I’m pretty sure that by now you all know the drill, so I’ll dive straight in.
CA-14.Incumbent: Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-CA).Challenger: Ronny Santana (R).CQPolitcis Rating: Safe Democrat.I concur with CQ’s rating: Though not gerrymandered, the population is extremely liberal in their views (with the conservative enclaves of Atherton, Los Altos, and Woodside being the exceptions), which explains why Eshoo, who has represented the district since 1992, has an ACU lifetime voting record of 5.08%. She’s easily won re-election every time, with 71.1% of the vote in 2006 and ~70% in 2004. The district covers about 1/2 to 3/4 of San Mateo County, the northwest corner of Santa Clara County, and about half of Santa Cruz County. Kerry had greater than a 2-1 margin here in 2004, but Gore carried the district 59-34.
CA-15.Incumbent: Rep. Michael Honda (D-CA).Challenger: Raymond Chukwu (R)CQPolitics Rating: Safe Democrat.First elected in 2000, Mike Honda has an ACU rating of 4%. Honda has gone up against his opponent, Raymond Chukwu, twice before. In 2004, Honda won 72-28, and the results from 2006 look similar. Bush fared somewhat better in this district, losing to Kerry 63-36 and to Gore 58-36. The district comprises the better part of Santa Clara County, starting in Milpitas and meandering it’s way down to Gilroy via Santa Clara/Campbell/Los Gatos.
CA-16.Incumbent: Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA).Challenger: None.CQPolitics Rating: Safe Democrat.Lofgren, a 7-term incumbent with an ACU record of ~4.80%, has never had to worry about re-election. In 2004, she beat out his opponent 71-26, and blew out her 2006 opponent 73-27. The results from the presidential elections don’t look as bad, with Kerry beating Bush 63-36 and Gore beating Bush 32-62. The district comprises the better part of San Jose and meanders down to San Martin, which is just north of Gilroy, via Highway 101.
CA-17.Incumbent: Rep. Sam Farr (D-CA).Challenger:Jeff Taylor.CQPolitics Rating: Safe DemocratThis district, which contains parts of San Benito County, Santa Cruz County, and most of Monterey County, is controlled by Sam Farr, a 7-term Democrat with an ACU rating of 3.81%. That he controls this district comes as no surprise – he won 67% of the vote in 2004, and just under 76% of the vote in 2006. Bush lost to Kerry by 2-1, and Gore beat Bush 59-32.
CA-18.Incumbent: Rep. Dennis Cardoza (D-CA).Challenger: None.CQPolitics Rating: Safe Democrat.Cardoza is a 3-term Center-Left Democrat with a whopping 32.60% rating from the ACU. His district, which contains Merced, as well as part of Stockton and Modesto, vote for him in 2006 with ~66% of the vote and in 2004 with ~66% of the vote. Bush carried this district in 2004 by a razor-thin margin of 1%, but lost it to Gore in 2000 by 9 points.
How this district trends will probably be influenced by how well McCain does there this year. My guess is that McCain will carry it by 5 points or less, because it seems that the more liberal a candidate is or is perceived as being, the worse they do, at least at the presidential level. I will provide you with a more accurate picture in a future post, when I can research data regarding recent Senate and Governor’s races.