The National Republican Congressional Committee added 1st District candidate John Koster to its “Young Gun” list, making him eligible for additional support and raising the national profile of his close race against Democrat Suzan DelBene. Candidates listed as Young Guns are considered by the NRCC to be most likely to win in November, based on campaign structure, fundraising and polling. They must have established “a clear path to victory,” according to the website.
DelBene is already a member of the Democrats’ comparable Red to Blue program, and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has already begun airing ads that are critical of Koster on social issues. National party groups use these lists to decide where to invest their money. Koster’s addition to the Republican list shows momentum and should help put an end to questions about whether he is a favorite of national Republicans.
“John Koster has met organizational and fundraising benchmarks and has established himself as a strong contender,” said a statement from the Young Guns program.
Neither Koster, a Snohomish County Council member, nor DelBene, a former Microsoft executive, has released third quarter fundraising totals, but a recent poll showed the two candidates within a few points of one another, with Koster ahead. Both have bought television advertising time starting this week. Their starkly different views on issues and the closeness of the race make the 1st one of the region’s most watched.