Monday, Feb. 01, 2010

Sean Duffy: Wisconsin House

In a normal year, Wisconsin Democrat David Obey, the powerful head of the House appropriations committee, would not have to worry. But normal years do not bring challengers like Sean Duffy, a successful district attorney who also happens to be a former star of MTV's The Real World (the Boston season), a champion lumberjack competitor and an ESPN commentator. Obama won Wisconsin's 7th District in 2008 by a decent margin, but Bush managed to win 49% of the vote in the largely Democratic district in 2004. Obey does not seem ruffled by Duffy's harping on his role in the stimulus or statements that Obey is helping to create a "greater crisis" in terms of deficit spending. In fact, the Congressman's campaign website isn't even up and running yet. With plenty of media attention, strong fundraising and a very fresh face — he wasn't even born when Obey first took office, in 1970 — Duffy will likely win the Republican primary, barring a surprise showing by the self-proclaimed Tea Party candidate Dan Mielke. Of course, that would mean facing the third longest-serving member of the House in the general election, a man whose smallest margin of victory in 18 elections was seven points.