What to Expect in Kentucky’s Congressional Races

There are competitive races this year for the U.S. House, but five of Kentucky’s six races have heavy favorites the week before the election. 

The Sixth

This rematch between Democratic Rep. Ben Chandler and Republican attorney Andy Barr was suppose to be easier for Chandler than the 2010 campaign, which he won by less than 700 votes.

But the campaign has turned nasty over coal issues and independent polling has been non-existent. Both campaign claim they are ahead and will win on Nov. 6.

In 2010, the race went into a recanvass, where totals are double checked. This year, the campaign could go into a full recount.

The Fourth

Republican Thomas Massie is a near shoo-in to replace the retired Geoff Davis. But Democratic candidate Bill Adkins is trying to change that.

The Fourth District is heavily Republican and Massie did most of his heavy lifting in a big GOP primary. Since then, most of the campaign staff has moved on and Massie’s campaign has been pretty quiet. But the district is considered a Republican stronghold and Massie’s the one with the (R) next to his name on the ballot.

The Third

Rep. John Yarmuth is fielding a challenge from Republican accountant Brooks Wicker, but the match-up doesn’t appear to be a close one.

Wicker has been ignored by his local party and national Republican organizations and has criticized them for doing so. Yarmuth agreed to multiple debates with Wicker, despite a fundraising and name ID advantages, but Wicker’s campaign didn’t get a boost from them.

Yarmuth is running only one TV ad for the whole campaign and with days left, is sending fundraising pitches out for other candidates instead of himself.

The Second

Rep. Brett Guthrie is facing a perennial Democratic candidate and a third party candidate that doesn’t even live in Kentucky. Guthrie’s biggest task is introducing himself to the new voters he’s received thanks to redistricting, but that task won’t be put to the test in 2012.

The First and Fifth:

Rep.  Ed Whitfield of the First District has a rematch with a Democrat he easily beat in 2010. Rep. Hal Rogers of the Fifth District is doing the same. Both men will be in Congress for another two years, at the very least.

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