UNDATED (AP) - Republicans are having a tough time mounting
respectable challenges to Democratic incumbents in this year's
congressional campaigns. They're even having trouble challenging
green first-termers in conservative-leaning districts.
An exemption to this is in Texas. It's the Houston-area district
represented by Democratic Congressman Nick Lampson. He who won a
seat that for two decades had been the domain of former Republican
leader Tom DeLay.
DeLay's resignation under a cloud of scandal cleared the way for
Lampson's return to Congress in 2006. Lampson formerly had
represented another district in Texas until DeLay's redistricting
plan for the state after the 2000 census basically gerrymandered
him out of office.
But Lampson's new district is overwhelmingly Republican, and he
has a formidable challenger in Pete Olson.
Olson is a Navy veteran and a protege of popular Senator John
Cornyn and former Senator Phil Gramm, both Texas Republicans. The
Lampson-Olson race is considered one of the most competitive in the
(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)