If Rob Gleason wants to waste Republican donors’ money running 3rd-tier kamikaze candidates in PA-13 and PA-17, be our guest. There is no chance he will win these seats.
Matt Cartwright’s district is a D+4, so in theory that’s maybe mildly swingy, but the only people stepping forward to challenge Cartwright so far are loser row-office holders. There’s no way they beat the best Democrat in the state. PA-13 is a D+13 district. Guess how many Republicans hold any seat more Democratic-leaning than a D+5.
Rob Gleason’s not that stupid. This is just trash talk. The PA GOP is going to spend 2014 protecting Fitzpatrick and Dent and the other DCCC white whales, and they may well spend some money in these other races too, but it would be silly for Democrats to spend any serious money defending PA-13 or PA-17.
Louis Jacobson hands the mic to Terry Madonna, who says there’s no chance of a GOP pick-up:
Terry Madonna, a Franklin & Marshall political scientist, called Pennsylvania’s post-2010 redistricting “one of the most effective in the nation.” Madonna said the Republicans “gave up any chance of ever winning” the 17th district now held by Democrat Matt Cartwright in order to protect the 6th, 7th, 8th, 11th and 15th districts. Those seats are held respectively by GOP Reps. Jim Gerlach, Pat Meehan, Mike Fitzpatrick, Lou Barletta and Charlie Dent, each of whom either succeeded a Democrat or faced a series of strong Democratic challenges under the previous map.