Monday, August 18, 2008
It's not my party (you would cry too if it happened to you)
Republican elected officials dressed to attend a GOP event without being recognized
Boy, it is sure tough to be a Republican Senator these days. They are even ditching their own party's convention so as not to be seen at a Republican event.
The good news for the GOP is that the growing list of Republican Senators who plan to miss their party's convention in Saint Paul did not go up by one today. The bad news for them is that Senator Norm Coleman admitted the obvious in explaining why he would be there and in so doing blew everyone else's cover.
Aside from two retiring Senators-- Chuck Hagel, who refused to endorse John McCain (in fact Hagel announced last week that he won't make any endorsement this year) and Larry Craig (who is not going as a service to his party) many Republicans up for re-election are not going this year. Of course they are claiming it is so they can campaign. Of course. In fact it is to campaign-- and to be NOT seen on television at a Republican event. That is how far the GOP brand has sunk by now. The Republicans who have announced they won't be there include Susan Collins of Maine, Gordon Smith of Oregon, Ted Stevens of Alaska and Elizabeth Dole of North Carolina-- all in tough re-election campains this year-- and Kansas Senator Pat Roberts (who according to the last poll was up by about twenty over Congressman Jim Slattery). I guess it's such a bad year for Republicans that even a twenty point lead in Kansas isn't enough to be seen at a Republican convention. A few weeks ago Smith even ran a misleading ad in Oregon in which he falsely left viewers with the impression that he had the support of Barack Obama. About the only thing Smith hasn't called himself is 'a Republican.' Which he is, of course.
Two other Republican Senators facing tough election fights, John Sununu of New Hampshire and Roger Wicker of Mississippi, still are mulling over whether they want to go.
And what was the 'good news' today? Minnesota Senator Norm Coleman finally said he will be there. But only because he can't very well escape.
Coleman told Minnesota Public Radio that he's going, but
"If the convention wasn't in St. Paul, I wouldn't be at the convention"
McCain has made a big deal about the fact that Joe Lieberman (I-CT) will be there. Well, Lieberman might as well show up. Because it looks like there will be a lot of elbow room in the VIP section.