Rep. Patrick McHenry (NC-10), Deputy Republican Whip and Chairman of the House Conservatives Fund, joined the Denver County Republican party for a young GOP fundraiser and unveiling of a new “I am a Republican” video meant to break down stereotypes about the party. He also discussed GOP prospects in Colorado’s competitive House races in the 3rd (Scott Tipton vs. Rep. John Salazar), 4th (Cory Gardner vs. Rep. Betsy Markey), and 7th (Ryan Frazier vs. Rep. Ed Perlmutter) Congressional Districts.
McHenry began by discussing the nadir of Republican membership in the House as a result of the 2006 and 2008 elections and the coming Republican resurgence, as well as the Pledge to America, which McHenry describes as “bold enough” to change the mindset in Washington DC:
McHenry also discussed the decisions by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and the National Republican Congressional Committee to shift significant resources from the vulnerable Markey race to the more competitive Salazar/Tipton tilt, and rated the chances in each race as quite positive, as long as Republicans do the hard work necessary to take advantage of a “great opportunity”:
McHenry told Battle ‘10 that some of the money reallocated from the Markey race to a race in NY-23 indicates the DCCC is reading the writing on the wall, and taking into account the strength of the Gardner and Tipton campaigns. According to McHenry, the competitiveness of the Republican candidates and the opportunity to pick up two or three high profile seats is pushing the NRCC to really ante up in each of the districts.
McHenry pushed back against recent polling that suggests Democrats like Markey are picking up momentum. He told Battle ‘10, “They’re grasping at straws. With their ship sinking, they’re trying to save every member they can.” McHenry sees the battle really moving to the independents in the final phases of the campaign, and envisions many close races–within two percent in some cases–in additional marginal districts that could push GOP takings well above the 39 seats necessary to regain the House.
McHenry elaborated on what the GOP needs to do if and when they retake the House. “First and foremost, Republicans have to honor their word,” McHenry declared. Balancing the budget by reducing spending and not raising taxes would be key to keeping their commitment to the conservative agenda, according to the
The North Carolina Congressman closed with a preview of what Gardner, Tipton, and Frazier have to look forward to should they win on November 2. “The key thing with young members of Congress is that they can put in the time necessary, the energy necessary, to master the legislative process,” said McHenry.