…leaving no-one in particular to challenge the Republicans.
Instapundit has reminded me of this story about retired General Ricardo Sanchez’s dropping out of the Democratic TX-SEN primary. The very short version: Sanchez was the handpicked recruit of the DSCC, much to the cynical amusement of hardcore partisan Republicans who looked forward to savaging rabidly anti-war DSCC chair Patty Murray for recruiting and running the guy who ran the infamous Abu Ghraib prison. And then Sanchez’s campaign… pretty much went nowhere, to the point where the man has decided to drop out from the race three days before the filing deadline. As to his possible replacements… well, as Lawrence Person’s BattleSwarm Blog put it: “So, Texas Democrats: Right now the only two candidates on your side who have filed are Sean Hubbard and Daniel Boone. Or a guy that doesn’t look old enough to drink, and a guy who’s been dead for 191 years.”
In other words, it’s not quite at Alvin Greene territory; more like Tara Hollis territory. Tara Hollis, for those who don’t remember, is a schoolteacher who ended up being the Democratic sacrificial lamb in Louisiana’s last gubernatorial election; her party leadership adamantly refused to send someone up against Bobby Jindal to be slaughtered, so they let that poor woman do it for them. As you might guess, I respect Hollis for that; and I’m pretty disgusted with her state party leadership for their cowardice. And now the Democratic Party of Texas, too. Continue reading Ricardo Sanchez drops out of TX-SEN Democratic primary…
Jim Geraghty’s usually more clear-headed than this (background here and here: essentially, the Democrats are apparently recruiting retired General Ricardo Sanchez for TX-SEN, which is kind of awkward, given how they kept accusing him of war crimes and everything):
it seems unlikely that Republicans would try to use the Abu Ghraib issue against Sanchez in a Senate election.
Um. It’s Texas. The place that came up with the Pigf*cker Gambit*. Bringing up the inconvenient fact that the same people boosting Sanchez now are the same people braying for his blood during the Bush administration is a trivial exercise in comparison…
*Supposedly, LBJ in a Congressional race one told his campaign manager to spread around the rumor that his opponent was a known, well, pigf*cker. His campaign manager protested that LBJ himself knew that this rumor was blatantly untrue. LBJ happily acknowledged that – but he wanted it done anyway, simply to get his opponent to publicly deny the charge.
It certainly looks that way: the word is that Patty Murray is really and truly thinking that the best way to rally Texas Democrats to victory in 2012 is to recruit Ricardo Sanchez, the Army general who commanded coalition forces during the worst of the abuses done at the notorious Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq. This, of course, blighted Sanchez’s career; while no formal charges were ever made, the general was essentially passed over for promotion until Sanchez took the hint. Due perhaps to this lack of formal charges, Sanchez’s full culpability has never been established: reports indicate that the general’s authorization of interrogation techniques gave wide latitude to interrogators that was later horribly abused, but no credible evidence of his actual complicity in torture has been found.
Which (even if true) will never happen now, of course. If Sanchez runs as a Democrat, the groups that would have been most likely to push for further investigation at this late date – the antiwar Left – will not be interested in pursuing the issue. The antiwar Left will, in fact, enthusiastically support the man who was their head devil in their designated Hell on Earth… because to do otherwise would be to show some elementary sense of self-worth and dignity, and the antiwar Left has neither. Continue reading TX-SEN: DSCC recruiting Abu Ghraib commander?