The big question in in GOP circles right now is whether or not the national GOP will pull out all the stops to get Jesse Kelly elected in CD 8, or whether they will concentrate on districts that they consider more likely wins. The next week or so will be critical to the Jesse Kelly campaign, and I think there are two factors at play, the first will be the degree of support from the local GOP establishment and the second will be the results of the first GOP poll. Kevin McCarthy (CA 22), a vice-chair of the NRCC, will be in Tucson this Thursday at a fundraiser for Jesse, so that success of that event will clearly have an impact on the RNCC's decision as well.
The local GOP support looks solid. Here's a picture from Friday's GOP candidate gathering at the Manning House in downtown Tucson. From left to right you have Joe Hart, Gary Pierce, Brenda Burns, Ruth McClung, John McCain, Jesse Kelly, Ray Carroll as emcee, Governor Brewer, Ken Bennett and Doug Ducey.
That's a really solid team, and I think it's fair to say that all of them are favorites except McClung and Kelly. McClung is obviously a long shot against Grijalva and despite his disastrous and bone headed call for a national boycott in his home state, I think he's considered completely safe.
Kelly is on the bubble. The rumor is that Governor Brewer is considering hosting a fundraiser for him in Tucson in the next few weeks. That would go a long way towards showing the national guys that CD 8 is still win able. If you start to see the RNCC put money into the race, you will know that the polls show Kelly is within striking distance.
If you start to see the RNCC put money into McClung's race, you will know that the Democrats are going to lose 100 seats in Congress this year.
By the way, there's no question about national money going into CD 5 and CD 1. The RNCC has actually rented space in the same building as Schweikert's headquarters and Gosar is deemed to have a really good shot against Kirkpatrick.