WASHINGTON, D.C. — A nationally recognized political report has moved a possible race for Congress next year in West Virginia from “Lean Democrat” to “Toss Up.”
The Cook Political Report said Friday state Sen. Evan Jenkins, R-Cabell, is drawing closer to longtime 3rd District Congressman Nick Rahall.
The following is Cook’s analysis of the possible race:
“Rahall won’t have President Obama to contend with on the ballot next year (he received just 33 percent here in 2012), but the administration’s decision to move forward with new energy regulations ensure the prevalence of the EPA in this race. Well-connected party-switching state Sen. Evan Jenkins is running as a Republican and narrowly outraised Rahall in the third FEC quarter, and his base in parochial Huntington could drain Rahall’s support in a critical area. Rahall has persisted here since 1976 and starts off with a small lead, but this looks like it is shaping up to be the race of his career.”
Jenkins switched political parties earlier this year. He reported raising $207,000 in the 3rd Quarter. He also said he has $200,000 on hand.