The indictment of Rep. Chris Collins (R-NY), who was the first member of Congress to endorse Trump, has moved his House seat from solid Republican toward another potential Democratic target in November.
Dave Wasserman of The Cook Political Report wrote (sub. required and recommended), “Democrats have a potentially credible nominee in attorney and Grand Island Town Supervisor Nate McMurray, who had $81,000 on hand at the end of June. Grand Island (population 20,000) isn’t located in the 27th CD and Democrats were forced to settle for McMurray after Hochul declined to run, but McMurray should have the ability to raise much more now that Collins’s arrest is in the spotlight. The indictment won’t prevent Collins from using his personal wealth to attack McMurray as a carpetbagger, and Collins will attempt to neutralize his legal problems by citing McMurray’s use of his town email account for political purposes to equate him with Hillary Clinton. But at R+11, this seat is about as GOP-leaning as the PA-18 seat Democrat Conor Lamb won in March. It moves from Solid Republican to Likely Republican.”
Collins was already under investigation by the House Ethics Committee for nearly a year, so his problems were known, but now that he has gone criminal, the race for his House seat has turned into an opportunity for Democrats. Collins is one of the richest people in Congress, so it is expected that he will use gobs of his personal wealth to fend off any challenge to his seat, but after the Ohio 12 special election was a total disaster for Republicans, and the voters in that district will get to do it all over again in three months, the last thing that Republicans needed was one of the few congressional faces from their party who is willing to go on television and defend Trump getting federally indicted.
Another deep red House seat is moving toward Democrats, as Chris Collins is the face of pro-Trump Republican congressional corruption.
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