As election day nears, Operation Counterweight continues. Today the spotlight is on the race between incumbent Democrat Mike McIntyre and Republican challenger David Rouzer for North Carolina’s 7th Congressional District.
McIntyre has been called one of the most vulnerable House Democrats of this election cycle. A new poll offers a glimpse into just how true that moniker has become [Emphasis mine].
In a matchup among likely voters in the reconfigured 7th district, McIntyre pulled 44 percent to Rouzer’s 40 percent. Fifteen percent were undecided.
Redistricting made the 7th significantly more favorable to Republicans and made McIntyre one of the more vulnerable incumbents in the House.
In a sign of the hill McIntyre will have to climb to keep his seat, Mitt Romney topped Barack Obama by a whopping 17 points in the redrawn district. The president got 36 percent to Romney’s 53 percent in the poll, conducted by respected GOP firm Public Opinion Strategies.
McIntyre’s challenger, Republican state Senator David Rouzer has been fighting an uphill battle from the beginning to win this hotly contested seat.
After a tough primary fight, Rouzer was left with little money on hand with which to wage his general election campaign against the heavily PAC backed McIntyre. Rouzer started out well behind McIntyre and while he has made up some ground, he remains at a potentially outcome-determinative cash disadvantage.
The numbers from the end of last month had McIntyre with $1.1 million in cash on hand, to Rouzer’s $172,000.
The breakdown of how the cash was acquired by the respective candidates is also interesting.
About 55 percent of McIntyre’s $1.4 million in contributions – $793,000 – came from political action committees, or PACs, with $616,000, or about 43 percent, coming from individuals.
Rouzer’s financial backing has come largely from individuals. Of the $695,000 he’s raised, about 78 percent — $541,000 – was given by individuals. About 19 percent — $130,000 – came from PACs
As election day approaches, McIntyre will use his distinct cash advantage, largely acquired from PAC donations, to court the undecided voters that Rouzer needs to turn the election in his favor.
However, Rouzer has a great opportunity to pull off an upset here. He’s in a statistical tie with McIntyre and anti-incumbent sentiment is still very high. If Rouzer can catch up on the fundraising front he is certainly capable of ousting McIntyre, adding some cushion to the Republican majority in the House.
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