"Liberal groups targeting moderate congressional Democrats should 'beware of forming a circular firing squad' that could hurt the party in 2010 elections, says the head of Democrats' House campaign efforts," the AP writes. "Rep. Chris Van Hollen, who chairs the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, wants to defuse heady expectations in his party for more gains in next year's midterm elections after too-close-to-call results in this week's election for a vacant Democratic seat in New York."
Meanwhile, the DCCC says it will be running new radio ads targeting Republicans who voted against the economic stimulus and its middle-class tax cuts. The targets: Mike Castle (DE), Ken Calvert (CA), Bill Young (FL), Thad McCotter (MI), Charlie Dent (PA), and Mike McCaul (TX).
NEW YORK: The Albany Times Union: "The too-close-to-call race in the 20th Congressional District between Republican Jim Tedisco and Democrat Scott Murphy just got considerably closer. Following a review of votes in Columbia County, Murphy still leads Tedisco — but only by 25 votes, 77,217 to 77,192. More: "The narrowing of the gap doesn't change the main fact: Thousands of absentee ballots will essentially decide the race — but not until after April 13."
Per the Washington Post's Chris Cillizza, Murphy "will win the special election in New York's 20th district by 210 votes after all outstanding absentee and military ballots are counted, according to projections made by Democratic Party officials… The projections -- based off of the county performances by Murphy and state Assemblyman Jim Tedisco (R) on election night -- show the Democrat gaining 115 votes in Warren County, 96 votes in Columbia County and 70 votes in Washington County as well as scoring smaller gains in several other counties. Tedisco's only major gain, according to the model, will be in Saratoga County where he will net an additional 116 votes. The Democratic projection puts the total number of absentee and military ballots at 5,584 with Murphy winning 2,864 and Tedisco taking 2,720."
Stu Rothenberg on NY-20: "And while both sides have reasons to feel good about the results, Tuesday night offered Republicans a small but important bit of evidence that they have turned the corner." He writes that the nature of this district being a conservative one is overwrought. "People in this district may be registered as Republicans, but many simply haven't been voting that way… What does this mean? It means much, though not all, of this talk about the huge Republican nature of the district is baloney. Second, talk of a stunning Murphy surge from far back is ridiculous and ignores normal campaign dynamics." And he says Dems shouldn't be so confident they will win once the absentees are all counted. "I don't know who will eventually win, but more Republican than Democratic absentee ballots have been received, according to GOP sources."