KS-04: Hartman Won’t Run

Major bummer:

Onetime Republican congressional candidate Wink Hartman has ended his flirtation with the Libertarian Party, announcing that he won’t take the small party’s nomination in the general election.

“After several days of prayerful reflection, I have decided not to seek the Libertarian Party’s congressional nomination,” Hartman said in a statement. “I am humbled by the Libertarian Party’s consideration and belief in me. Through this process, I have gained additional respect for their dedication to the fight for limited government.”

Hartman said he would support Republican candidates in the November election, but stopped short of endorsing his own former Republican rival, Mike Pompeo, who beat him in the GOP primary last month.

Democrat Raj Goyle, down by just three points in his latest internal poll, is still running a surprisingly strong race given the GOP slant of the district, but a Hartman Libertarian bid would have turned the dynamics upside-down. It sounds like someone convinced the seriously wealthy Hartman that his re-entry would have only helped Democrats steal the seat. Tough luck for us.

Pompeo, who has yet to earn the endorsement of any of his primary rivals, is still in the running for GOP Dickbag of the Year – but his chances of getting elected to the House just got better.

16 thoughts on “KS-04: Hartman Won’t Run”

  1. This is a very Republican area, and Goyle’s path to victory depends on the support of Republicans who don’t like Pompeo. Having Hartman in the race would give these Republicans a more attractive option than Goyle and probably strip him of whatever support he has from right-tilting Independents as well. In other words, Goyle’s support would be down to left-of-center voters, and it would be tough to win even a plurality with them alone.

    In a one on one, Goyle can run to the center unimpeded, as Pompeo appears well to the right. Without Hartman in the race, he can make his case to disaffected moderates and conservatives and build a coalition that can get him to 50%+1.

    I think this is the same scenario in Alaska: people disagree with me, but I think Scott McAdams has a better chance of winning if he has Joe Miller alone than if he has Murkowski running to the center as well.

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