Senate 2008 Guru: Following the Races

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

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Tom Allen Is In and Other News

  • Maine: Congressman Tom Allen is now an announced candidate for U.S. Senate. MaineToday.com, AmericaBlog, and Swing State Project offer initial thoughts. Here is the Guru's initial thought. Tom Allen will win for reasons including, but not limited to:

    1) Susan Collins promised the voters of Maine she would only serve two terms. Collins lied to the voters of Maine.
    2) Susan Collins has a Presidential Support Score of about 80%. Bush has an approval in Maine of around 33%. Bush will drag Collins down.
    3) A majority of voters want to bring the troops home. Not Susan Collins. Iraq will drag Collins down.
    4) The conditions that led to the Walter Reed scandal occurred while Susan Collins was Chair of the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs. Collins provided no oversight or leadership in defense of our veterans' health.
    5) Susan Collins claims to be pro-choice, but she supported the nominations of both John Roberts and Sam Alito to the Supreme Court, which has since resulted in an erosion of a woman's right to choose.
    6) 2008 should be another Democratic-leaning year, with more voters trusting the Democratic Congress over Bush on most issues and polls indicating that voters currently lean toward a generic Democrat over a generic Republican. Further, Maine goes blue in Presidential years, which should also help Allen over Collins.
    7) The DSCC will be able to support Tom Allen more significantly than the NRSC will be able to support Susan Collins.

    Of course, Susan Collins as the incumbent will start out with a very healthy lead in the polls. Most voters are not paying attention to the race yet and Tom Allen is only beginning his formal campaign. But once voters begin to see a strong alternative to Susan Collins' duplicity and the Bush-Collins Iraq policy, expect Allen to come on strong.

  • Alaska: TPM relays that "Ben Stevens, son of Sen. Ted Stevens (R-AK), [is] one of the unidentified legislators involved in the VECO cash-for-favors corruption scheme." TPM also notes that "Ben’s dad, Sen. Stevens, is pals with one of the executives, Bill J. Allen, who pled guilty to bribery charges yesterday" and that VECO executives have contributed over $72,000 to Ted Stevens' campaign fund over the years. Any chance Stevens will return this dirty money? (Um... probably not.)

  • Kansas: White House Spokesman Tony Snow is, at best, a liar in suggesting that Kansas Governor Kathleen Sebelius had not alerted the White House to National Guard needs resulting from Bush's Iraq War diversion because Governor Sebelius had alerted the White House on at least five occasions between December '05 and February '07. I'd like to know whose side Pat Roberts (R-KS) is on in this situation - Governor Sebelius' or Tony Snow's. Any comment, Pat? Feel free to give Senator Roberts' office a call (202-224-4774) and ask whose side Roberts' is on between Governor Sebelius and Snow-Bush. (Quick reminder on approval-disapproval in Kansas: Sebelius 70-27; Roberts 48-39; Bush 37-58)

  • Bush wants 35,000 more soldiers prepped to deploy to Iraq. Yeah, that'll go over well.

  • 4 Comments:

    Blogger Contrapositive said...

    Psst: Bush's approval is down to 20% in Maine!

    Wow.

    3:53 PM, May 08, 2007  
    Blogger VA Blogger said...

    1) Susan Collins is giving the people of Maine a choice. If they think she should stop at two-terms, then they won't vote for her. But if they like the job she's done (and the most recent polling indicates that 3 out of 4 do), then they can vote to continue what, in the minds of Maine voters, has been great service.

    2) Susan Collins support score is among the lowest of Republican scores, and her party unity score is among the lowest in all the Senate. Trying to use these statistics will only high-light her record as one of the most moderate Senators serving today, certainly more moderate than Tom Allen has been in the House of Representatives.

    3) Susan Collins wants to bring home the troops, but not prematurely.

    4) Blaming Collins for the Walter Reed scandal will come across as a partisan smear, something that doesn't play well in Maine, especially given Collins' moderate record.

    5) An overwhelming majority of the voters oppose partial-birth abortion. You're not likely to take votes away from her by highlighting how she feels the same they do.

    6) Generic ballot test don't mean much, and the public's trust of President Bush means even less. By February of 2008, the Republican Party will have a new standard-bearer. And Maine "going blue" didn't help the Democrats in 2000 or in 1996.

    7) It remains to be seen if either Tom Allen or Susan Collins will need support, and it remains to be seen how much either side will be able to give. I cannot stress enough how utterly insignificant first quarter numbers are, compared to every subsequent quarter.

    Its nice to know that in your mind, the Democrats have already won five or six states. However, try to keep your head out of the clouds.

    4:00 PM, May 08, 2007  
    Blogger Marc said...

    Hi va blogger!

    I have to admire how forward you are with the GOP talking points. I don't need to refute them point by point, but here's two comments:

    1) She voted for the war when it was popular. The war has been a disaster. It is now decidedly unpopular. So she throws out some empty rhetoric about not liking the war while taking no pro-active steps to get us out of it.

    Contrast: Allen voted against the war, even though such a move could have hurt him politically. He continuously works to get us out of the mess in Iraq while Senator Collins enables Bush.

    2) Walter Reed is not Susan Collins's fault per se; it is the Bush administration's. And they were emboldened in their incompetence by members of their own party who would not hold them accountable---like Senator Susan Collins.

    This is going to be a hard-fought, competitive race. I'm looking forward to it.

    5:06 PM, May 08, 2007  
    Blogger Blue South said...

    Being a moderate doesnt always save you. Look at Chafee.

    Thanks contrapositive for the link.

    5:16 PM, May 08, 2007  

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