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Smart Politics on WCCO-TV's "Good Question"

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Smart Politics' Eric Ostermeier was interviewed by Jason DeRusha on WCCO-TV's "Good Question" segment during Tuesday night's 10 o'clock telecast.

DeRusha's Good Question tonight was, "Does the Vice President Pick Matter" Ostermeier explained why a VP pick is not a predictor of how a party's ticket will fare in November - even in the VP nominee's home state. Nearly twice as many VP picks have failed to carry their own state during the past 100 years (38 percent) as those who have picked up their home state after their party failed to do so in the previous presidential election (20 percent). This is what McCain would be asking of Tim Pawlenty, should the Minnesota Governor be selected later this month.

Ostermeier also picked up on why Barack Obama and John McCain are strongly considering gubernatorial running mates, even though over 90 percent of vice-presidential nominees since 1952 have served in Congress.

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Remains of the Data

Plurality-Winning Governors Elected At Century-Long High Water Mark

The rate of gubernatorial candidates elected without the support of a majority of voters is at its highest level since the 1910s.

Political Crumbs

Seeing Red

Congressman Nick Rahall's failed bid for a 20th term in West Virginia this cycle, combined with a narrow loss by Nick Casey to Alex Mooney in Shelley Moore Capito's open seat, means that West Virginia Democrats will be shut out of the state's U.S. House delegation for the first time in over 90 years. The Republican sweep by two-term incumbent David McKinley in the 1st CD, Mooney in the 2nd, and Evan Jenkins over Rahall in the 3rd marks the first time the GOP has held all seats in the chamber from West Virginia since the Election of 1920. During the 67th Congress (1921-1923) all six seats from the state were controlled by the GOP. Since the Election of 1922, Democrats have won 76 percent of all U.S. House elections in the Mountain State - capturing 172 seats compared to 54 for the GOP.


Home Field Advantage?

When the 114th Congress convenes in a few days, Maine will be represented by one home-grown U.S. Representative: Waterville-born Republican Bruce Poliquin. With the departure of Millinocket-born Mike Michaud, who launched a failed gubernatorial bid, the Pine Tree State was poised to send a House delegation to D.C. without any Maine-born members for the first time since 1821. Three-term U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree (born in Minnesota) coasted to reelection as expected, however Poliquin edged Kentucky-born Emily Cain by 5.3 points to keep the streak alive. Since 1876, a total of 208 of the 222 candidates elected to the nation's lower legislative chamber from the state have been born in Maine, or 94 percent.


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