PA-15: Democrats Land Another Top Recruit In Swing Territory Hotlist
Every time the media tries to fire up the narrative of resurgent Republicans and retreating Democrats, something like this happens:
Bethlehem Mayor John Callahan will run for Congress against Republican incumbent Charlie Dent in 2010, sources say, setting up a political battle the likes of which the Lehigh Valley hasn't seen in 17 years.
The two-term mayor has made his decision clear to Democratic Party leaders in Pennsylvania and Washington and is preparing to put a campaign team in place. An official announcement is expected soon.
Despite the incessant media drumbeat that the partisan landscape in America is approaching parity (much polling evidence to the contrary), this does not appear to be dissuading top-notch Democratic candidates from making their plans for 2010.
In John Callahan, the Democrats have their best candidate in the Lehigh Valley in many cycles. Callahan, elected in 2003 at the age of 34, is seen by many as a rising political star in Pennsylvania. Dent has held onto a district that has been tilting Democratic over the last few cycles (Obama carried the 15th 56-43). In 2008, Dent defeated Sam Bennett 59-41, but he also struggled in 2006 against underfunded Democrat Charles Dertinger, who he outspent about 14-to-1 but only beat 53-43.
What this means for the Democrats--they now have top-tier candidates in five of the six districts in the House that were carried both by Barack Obama and John Kerry. The only district still lacking an established candidate is the Louisiana 2nd district, where it is an absolute certainty that accidental Congressman Joseph Cao will have a serious Democratic challenger before 2010 rolls around.
Race tracker wiki: PA-15
You can donate to win this seat through Act Blue (whoever the Dem nominee is).