Mar 28, 2024 - Politics & Policy

Scoop: House Democrats grow their GOP target list for 2024

DCCC Red to Blue list
Data: Dave's Redistricting Atlas, The New York Times; Table: Axios Visuals

House Democrats are adding four more candidates to their "Red to Blue" program as they attempt to flip enough Republican-held seats to take the House majority, Axios has learned.

Why it matters: All four candidates are in districts President Biden won in 2020 — a sign that Democrats are doubling down on a strategy of trying to ride Biden's coattails in November.

Driving the news: The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee's list includes three candidates challenging Republican incumbents and one running for an open seat vacated by Rep. Katie Porter (D-Calif.).

  • Derek Tran: A veteran and attorney challenging Rep. Michelle Steel (R-Calif.) in the Orange County-based 45th District.
  • Dave Min: A state senator running in Porter's Orange County-based 47th District. He is likely to face Republican Scott Baugh, a former state representative who challenged Porter in 2022.
  • Sue Altman: A progressive organizer and former teacher challenging Rep. Tom Kean Jr. (R-N.J.) in New Jersey's affluent northern suburbs.
  • Laura Gillen: A former town supervisor who is running to challenge Rep. Anthony D'Esposito (R-N.Y.) in the Long Island-based 4th District after losing to him in 2022.

Between the lines: The new endorsements are in races where primaries have now happened — in the cases of Tran and Min — or where all or most serious opponents have dropped out — in the cases of Altman and Gillen.

  • One notable omission is Joe Kerr, the Democratic challenger to Rep. Young Kim (R-Calif.) in a district Biden won narrowly in 2020.

What they're saying: "I am excited to work with this diverse group of public servants, veterans, and leaders to take the House back in November," DCCC Chair Suzan DelBene said in a statement.

  • "Their records of service stand in stark contrast to their extreme and dangerous far-right opponents. Their victories will help ensure Democrats retake the majority so Congress can get back to work to lower costs, grow the middle class, and defend our reproductive rights."

The other side: "A drunk driving politician, an ambulance chasing lawyer, a perennial candidate and a radical progressive activist would make for a great cast on a Bravo reality show," National Republican Congressional Committee spokesperson Will Reinert told Axios in a statement.

  • "However, watching them on CSPAN greenlight every liberal pipedream from defunding the police to even more open-border policies would be a nightmare for American families."

Editor's note: The table has been corrected to reflect the House margin in New York District 4 was +3.6 Republican, not Democrat.

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