Senate 2008 Guru: Following the Races

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

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Thursday Rundown

  • Kentucky: Businessman Greg Fischer has officially joined Lieutenant Colonel Andrew Horne in the 2008 Democratic Senate primary, and he's put up a campaign website. Fischer is expected to put a considerable amount of his own money into his campaign. As long as the primary remains positive, civil, and focused on the failings of Mitch McConnell, it should be productive in raising the Democratic candidates' profiles. Speaking of Mitch McConnell's failings, the Lousiville Courier-Journal slams Mitch McConnell's obstructionism in support of Big Oil.

  • Mississippi: As expected, GOP Gov. Haley Barbour is appealing to the state supreme court the decision against allowing Barbour to delay the special election to succeed Trent Lott until November. Mississippi blogger Will Bardwell offers a thoughtful analysis suggesting that there is a chance that the heavily Republican Mississippi supreme court might uphold the lower court's ruling, as the judge in the case relied heavily on previous legal opinions of many of the current supreme court judges. Meanwhile, following yesterday's WaPo story on the ethically-questionable relationship between Republican Senate-appointee Roger Wicker and the Aurora Corporation, local media in Mississippi have begun tracking the story.

  • Idaho: Former Congressman and Democratic Senate candidate Larry LaRocco has a terrific new radio ad playing (text in PDF format) that hits Republican Jim Risch on his lies about taxes:

    In the 2006 Gem State Voter guide, Risch promised to never support a tax increase. Oops. Risch then orchestrated a 20% sales tax increase. But it gets worse. Jim Risch also promised not to tax food. In fact, Jim Risch's tax raising scheme does tax food... making Idaho one of only a handful of states to fully tax groceries. What’s even more unbelievable, Risch’s 20% tax raise for you gives big tax breaks to out-of-state land owners and speculators.
    The ad can be heard online here. Republicans aren't just corrupt; they're also dishonest.

  • Wyoming: Attorney Nick Carter is considering a 2008 Senate bid against Senate-appointee John Barrasso.

  • North Carolina: The latest Survey USA poll of the 2008 Democratic Senate primary sees State Senator Kay Hagan leading businessman Jim Neal by a 37-29 margin, with still more than a third of the poll respondents undecided.

  • Minnesota: Al Franken has secured the endorsement of the 70,000-member state teachers' union.

  • New Jersey: State senator Joe Pennacchio is expected to formally enter the 2008 Republican Senate primary today. Meanwhile, it looks like the GOP establishment in Washington DC is getting behind Republican real estate developer Anne Evans Estabrook, if contributions from John Ensign and Mitch McConnell are any indication. The ability to self-fund her campaign may be one of the main reasons they're supporting Estabrook, as she has already put $1.6 million of her own money into her campaign.

  • New Mexico: The Federal Election Commission ruled that Pete Domenici can use campaign funds to pay for legal bills resulting from the ethics inquiry into his role in the U.S. Attorney firing scandal. I suppose that's better than Domenici contributing it to the NRSC, and it'll serve as a continual reminder to New Mexicans of the Republican Culture of Corruption.


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