The Republican challengers who nearly upset two veteran Democratic congressmen in California during the Nov. 4 elections ran short on money for their campaigns and got little or no help from their party, reports filed this week showed.
Yet Tacchera was 700 votes ahead of Costa when the ballots were counted on election night and he maintained his lead for several days as the remaining vote was tallied. Costa ended up holding onto his seat, but by only 1,334 votes.
In another unexpectedly close Central Valley race, retired U.S. Marshal Tony Amador came within less than five percentage points of defeating Rep.
It is possible that, had
Nonetheless, the near-misses prompted a scolding of
Quinn called the failures "a testament to the lack of knowledge of the nuances of California on the part of the national party, and their failure at the basic mechanics of winning close elections."
"This was the year for big Republican gains in
That's way off base, said Tyler Q. Houlton of the National Republican Congressional Committee.
"We were very competitive in California and had great candidates," Houlton said. "Monday morning quarterbacks and political spectators will always second guess us but they fail to mention the competitive Republican districts we easily held in California."
Houlton listed several districts he said Democrats could have done better in, including those held by Republican Reps.
Two of the other races the GOP had a shot at wound up among the costliest in the nation, the reports showed. Rep.
When the $13.5 million spent by the political parties and other groups outside the campaigns is added, the race becomes the most expensive House contest this year, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.
In another costly race, the campaigns of Rep.
The reports, covering the period between Oct. 15 and Nov. 24, added fundraising and spending activities as the campaigns drew to a close.