Monday, September 13, 2010

Down To The Wire In Delaware

Tomorrow is an interesting day in that we are going to see primaries in Delaware, Wisconsin and New York. And the Senate races there are not without interest.

While conservative businessman Ron Johnson is a cinch to win in Wisconsin and a good bet to even take the seat, it is the races in new York and Delaware that have created the most controversy.

They point out important question for the GOP..who's going to ultimately come out on top, the party's conservative base or the GOP establishment? Is it better to have a Republican in Congress even if he or she votes with the Democrats a substantial amount of the time?

In New York, conservative Joe Dioguardi is well ahead of his more establishment oriented opponent David Malpass - who some GOP pundits say would run better against the rincumbent Senator Gillibrand, who Governor David Paterson appointed to fill Hillary Clinton's seat.

Rasmussen shows Gillibrand over Dioguardi by 20 points...but that's a pre-primary poll and Gillibrand has yet to face any kind of campaign from a united GOP candidate.

But even more interesting is the race in Delaware for Joe Biden's open Democrat seat.

Congressman Mike Castle is about as GOP establishment as they come. He's been in government forever, somehow managing to become a millionaire on a legislator's pay, is fairly left leaning and has voted with the Obama Administration on several major issues - although not on ObamaCare, as some people have reported.

He has statewide name recognition, is polling well ahead of Democrat challenger Chris Coons and appeared to be a shoo-in to take the seat...until Christine O'Donnell showed up.

O'Donnell has run for this seat before and lost,and while she has a background lobbying and advocating for conservative causes, her legislative experience is nil.Nevertheless, she's mounting a successful primary challenge to Castle, complete with last minute endorsements from Sarah Palin, Mark Levin, and Jim DeMint and help from Tea Party activists.

If she wins, as she every well might, the open question is whether she can garner enough support in a Blue state like Delaware to win.

Dioguadio is facing the same question in New York, but the difference is that he's a clear underdog there, while Mike Castle would likely win the seat in Delaware easily.

There's also a question, frankly, on how much support the National Republican Senate Committee would give Dioguardio and O'Donnell, since they represent the conservative insurgency, which the GOP establishment reacts to like a vampire to a cross.

My own opinion is a bit more nuanced than either side, since I favor Ronald Reagan's old dictum of supporting the most conservative candidate you can find who's likely to win.

What we really need in DC is a conservative majority, not necessarily a Republican one.

There's no doubt in my mind that Mike Castle is not a conservative.In fact,team him up with the Maine Gals, Lindsay Graham and John McCain and you could have the spectacle of Barack Hussein Obama claiming he now has 'bi-partisan support'. That does not bode well for 2012, when anti-incumbent sentiment is still likely to be pretty pronounced.

On the other hand, Christine O'Donnell has little legislative experience and even more importantly, a decent shot at losing the seat to a Democrat.

Delaware has only three counties. Sussex, in the southernmost part of the state is the most conservative. New Castle in the north is the Bluest part of the state ( and also the most populous) and Kent generally splits down the middle.

The question in Delaware is actually pretty simple. First how likely is Mike Castle to vote with the Obama Administration on key issues? If the answer is very likely, than the choice for a candidate obviously has to be Christine O'Donnell - since there's nothing to lose either way aside from have someone with an 'r' behind their name.

It really is that simple.

(via memeorandum

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