State Senator David Cappiello does "Beyond the Headlines"
(cross post from HatCityBLOG)
Danbury State Senator Republican David Cappiello recently announced that he's challenging newly elected Congressman Chris Murphy for the 5th District Congressional seat.
The Danbury native and loyal supporter of former Congresswoman Nancy "Queen of shaking the special-interest money tree" Johnson recently made an appearance on WTIC's "Beyond the Headlines" to explain why he's throwing his hat into the race just a few months after Murphy was officially sworn into office.
Now, although Cappiello has about as much chance in beating Murphy as me cutting off my hair, his logic in throwing his hat in the Congressional race makes common sense when you see what he's going up against.
Just three months into his first two-year term, Chris Murphy has had 11 fundraising events that have helped net him $419,700 for a 2008 re-election campaign.
The first campaign finance reports of 2007, which cover the Jan. 1-March 31 period, showed Murphy, D-5th District, had $440,048 on hand; Courtney, D-2nd District, had $286,784; and Shays, R-4th District, banked $185,397. These sums indicate what they've raised this year, anything left from their 2006 campaigns, minus what they've spent on re-election efforts.
Democratic leaders have made it clear they want a lot of cash and they want it now. In a Jan. 23 memo to "interested parties," Rep. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, told such vulnerable members as Murphy and Courtney, both of whom won close races last year, to have $650,000 to $1 million in the bank by June 30.
Given that the 5th district was a battleground district in 2006, expect the Democrats to fight like hell to keep the seat in 2008. Cappiello knows this and therefore, his only choice is to announce his intentions now and basically cross his fingers.