Shutdown fuels Republican primaries

Shutdown fuels Republican primaries

By: Alex Isenstadt
October 21, 2013 05:01 AM EDT

Mike Simpson is shown. | AP PhotoPolitical handicappers expect Republicans to keep the House in 2014. But plenty of GOP lawmakers will still be slugging it out in tough races next year — they’ll just be hitting one another in a growing number of primaries propelled by the party’s nasty split over the federal shutdown and debt crisis.

Nearly a dozen House Republican incumbents already have credible challengers, and conservative groups expect that number to grow in the coming months as races develop and deadlines approach to qualify for the ballot. The coming fiscal battles — there’s now a Jan. 15 deadline for funding the government and a Feb. 7 deadline to raise the debt ceiling — could add fuel to the primary fires.

Redistricting whittled down the number of competitive House districts and fortified the GOP’s majority. That means much of the action next year will be in primaries, where Republicans will fight out their differences in deeply conservative, gerrymandered districts. Continue reading “Shutdown fuels Republican primaries”