The Cook Political Report changed its ratings in PA-6 and PA-8 from “Leans Republican” to “Likely Republican” yesterday, signaling a shift away from the Democratic candidates in PA’s most competitive House races.
Democrat Manan Trivedi is competing with Republican Ryan Costello for the PA-6 seat vacated by Republican Rep. Jim Gerlach, while Democrat Kevin Strouse is battling Republican incumbent Mike Fitzpatrick for his seat in PA-8.
Both Trivedi and Strouse showed early promise, with the DCCC labeling them “Red to Blue” districts and choosing to spend significant cash on ad buys in the Philly TV market. Recently, though, the Democratic nominees have lost some steam. They were outraised by their Republican opponents and omitted from the DCCC Chairman’s personal list of top targets for the party.
In PA-6, the Cook Political Report points to Costello’s position as Gerlach’s “ideological heir” and Trivedi’s history of losing the general election in 2010 and 2012 as reason for the switch. Costello also has a significant cash advantage.
In PA-8, the Report sees Fitzpatrick’s leg-up in both fundraising and surveys as evidence that he currently holds the upper hand against Strouse.
The 6th and 8th are the only PA districts on the DCCC’s Red to Blue list and thus represent the organization’s top priorities in the Keystone state.