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10.09.10

The Dems' Sacrificial Lambs

Democrats in Colorado and New Mexico are becoming more endangered as the November midterm elections near, according to our Election Oracle, giving the party reason to refocus their efforts elsewhere.

Democrats are pulling back ad spending on a number of races, a move that may indicate they're giving up on saving them (or hoping they're strong enough to stand on their own) in order to prioritize other districts.

The Daily Beast’s Election Oracle actually finds some Democrats quite competitive, for example Betsy Markey in Colorado's 4thd district. Markey, like many endangered Democrats, is a recent addition to Congress, having won her seat in 2008. While she hasn't always voted down party lines and significantly outperformed President Obama's vote total in the district in her first election, her opponents have plenty to tie her to the Democrats' agenda, including her support for the stimulus bill and cap and trade. She faces a young state lawmaker in Cory Gardner, who made his name working on bringing clean energy investment to the state. Our Election Oracle currently rates the race as 50-50, versus 70-30 in Markey's favor just one day prior.

Another Democrat about to lose his Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee backup is Harry Teague in New Mexico, another freshman at the top of the Republican target list. He's in a tight race with Republican challenger Steve Pearce and remains locked in a tie in the polls. Our Election Oracle puts him at a 50-50 bet to win, and trending downward.

Benjamin Sarlin is the Washington correspondent for The Daily Beast and edits the site's politics blog, Beltway Beast. He previously covered New York City politics for The New York Sun and has worked for talkingpointsmemo.com.