Rep. Donna Edwards of Maryland has been named one of four co-chairs of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee's program to win Republican House seats this fall.
Talk about a tough assignment. Most GOP seats that were ripe for Democratic picking got plucked in the last two elections. Now the momentum is flowing the other way.
Independent analysts expect Republicans to take 20 to 30 Democratic seats this fall, possibly more. Out of 76 congressional seats in play in 2010, only 14 are currently held by Republicans, according to the latest analysis by Stuart Rothenberg, publisher of the non-partisan Rothenberg Political Report.
Of course, a Republican seat that goes Democratic (a number that could well be in the low single digits when all the votes are county) would offset a Democratic loss and, conceivably, could make the difference in determining which party controls the House in 2011.
Edwards joins Reps. Allyson Schwartz and Patrick Murphy of Pennsylvania and Bruce Braley of Iowa as co-chairmen of the DCCC's Red to Blue program for the 2010 cycle.
DCCC Chair Chris Van Hollen of Maryland (Montgomery County) praised the "talented leadership" of his "battle-tested" Prince George's neighbor in a prepared statement. He said Edwards would "bring that experience and determination to the Red to Blue program."
The DCCC also said, in announcing her willingness to join the program that provides financial, strategic and PR assistance to Democratic campaigns, that "Edwards knows what it takes to win tough races and will bring that experience and determination to the Red to Blue program."
Edwards does know what it takes to unseat a member of Congress--at least within the Democratic family (she bounced incumbent Democratic Rep. Al Wynn in 2008).
She also seems to know how to protect herself. Late last year, Prince George's County State's Attorney Glenn Ivey announced that he was planning to challenge Edwards in the Democratic primary this September; then, a few weeks later, he quietly dropped that idea.
Edwards may still face a primary challenge, but she is currently considered a strong favorite for re-election.