Jeff Rosenberg at TC Daily Liberal has been doing a precinct by precinct voter analysis of each of Minnesota's Congressional Districts based on results from the 2006 election. His most recent effort looks at CD5, which is my district.
I've received some grief in the past whenever I have expressed my thoughts that the GOP's prospects for any sort of success in CD5 are extremely dismal. But honestly, take a look at this map and tell me why I should think differently? All but a handful of precincts went for the Democrats by 60% or more of the vote. In two precincts the GOP was able to hold the DFL to "only" 50-52.4% of the vote. Those are the bright spots folks.
Rosenberg observes that the key for Democrats statewide in CD5 is not winning (already a foregone conclusion) but turnout. Franken is going to easily win CD5. However, if he wants to win the election he's going to need win it with heavy voter turnout. Rosenberg also notes that Obama could potentially have a significant impact on how CD5 turns out, which could push Franken over the top. The only problem with that analysis is that polls show Franken consistently underperforming both his party and the Democratic presidential candidate.
Rosenberg does have a map on voter volatility in the Fifth which shows that CD5 voters followed the party line in 2006. It will be interesting to see whether that holds true this year.
Meanwhile, I'll cast my ballot in November knowing that with the exception of the US Senate race, it will once again be like adding a drop of red to a gallon of blue paint. In the Fifth, we're a long ways from being anywhere near purple.