Dem PAC Names Fitzpatrick, Not Rothfus, 1 of 10 Targets in 2014

Fitzpatrick Head Shot 2012
Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick

The 2014 cycle is just a few weeks old, but a significant Democratic super PAC has already named Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick (R-Bucks) to its list of targets.

The House Majority PAC, which works to complement the efforts of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, chose Fitzpatrick as one of ten. He’s the only member from Pa.

“In 2012, House Majority PAC built a strong record of success and in 2013 we are ready to hit the ground running to hold these Republicans accountable and communicate with swing voters about their extreme records and backwards priorities,” said Alixandria Lapp, Executive Director of House Majority PAC.

The group is the unofficial super PAC of House Democratic candidates, and their targeting almost universally overlapped in 2012. That means they worked – without direct coordination – to boost the same candidates.

The PAC spent $36 million in 2012, including over a half a million to boost Rep. Mark Critz (D-Cambria) in PA-12.

Fitzpatrick was elected in 2004, defeated in 2006, and elected again in 2010. The most highly-targeted Republican incumbent in Pa. in 2012, he easily fended off challenger Kathy Boockvar.

“No amount of hyperbole from Nancy Pelosi’s henchmen will distort Congressman Fitzpatrick’s independent record of fighting for his constituents,” said National Republican Congressional Committee spokesman Nat Sillin.

The Congressman defeated Boockvar, an attorney, convincingly: 56.6 percent to 43.4 percent.

Even given his strong performance, his district in the swingy Philadelphia suburbs may be Dems’ best option for a Pa. pickup in 2014 – albeit a tough, uphill battle.

Interestingly, freshman Rep. Keith Rothfus is absent from the admittedly preliminary list of targets, despite that fact that his 3.4 point win was the narrowest in any Pa. congressional race in 2012.

(2 of the 10 names on the House Majority PAC list are Republican freshmen, so it’s not for lack of a voting record that he was omitted).

Though the 12th district had sent a Democrat to Congress for decades, Rothfus represents constituents who went for Mitt Romney, John McCain and George W. Bush – in each case by at least 9 points.

Conversely, Fitzpatrick’s 8th district went for Obama by 7.5 points in 2008, Kerry by 1 point in 2004, but flipped to Romney in 2012. The Republican narrowly carried the 8th district 49.4 percent to 49.3 for Obama, according to the website DailyKos.

Another factor counting against Democrats in PA-8: Fitzpatrick’s pledge. He pledged to serve at most through 2016, meaning 2014 will be his final congressional campaign. The major talent on the Democratic bench in the 8th knows they’d stand a better chance in 2016 when the seat is open and presidential year turnout is likely to boost their party.

Note: numbers above refer to vote totals for the current configuration of the congressional districts, post-redistricting.

16 Responses

  1. Critz would have lost in his old district, Washington and Greene Counties were tired of him and what he didn’t do. His last races were even narrower than the Rothfus race. Critz is about Critz, and unless Cambria and Somerset are their own district he won’t win.
    The Republicans should go after Murphy who has a weak opponent last time. There’s a democratic state senator in his area that could easily beat him.

  2. I volunteered for Kathy Boockvar’s campaign, and I couldn’t believe how many people told me they were voting for Rep. Fitzpatrick because ‘he’s a good friend of mine.’ Lots of people in Bucks know the Fitzpatrick name, have met him once or twice, and voted for his likability/name recognition.

    I personally don’t think Rep. Fitzpatrick is that bad of a congressman. He recently expressed support for common sense gun control initiatives and he supports the Violence Against Women Act WITH provisions for LGBT, Native Americans and others. However, he’s still conservative enough to vote blindly along party lines on vital issues like economics (Ryan budget).

    I’m young, female, and, in the words of Tina Fey, I think gay couples are just as good at watching their kids play hockey as straight couples. Therefore, I know which candidates I’ll keep supporting in Bucks County, and it won’t be the ones I think are just ‘good friends of my family.’

  3. I think that Tina Davis would make a fine Congressional candidate in 2016 if the 8th District is a vacant seat. She is a real worker who won a close election in 2010 and blew out the same opponent in 2012.

  4. The BCDC “bench” is filled with bad candidates. Diane Marseglia Ellis was only re-elected to the board of commissioners because of the 2-1 requirement.
    Boockvar was as well funded as any challenger in the nation in her bid to defeat Fitzpatrick and nothing that came out in the 8th district contest was new. The Mumia connection was used the year before and she was foolish in her continued mentioning of this damning connection.
    Lets look at the BCDC record.
    2006 in an historic wave election Murphy wins by 1500 votes. Wins in 2008 during a presidential with anti-republican sentiment against an unkown candidate.
    2009 again failed to crack any of the county row offices.
    2010 lost miserably including poor performances for Toomey and Corbett/Cawley with Fitzpatrick winning by almost 20,000 in the rematch of 2006.
    2011 with a row officer under indictment the BCDC again was unable to win a row office seat and the Dems lost badly in the commissioner race.
    2012 saw Obama barely hold onto the county with his winning percentage less than the registration advantage. Casey won against the only man worse at debating than him (seriously the senate debate made me want to stab myself in the neck with a spoon it was so dull). And finally Fitzpatrick didn’t win re-election, he destroyed Boockvar by a historic number of votes more than double what he defeated Murphy by.

    In summation, the BCDC are useless as a minority party and if not for the awesome ground game of the Obama campaigns they probably would never have won in 2008 and 2012. 2013 will reaffirm this as they will not run any of their “talent” for a row office and again lose badly.

  5. The only competitive seat in Pennsylvania is PA-8, but the Democrats simply don’t have the bench they need. PA-7 could be competitive, but the Democratic bench is terrible there as well.

    PA-12 is gone for the Democrats.

  6. Fitzpatrick’s biggest fear isn’t any Democratic Candidate,,,,,,it Dom Giordano from 1210 Talk radio who continually threatens him with a “primary Challenge” and encourages his Base Listeners – Not the brightest bulbs to call and tell him how to vote on everything. I’m a Democrat and would contribute $1K to the re-election campaign of any of Dom’s Depends delegates that asks this simple question,,,”Who the “H” died and left you boss, and what was the last campaign you ever won?” –

  7. I believe Barletta is vulnerable. The Dems need to get a strong candidate. Holden should move to the district and run.

  8. @Bucks Barrister… I hope you are not referring to John Cordisco…

    There is Diane Marseglia, current Bucks Commissioner. Also, Robin Wiessmann, former PA State Treasurer.

    Either way, Fitzpatrick is a tough out. He is liked, popular in Bucks, and knows the area well. Large areas around Doylestown and the north are enough to counter the south, and Newtown, Makefield areas waffle between R and D.

    It’s ironic that Fitzpatrick makes the list when the DCCC bailed on Boockvar.

  9. Yeah, Kathryn Boockvar is a Marxist.

    You’re a prime example of why my party is unfairly stereotyped as a bunch of hateful whackjobs.

  10. The Soros Supervised Sycophants did such an outstanding job in the last election Mike Fitzpatrick is still shaking in his boots. These radicals will never infiltrate civil human beings in Bucks County who vote for public servants, not Marxists. The last election confirms this.

  11. think that the Rothfus seat will be Republican for a while, barring a severe Democratic wave year. As a moderate Dem with “local” values, Critz got a lot of support in Cambria County, Somerset County, etc. — support that future Dems candidates won’t get. In other words, look for Congressional races in that district to more closely mirror the Presidential vote in PA-12, which Romney took by 15 points if I recall correctly.

    All in my humble opinion, of course.

  12. other than one Democratic entrepeneur/ businessman I know, who the hell are the other “major Democratic talents” in Bucks County. In my opinion there is no bench in the BCDC

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