The hype is from this blurb from the Argus
Its Web site, CQpolitics.com, rates every race in the country on a scale of seven ranks, from "Safe Republican" to "Safe Democrat."
The chances of Democratic challenger James Marcinkowski of Lake Orion are apparently improving, because CQ changed its rating of the contest from "Safe Republican" one notch in his favor to "Republican Favored." He still has two more notches to go before reaching the coveted "No Clear Favorite" ranking.
In an article accompanying the rating change, CQ's Marc Rehman wrote that Marcinkowski has two logistical advantages previous challengers didn't: First, he's from Oakland County and could siphon votes from the area added to the 8th District in the most recent redistricting.
Secondly, Marcinkowski has raised nearly $150,000 so far, "putting him in contrast to Rogers' past two underfinanced opponents," Rehman politely wrote.
The reason given was fundraising. Marcinkowski has more money than Bob Alexander and Frank McAlpine did. That makes him the great white hope for the dems, especially those looking from a distance in DC, Virginia, and Maryland. CQ's from DC, sees the money, sees the name Oakland County, and makes its decision from that.
The "logistical advantage" cited by CQ is a disadvantage for Marcinkowski. Most of Oakland County is Detroit media. The area around Holly, Fenton(Livingston side), and Durand is in Flint media. The district Howell-westward is in Lansing media. The Oakland County part of the district is 63%+ GOP. Even if Marcinkowski wins Lake Orion (and much of that is in the Knollenberg district), he's going to lose that part of district, most likely 60-40. His campaign address is a PO BOX in Brighton, 50 miles from his home. That's a long commute. Marcinkowski is on the fringes of the district, 50 miles from Brighton, and very far from the democrat base of the district - Lansing, East Lansing, and Okemos.
Too add to that, Rogers always wins big in Livingston County, never lower than 63.66% - and that is against an A-team opponent for an open seat. 70%+ is the norm here for Mike. Rogers almost always does well in the democrat stronghold of Ingham County. Dianne Byrum won big there in 2000 57-40, but she represented the area as a state senator. Since then, Mike won it 59-39 in 02 and only lost it 49.16 to 49.01 in 2004. In order for Marcinkowski to beat Mike, he needs to get over 60% here - that's tough if you're not a homer.
Shiawassee County is a marginal GOP area that sometimes goes Democrat. Mike wins big here. 62-35 in 98, 55-42 in 00, 69-29 in 02, 64-34 in 04. Clinton County is a GOP stronghold. 69-29 in 98, 74-25 in 02, 67-31 in 04. Marcinkowski is on the other side of the district from Shiawassee and Clinton Counties, as well as Ingham County. I don't see any logistical advantages for Marcinkowski at all. Shiawassee County is where a homer advantage would be most important, not Oakland.
So celebrate your momentum Jimmy, and waste all your money, since when all is said and done - Marcinkowski will Crash and Burn, eh Maverick?