Dem 51
image description
GOP 49
image description

Brian Kemp Is Trying to Have It Both Ways...

This is a story that was on tap for last week, but then bigger news pushed it aside. Gov. Brian Kemp (R-GA) sat for an interview with CNN, and talked about his presidential primary vote. Or, really, his non-vote. He proudly declared that he did not vote for Donald Trump, and then said... he didn't actually vote for anyone, and that he would nonetheless be voting for Trump in the general election. Here are his exact words, if you want a case study in bloviating:

I mean it would be interesting if I had've voted for him, it would be interesting if I didn't, it would be interesting if I didn't vote at all. But the bottom line, it doesn't really matter. I mean, he was the presumptive nominee before the primary ever got here. I mean, I didn't support anybody in the race. I mean, I was thinking about it, but just 'cause a lot of circumstances and the way things played out, didn't end up doing that, but said all along for the most part that I would support the ticket, and that's what I've always done, that's what I'm doing this November.

Add another one to the list of people who will not be appearing in a future edition of Profiles in Courage.

Kemp's revelation, such as it is, tells you two things. The first is that Kemp is absolutely going to be looking to move to Washington in the near future. Maybe he will run for the U.S. Senate, maybe he will run for president, maybe both. The second is that his crystal ball is murky, and he can't tell what the status of Trumpism will be in 2 or 4 years. So, he's setting himself up to claim membership in the never Trump resistance, but also in the Trump movement.

We suppose that might fly in a statewide election, since Georgia has a complicated relationship with Trump, and since Kemp is well-known and is reasonably popular statewide. But if he decides to run a national campaign for president? In that case, this mealymouthed, spineless, Lindsey-Graham-style crap won't get it done. As long as Trump leads the party, a person has to be 100% on board if they hope to succeed him, when that day comes. And once the Trumpist spell is broken, it will be by someone who was not willing to touch him with a 10-foot pole. But this middle-of-the-road stuff didn't work for Nikki Haley, and it didn't work for Mike Pence, and it's not going to work for Brian Kemp. (Z)

This item appeared on Read it Monday through Friday for political and election news, Saturday for answers to reader's questions, and Sunday for letters from readers.                     State polls                     All Senate candidates