Chuckie Schumer made a really dumb speech yesterday..the idea of Tea Party "elites" shoveling tens of millions to support radical right wing candidates is bizarre, as is his plan to somehow bypass the Constitution to prevent these types from ever getting elected. It's been pretty much laughed at and dismissed, even in the MSM, but it's worth while attempting to delve into Chuckie's mind as we ponder "what was he thinking?"
There are several possible explanations for yesterday's speech.
1. It's long been axiomatic that the most dangerous place on Capitol Hill is between Chuckie Schumer and a camera. It's possible that he just need his media fix..some attention, so he made a speech.
2. He felt the need to"one-up" his fellow New Yorker, Andy Cuomo who a week ago said that conservatives didn't belong in New York State. Schumer is now proposing that they don't belong anywhere in the country, especially NOT in the Congress. "I mean," Chuckie wonder plaintively, "come on, who elects these people anyways."
3. He wants to deflect attention from any and all things related to Obamacare; understandably so.
3. Schumer is a very astute politician. Gotta give the devil his due. He's most responsible for Democrats winning back the Senate, ( for which success he demanded they make him co-assistant majority leader) and above all, he can count. So, assume that he's already concluded that the Senate is gone in November. It's just a question of how many seats they'll lose.
4. Dick Durbin used to be the lone assistant majority leader. It was assumed that he'd eventually succeed Reid. With Schumer's rise, the conventional wisdom was there' d be a fight inside the Democrat conference to see who follows Reid. Durbin's pretty much disappeared from the national view these past months, while Chuckie's profile has risen.
5. While Reid has publicly said that he intends to seek re-election in 2016, that can be discounted simply because he had to say it. The majority leader, and the head of the party in the Senate, can't be a lame duck. It won't work.
6. When the Democrats lose the Senate, expect Schumer to engineer a putsch to force Reid out. It won't come to a vote; rather, look for Reid to announce that he won't run for minority leader because of the need to help care for his wife ( who sadly, is quite ill.) If the GOP has more than a two seat majority ( as I expect it will) Reid will announce his retirement, as if won't make a difference when Nevada's governor appoints a Republican to the seat.
7. There will be a general consensus in the Democrat conference that Reid needs to go. His time is up.
8. Schumer doesn't have a clear path to the leadership slot. Durbin's no longer a threat, but Chuckie has to watch out for Patty Murray. She's viewed as a deal-maker..someone who can make things happen. She's staking out a hard line position on the upcoming debt ceiling negotiations, which the base loves. And Schumer, because of his rough and tumble politics, and his abrasive style, hasn't made that many real friends inside his conference. They like him for putting them back in control, but given the opportunity to vote for someone else, especially for a female, they just might pick Murray. Especially so since the other key Democrat female, Pelosi, is all but viewed as a lock to retire after the Dems fail to take back the House for the third straight time. The fact that many of her key supporters in the House have already announced their retirement is a dead give-away. The only thing that would be surprising here is if Pelosi held a press conference to admit the obvious; that the Democrats will NOT win back the House, and that she will NOT again be Speaker.
Every time between now and election day, whenever Schumer opens his mouth, what comes out must be evaluated with the understanding that :
a)he expects the Democrats to lose the Senate,
b) he is running for minority leader
c) he's worried about Patty Murray