SSP Daily Digest: 6/12

MO-Sen: I’m not sure if Roy Blunt’s task just got easier or harder. Tom Schweich, a law professor and former ambassador, who started exploring the Missouri Senate race and landed some surprisingly hard blows on Blunt, yesterday decided not to run and instead endorsed Blunt. Schweich was a friend of moderate ex-Sen. John Danforth and was understood to be something of a Danforth proxy in the race. So Blunt should be happy to be free of that challenge, right? No, because he’s still likely to face a challenge from former Treasurer Sarah Steelman, who hasn’t formally announced her candidacy but has been stepping up her attacks on Blunt as an unprincipled insider. Without Schweich in there splitting the outsider anti-Blunt vote, Steelman becomes more viable.

FL-Sen: Here’s an endorsement from a key player for Rep. Kendrick Meek: he was endorsed by Miami mayor Manny Diaz, who’s recently been associated with possibly running in FL-25 or for Lt. Gov. next year. Another interesting Meek tidbit that just came out: Meek has gotten more tobacco industry money than anyone else in the 2010 election cycle (more than, say, Jim Bunning or Richard Burr). Meek has close ties with the Tampa-based cigarmaking industry.

OH-Gov: What’s that? An endorsement from a puny mortal like Manny Diaz? Screw that, because John Kasich just got an endorsement from Chuck Norris. (Which is odd, because I thought the fact was that Chuck Norris didn’t endorse politicians; politicians endorse Chuck Norris.) Ted Strickland was reportedly last seen running in terror on the shoulder of I-70, trying to get out of Ohio before sunset.

CA-03: A second credible Dem has gotten into the race against the newly-vulnerable Rep. Dan Lungren in this R+6 district in the Sacramento suburbs. Bill Slaton, director of the Sacramento Municipal Utility District (and overseer of the electrial grid for 1.5 million people), filed to enter the race, joining confusingly-named fellow Dem (and Elk Grove city councilor) Gary Davis.

CT-04: The GOP has landed an interesting challenger to go against freshman Rep. Jim Himes: 24-year-old Will Gregory, a “young, fiscally conservative, socially moderate Republican” activist who applied for a White House job during the Bush administration and, when asked to name two administration policies he agreed with, couldn’t provide an answer. State Senate minority leader John McKinney also seems likely to get in the race for the GOP and would bring a bit more, um, gravitas.

NY-29: Tom Reed, the mayor of Corning, New York, announced that he won’t run for a second turn but that he was looking at another public service opportunity that he couldn’t be specific about, but that sounded suspiciously like running in the 29th against freshman Rep. Eric Massa.

FL-Ag. Comm.: Ordinarily even we at SSP wouldn’t get so far down into the weeds as to post results of a poll of the GOP primary for the Florida Agriculture Commission race, but the results are too unbelievable to pass up… unbelievably funny, that is. The idea that the guy who used to be #3 on the House leadership ladder would try to demote himself to Florida Agriculture Commissioner is odd enough, but Rep. Adam Putnam is trailing a state Senator, Carey Baker, 26-17, in that race.

NY-St. Senate: As everyone sits and waits to see whether state Senator Hiram Monserrate should stay or go (he’s vacillating on his coup participation, meaning the whole thing turns on him now), two interesting new developments. One is that the coup may lead to ouster of Dem leader Malcolm Smith and his replacement with John Sampson, who apparently has a better relationship with the dissidents. Also, there’s buzz (though nothing confirmed) that Barack Obama himself has been on the phone with not just Monserrate and Pedro Espada, trying to get them back into the fold, but also with Darrel Aubertine (although it’s unclear whether Obama would encourage Aubertine to stay in the Senate as the Dems try to get their narrow edge back or to get into the NY-23 race that Obama opened up for him by promoting John McHugh).

36 thoughts on “SSP Daily Digest: 6/12”

  1. John Danforth, a moderate? Is that what we’ve come to? John Danforth was always a principled pro-life conservative, no moderate. I respected him, because unlike many anti-abortion demagogues, he actually believed that life doesn’t end at birth and also cared about other matters of morality, such that he was one of the Republican senators who voted to override President Reagan’s (or was it George HW Bush’s?) veto of divestment from South Africa legislation. Danforth, a minister, used to fund a grant for aspiring grad students to go to the school of their choice, and it always included a line item for child care. My mother was a recipient of the grant, which also funded a great babysitter for me. Danforth later decided to use the fund to support poor people in St. Louis, instead. Danforth is admirably principled, ethical, and anti-racist, but he is not a moderate.

  2. Roy Blunt lost the last time he tried for statewide office here In Missouri.back In 1992 he lost the Governor’s nomination to crook William Webster who lost In a landslide

    to Mel Carnahan.His Daughter Robin our popular secretary of State who just won reelection In 2008 with 61 percent

    of the vote.On the Democrats side you have the secretart of state daughter of a late popular Governor against the father of a very unpopular Governor.This Is why danforf wanted someone else against Blunt In The republican primary.

    Missouri Is on path to having 2 female Senators.

  3. Mississippi

    From the Clarion Ledger:

    Clarksdale attorney and businessman Bill Luckett is trying to raise money to run for Mississippi governor 2011, saying he wants to reduce poverty and improve public education because he believes the state “does not have to accept a perpetual spot on the bottom rung of America.”

    The Democrat, who owns the Ground Zero Blues Club and the upscale Madidi restaurant in Clarksdale with actor Morgan Freeman, said Thursday that he is forming a political action committee called Progress for Mississippi. He also has been hiring campaign staff members.

    Not sure how major a candidate he’ll be, but he does have an interesting quote:

    “You can’t have grown up in the Mississippi Delta with any kind of sensitivity or any kind of feelings and not come out of that aligned with the Democratic Party, unless you’re just a racist or something,” Luckett said.


    From the Review Journal:

    Could Oscar Goodman be Nevada’s Jesse Ventura?

    The larger-than-life Las Vegas mayor confirmed Thursday he is considering a run for governor as an independent candidate not affiliated with a political party.

    Under term limits, Goodman’s third and final term as mayor ends in 2011. A Democrat, he has periodically floated the idea of running for governor or other higher office over the years, but the idea of an independent run is new.

    …By running as an independent, Goodman could position himself as a “total maverick,” appealing to voters who are disaffected with partisan politics.

    “That’s the way I ran as mayor,” he said. “I do it my way. It’s always worked for me.”

    A former mob lawyer, Goodman, 69, is known for a flamboyant style that he says helps promote Las Vegas as a destination. He has an endorsement contract with a brand of gin and routinely appears at public events with a scantily clad showgirl in full headdress on each arm, accompanied by an Elvis impersonator.

    …Getting on the ballot as an independent candidate is remarkably easy. For statewide office such as governor, it takes a petition with the signatures of 250 registered Nevada voters, to be submitted in early February prior to the March candidate filing period, Clark County Registrar Larry Lomax said.

    Independent candidates must not themselves be registered with a political party, so Goodman would have to switch his registration from Democrat.

    …In a general election with a Democrat, a Republican and Goodman, Goodman would be likely to take more votes away from the Democratic candidate, potentially helping the Republican nominee to victory, Damore said.

  4. is a stepping stone to the Governor’s mansion. Putnam is aggressive enough to try for that in the future should he get elected statewide. The Ag. Commissioner will get a lot of contact from the big agriculture industries in Florida and interests which is a good thing/campaign donor base for a future state-wide campaign. It is not a step down in any way.  

Comments are closed.