Celtic Diva's Blue Oasis: Mayor Begich makes it official and what the numbers are saying about the Congressional Races

Monday, April 21, 2008

Mayor Begich makes it official and what the numbers are saying about the Congressional Races

Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich officially announced his candidacy today for Senator Ted Stevens seat.
Begich, 46, has been mayor of Alaska's largest city since 2003.

A Democrat, Begich formally announced his candidacy at noon at the Mountain View Community Center. At 5 p.m., he'll make a similar announcement in Fairbanks at the J.P. Jones Community Development Center, according to a press release sent by his campaign.

"What I've been hearing is people are truly ready for change," the Democratic mayor said Sunday. "They want to see something different."

Begich, 46, said he will not resign as mayor during the campaign.

The 84-year-old Stevens has been in the U.S. Senate since 1968. He's the longest-serving Republican in U.S. Senate history.

"As I have said before, this race will be about who has the experience, the seniority and the proven record to best serve Alaska in the U.S. Senate," Stevens said in a written statement released late Sunday.

Begich said Sunday his recent travels around Alaska convinced him he can win.

"There is definite broad-based support out there and from all walks of life," Begich said.

The campaign will be "fast and furious," Begich said, but won't keep him from doing his job as mayor.

"This city continues to run because we've got great people working. You'll still see me at the Assembly meetings, still see me engaged with the activities of this city."

As other Kossacks have been reporting, Mayor Begich's numbers are good -
better than any rival Stevens has had to date:
Rasmussen. 4/7. Likely voters. MoE 4.5%

Stevens (R) 46
Begich (D) 45

Also, directly from the Rasmussen site:
Rasmussen Markets data immediately prior to release of this poll showed the Alaska Senate race to be a pure toss-up. Current prices show the GOP with a 49.9% chance to retain the seat and the Democrats with a 56.8% chance to pick up a seat in Alaska. Data in this paragraph is from a prediction market, not a poll.

MissLaura mentioned that Begich might "trail his opponent" in fundraising but his poll numbers are good. What folks keep forgetting is the man only announced he was starting an Exploratory Committee...until today.

I have no doubt the donation floodgates are opening even as we speak.

XStriker gaves us a nice little table of how the fundraising has been going through April 15th. Looking at the other Alaska races, while the sentimental favorite for us "Democratic activist" types is Diane Benson (go Diane!), her donation numbers are down considerably and the so-far-low-key Ethan Berkowitz is amassing a good-sized war chest against Don Young.

Of course Don Young has additional problems between the Coconut Road investigation and the new discoveries regarding his cozy ties with Abramoff. It makes it less and less likely that the Democrats will be running against Young himself as opposed to his Gov. Palin-sponsored opponent in the Republican Primary, Lt. Governor Sean Parnell.

That would be a formidible race for the Dems.

As for now, I will bask in the dream of a possible Blue sweep this November.

**********UPDATE 2 - HOLY LINK, BATMAN!************

So I go to the new website just set up by the Begich Campaign and I go to the blog page...

...and what do I see but "Celtic Diva's Blue Oasis" in the list of 4 Alaska Blogger links!!!!!

Life is goooooooood...

Thanks so much, Begich team, for including me!


I just got an email from the Begich campaign about the Mayor's announcement and an introduction of his Campaign Online Communications Director.

I wanted to take a minute to introduce myself. My name is Matt Browner-Hamlin and I'm working as Mark Begich's campaign Online Communications Director. I was previously Chris Dodd's Deputy Internet Director & blogger on his presidential campaign and I've been a blogger for over three years.

There will be two announcement events today - one in Anchorage at noon and one in Fairbanks at 5pm. I'm not sure where in the state you are. I wanted to make sure you also knew that we'll be relaunching the campaign website around midday. I'm going to have a whole bunch of video content, including a short web video of why Mark is running, the announcement speech in Fairbanks, and some other stuff.

Mayor Begich has some serious experience backing him up on this campaign. It just gives me all kinds of warm-fuzzies!


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