbent on their list is Anh Joseph Cao, Louisiana Republican. Interestingly, his campaign released a poll showing Cao up 51 percent to 26 percent on his nearest challenger in this heavily Democratic New Orleans district.

Of course, this is the National Journal ranking; you’ll find a different order of vulnerability from Larry Sabato’s Crystal Ball. Clearly, we need some sort of national playoff system to determine the true champion.

Tags: Betsy Markey , Carol Shea Porter , Charles Djou , Harry Teague , Mary Jo Kilroy , Paul Kanjorski

Lou Barletta, Holding a Slim 19-Point Lead in PA-11


As usual, feel free to adjust your sodium intake when evaluating a poll released by a campaign, but I find this pretty plausible:

A poll commissioned by his campaign shows Hazleton Mayor Lou Barletta (R) leading 13-term Rep. Paul Kanjorski (D) 56 percent to 37 percent. The Tarrance Group surveyed 400 likely voters on July 12 and 13. Its poll has a margin of error of 4.9 percent.

At the link, the Kanjorski folks note that other polls showed Barletta leading in 2008. Yes, but he never led by a margin like this.

Why do I find this result plausible? Barletta is a good, charismatic candidate who gave a good push in 2008 while Obama was carrying the state, and Kanjorski seems particularly weak for a Democratic incumbent, winning only 49 percent in his own party’s primary.

Barletta’s putting up his first general-election campaign ad:

Tags: Lou Barletta , Paul Kanjorski

The Era of Town Halls With Democratic Congressmen Is Over


Flee! Flee!

U.S. Rep. Paul E. Kanjorski, D-Nanticoke, has announced that he will forego the face-to-face town hall meetings for telephone town halls once again this summer. It’s a decision he’s not alone in making. Other congressmen across the state, mainly Democrats, have also announced they either won’t be holding the traditional town hall gatherings in their districts or haven’t decided if they would.

“I have held many town meetings over the years in many different formats. I have found that telephone town meetings can be especially effective because I can interact with as many as 8,000 Northeastern Pennsylvanians on a single phone call,” Kanjorski said Thursday. 

Hey, Kanjorski won a whole 49 percent in his primary. He’s got no particular need to meet with constituents face-to-face.

Tags: Paul Kanjorski

Mr. Even Keel and Mr. Ebullient


One of the Young Guns at today’s NRCC meeting was Jim Renacci, who’s running against Ohio Democrat John Boccieri, one of the Democrats who flipped from “no” to “yes” on the health-care bill. Boccieri cited as the decisive factor in his decision his mother’s fight with cancer when he was a child. (He had voted “no” a few months earlier, so perhaps he just remembered it.)

A poll out today shows Republican Renacci ahead, 47 percent to 35 percent. If I were a former mayor who was up 12 on an incumbent, I’d be doing back flips, but Renacci seems like a supremely even-keeled guy, only offering the well-worn comment, “The only poll that matters is the one in November . . . every day’s a new day in the campaign. We’re going to keep making the point that the incumbent votes the way Nancy Pelosi wants . . . Right now, this district is effectively represented by Nancy Pelosi.”

By comparison, Hazleton, Pa., mayor Lou Barletta was practically giddy, and he’s got some good reasons. The Democrat he’s running against, Paul Kanjorski, beat Barletta by 3 percentage points in 2008, while Obama was carrying the district by 17 percentage points. Kanjorski just won a three-way Democratic primary with 49 percent of the vote. IT consultant Brian Kelly ran on a Tea Party–style platform, raised no money, spent no money, and finished with 17 percent; Kelly then endorsed Barletta.

One other reason Barletta’s smiling? “Kanjorski [and his allies] spent $7 million last cycle, and they went up on the air in June, the earliest anybody went up on the air against a challenger. . . . He’s not going to have $7 million this cycle.” Kanjorski has a little under $1 million on hand.

Tags: Jim Renacci , John Boccieri , Lou Barletta , Paul Kanjorski

Could One More Incumbent Get Knocked Off Tonight?


One more vulnerable incumbent to watch: Paul Kanjorski, Pennsylvania Democrat.

Lackawanna County Commissioner Corey O’Brien wants a repeat of 1984 on Tuesday.

Back then, an upstart lawyer from Nanticoke named Paul Kanjorski took on the incumbent 11th Congressional District Rep. Frank Harrison in the Democratic primary election. The upstart pulled the upset and remains in Congress after 26 years.

O’Brien, 36, a lawyer from Moosic and somewhat of an upstart himself in county politics, thinks he can pull off a similar upset in this primary.

Some have seen parallels to Allan Mollohan’s primary loss. Kanjorski will probably win today, but his share of the vote is worth watching.  My take in my list of 99:

Paul Kanjorski, Pennsylvania: Kanjorski is consistently dogged by scandal and faces Hazleton mayor Lou Barletta in a rematch; in 2008, he won by 4 percentage points while Obama carried the district 57 percent to 42 percent. The Democratic incumbent may not be at the top of his game, recently insisting that troops serving in “wars in Europe” fit the definition of “bureaucrats.” PoliticsPA ranks him the second-most-vulnerable lawmaker in the state.

Tags: Paul Kanjorski

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