Go to HHH home page.
Smart Politics
 


Election Profile: Wisconsin's 6th Congressional District (2008)

Bookmark and Share

Smart Politics is running a series of election profiles of all the Upper Midwestern U.S. Senate and U.S. House races leading up to the November 4th elections. The series will culminate with Smart Politics' official projections. The fourteenth profile in the series is Wisconsin's 6th Congressional District race.

Candidates:
Republican: Thomas E. Petri (15-term incumbent)
Democrat: Roger A. Kittelson

District Geography:
Wisconsin's 6th Congressional District comprises the east-central counties of the state: Calumet, Dodge, Fond du Lac, Green Lake, Manitowoc, Marquette, Sheboygan, Waushara, Winnebago, and parts of Adams and Jefferson counties.

History:
Petri won a special election by just 0.8 points over Democrat Gary R. Goyke in 1979 to fill the vacancy due to the death of seven-term Republican Representative William A. Steiger. Petri won the rematch with Goyke in 1980 by 18.7 points and then won the next 13 elections by an average of 63.7 points - including six elections without major party opposition (all non-presidential election years: 1986, 1990, 1994, 1998, 2002, and 2006). Petri has only faced one competitive re-election contest - a 5.8-point win over Democratic nominee Peggy A. Lautenschlager in 1992 (the closest U.S. House race in the Badger State that year).

Petri serves on the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee and the House Education and Labor Committee. He is one of two Upper Midwestern House members (along with Minnesota Representative Jim Ramstad (MN-03) of the center-right Republican Main Street Partnership (the Partnership, with 44 Representatives, 6 Senators, and 2 governors, bills itself as a coalition building force to promote policies that are supportive of conservation and preservation of our natural resources, accountability in the education system, maintaining a strong national defense, increasing economic growth, encouraging renewable energy resources, reforming Social Security, creating more affordable health care, creating transparency and accountability in Congress, and creating American competitiveness through free and fair trade.

Kittelson, who works in agribusiness, is campaigning for fair trade, bringing the troops home from Iraq, expanding health care coverage, repealing No Child Left Behind, balancing the federal budget, and eliminating the federal debt.

Outlook:
All nine counties that are entirely contained within the 6th Congressional voted for George W. Bush in 2004 - and six of them by double-digit margins: Calumet (17.5 points), Dodge (23.8 points), Fond du Lac (26.6 points), Green Lake (28.2 points), Manitowoc (5.3 points), Marquette (9.6 points), Sheboygan (10.9 points), Waushara (13.3 points), and Winnebago (6.3 points). Petri's moderate Republican credentials in this conservative stronghold of the state will serve him well in what is shaping up to be a big year for the Congressional Democrats.

Previous post: Humphrey Institute Candidate Forums: Minnesota's 3rd Congressional District
Next post: Election Profile: Wisconsin's 7th Congressional District (2008)

Leave a comment


Remains of the Data

Who Has Won the Most Votes in US Senate Electoral History?

Only three of the Top 10 and nine of the Top 50 vote-getters of all time are currently serving in the chamber.

Political Crumbs

Six for Thirteen

Collin Peterson remarked last month that he is leaning to run for reelection to Minnesota's 7th Congressional District in 2016. If he does and is victorious, he will creep even closer to the top of the list of the longest-serving U.S. Representatives in Minnesota history. The DFL congressman is only the sixth Minnesotan to win at least 13 terms to the U.S. House of the 135 elected to the chamber in state history. Peterson trails 18-term DFLer Jim Oberstar (1975-2011), 16-term Republicans Harold Knutson (1917-1949) and August Andresen (1925-1933; 1935-1958), and 14-term DFLers Martin Sabo (1979-2007) and John Blatnik (1947-1974). Andresen died in office, Sabo and Blatnik retired, and Knutson and Oberstar were defeated at the ballot box in 1948 and 2010 respectively. At 70 years, 7 months, 11 days through Monday, Peterson is currently the ninth oldest Gopher State U.S. Representative in history. DFLer Rick Nolan of the 8th CD is the seventh oldest at 71 years, 1 month, 23 days.


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.


more POLITICAL CRUMBS

Humphrey School Sites
CSPG
Humphrey New Media Hub

Issues />

<div id=
Abortion
Afghanistan
Budget and taxes
Campaign finances
Crime and punishment
Economy and jobs
Education
Energy
Environment
Foreign affairs
Gender
Health
Housing
Ideology
Immigration
Iraq
Media
Military
Partisanship
Race and ethnicity
Reapportionment
Redistricting
Religion
Sexuality
Sports
Terrorism
Third parties
Transportation
Voting