Democrat Craft dropping congressional bid, ally saysby George Bennett | March 26th, 2010
“I’m depressed,” said local AFL-CIO President and Democratic activist Pat Emmert, a Craft backer who said Craft informed her of his decision this afternoon.
Efforts to reach Craft today have been unsuccessful.
Craft’s fund-raising has been unimpressive and he appeared unlikely to get national Democratic help in a year in which the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee is scrambling to defend dozens of incumbent seats.
Rooney’s District 16 seat extends from northern Palm Beach County across the state to Punta Gorda. Republicans hold a slight registration edge and the district voted 52 percent for GOP presidential nominee John McCain in 2008.
Despite the district’s Republican tilt, Craft supported the Democratic $787 billion economic stimulus package and the House Democratic health care overhaul bill, including a government-run “public option.”
Republican Mark Foley represented the district for 12 years until an Internet sex scandal drove him from office in 2006. Democrat Tim Mahoney won the seat on a “faith, family and personal responsibility” platform, but his career imploded in 2008 amid revelations he had “multiple” extramarital affairs and paid a $121,903 legal settlement to a former mistress who had been on his campaign and congressional payrolls.
Rooney began 2010 with $460,304 in his campaign account to $64,854 for Craft.
The DCCC in January listed the Rooney-Craft race as one of 26 “races to watch” for open or GOP-held seats. The list included 17 “top races” and identified Craft as one of nine Dems in “emerging races.”
But Craft was not included this month when Democrats named 13 candidates for the party’s “red-to-blue” program for capturing Republican-held House seats.
Tags: Chris Craft