Last week, Minnesota First District Republican congressional candidate Allen Quist told the Late Debate radio hosts that pundits in DC may be predicting his loss, but they don't know what's on the ground in Southern Minnesota.
Quist next flew to Florida to look for friends. The Pioneer Press's Political Animal tweeted:
CD1 GOP candidate Allen Quist at Tampa convention as guest, says he hopes to make helpful contacts. US Senate candidate Kurt Bills not here.— PiPress politics (@PolAnimal) August 27, 2012
Congressman Walz plans to stay in the district when the DNC convenes next week in North Carolina. While Democratic representatives in some swing districts have been advised to stay away, Walz and wife Gwen have a reason closer to home for the former teacher and retired National Guard Command Sergeant Major to stick around Mankato: son Gus is starting kindergarten that week.
The lively boy may cause the congressman more concern than Republican attempts to tie Walz to what they perceive to be the excesses of national Democratic leadership. While the MNGOP recycles talking points about Walz being out-of-touch with the district, the seat is rated a safe Democratic hold by a range of election rating sites. It's likely that Walz' cash advantage, genuine likeability, and championing of vets, transportation and farm issues, along with fallout from the negative Republican primary, factor in the ratings.
MNCD1 does not appear to be in play at the end of August. Bluestem suspected this might get a bit sleepy after Emo Senator got cancelled.
Site by site, here are the ratings in alphabetical order:
Ballot Box (The Hill)
The Hill's Ballot Box ranked MNCD1 "Safe Democratic" on July 24.
Cook Political Report
MNCD1 isn't among the competition races, nestling in the Solid Democratic districts despite its own R+1 PVI (Bluestem knows how much boys like reading about that). The ratings were updated August 23.
CDMN1 is ranked "Likely D." "Safe" is the most solid rating, followed by "Likely," "Lean" and "Tossup." The ratings were updated on August 24.
Larry Sabato's Crystal Ball
Last updated on July 11, the Crystal Ball puts MNCD1 in its "Safe D" column.
New York Times
The Times rates the First "Solidly Democratic," not among the 81 House seats it considers in play.
Real Clear Politics
RCP rates the seat "Likely Dem." "Likely" is its most certain category.
MNCD1 is rateed "Safe Democrat." Funny picture of Walz in the incumbent profile.
Photo: Tim Walz is still smiling.