Mar
09
2015
3

The Last Temptation of Russ Feingold.

Oh, poor Russ Feingold.  He must be so sorely, sorely tempted to run: “Former U.S. Sen. Russ Feingold’s departure from the State Department has political experts predicting a highly contested rematch of the 2010 race in which the Madison-area senator was defeated.” Russ Feingold, of course, lost to Ron Johnson in that race; and as Senator Johnson is at the top of most people’s Senators Most At-Risk lists it makes a good deal of sense that Feingold might want a rematch. I can’t imagine that losing in 2010 made Feingold feel good about himself, after all.  The man had (still has, I suppose) a carefully-constructed mental vision of himself as being a Servant of the People: that the People took the opportunity to remove him from service very probably eats at Mr. Feingold.  At least a little.

But there’s a solution, right? Russ Feingold runs for office again, beats Ron Johnson, and goes back to his old life.  And then everything will be good again and there will be pie.  No problems there, no problems at all… well. There’s a small problem. (more…)

Mar
03
2015
3

Martin O’Malley not running for MD-SEN seat, surprisingly.

You’d think that he’d be all over this, but no: “Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley said Tuesday he will not run for Senate in 2016, taking himself out of what could be a messy Democratic primary race to replace retiring Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski.” That is… very interesting. Maybe there really is an internal Democratic movement afoot to give Hillary the old heave-ho convince the Distinguished former Secretary of State that she should relax a little, and enjoy her twilight years.  Certainly O’Malley would have much more of a shot in a completely open Presidential field…

Or maybe O’Malley just wants to spend the rest of his life cashing fat lobbying checks. I could see that, too.

Feb
25
2015
3

Ted Strickland (D) launches his futile bid for Ohio-SEN today.

Such a pity… well, no.  It’s not.  But the proprieties must be observed: “Former Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland will seek to challenge Republican Sen. Rob Portman next year, launching what could become one of the top-tier Senate races of 2016… Strickland, who has been talking to donors and supporters in recent weeks, announced his decision to run in an email to supporters this morning.”  Strickland has three major problems, here:

  1. He’s 75 years old [sorry: 75 in 2016 – ML]. That’s a bit old for a freshman Senator; and, yes, that’s a legitimate concern. The Democrats would get a max of two terms out of him, tops, and I’m being kind in pretending that they’d even have the chance.
  2. His past record. This article here mentions Strickland’s habit of spending the last fewe years working for people and groups who more or less hate everything that gives Ted Strickland his crossover appeal; to that I’ll add a little matter of some local corruption from 2010 (the fallout from that is still merrily bubbling along). There’s an existing file on this guy, in other words. One that the Portman campaign is already perusing, assuming that they didn’t just memorize it.
  3. And then, of course, there’s the minor matter of the 2014 governor’s election. No, not the 49/46 squeaker from 2010; the 64/33 blowout from 2014 that Ted Strickland didn’t have the nerve to even show up for. And he should have shown up for it; the fact that he didn’t pretty much confirms the conventional wisdom that Ohio is better off under John Kasich’s leadership than it was under Strickland’s.

(more…)

Feb
25
2015
8

John Boehner essentially ignores Harry Reid’s ‘request,’ tells Senate to send over DHS bill.

This response is either a display of the Hawaiian good-luck symbol to Harry Reid, or simply an indication that the Senate is just going to have to shove this thing into conference. Your guess is as good as mine: “U.S. House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner on Wednesday said House Republican leaders were waiting for the Senate to act on legislation to fund the Department of Homeland Security.” I mean, personally I would prefer the Hawaiian good-luck symbol, but I can’t pretend that a conference to resolve the differences in the House and Senate DHS bills is a low probability. Guess we’ll see.

Feb
17
2015
3

Shorter Washington Post: DSCC not yet prepared for 2016 Senate races.

I’m not saying that February of 2015 is late to be having stories like this with regard to the 2016 elections…

Less than four months after the painful losses, Democratic officials have begun charting a path back to Senate control that runs through more than half a dozen blue and purple states where the presidential campaign is expected to boost Democratic turnout. But even in that favorable terrain, the party faithful fear they could fall short if marquee challengers don’t step forward, since their talent pool is shallow and they are trying to unseat a well-prepared group of Republican senators.

…but if this is still the situation in, say, July – well. Truth of the matter is, the Democrats really should have a better idea of who they’re going to be running with. That they don’t yet is, well, kind of fun.

Written by in: Politics | Tags: ,
Feb
07
2015
1

I’m gonna cheat a little and just link to the RS piece.

It’s on Senate retirements.  Sorry, but it’s been a long day. Not a bad one – my mom’s visiting – but a long one. I may call it early; it’s been a slow day Outside anyway.

Written by in: Politics | Tags:
Feb
06
2015
7

Quote of the Day, @TheRickWilson Tells It Like It Is About An Alan Grayson Senate Campaign edition.

Oh, this is some prime stuff. Gold. Gold, Jerry!

Republicans, for their part, seem positively giddy at the prospect of [Alan] Grayson in a Senate general election. As Rick Wilson, a prominent Republican consultant in Florida, chortled, “He’d be a mixture of Sharron Angle, Todd Akin, and Hannibal Lecter.” While Wilson said Grayson would be nearly unbeatable in a Democratic primary, he gave him little chance in a statewide election in November. Wilson did add the caveat that he could see a path to victory for Grayson “if all the other Republican candidates were found to be part of a child pornography ring.”

…Yeah, maybe a little unfair to Sharron Angle, but she did under-perform.

Via @BenjySarlin, whose quote of the title (“Florida’s Craziest Liberal Wants to Be a Senator. It’s Nice to Want Things.”) reminds me of one of my late father’s favorite sayings (“It’s Good To Want.”). So I am actually well-disposed and beaming serenely at the the Daily Beast, at this precise moment in time.  …Yeah, I dunno how long that’ll last, either.  Hopefully until after lunch?  I like cheerful lunches.

Moe Lane

Feb
04
2015
7

SecDef nominee Ash Carter makes the novel argument that he can protect the DoD from the PotUS.

So this is where we are, now: “Ash Carter vows to be a “stickler for the chain of command” if confirmed by the Senate as the next secretary of defense, according to the opening statement prepared for his confirmation hearing Wednesday.” As Glenn Reynolds notes, this is pretty much semantically equivalent to Ash Carter saying that he’ll keep Barack Obama away from the controls at the Department of Defense until the end of the Obama administration. Which is… great news, actually; and God help us all that it is.

Feb
03
2015
13

Alan Grayson thinking of running for FL-SEN. …Because Jesus loves me.

Well, He loves everybody; but apparently I did something really, really good lately. Like, spectacularly good.

…because oh man but that would be fun.

Moe Lane

PS: Click the link for the icing on the cake. There’s apparently only one thing that might keep Alan Grayson from running, and it’s arguably even a more entertaining scenario.

Jan
09
2015
7

Quote of the Day, Actually, Dude, It’s Not A Stunning Fact At All edition.

I mean, I get that Ronald Brownstein of the National Journal has a narrative to feed, but come on.

It’s a stunning fact that a Republican Party that still depends on whites for 90 percent of its votes has more viable minority leaders to consider for its 2016 presidential ticket than do Democrats.

It’s only stunning if you assume that white people will not vote for minorities. Now, I grant that this is true for Democrats, historically speaking: and before you say ‘Barack Obama’ let me just note that the President typically comes across as the reincarnation of Woodrow Wilson*. At any rate, getting a white Democrat to vote for a minority in a statewide race or better is like pulling teeth with a pair of pliers.  It can be done, but not gently. (more…)

Jan
09
2015
4

Tom Steyer reportedly mulling California Senate run.

Or, as I would put itTom Steyer thinking of eliminating middleman by signing up to directly lose a Senate seat: “Billionaire environmentalist Tom Steyer is mulling a run for Barbara Boxer’s Senate seat, according to a person close to the former hedge fund trader.” …and there’s the trouble, right there for Mr. Steyer: all those adjectives. ‘Billionaire’ is at best, neutral. ‘Environmentalist’ is not really all that helpful, even in California. And ‘hedge fund trader’ is going to be a really fun club with which to beat the prospective candidate. (more…)

Jan
08
2015
4

Sen. Barbara Boxer (D, California) cuts and runs.

“Prepare the viands, prepare the foods, prepare the strange wines, for tonight is indeed a great night!” – The Martian Chronicles.

Barbara Boxer is retiring.  If you listen, you can hear the faint sounds of Democratic politicians all across California as they get up from their breakfasts and calmly go to open up their weapons caches. For there will be a Democratic war in the primaries over this.  A California Senator’s seat?  Oh, my, yes, but there will be a Time Of Troubles.  Lots of people want that job, and they won’t be shy about trying for it.  I cannot wait to see how far the Democrats involved will go…

Moe Lane (crosspost)

PS: The Republican party of California needs to do precisely two things, here.  One: it must limit the viable candidates for this seat to two, no more, no less, and I don’t care if the CA GOP has to enforce this with a club with a nail in it.  Two: those two candidates must absolutely resolutely ignore each other before the jungle primary.  If they can’t say anything nice about each other, they shouldn’t say anything at all. I do not say that following this advice will ensure victory: but I will say that following this advice could not hurt.

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