Q. What does present-day New England have in common with the Jim Crow-era South?
A. They each feature(d) across-the-board Democratic representation.
The last Republican to fall in New England? Connecticut's Chris Shays…
U.S. Rep. Christopher Shays has lost his bid for an 11th term in Congress.
Shays, who is the last New England Republican in the House of Representatives, lost to former Greenwich businessman Jim Himes.
With 40 percent of votes counted, Himes won 60 percent to 39 percent.
Also Carol Shea-Porter held off her Republican challenger in right-of-center New Hampshire.
To repeat, that gives us a net total of zero Republicans left in New England's Congressional delegation. Just like the old South.
Now to be fair, a lot has changed; the Southern Democrats hated Abraham Lincoln, not George W. Bush. And you don't often hear New Englanders muse about "rising again."
But politics makes strange bedfellows.
Tags: Carol Shea-Porter, Connecticut, New England, New Hampshire
The voters of New Hampshire have gotten a lot of press for their involvement in the presidential campaign this year. Their primary votes gave life to the John McCain and Hillary Clinton campaigns, and in the wee hours of this morning they gave a preliminary body-slam to McCain's general election hopes.
But the Granite State is a perpetual battleground for Congress as well! It wouldn't be a proper election day unless grumpy New Hampshirites dripped some of their nose icicles onto the makeup of the legislative branch.
In the Senate race, it's a rematch between 2002 rivals John Sununu (now the incumbent Republican senator) and Jeanne Shaheen (the former Democratic governor). Polls show Shaheen with a comfortable lead of 9%, mainly due to her shrewd decision to remain entirely silent during debates. Meanwhile, George W. Bush was willing to go to New Hampshire to campaign for the Republican, but the Secret Service vetoed that idea out of fear that Sununu might assault the president, in keeping with his strident Bush-bashing of late.
The big House race is in the state's 1st Congressional District, featuring a rematch between incumbent Democrat Carol Shea-Porter and the man she defeated in 2006, former Rep. Jeb Bradley. Shea-Porter is ahead by 5% in a recent poll, but Bradley has reignited his hopes by vowing that if elected he will allow his wife to be kidnapped, in the proud tradition of New Hampshire Republicans.
Polls in New Hampshire close in less than five hours!