May 13, 2010

Clarke gets a boost in Congressional race to unseat incumbent

The campaign of State Sen. Hansen Clarke, D-Detroit, for U.S. Congress in the 13th District is picking up steam, and according to Politico, incumbent Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick is in for a tough race.

In an article in Tuesday’s edition called “Incumbent watch: Who's next to go?” Kilpatrick is among the “list of incumbents who should be looking over their shoulders.”

“If Kilpatrick thought she had seen the end of her political difficulties after narrowly fending off two primary challengers in 2008, she was wrong. Kilpatrick, who has come under sharp criticism for her fierce defense of her embattled son, former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, waved off concerns about the looming intraparty fight during her campaign kickoff speech Monday, telling reporters, “We’re ready for the challenge.”

U.S. Sen. Bob Bennett, R-Utah, was the first incumbent to lose his party’s nomination this year after he lost last Sunday, and the article lists nine other incumbents besides Kilpatrick who could lose in a primary. Those are Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colo.; Rep. Alan Mollohan, D-W.Va; Rep. Jim Matheson, D-Utah; Rep. Bob Inglis, R-S.C.; Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz.; Rep. Jane Harman, D-Calif.; Rep. Paul Kanjorski, D-Pa.; Sen. Blanche Lincoln, D-Ark.; and Sen. Arlen Specter, D-Pa.

Clarke has picked up some early labor endorsements, and he has steadily been picking up supporters. The negative is that there also four other Democrats in the race besides Clarke, and the Rev. Glenn Plummer is the most notable. Two years ago there were two candidates in the primary race besides Kilpatrick, and they split the vote giving Kilpatrick a narrow victory. In fact, the two Democratic challengers took more than 32,000 votes, and Kilpatrick only received 21,000 votes.

Tomorrow, Friday, is the deadline to withdraw, and in Detroit it’s common for candidates to file for the price of the filing fee just to see who else will file. Most likely some will withdraw by the deadline.

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