The Campaign Spot

The Challenge for Democrats Who Want Stupak’s Job

A note about Stupak’s district, from my piece of a few weeks ago:

Yes, Stupak’s district ranks as the 208th most Republican House seat out of 435, and was seen as a Republican-leaning one that Obama narrowly carried in 2008. But Stupak seemed a perfect match for this sprawling, largely rural district. Michael Barone’s Almanac of American Politics describes it as follows: “Starting in the 1840s, immigrants flocked here to work in the mines: Irish, Italians, Swedes, Norwegians, miners’ sons from Wales and Cornwall, and most prominently Finns, who must have found this cold land with its lakes and hills much like home. Many were Roman Catholic, and they remain predominantly anti-abortion.” It is, geographically, the second-largest district east of the Mississippi, and Marquette, with 21,000 people, is the largest city in the district. A congressman like Stupak — an economically liberal pro-life Catholic, a former police officer injured in the line of duty — would, ordinarily, serve until retirement.

And also note:

At the top of the ballot in the state is a gubernatorial race that has attracted a plethora of candidates from both parties. Stupak probably won’t be able to count on a big Democratic turnout to help him across the finish line; the leading candidates on the Republican side, Rep. Pete Hoekstra and state attorney general Mike Cox, are consistently leading the Democratic candidates by wide margins.

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