Sometimes it’s better to keep quiet

Especially if you’re these three.

Say what you will about John Fetterman, at least he was smart enough to keep quiet at his rally with Biden.  Biden, meanwhile, was even more incoherent than usual.  If there is a red wave in November, I’ll be curious to see if the whispers about Biden’s diminished abilities becomes louder amongst Democrats.

Truss Resigns, Boris Returns

I didn’t expect Liz Truss to be Prime Minister for a very long but I figured that she would at least make it to 6 months.  Instead, she quit after 44 days and brought Labour back from the dead.

For now, everyone knows Boris Johnson is going be PM again by the end of next week, right?

Swalwell News

It’s always a good day to share a negative story about Eric Swalwell:

Rep. Eric Swalwell’s campaign drops thousands more on travel, luxury hotels: report

Swalwell is a good example of what you get with gerrymandering.  He is widely agreed to be one of the dumbest members of Congress and people are still ridiculing not only his presidential campaign but also the news that his ex-girlfriend was a Chinese spy.  But he comes from a solid blue district and, until a local Democrats primaries him, we’re stuck with him in Congress.

The Best Thing That Could Happen To Joe O’Dea

Trump slams ‘stupid’ GOP Colorado Senate candidate after 2024 remarks

Considering how unpopular Trump is in Colorado, this is probably the best thing that could have happened to Joe O’Dea.  Much like Lee Zeldin in New York, O’Dea is a Republican who originally wasn’t given much of a shot but who has recently been showing unexpected strength in the polls.

Working to O’Dea’s advantage is that he’s running against one of the most vapid senators in Washington, Michael Bennet.  Bennet is so forgettable that most stories on this race don’t even mention that he was briefly a candidate for 2020 Democratic presidential nomination.  He dropped out of that race even before Tim Ryan but he did manage to outlast Eric Swalwell.

Is there anyone in Washington who didn’t run for President in 2020?

Governor Lee Zeldin?

It has been interesting to watch the polling in New York’s race for governor.  Originally, no one was paying attention.  New York is so blue that even Andrew Cuomo was able to get elected three times.  No one expected Lee Zeldin to seriously challenge Kathy Hochul.

The last few days, though, the race has been tightening.  While Hochul still leads, Zeldin is only a few percentage points behind and that would suggest that the momentum has shifted in the final weeks of the campaign.  Along with the rise in crime, the struggling economy, and the Democratic Party’s decision to focus on social issues instead of the economic day-to-day issues that most voters are concerned about, Hochul’s problem is that people already know her so the people who are going to vote for her have already made up their minds to do so.  In most polls, she’s polling between 47-50% and that’s probably the ceiling for her.  Undecided voters, though, are now discovering Zeldin and enough of them seem to like what they say and, more importantly, dislike the job that Hochul and the Democrats are doing in Albany.

For the record, I would be stunned in Zeldin pulled it off.  New York is very, very blue.  For many people in New York, voting for Democrats is as automatic a thing as getting up in the morning.  But the same was true when George Pataki defeated Mario Cuomo in 1994.  If Zeldin does win in November or even comes close, that means it’ll be a good night for the GOP.

Walker and Warnock

I’m like a lot of people, in that I was dreading the Raphael Warnock/Herschel Walker debate but it turns out that rumors of Walker’s incompetence as a candidate were exaggerated.  In fact, after watching the debate, it’s pretty clear that Walker won the debate.

Some of that is Warnock’s fault.  Watching the debate, I got the feeling that Warnock assumed that he would so easily walk over Walker that he could get away with not adequately preparing.  Warnock is definitely the more polished candidate but he was almost too polished.  His answers felt rehearsed, in much the same way that Tim Kaine’s answer felt pre-written in his only 2016 debate with Mike Pence.  (Picking Tim Kaine for her running mate, instead of Cory Booker or even Julian Castro, was one of Hillary Clinton’s biggest mistakes.)

As for Walker, he came across as someone who might not be a smooth politician but who actually cared about the election and who was willing to do the work necessary to make his arguments.  Warnock seemed to take it for granted that he would win just be showing up.  Walker proved him wrong.

It really all came down to hubris.  That’s been the biggest issue for the Democrats ever since Biden was elected.  They’ve been so convinced that the Republicans will self-destruct that they never bothered to come up with a Plan B.  It reminds me of what I saw during the 2020 elections in Texas.  The Democrats running for Congress and the State Legislature were so convinced, due to the results of 2018, that they were going to win that few of them bothered to start paying attention to what the voters wanted until the last two weeks of the campaign.  Suddenly, candidates who had been bragging about their efforts to defund the police suddenly started running tough-on-crime ads.  It didn’t fool anyone.

Is Walker going to be elected?  I don’t know.  But he’s a far stronger candidate than many are willing to admit.  Imagine if this race goes to a run-off and the Senate majority is hanging in the balance.  If that’s the case, I feel for the poor people of Georgia, having to deal with all of this for an extra month.

Changing The Narrative

Of course, on the same day that a truly terrible inflation report comes out, the J6 Committee tries to change the narrative by issuing a subpoena that Trump is going to ignore and which will never be enforced.

At this point, most people just want to be able to wake up with some sort of confidence in the future of the country.  Biden and his people don’t seem to understand that and that’s why they’re about to lose the House and probably the Senate as well.

Never Let Them Catch You

NBC News is getting some heat for its interview with John Fetterman

Someone at NBC news actually did their job for once and now they’re catching Hell.  Honestly, there was no reason why Fetterman couldn’t step back for health reasons and work on his recovery.  The Democrats had two acceptable alternatives — Connor Lamb and Malcom Kenyatta — that they could have replaced him with.  Fetterman would have been feted as a hero and, in 2024 or 2026, he probably could have gotten any nominated for any office he ran for.  Insisting on staying in the race showed not only a good deal of hubris but also a serious underestimation of Dr. Oz and Pennsylvania Republicans.

The freakout over the interview has really been something to see.  It’s easy to understand why the Fetterman campaign assumed that the press would cover for him because the one member of the press who didn’t is currently being attacked by all the other members of her profession.  Never let them catch you performing real journalism, I guess.

The Election Will Go On

2nd Congressional District election will not be postponed after candidate Paula Overby’s death

This is an interesting story about a Minnesota election law, one that I think is unique to that state.  If a major  candidate dies within 79 days before an election (as Paul Wellstone did in 2002), the law requires that a special election be held.  In 2020, the candidate running for the Legal Marijuana Now Party in the 2nd district Congressional race died in September and Tyler Kistner, the Republican candidate, argued that the law required that the general election be held in February.  The Federal Appeals Court rules that the law did not apply to Federal elections (despite the fact that the law was passed in response to the death of Paul Wellstone).  Angie Craig went on to narrowly win the election, with the dead candidate taking more than enough votes that his presence could have theoretically effected the outcome.

Now, in 2022, Kistner and Craig are having a rematch and, once again, the candidate for the Legal Marijuana Now Party has died just a few weeks before the election.  History repeats itself, except there doesn’t seem to be any question that the election will go on as normal.

Personally, I think Minnesota’s law makes sense and I wouldn’t mind seeing something like that for federal elections as well.  But it’ll probably never happen on a nationwide basis, not with the control of Congress up for grabs.  Special elections are just too unpredictable.