Scandal and Triage Define The Election

The true theme of the 2010 mid-term elections is clear: panic? No, it’s anger! Wait, no. Oh, right. It’s all about confusing the message.

Whether it’s been increasingly bizarre defense and attack ads courtesy of Delaware’s Christine “I’m Not A Witch” O’Donnell (rightfully parodied by SNL here) or Chris Coons going the “No Comment” route as the New York Times reports. Ignoring the “Mama Grizzly” trope that Newsweek tried to explain, the message behind the Delaware Senate race is tough to understand.

For the Times, Frank Bruni breaks it down as “She: cheerleader pretty. He: science-club-president plain.” This can be applied to roughly 90 percent of politics with ten percent leftover for ads and scandal.

Politico runs the idea that both parties are hemorrhaging members and sacrificial lambs to the media slaughter:

All of it is part of Washington’s biennial exercise in cold-blooded, risk-reward analysis: Figuring out which candidates to fund in the homestretch and which ones to cut loose. It’s the Beltway equivalent of choosing which of your children to put in the lifeboat, as the party committees decide which candidates to throw overboard because they aren’t viable enough to warrant the investment.
Which is also highly accurate when most newscycles become dominated by the spectacular pony shows that an on-camera interview with Alvin Greene can generate. Even better?
Beware a Republican Congress or else Obama will be impeached–sez Jonathan Chait in The New Republic complete with ominous subhed “The coming impeachment of Barack Hussein Obama.” This isn’t actually happening now, but it could! And so could a complete Dem sweep on November 2nd and so could a cloudy day in June.
This election year has been rife with over-analyzation to the point that it’s even grating for regular policy wonks trying to juggle whether or not a “viral” ad will help or hinder a candidate’s message.

Election 2010 Round-Up: 43 Days and Counting

Six weeks until the 2010 election and the Tea Party remains the big discussion point for wonks across the country. Here’s what’s been happening over the weekend:

  • The Untied Nations Summit and Clinton Global Initiative begin today in New York City. [USA Today]
  • CNBC’s John Harwood hosts a town hall event in Washington DC with President Obama today at noon. [CNBC]
  • The New York Times cites Obama aides as prepping a united front against the Tea Party by tying them to the GOP…
  • …yet Politico‘s own White House sources say the Times is “100 percent wrong.”
  • And the Washington Post cites an AP poll claiming both Republicans and Democrats are disliked by voters, which always leaves a third-party option.

Checking In on Today's 2010 Primary

If you’ve been living under a rock, good for you. If not, you know today is primary day for New Hampshire, Delaware, New York, Wisconsin, Maryland,Massachusetts, Rhode Island–and even Washington, D.C itself, but that’s only relevant if you’re inside inside the Beltway.

Politico provides the complete rundown for what to watch for today and how November could shape itself:

Several marquee House and Senate primaries are on tap. In Delaware, Rep. Mike Castle, the establishment favorite and the most popular Republican in the state, is fending off an insurgent challenge from the right in his bid to win the state’s open Senate seat. In New Hampshire, a crowded field is seeking the GOP nomination in order to face Democratic Rep. Paul Hodes in November in another open Senate contest.

The most closely watched House race will take place in New York, where Democratic Rep. Charles Rangel, the embattled former Ways and Means Committee chairman, faces a handful of challengers in his bid for a 21st term.

The New Hampshire, Maryland and Delaware’s races provide more of a microcosm, as both of those races represent the first main battle between so-called “fringe” tea-partiers and traditional Republicans. MSNBC stresses the losses that incumbents have suffered this election year and wonders if we’ll see the promised tea party/”traditional GOP” brawl Democrats have been speculating for the last few weeks. The brunt of this focus in Maryland falls to Brian Murphy, endorsed by Sarah Palin, and struggling with a race that he can’t seem to win–literally as Bloomberg reports–and the Washington Post’s live-blog of Maryland is here.

In New York, Rep. Charlie Rangel may be making his last dance amid speculation of fraud and investiagations. But it won’t be rage and revolution in the streets of Albany, according to the New York Times. It seems everyone’s just fed up and tired of the political system that inspired a bagel tax.

For anything related to D.C. politics, we turn to TBD who break down the big local race: incumbent Adrian Fenty vs. Vince Gray. On one hand, things look rather dire for Mayor Fenty and TBD even wonders how he’ll fare in the current job market.

Washington City Paper’s Loose Lips spoke with Fenty earlier today after the age-old “faulty voting machine” rumor leaked out. To see how this started, look no further than City Paper’s late July profile on Gray’s rise as a threat to Mayor Fenty’s campaign.

Polls will close tonight at 8 pm in DC and stagger elsewhere, allowing for the proper speculation and nail-biting that live-blogs and Twitter thrive on.

Then again, it’s never too soon to air colorful ads referencing fighter jets, The Wizard of Oz and…god knows what else John Dennis is thinking per the Washington Wire.

50 Days Until The Election…

So what’s happening? So glad you asked.

  • Jusitn Bieber is proof you can market anything with his name and it will become popular. For example, “WHAT IF BIEBER WAS A REPUBLICAN?! THEN WHAT WOULD HAPPEN?!!” (Politico)
  • Sharon Angle’s last-minute departure from a debate prompts Jon Ralston to point out this is a Senate, not a High School, race. [CNN]
  • The Delaware race for Mike Castle’s seat is becoming TEA PARTY V. REPUBLICANS rather than about the candidates. (Washington Post)
  • This election will be rough for Dems, but there’re seven races that could lessen any blows. (Washington Post)
  • Not tied to an election per se, but The Atlantic Media Company is shifting Hotline, National Journal and Congress Daily to be free. Thanks, Politico! (NYTimes)