« Jill Abramson, What Was Judy Working on in July 2003??? | Main | SCOTUS-a-Go-Go »

October 09, 2005


Man, my pajamas are not keeping me warm. It's starting to get cool in New England.

It is fun watching George Will's head explode on Sunday TV. Matthews, Mitchell and the tweety crowd think Miers may not pass muster.. Brownback and Coburn may not allow her out of committee.

But then what?

more the the point, if Dems vote for Miers, how do they run with cronyism?

Then what? I think Bush heads to Mars, gets stuck at Customs when all he can do is repeat the phrase "two weeks," and then his face explodes, revealing Robert Bork underneath.

I don't know. But here's a fun tip for our readers: you can almost always confuse emptywheel by making pop culture references. Go ahead. Try it!

Speaking of fun tips, for a more reasoned approach to bird flu than I could ever do, go here.

I should add, on a slightly more serious note, but still one not without an emptywheel reference, that Arlen "Scottish Compromise" Specter might still be counted on to get that nomination out of committee. It depends how pissed Coburn and Brownback are, of course, but how would a vote to report unfavorably come out? The president (others publicly committed to the concept) still gets the "upperdownvote," but conservatives don't have to go on record in support of the nomination.

Kagro re:Mars, I think you are getting the two Republican leaders with approval ratings around 37% confused.

I'm not so sure Specter is committed to getting the nomination to the floor.

An unfavorable report, though, is just Specter's style, in that he gets to claim he did what he wanted, and at the same time wash his hands of the whole thing.

It's the Judiciary Chairman's version of, "I didn't inhale." He doesn't support her, but he doesn't screw the leadership, either.

Bork was defeated by the committee, but still voted on by the entire Senate, and Specter was chair then if I remember correctly. So, as Kagro X points out it's definitely possible to get the nominee to the floor even if it loses the committee vote.

If you were on Hackett's campaign, how would you handle Brown entering the race?

If you were in Brown's camp, how would you handle the situation with Hackett?

If you were DSCC chair, how would you handle the situation?

more the the point, if Dems vote for Miers, how do they run with cronyism?

They could still vote against. Those who have said positive things could just say that after the hearings they had some concerns.

I hope Miers gets more Democratic nay votes than Roberts, just on the qualifications and cronyism angles alone.

Ooh, tough stuff, Newsie. So tough, in fact, that instead of charging you the regular nickel, it's gonna cost you shared access to your Hotline subscription.

Well, this can be approached in two ways. One, what I might say if I were them, and; two, how to actually handle the situation. As in solve it. What to say is, of course, much easier.

First, Hackett. Well, a realistic assessment of things would be a good place to start. Neither Hackett nor Brown are actually declared, so I'd say there's plenty of room for maneuvering. Even dropping out of the race, at this point, is an easy enough thing to do, if that's the route you decide to take. So that being the case, I personally would have counseled that there was no need to get your back up about it.

Still, if there really was a face-to-face meeting in which personal assurances were given which were later reneged on, the anger is understandable. But the public position on that anger was not. Still, there was a very valid reason to express disappointment, if the stories are in fact true. My own preference would have been for a statement along the lines of, "Sherrod and I have very different approaches and very different visions of how we would represent Ohio in the Senate. I respect his and he respects mine. That's why I was reluctant to enter the race so long as there was a chance that a quality candidate like Sherrod thinking about a bid. It was only after he assured me that there was no such chance that I stepped up to the challenge. It's a great disappointment to me that he's put me in this position, but if I didn't believe I was right for the job, I wouldn't have spoken to him about it in the first place.

If he wanted the job and wanted my backing, he could have had it, and I'd have been out there fighting for him from now through election day. But now if he wants it, he's going to have to come and take it."

To me, that's plenty "tough guy" enough. My biggest problem with Hackett the candidate (as opposed to Hackett supporters -- a separation eerily reminiscent of my feelings about Howard Dean) is that he's so invested in the no-nonsense Marine image that it seems like he thinks he can solve any problem just so long as he puffs his chest out far enough.

I'm sure that's entirely unfair. But there it is.

Next, Brown. Same logic applies as to being undeclared, of course. Other than that, if there really were face-to-face assurances made, then there's no getting around the fact that Brown has a hurdle to overcome in explaining his decision to run. Publicly, I would think the message has to be one of competing visions for Ohio, because there's just no other compelling and believable reason for doing things this way. Of course, if there were no such assurances -- or Brown thinks it's feasible that they could be denied -- then the reaction can be very different. But assuming that Brown would concede that there were at least discussions, then I think the story has to be one in which he lays claim to the mantle of progressivism, and paints Hackett as a one-issue candidate. Is he? Don't know. I doubt he'd say so. Fair? Probably not. But plausible? Sure. For all the talk about how Hackett has gained "national exposure" from his race, I don't see how anybody could reasonably deny that what attention he got was inextricably linked to his status as a Marine and an Iraq vet. Does his depth go beyond that? We don't know for sure. But we do know that we don't often think charitably about the intellectual depth of people whose most recognizable moments are the ones in which they call other people sons of bitches.

DSCC Chair Schumer? Public statement-wise: We're glad to have this embarrassment of riches in terms of quality candidates to take back Ohio's Senate seat. Privately: Get your shit together, you two. If you want to have a primary, that's fine. But one of you is going to lose, and want to run for something else instead at some later date. You owe it to yourselves and to Ohio Democrats that you not conduct yourselves in a way that preserves your viability for your next race.

Then, back slowly away.

As to Miers, I haven't really seen anything from Dems that commits any of them to an "aye" vote. But I haven't been searching for it, either. For Harry Reid, for instance, to say that she's a "nice lady," seems to me to be more killing with kindness than endorsing.

Good answers by Kagro. I'll expound on only one part of the Schumer piece. The other thing Schumer does is get on the phone--which he's probably already done--to some of the main players in Ohio and national politics, which I would imagine would be the Ohio Education Association, the Trial Lawyers, the AFL-CIO, SEIU, AFSCME, the UAW and the Steelworkers. Also find a couple of the big donors and fundraisers. Assess their support for the two candidates. If they think DeWine will likely win, they'll probably want Brown to continue to amass seniority in the House, especially with the possibility of a Dem takeover. Then Schumer gets them to deliver the tough message to Brown: stay where you are.

If they think DeWine can be beat, they're probably going to go with Brown, because they know where he's at in policy terms, and because they'll figure that he's more experienced than the "shoot-from-the-mouth"-prone Hackett. Brown will hire real campaign pros, and he'll raise major instutitional money on his own. And again, Schumer recruits the interest groups to deliver the message, this time to Hackett: look, he's our guy, and not only will we help him out financially to get through this primary, we'll communicate with all our members. You may think you can beat us, but chances are slim. But if you step aside now, we will find something for you in the future. You're a young guy, and we'll always remember that you put Ohio and the party before your own aspirations.

Then, assuming Strickland or Coleman wins, either make him LG, or find him a prominent place in the administration where he can get good publicity, and get him to move into a CD where in 2008 he can take on a Repub incumbent or possibly an open seat.

Geez, Newsie, you should have disclosed your endorsement of Bob Brigham's position when you asked me those questions!

"Sherrod Brown's indecision has been annoying at best. I have more faith that a Hackett campaign would be a better one than a Brown campaign. Plus, there are advantages to having an Iraq war veteran speaking about thie administration's incompetence in the execution of the war and indifference to the soldiers and their families."

Did you know that he had enlisted you on his team? Or did you say something detached and analytical and get drafted because it suited his purposes?

Just wondering.

(Not really. I think I know the answer.)

I'd never be in cahoots with Brigham. What's the drafted reference? I think I'm missing something.

There are things Brown has that Hackett doesn't, but I can't help but be annoyed taht Brown's indecision is creating a situation that OH Dems didn't need.

Oh, and if you want to pay my college tuition, then, you're welcome to my Hotline access. :)

Nice answers. I can see where you and DHinMI are coming from in your answers.

Kagro, I know where she goes to school, and trust me, it would be far cheaper to pay for Hotline than her tuition.

The reference is to his use of your quote in his latest Daily Kos diary. I think it's supposed to demonstrate how you and others who are quoted are standing shoulder to shoulder with him in "speaking truth to power."

Am I subsidizing any loans for your tuition, as a taxpayer? I want that access, damn it.

Ok, I went to check on that post. I'm going to stay out of some of the OH posts until things settle down a bit. Some are getting too emotional about it.

No taxpayers subsidize my tuition. Family pays tuition and rent. I work to pay for some books and all other living expenses. Anyways, with that kind of tuition, I'd better be getting access to Hotline and Roll Call.

The comments to this entry are closed.

Where We Met

Blog powered by Typepad