Wednesday, September 06, 2006

NFL Week 1

And now for a new feature........

I am going to be listing my weekly NFL picks.

These picks have nothing to do with the point spread. I am just keeping it simple and trying to pick the winners.

Let's see how I do. After the football week is completed, I will be editing these posts to score myself.

Current score: 0-0 (0%)

1. Dolphins (0-0) at Steelers (0-0)
2. Falcons (0-0) at Panthers (0-0)
3. Ravens (0-0) at Buccaneers (0-0)
4. Bills (0-0) at Patriots (0-0)
5. Bengals (0-0) at Chiefs (0-0)
6. Broncos (0-0) at Rams (0-0)
7. Saints (0-0) at Browns (0-0)
8. Jets (o-o) at Titans (0-0)
9. Eagles (0-0) at Texans (0-0)
10. Seahawks (0-0) at Lions (0-0)
11. Bears (0-0) at Packers (0-0)
12. Cowboys (0-0) at Jaguars (0-0)
13. '49ers (0-0) at Cardinals (0-0)
14. Colts (0-0) at Giants (0-0)
15. Vikings (0-0) at Redskins (0-0)
16. Chargers (0-0) at Raiders (0-0)

New Hampshire Governor Race

Race of the Day

September 6, 2006
62 Days Until Election Day

New Hampshire Governor

Status: Democrat Incumbent
2004 Presidential Result: Blue State (East)

Outlook: Likely Democrat

As one of just two states that features biannual elections for Governor, the contest to be the Chief Executive of the Granite State has not been receiving much attention this year, and probably for good reason.

New Hampshire is alone in New England states in demonstrating a consistent Republican lean in most elections. A Democrat has not been sent to Congress from the state since 1992 and it has been even longer since one was victorious in a statewide federal race.

The state typically elects Republicans to the Governorship and the legislature as well, but there was a Democrat Governor from 1997-2003, and after a single term of a Republican in office, Democrat John Lynch was elected Governor in a very close 2004 race. The fact that Lynch was able to turn an incumbent out of office in just two years was pretty impressive as voters typically feel like they owe a new Governor at least four years to try to implement their agenda before they are as willing to turn on them. Lynch’s Republican predecessor though must have really just gotten off on the wrong foot with the state and remained in a bad political position. This year, there is no reason to believe that Lynch will be the second victim of a “two-year curse.”

Lynch’s Republican opponent will be State Representative Jim Coburn, who is the sole Republican in the race heading into next Tuesday’s state primary. I have to admit that I really do not know much about Coburn (besides the fact that he sort of looks like the Dad from the ‘80s sitcom classic, “Alf”) or how this race is shaping up at this time, but my sense is that Lynch, who has a high job approval rating, will earn at least another two years from New Hampshire voters. If there were further polls on this race, I would probably be willing to call it “Safe Democrat” but on this day, I think it might be best to still keep in mind the example of the last Governor losing after just one term and the traditional Republican bent to New Hampshire. Still though, it is very unlikely that Lynch will lose this year, and it actually appears that the Governor, and both Republican Congressional incumbents are in good shape this year.

In the meantime, much of the national political attention that will be paid to Lynch will involve how he will attempt to save the viability of the New Hampshire Presidential primary, which is traditionally the first in the nation. Democrats have a plan to shake up their nominating calendar for 2008 though, which Lynch is very much opposed to. He has claimed that several potential candidates are pledging to honor the New Hampshire tradition and not campaign in the Nevada or South Carolina contests. A Lynch endorsement for a Democrat contender in 2008 could really be beneficial, while Republican White House aspirants probably will not be falling over each other to kiss up to Coburn.

Coburn campaign link:

2006 Governor races predicted thus far: 6 D, 16 R
Post-election total of Governors predicted thus far: 14 D, 22 R