Senior Bush adviser and GOP political evil genius Karl Rove spent time in Minnesota late last week, fundraising for Republican Michele Bachmann running to hold Rep. Mark Kennedy’s 6th Congressional District. Bachmann is running against Democrat Patty Wetterling, an anti-war type who has failed in previous bids for Congress.
Rove also stumped for Mark Kennedy, who is giving up his seat to run for the U.S. Senate.
Rove’s arrival in Minnesota came at a time critical for Republicans there, particularly in a week that saw the release of a Minneapolis Star Tribune poll that showed Kennedy 19 points down to Democrat Amy Klobuchar.
The Kennedy/Klobuchar race is considered one of four critical races Republicans need to win if they are to hold if not expand their seat count in the Senate, and it is one that has been cited as highly competitive for Republicans, the Strib poll aside.
Almost every other in-state Minnesota poll shows Kennedy trailing within the margin of error at the narrow end and by high single digits at the other, but no double digit deficits as the Strib presented.
“Kennedy is in a good position,” says an RNC political operative. “We think he’s going to force the Democrats to spend up there, where they didn’t think they were going to have to invest so heavily, and that’s good for us and our candidates elsewhere.”
It’s especially important to Sens. Jim Talent in Missouri and Montana’s Conrad Burns, both of whom are in tight races, to hold their seats this election cycle. “Those are the two guys who are going to need the national party’s help more than others,” says the operative.p> ELBOW RAHM br> The tussle between Democrat Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) chairman, Rahm “Twinkle Toes” Emanuel and Democrat National Committee Chairman Howard Dean continues. The two have been warring for months over Dean’s refusal to seed national party money to the DCCC for Congressional races it has identified.
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