News from the Votemaster
During a heated campaign, each party attacks the other one relentlessly, but sometimes it gets very petty. Consider Kentucky, where minority leader Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) is in a pitched battle with Kentucky secretary of state Alison Lundergan Grimes (D). The Republican party has now filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission claiming that Grimes got a discount on the bus she rented from her father's company to travel around the state. If true, the amount of the discount would be an illegal corporate campaign donation. The Democrats are countering that McConnell had breakfast with an airline executive in the Senate building and then received a $10,000 check for his campaign from the executive. If they had walked outside and the check was handed to McConnell on the street it would have been legal, but on government property it is illegal to campaign. Of course, it is August now, no time for talking about the big issues that separate McConnell from Grimes.
The midterm elections are still more than two months away but the battle for 2016 is in full swing. A group called "Ready for Warren," modeled after the "Ready for Hillary" group has been set up to encourage Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) to run for President in 2016. Warren just made it clear she is not ready for them. She had her lawyer send a letter to the Federal Election Commission formally disavowing any connection with the group. She has stated many times that she has no intention of running for President in 2016. Of course, she is probably assuming that Hillary Clinton will run, in which case she will support Clinton. If Clinton decides not to run, it will be a whole new ball game.
On the Republican side, unlike Warren, Gov. Rick Perry (R-TX) really does want to run for President, despite his fumbles during the 2012 campaign and his recent indictment for misuse of his office. Both Republicans and Democrats are are trying to help him. Conservative Republicans like him because he is a macho conservative with views they adore. Democrats like him because they think he would be a weak candidate likely to say things that go over big in Texas without realizing that they are disastrous on the national stage.
Potential presidential candidate Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) is also in the news. Although up until now he has focused on actually doing some of the things called for in the autopsy RNC chairman Reince Priebus did on the 2012 elections, namely widen the party's outreach to minorities and young people, now Paul has felt obligated to toe the party line. In particular, House Republicans, at the behest of the tea party caucus, want to force the Obama administration to deport illegal aliens who came to the U.S. as young children. Obama has said that it is not the fault of the children that they were brought here illegally and that the Justice Dept. has better things to do with its scarce resources than go after these people. The lesson here is that even an unorthodox candidate like Paul has to kowtow to what the House Republicans want, making it difficult for him or any other potential candidate to escape them during the Republican primaries. His problem, of course, is that he is worried about being forced to say things in the primaries that will come back to haunt him in the general election. But apparently he has concluded that unless he follows the House Republicans now and in the primaries, there will be no general election campaign for him to worry about.
We have only one new poll today, in Wyoming. Rasmussen ran the poll because the Democratic candidate for the Senate running against. Sen. Michael Enzi (R-WY) was chosen only this week in a primary. Now he has a baseline for future polls--not that there is a lot of doubt about the outcome. Still, some Wyoming newspaper or television station might be interested in some other Wyoming race and want to see if Enzi is going up or going down.
Enzi was first elected to the Senate in 1996 and reelected in 2002 and 2008, the last two times with 73% and 76% of the vote, respectively. One has to wonder what kind of person would bother running for the Democratic nomination knowing that he or she will have to spend 3 months driving around this large and more-or-less empty state talking to farmers who like Enzi and fundamentally disagree with you on almost everything. Under these circumstance, the Democrats came up with the ideal candidate in Charlie Hardy. Hardy is a retired Catholic priest who spent years in South America as a missionary trying to convert the natives. Clearly this was not an easy task, probably even more difficult than trying to convert Wyomingites to become Democrats. He probably never measured his success in South America by whether he got 51% of the people to join his team and probably won't judge his work as a candidate that way either. Every soul saved is a soul saved.
|State||Democrat||D %||Republican||R %||I||I %||Start||End||Pollster|
|Wyoming||Charlie Hardy||27%||Michael Enzi*||63%||Aug 20||Aug 21||Rasmussen|
* Denotes incumbent
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