In the week or so since I posted at length about the meager outlook
for women Republicans in elected office, I have some updates that seem
to show the problem only worsening.
First of all, as you probably
know, DeDe Scozzafava was chased out of the race and, one assumes, out
of the party altogether. Meanwhile, the GOP added two male governors,
meaning that they now have 3 women out of 24 governors, dropping the percentage to 12.5%.
we learn that, as suspected, Connecticut Gov. Jodi Rell will not run
for re-election. Oh, and Heather Wilson has opted not to run for
governor in New Mexico.
On the Senate side, the best shot for a
new female GOP Senator -- Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire -- is in
increasing danger of falling victim from the right herself. Club for
Growth is reportedly planning to side with Ovide Lamontagne (who just
officially announced) in that primary. And if that doesn't provide
enough ammunition against her, wealthy businessman Bill Binnie has jumped into the Republican primary
too, planning to spend "an undetermined amount of his own money." Oh,
and of course this comes just as the NRSC, running scared of the tea
party crowd, just pulled primary funding for its favored candidates
like... Kelly Ayotte.
Movement conservatives are also going
after newly-officially-announced Senate candidate Carly Fiorina in
California. Senator Jim DeMint has now endorsed her conservative
opponent, Chuck Devore, who is quickly becoming a national cause for
the far right. And, in Colorado, NRSC favorite Jane Norton is also
increasingly likely to be the target of Club for Growth attack, in
preference for a male candidate to be the GOP's challenger to Michael
I had mentioned that of the 17 women Republicans in the
US House of Representatives, one -- Mary Fallon -- is leaving to run
for governor, and at least two others were vulnerable: Bachmann of
Minnesota, and Schmidt of Ohio.
As you may have heard, Bachmann
was out leading a wingnutty anti-health-care-reform rally on Capitol
Hill today -- which Fallon spoke at.
While Bachmann and Fallon
work to make themselves too wacky for the general election, at least
one relative moderate seeking re-election is under increased challenge
in her primary. Down in Florida, Ginny Brown-Waite has a (male) primary
challenger from the right -- who, according to Swing State Project, is
attacking Brown-Waite for endorsing and campaigning for, you guessed
And finally, there's a congressional race out
in California that some of you might want to take a look at. It's the
45th District, where Mary Bono-Mack has long held the seat that she
took over when her famous husband died. Steve Pougnet, the Democratic
Mayor of Palm Springs (Sonny's launching pad to the congressional seat)
is running against her.
Although it's often considered part of
the ultra-conservative California interior, the district has become
increasingly Democratic. The district went for Obama, and Pougnet's
campaign manager tells me that Republicans' registration edge is very
slim now. He also tells me that they've already raised $400,000 for the
campaign, a year out; the DCCC is high on this race.
here's the twist: if elected, Pougnet is a gay man, and he and his
partner have two young children. He would be the first (openly) gay dad
So, if that interests you, go check him out.