Saturday, October 24, 2009

Republicans endorsing a Conservative over a Republican

Following the story of Chris Daggett in NJ...

The most recent buzz here was Palin's endorsement of the Conservative party candidate. (I heard Michael Medved do the same on his radio show. Dick Armey, Fred Thompson, and Steve Forbes are other notables who have thrown their hats in his ring.)

Here are the WSJ editorialists on the congressional race in NY...

Republicans are telling themselves that a political wave is building that could carry them to big election gains next year. Judging by their performance so far in a special election in New York, however, they deserve to wander in the minority for another generation or two.

The November 2 contest will replace nine-term Republican John McHugh, who resigned to become Secretary of the Army. President Obama carried the district along the Canadian border with 52%, but George W. Bush carried it twice and Republicans outnumber Democrats by 45,000 or so. With voters alarmed about the economy and runaway spending, this ought to be an easy GOP retention.

Yet party bosses have managed to nominate a rare Republican who could lose: Assemblywoman Dede Scozzafava, whose liberal record has caused voters to flee to Doug Hoffman, a business executive who is running on the Conservative line. Mr. Hoffman has more than 20% support in the latest poll, which is only a few points behind Ms. Scozzafava, who is only a little behind Democratic lawyer Bill Owens....

...the best result might be for Mr. Hoffman—who promises to caucus with Republicans—to emerge as the main opponent to the Democrat. A divided GOP vote could elect the Democrat and add to their majority. But Mr. Hoffman might even win if enough voters abandon Ms. Scozzafava. James Buckley won a Senate seat as the Conservative candidate in New York in 1970 against a pair of major-party liberals.

Above all, a defeat would teach Republicans that running candidates who believe in nothing will keep them in the minority for years to come.


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