Senate 2008 Guru: Following the Races

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

Monday, December 17, 2007

Monday Items

  • Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) released their list of the top ten ethics scandals of 2007. On the list:

    Ted Stevens still sitting on Senate Appropriations;

    Senate Ethics Committee looking into Sen. Craig, but not Sen. Vitter
    Both are indeed highly scandalous. (HT: Think Progress) I recently commented in depth that the Senate Ethics Committee should be much busier than they seem to be.

  • Oregon: On Saturday, the Guru mentioned that he had heard rumors that the Constitution Party candidate for Governor of Oregon in 2006, Mary Starrett, is considering a 2008 Senate bid. Well, I engaged in a little investigative journalism and simply contacted Ms. Starrett. I mentioned the rumor and asked if a 2008 Senate bid was something she was considering. Her response by e-mail:

    Anything's possible...and let's face it Gordon Smith needs a spanking, don't you think?
    First off, that certainly isn't a "Nope, not considering a bid." And it certainly sounds like she's no fan of Gordon Smith. Like I mentioned on Saturday, she got 3.6% in the OR-Gov race, so her entry could cost Gordon Smith two or three percent. Stay tuned! Meanwhile, it looks like Speaker Jeff Merkley had a great event this weekend with Senator Jon Tester.

  • North Carolina: Public Policy Polling is out with their latest round of Senate polling; and, while Elizabeth Dole's approve-disapprove still languishes at a weak 46-38, she does break 50% for the first time this cycle against potential opponents, as she leads State Senator Kay Hagan 51-39 and businessman Jim Neal 52-37.

  • Virginia: Looks like Republican Jim Gilmore is getting a primary opponent after all, state delegate Bob Marshall.

  • Kentucky: Could Mitch McConnell see an opponent in the 2008 Republican Senate primary in the person of conservative Democrat Bruce Lunsford? Crazier things have happened.

  • South Carolina: Lindsey Graham's 90-day deadline until Iraq should be considered a "failed state" is up. Any comment, Lindsey?


    Blogger VA Blogger said...

    If Starrett is running an anti-Smith platform, why would she pull voters from Smith, and not Merkley?

    12:41 PM, December 17, 2007  
    Blogger jak said...

    Uh, it's called running on an anti-Smith platform from the right, where he's widely perceived to be vulnerable. Are you really that stupid, or is this a consequence of selling your soul to the devil/Republican Party?

    1:53 PM, December 17, 2007  
    Blogger VA Blogger said...

    Why would she neccesarily be running the campaign from the right?

    1:54 PM, December 17, 2007  
    Blogger jak said...

    You're right, va blogger. Starrett is the national communications director of the Constitution Party because of her undeniably left-wing politics. According to Wikipedia, her 2006 gubernatorial platform only included:

    *Support for CfG-style, unregulated free-market laissez-faire capitalist economics
    *Support for an unconditional right to keep and bear arms (since we all belong to well-equipped militias per the Second Amendment)
    *Opposition to abortion, embryonic stem cell research, gay and immigrant rights
    *Questioning/denial of global warming

    Surely, these are votes which will come right out of Merkley's hide. In the 2006 election, we saw how fringe candidates Stan Jones (L-MT) and Frank Gilmour (L-MO) siphoned off support for the Democratic challengers.

    OH, WAIT...

    2:31 PM, December 17, 2007  
    Blogger Neal said...

    Republican Senators like Gordon Smith,John Sununu,Susan Collins,and Norm Coleman are getting smacked on the both sides of the end.

    Liberal Democrats are seriously targeting those Republican Senators because they represent states that lean Democratics- Their is no reason why we should not elect a Democratic Senator in Maine,New Hampshire- Minnesota and Oregon. Gordon Smith cancels Ron Wydens vote. Just as Norm Coleman cancels Amy Klobachurs vote.

    Conservative Republicans are targeting Smith because he is not Conservative enough. HE is a big government Conservative. This is similar to the Green Party undercutting a Democratic Party victory- Because Democrats were behaving like Republicans.

    2:39 PM, December 17, 2007  
    Blogger IMR4350 said...

    If it weren't so painfully sad it would be both comical and amusing........... We the People (of Oregon) had the opportunity to FINALLY have a governor who understands and upholds the Constitution (both Oregon's and U.S.) as well as the moral and ethical principles upon which this nation and state were founded ( see the statues of Jason Lee and the Circuit Riding Preacher outside of the Oregon capitol ). Ah, but no.... the so-called 'conservatives' whimpered like bad puppies with their tails between their legs and immediately surrendered----"Oh, she can't win... we have to support the viable candidate.." So, instead of striving for some real change these sheep-le backed a R.I.N.O. ( Republican-in-name-only ) rather than MAKING something good happen !! It's a bit like the current presidential race and the establishment ignoring Ron Paul.......but people are waking up, especially young people, and maybe there's hope there. Mary Starrett is one brilliant lady and needs to be taken seriously, whether in a bid for senator, or-? To ignore such a potential treasure is to do so at great loss and harm, both to ourselves and future generations. It's way past time for some significant changes, and Mary Starrett is one of the most important we could possibly consider.

    3:51 PM, December 17, 2007  
    Blogger Stephen said...

    VA Blogger may have a point as I watched it happen in PA in 2004. A far right candidate: James Clymer gathered 4% of the vote, presumably from Arlen Specter, but as he attacked Specter from the right and Toomey did it during the primary) and Hoeffel attacked from the left, it actually helped solidify Specter moderate bonofides. Did I spell that right?

    4:41 PM, December 17, 2007  
    Blogger Se├ín said...

    Hey guru, what do you think of Dodd for Senate Majority leader?

    4:51 PM, December 17, 2007  
    Blogger jak said...

    Va Blogger explicitly suggested that Starrett's presence on the ballot would pull Merkley votes to Starrett. I'm willing to entertain for a moment the notion that Starrett could pull centrist Merkley votes to Smith if Starrett inadvertently reinforces Smith's ill-gotten reputation for being a moderate. But I don't believe for a second that Starrett will deliver more Merkley votes to Smith than Starrett will take from Smith herself, ultimately yielding a net gain for Merkley.

    Starrett and her Paultard ilk appeal to ideologues like imr4350 above who cast themselves as combatants in a grandiose struggle of epic, almost biblical, proportions in the battle between good and evil. These aren't the sort of people who are likely to appreciate the nuances of Smith's political chicanery and legerdemain.

    P.S. Why do screwy ultraconservative female politicians make reference to physically spanking their male opponents? I seem to remember Barbara Cubin threatening to spank a Republican colleague for objecting to her language on the House floor. I guess it's good to be a Republican. As a Democrat, I usually have to pay for that kind of action!

    9:43 PM, December 17, 2007  
    Blogger Anthony_Distler said...

    It's not just Democrats. David Vitter had to pay for it, too.

    11:41 PM, December 17, 2007  

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