The Hail Mary

The Minnesota 7th CD is the great long-term hope for the MN GOP; someday, when Collin Peterson finally leaves office, the district – I call it “East Dakota” – will never elect another Democrat again.  Ever.

But incumbency is everything in a rural district like the 7th.

But maybe lightning can strike.  I’ve had a few friends tell me “Watch out for Dave Hughes”, the second-time candidate against Peterson.   The district went for Trump by 30 points in 2016, and Hughes is a likeable and hard-working guy.

And today’s news makes for intrigueing reading.  Here’s John Hinderaker at Powerline:

Until now, hardly anyone has taken seriously the chance that Republican David Hughes can upset longtime Congressman Collin Peterson in Minnesota’s 7th. But, in a stunning move, Real Clear Politics now rates the contest a tossup.

Peterson has represented the 7th in Congress for 28 years, and has been personally popular in the district. But his vote totals have been slipping with each cycle, and the 7th went for President Trump by 30 points. Peterson has gotten less energetic over the years, and one suspects that he would like to retire. I liken him to Ruth Bader Ginsburg; the Democrats no doubt are pressuring him to stay on, knowing the seat will flip as soon as he retires.

Personal aside:  I listened to Hughes debating Peterson on MPR a few weeks ago.  Peterson sounded tired, like he was literally phoning it in.   If it were a boxing match, Hughes would have won by call.

But maybe the voters don’t want to wait that long. As a practical matter, Peterson, like all House Democrats, is little more than a vote for Nancy Pelosi as Speaker. David Hughes has essentially no money, but door knockers in the 7th report that they are seeing five or six Hughes lawn signs for every Peterson lawn sign.

Hughes has no money to speak of – so if you have a few bucks to spare, it could go to much worse causes.

9 thoughts on “The Hail Mary

  1. Y’all are slated to lose a US House seat after the next census. Because the conservative, rural districts are already so big, it seems inevitable the reprobates will take the hit.

    That’d be a great time to flip the 7th. Rub some salt in.

  2. Peterson is 74, I’m sure he’d rather be doing something other than hanging around with a bunch of not very attractive sociopaths, narcissists, and old fashioned criminals (his fellow Democrats).

  3. Time to consolidate St. Paul and Minneapolis into a single House seat…..might not eliminate a Democrat, but you’d at least get just one lunatic instead of the two we have now.

  4. if 7 fliips Id say the democrats chance of taking the house goes from a coin flip to 25% or less. Because if this is happening, you can bet there will be 3-5 other surprises out there.

  5. BB, due to population distribution in the state the chances of that happening are next to zero (former poly sci major here).

  6. this is fascinating, no poll, but rated tossup

    meanwhile at 538 (we need to come up with a derogetory name for this site)
    Peterson has a 93%+ chance of winning according to him. Something is off, two supposedly credible polling sites should not have the same seat listed as safe D and tossup.

  7. POD; so much more the shame. Shouldn’t districts be relatively homogeneous in character, and what two cities in the state are more like each other than Pig’s Eye and the Mini Apple? Population works out well, too. Then you get two or three more districts in the suburbs, a couple of rural districts, and you’re done.

    I guess I might be making too much sense. :^)

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