Monday, October 16, 2006

GOP "strategies" for victory

The Christian Science Monitor offers a textbook lesson in overselling the story in the headline.

In a piece entitled "GOP Strategies for Blue-state Victories," the Monitor goes against the conventional wisdom to examine states in which the Republican Party is on the attack against the Democrats.

Democratic knees will buckle in the face of this "strategic" political onslaught from the Repubs:

    * In Maryland, the GOP's Senate candidate is steering clear of parts of the national party's agenda - and winning some African-American voters.

    * In New Jersey, the Republican for Senate tries playing the corruption card.

    * In California, celebrity is trumping party loyalty in the governor's race now that Arnold Schwarzenegger has recast himself as a moderate.
And no, I didn't leave any out.

In the case of Maryland, the Monitor says GOP senate candidate Michael Steele is making Republican inroads with black voters by running as a "different" kind of Republican.

That's the key to running as a Republican in a blue state in the 2006 elections: Run away from the White House and the party, and run as an independent voice. At least in Maryland, the strategy is keeping this race within the range of the possible for the GOP underdog.

"Democrats are a little bit worried about this race," says Jennifer Duffy, who handicaps Senate races for the Cook Political Report. "Given the [political] environment, given how blue the state is, that they haven't put it away is troubling to Democrats," she adds.

One of three prominent black Republicans in national races, Steele hopes to make inroads in what has been a keystone in the Democratic base.
Yeah. "Different," as in "not really a Republican."

And, as the story also mentions, Democratic candidate Ben Cardin is running ahead of Steele by 6 to 15 points, depending on which poll you read.

In New Jersey, the Monitor examines the senate race between Democratic incumbent Bob Menendez and Republican Tom Kean, Jr. Kean's strategy for blue-state victory is to allege corruption against Menendez.

New Jersey Senate candidate Tom Kean Jr. won't stop smiling - despite the crush of reporters aggressively lobbing questions at him.

Why did he pull out of a League of Women Voters debate? Was he calling his opponent corrupt? Was he running a smear campaign?

The candidate doesn't answer directly, sticking with the script that he thinks will win him a US Senate seat in usually "blue" New Jersey. "Corruption is a significant issue. How many more times do we have to see politicians taken out of county courthouses with raincoats over their heads?" he asks.
Mr. Kean, a state senator, is the GOP's best hope for picking off a Democratic Senate seat in November - and the outcome could determine whether Republicans retain control of the Senate.
Well, yeah, Tom. Corruption is a significant issue. Rubberstamping a corrupt president's illegal war is significant. Putting congress up for sale to the highest bidder is significant. Making a conscious decision to protect a sexual predator of children because you don't want to lose his congressional seat is sho 'nuff significant. Bob Menendez might not be as clean as the driven snow (but, then again, he might be), but good luck riding the anti-corruption wave as a Republican this year. That might be just a little more counter-intuitive than a GOPer can afford to be in 2006.

And in California, GOP Governor Arnold Schwarzenneger has reversed his political free-fall by recasting himself as as more reasonable kind of Republican.

He's gone from "bickerer to bargainer," says the Los Angeles Times, the state's largest newspaper. This year he has joined Democratic lawmakers in supporting a wide range of issues, from lowering the cost of prescription drugs to increasing the minimum wage to curbing global warming.

"He worked well with the Democratic legislature, and they rewarded him with legislation that made him into a new person, a moderate," says Robert Stern, president of the Center for Governmental Studies.

The result: His approval ratings have risen some 19 percent in the past year, a rare spike in a short time, analysts say. Now nearly 7 in 10 of likely voters say Mr. Schwarzenegger will be re-elected, according to a Sept. 27 poll by the independent California Field Poll.
So, the GOP strategy for blue-state victories is to shed the skin of a Republican and run against your own party. In three states. Wow.

Good luck with that.


betmo said...

one of the traits of a repub is their ability to bald face lie while looking at you- and not think twice about it. hopefully folks won't be fooled by the outside and look inside to see the same rotting piece of humanity these folks have always been and will continue to be.