Senate 2008 Guru: Following the Races

Keeping a close eye on developments in the 2008 U.S. Senate races

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Shockwaves in Colorado and Shock in Montana

  • Colorado: Could the front-runner for the GOP Senate nomination, former Rep. Scott "McLobbyist" McInnis, be dropping out of the race? WaPo's Cillizza says that may be the case:

    Former Colorado Rep. Scott McInnis (R) is expected to end his Senate bid as soon as today, according to sources familiar with his thinking who asked not to be identified because they did not have permission to speak for the McInnis camp.
    The Denver Post suggests why:

    Not only does the national political environment still show voter dissatisfaction with Republicans, but GOP backers have paused at some of McInnis' past political decisions and current status as a lobbyist.

    Additionally, former Sen. Bill Armstrong, known as the "godfather" of the state GOP, isn't backing him, and has thrown his support behind former U.S. Rep. Bob Schaffer - who hasn't decided whether he is running.
    It also doesn't help McInnis that new CO-GOP Chair Dick Wadhams has such a close personal relationship with former Rep. Bob Schaffer.

    If McInnis does withdraw from the race, it does decrease the chances of a bloody GOP primary, but it vastly increases the chances that the eventual GOP nominee will be further to the right, giving greater potential to see independents and moderates disenchanted with the GOP, especially in a state like Colorado that has been trending blue for the last couple of election cycles.

  • Montana: It is still unclear if GOP Rep. Denny Rehberg will gamble on a challenge to super-popular Democratic incumbent Senator Max Baucus, but, if he does decide to gamble, he will have much to explain about this vote:

    Ranking Member Jerry Lewis (R-CA) offered an amendment during the committee markup which would have stripped language from the Iraq supplemental restricting the use of troops who are not properly equipped or trained...
    The GOP Leadership wanted to remove language that protected troops that were not properly equipped or trained, and Rehberg supported the GOP Leadership over the safety of our troops. Rehberg was apparently perfectly comfortable removing those protections for the troops. Is that supporting the troops? No. And Rehberg will have to explain himself. Montana Netroots, Intelligent Discontent, and Kagro X (here and here) offer more reaction.


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