LJWorld.com weblogs Congressional Briefing

Can Boyda repeat Moore's electoral success?


Here are today's headlines from the Kansas congressional delegation:Rep. Nancy Boyda (D) ![][1][(Washington Post commentary) The Line: GOP Wants Its 'Safe' House Seats Back:][2] So here's an update on the most-competitive House races of the '08 cycle. Due to the fact that many of these races have yet to begin in earnest, we're not yet rank ordering them by the likelihood of a party turnover. ... Kansas's 2nd (D): The more we hear about the looming primary fight between former Rep. Jim Ryun and state Treasurer Lynn Jenkins, the more apt the comparison to the neighboring 3rd District seems. After Dennis Moore knocked off Rep. Vince Snowbarger (R) in 1998, national Republicans promised that they would take the seat back in 2000 -- pointing to its strong GOP underpinnings. But state Republicans were in the midst of a huge battle between the moderate and conservative wings of their party and were never able to fully unite behind the eventual nominee. Ditto in 2002. By 2004 it was too late. Could Republicans be repeating the mistakes of the past again? Maybe. Regardless, first-term Rep. Nancy Boyda is clearly vulnerable in a seat that gave Bush a 20-point victory in 2004.[(LJWorld.com) President not listening to Americans, Boyda says:][3] U.S. Rep. Nancy Boyda, D-Topeka, said Thursday that President Bush ignored most Americans when he vetoed legislation that continued funding the war in Iraq but called for the withdrawal of American troops. "He has absolutely disregarded the will of the vast majority of Americans," Boyda said in a telephone news conference from Washington, D.C. Boyda, who voted for the bill that was approved by the House and Senate, represents the 2nd Congressional District, which includes west Lawrence, Topeka, Manhattan and southeast Kansas. [1]: http://ljworld.com/specials/election04/primary/boyda.jpg [2]: http://blog.washingtonpost.com/thefix/2007/05/house_line_gop_wants_safeseats_back.html [3]: http://www2.ljworld.com/news/2007/may...


heysoos 11 years ago

I supported her, but I think she is toast now that Jenkins is in the field. I think she has done enough to alienate the Democratic base (yes, just in these few months) that it will hurt her. Of course, a Presidential election in 2008 might help, but I don't think Democratic voters in KS are necessarily driven to the polls for Presidential elections the way they might be in other states. I think she has made some poor calculations so far. I appreciate her attempt to appeal to the right, but she doesn't need to appeal to the right, she needs to keep her base happy and appeal to the handful of mainstream Republicans that got her elected.

I'm glad to see she is taking a stronger position against the President on Iraq, but I lost a little faith that she was going to represent the majority of opinions on the war because of her initial, wishy-washy response to the question of whether she would vote to fund the war.

There's a lot of time left, I realize, but I think that unless it comes out that Jenkins is some kind of child-rapist or something, she takes the seat back for the Republicans.

My two cents.

jasonc_22 11 years ago

what in the world has she done to appeal to the right? my god she's voting against the war...she raised the minimum wage

and she's appealing to the right? good grief!

heysoos 11 years ago

Well, most recently:


"It is not only Republicans who oppose comprehensive reform. House Democrats include several conservative voices on immigration, particularly among freshman representatives from rural and working-class districts.

Rep. Nancy Boyda, D-Kan., is one of them. "People do not trust, and they don't believe that the enforcement and the border protection is going to be there," Boyda said. "We need a system that's workable, that employers can use to see who's here legally. But no effort has really been made to implement that."

And this:


"As tragic as this incident was : I don't think we need additional federal gun laws," Boyda said Tuesday. "We need to enforce the laws we have."

I think these are both obvious appeals to the right. Do you disagree?

heysoos 11 years ago

I suppose I should calrify: I think these are both efforts to appeal to those who historically and consitently vote Republican. I'll make an effort to stay away from stupid labels like "right" and "left" in the future, although I'm sure that you recognize that immigration and guns are bread-and-butter issues for certain elements that stray from the center.

dagopman 11 years ago

Boyda isn't even liked by the highest ranking Democratic officials in the state of Kansas. No way she beats Jenkins.

MyName 11 years ago

I disagree, I think Jenkins is very beatable. Assuming Jenkins beats Ryun in the primary she's going to be lower in funds and tired from having to run a hard campaign, while Boyda doesn't have those disadvantages. Not only that, but Jenkins will have a harder time campaigning in Eastern Kansas, where she has to get more Republicans to turn out, then she would in campaigning for statewide office where she could count on the Western Kansas votes without having to campaign hard for them.

Moreover, if Boyda manages to turn the campaign into a referendum on Iraq, which is exactly what she did against Ryun, she has an even better chance of beating Jenkins. She's already on record as going against the Iraq war, and Jenkins is not.

dagopman 11 years ago

Boyda will have a full term to destroy her own credibility. She already has within some ranks of the Democratic party. Its only a matter of time until the bulk of the electorate figures her out as well. You can only survive so long with smoke and mirrors.

MyName 11 years ago

But if you're an empty suit, like Ryun was, you can continually get re-elected in this state. I think there's a flaw in your reasoning somewhere dagopman.

Jamesaust 11 years ago

Boyda absolutely COULD defeat any candidate with an "R" after their name in 2008! (I don't predict she will as she's a fairly weak politician in general but then elections are not always decided merely by the character of the candidates themselves.)

Absent a very rapid soul-searching and existentialist reform of the Party, the same electoral storm blowing against the Republicans in 2006 will be revisited in 2008 - with a vengence. The election results in 2006 and subsequent polling indicate a signficant shift away from the GOP and toward perhaps a generational Democrat majority. Party affiliation away from the Republicans among those under 30 is massive. Absent major GOP reform, expect ANOTHER 20-30 seats to go to the Democrats in '08, probably along with a Democrat President (more if the Republican Presidential primaries turn into a generalized bloodletting among factions much as we've seen in Kansas lately).

As conservative commentator George Will notes, the GOP is risking the type of multi-decade abandonment of the Party by voters that occured after the Hoover Administration. Independents have wholly defected to the Democrats and, as we've seen in Kansas, dyed-in-the-wool Republicans face enormous and growing pressures to divorce themselves from the extremist right.

Video clip here: http://www.realclearpolitics.com/vlog/2007/04/this_week_panel_the_iraq_war.html

BigDog 11 years ago

There is a difference between the two situations, Dennis Moore because he is a former prosecutor and seen as more moderate/law & order democrat. Boyda is a former pharmaceutical executive who now claims drug companies are making too much. I wonder if they were making to much when they were paying her paycheck.

texburgh 11 years ago

Boyda is representing her constituency. That means she will be "right" on some issues (immigration, guns), "left" on others (the Iraq war). It's probably wrong to call the Iraq war a "left" issue since a strong majority of Americans are opposed to this war - it's more a centrist issue than left. And Boyda will have constituent services unlike her predecessor. Ryun lost in part because of the war, in part because of his entanglements with Mark Foley and Jack Abramoff, but in large part because he was, as someone said earlier, "an empty suit." He did nothing for the district; just show up every two years and tell us all he's a Republican. Without service, who cares? Boyda will have an uphill battle protecting her seat but she's doing things right by this district and if she keeps it up, she can win.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.