VA-9 (Rick Boucher-D)It's not going to be easy to take down Boucher, but based on the developments of the last few days it looks like the GOP is ready to put up one hell of a fight. Should be fun.
Rating Change: Safe D to Likely D
When an incumbent member of Congress who has represented the same district for 28 years draws a challenger who does not even live in the district should he be worried? If the incumbent is Virginia Democrat Rick Boucher then yes. Boucher’s district is coal country, comprised of the entire southwestern tip of Virginia and bordered by West Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, and North Carolina. While Boucher voted against the health care bill, his vote for cap-and-trade is already causing him headaches. Adding to his pains, Virginia’s state House Majority Leader, Morgan Griffith, has all but announced he will challenge Boucher. Griffith is a top tier candidate and has been recruited by the NRCC, but he lives in the 6th District instead of the 9th. This could complicate his bid against the entrenched Boucher, although Griffith’s supporters point out that his home is only “feet” from the district’s border and redistricting may render the point moot after this year’s election. While Griffith’s bid would be legal, since congressmen in Virginia only have to live in the state and not in the district they represent, politics is perception and a Republican argument that Boucher is out of touch with his district could be weakened by a messenger who does not even live there. Still, Boucher will be in for one of the tougher fights of his decades-long career as Republicans put another entrenched Democrat on their target list. (emphasis mine)
Cross-posted @ RedState