Here's my update of the House Side of the Leg. Races
Seats to Protect
LD5 Payson-Globe-Snowflake-Safford (R+14) - Sen. Sylvia Tenney Allen's departure from the House race, albeit under tragic circumstances, is a boon to Rep. Jack Brown's reelection efforts. Given the closeness of the 2004 race, Brown could have been in real trouble. He'll still face competition from former Payson Mayor Barbara Brewer, but just a quick comparison of the primary numbers from 2004 and this year help to confirm my suspicion that Brewer is a significantly weaker candidate than Allen would have been.
Race Rating Change: Toss-Up to Leans Democratic
LD10 Phoenix (R+4) - Well, out of the primary emerged a patsy runningmate for Rep. Jackie Thrasher in Lamont Lovejoy. As I wrote before, I never bought that we would be able to knock out the Speaker, and a patsy runningmate is fine by me (see my to-be-completed thesis). Anyway, this is an exact rematch of the 2006 race and I expect the results to be similar. Thrasher does have the advantage of incumbency this time, so I'm not panicked, but she's at a severe risk.
Race Rating: Toss-Up/SlightD
LD11 Phoenix-Paradise Valley(R+4) - 2007 Phoenix Council Candidate Jon Altmann and Adam Driggs will be a tough ticket to stop. Just take a look at Altmann's website and you'll see that he perfectly fits the profile of a successful Republican candidate in that district. Eric Meyer, the party supported write-in, made it on the ballot and will receive Clean Elections funds. Jon Hulburd did not. Meyer is an emergency room doctor and a member of the Scottsdale School Board.
Race Rating Change: Toss-Up/SlightD to Toss-Up/SlightR
LD24 Yuma (R+7) - Nothing has changed in this race. Rep. Theresa Ulmer is extraordinarily vulnerable to Russ Jones' single-shot effort. I would put good money on Jones holding a seat in the House next year.
Race Rating: Leans Republican
LD9 Peoria-Sun City-Glendale (R+9) - Memory of Sheri Van Horsen's near victory in 2006 (she came less than 800 votes from beating Rep. Rick Murphy), keeps this race on the list. Obviously, I think she came so close because she was a single-shot, but I'm not all that disappointed that she'll be accompanied by Progressive Majority candidate Shawn Hutchinson. 1) She's already a known entity in the district from her 2006 run, so any drop-off (Dems voting once) should hurt Hutchinson, not her and 2) the strongest Republican candidate from 2006, Bob Stump, is gone. Murphy is joined by Former LD chair Debbie Lesko on the GOP ticket.
Race Rating: Leans Republican
LD20 Ahwatukee-Chandler (R+3) - Michael Williams will not be on the ballot here, but Rae Waters was the only Dem with a shot anyway. Unfortunately, Rep. John McComish survived the primary, so Waters will have to go after Jeff Dial to win a seat.
Race Rating Change: Leans Republican to Toss-up/SlightR
LD21 Chandler-Southwest Mesa-Queen Creek (R+9) - Everybody knows the rundown here. Phill came within 0.9% of beating Warde Nichols in 2006 and he's back for another single-shot run. I've got to give the coordinated some props for sticking with this race in pretty red territory.
Race Rating Change: Toss-Up/SlightR
LD30 Green Valley-Sierra Vista-Tanque Verde (R+7) - A single-shot in 2006 came 5 points away from knocking off incumbent Jon Paton. The GOP's got have a whole new ticket here, featuring third-time candidate David Gowen and good ol' Frank Antenori, so now is as good a time as any to take a single-shot to this district. Andrea Dalessandro is doing just that. That isn't great, but it's reasonably close and gives us some reason to hope that the well-organized Dalessandro (she was quick to get her $5's in) can put a scare into a couple of GOP newcomers.
Race Rating: Likely Republican
LD23 Casa Grande-Florence-Coolidge-Maricopa-Eloy (R+4) - Incumbent Rep. Pete Rios is retiring, leaving first-termer Barbara McGuire as the only incumbent, but she's got a really strong runningmate in former Rep. Ernest Bustamante. The best news since my last round-up is that Cheryl Chase is not on the GOP ticket. Instead, they've got a re-run of their 2006 ticket with two-time previous candidate Frank Pratt, a pool builder, and John Fillmore the Prez of the AJ GOP club. This district is too close to say that McGuire is totally safe, so she'll keep her Likely Democratic rating. The second seat will be a dogfight, just like it was in 2006. Still, I'd like to think that Bustamante in 2008, with his resume, Hispanic surname, and pro-life position, will be a better candidate than McGuire was in 2006 and should have an easier time of winning the second seat.
Race Rating Change: McGuire's seat - Likely Democratic, Open Seat - Toss-up to Toss-Up/SlightD
LD25 Gila Bend-Buckeye-Marana (R+1) - This race is wide open. Richard Boyer, 2006 Corp Comm candidate, former NH legislator, and bucket hat enthusiast is making a run for a much smaller lower house than the one in which he served in NH. Patricia Fleming is also running. The Republicans have David Stevens, third-time candidate, president of the Christian Medical and Dental Association and a friend of the Center for AZ Policy and Timathy Davies. This district leans Democratic at the legislative level, so I'd be really shocked if we get swept here. Still, since this district has never elected an all Democratic delegation (as far as I know) we're in a real fight for that second seat.
Race Ratings Change: First seat - Leans Democratic, Second Seat - Leans Republican to Toss-Up.
LD26 Oro Valley-Catalina Foothills-Marana (R+4) - The Democratic ticket here is composed of the 3 candidates who went before the Pima County Board to replace Lena Seradnik. Rep. Nancy Young Wright was chosen out of that process. The PC's preferred candidate, Don Jorgenson, will be joining her in running for the House. Vic Williams, the LD26 Vice Chair, and Marilyn Zerull are the Republican ticket.
Race Ratings Change: Young Wright's seat - Leans Democratic, Open Seat - Toss-up to Toss-Up/SlightR