Monday, December 1, 2008

Showdown: 2012

Minnesota's state demographer came out with a rather unsettling assessment of the State of the State - no, it wasn't that the country is in a recession - its that Minny may lose a Congressional seat if current population trends hold up in the 2010 Census. 

I'm not interested in the reasons for it, they are relatively straightforward: Baby Boomers, snowbirds, Sun Belt, retirement, the reason all major Minnesota politicians fundraise in Florida and Arizona.  

I'm interested in who its going to take down.  Which leads to the first Degausser prediction for the 2012 race - one that is based almost entirely on caveats.

Fact: MN has 8 Congressional Districts now.  

First Assumption: All current occupants run for Re-Election in 2010; all then-sitting Congresspersons would be Incumbents, beyond their first term - arguably the second toughest electoral fight for a Congressperson after their initial election (or scandal).   

**The First Assumption obviously faces the fact that 2010 will certainly bring a slew of Democratic challengers to Pretty Boy Tim, who may come out of the MN House Delegation**

Fact: The US Census Occurs in 2010 and applies to Redistricting in Minnesota in 2012.

Second Assumption:  The Census shows Minnesota losing population enough to yield a net loss of one Congressional District.  

Fact:  Redistricting Plans are drafted in each house of the Minnesota Legislature, must be reconciled, passed then signed by the Governor - OR - Passed by Each House of the Legislature, Reconciled, Vetoed by the Governor, then a Veto Override Occurs.

Third Assumption: DFL maintains majorities in each of the state houses at least through the 2010 election, and a GOPer retains the Governor's manse.   

Think about this for a minute .... so many plausible scenarios.

Prediction:  The MN 6th and 2nd Congressional Districts are the Fastest Growing Districts, and any reallocation of territory will have to be ceded from these two to the 5th (Minneapolis - Ellison) and 4th (St. Paul - McCollum).   This makes Demographic Sense and Political Sense given the DFL's obvious interest in Weakening the 2nd (Kline) and 6th (Bachmann) districts.

But there won't be enough political capital available for the DFL to run roughshod over the two remaining GOP Congressfolk from MN, so they will shoot for the most delicious victory.  

Bachmann is the mark and gets redistricted into the 8th - when the DFL redistricts her Stillwater home into a now very longitudinal Northeast 8th.  

Oberstar v. Bachmann - 2012 
 - He will only get older; 
 - She will only get more batshit crazy.

Get your tix now.

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