CA17: Roll Call says Honda among most vulnerable

Roll Call has deemed Rep. Mike Honda, D-San Jose, one of its “10 Most Vulnerable Members of 2014.”

Here’s the readout:

The congressman is worse off than he was six months ago, and momentum has shifted away from him in this Silicon Valley-based district.

California Democratic operatives said Honda’s campaign may have taken its early lead in polling for granted. At the end of March, fellow Democrat Ro Khanna’s campaign had built a nearly $2 million war chest. That’s almost double what Honda had in the bank then.

More telling is that Khanna’s team — led by former top Obama campaign strategist Jeremy Bird — has forced Honda to go on defense, pushing him to agree to a debate schedule.

Honda has even lost support from one of the region’s largest newspapers, The San Francisco Chronicle. The paper endorsed Khanna over the weekend, calling him “an upgrade.”

Also, Khanna launched his third television ad last week, focusing on the aftermath of the 2010 closure of the New United Motor Manufacturing Inc. (NUMMI) in Fremont:

Josh Richman

Josh Richman covers state and national politics for the Bay Area News Group. A New York City native, he earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri and reported for the Express-Times of Easton, Pa. for five years before coming to the Oakland Tribune and ANG Newspapers in 1997. He is a frequent guest on KQED Channel 9’s “This Week in Northern California;” a proud father; an Eagle Scout; a somewhat skilled player of low-stakes poker; a rather good cook; a firm believer in the use of semicolons; and an unabashed political junkie who will never, EVER seek elected office.

  • Arete88

    The sudden willingness to debate whoever goes through the 3 June primary a pretty clear indication that the momentum has shifted, and that Honda realizes it. Big question is whether its too little too late – Khanna has been way better prepared for recent events, and that seems to be making a big impact. It’s clear to me that Khanna has not only the better plan moving forward, but the energy to make it happen.


    Roll Call has noticed what has been happening here for more than a year. Every weekend Ro Khanna and volunteers are knocking on voter’s doors throughout the district every weekend and it has having impact. Ro’s position on not accepting donations from special interests and PAC’s also resonates. Mike Honda continues to accept contributions from Big Pharma and PG&E along with not living or even having his district office in the district. Need we say more…

  • JohnW

    SF Chronicle endorsement definitely not a good sign for Honda. The Chronicle seems to be evolving a lot more toward the political middle. I was pleased to see them endorse Marshall Tuck over incumbent Torlakson for state schools czar.

  • RRSenileColumnist

    Chron is a shadow of its old self. Its readership is based on folks who can’t get a handle on that new-fangled Internet stuff. Besides, you can’t rest a paint brush on a computer keyboard