The usually ultra-cool Karl Rove comes close to losing it when discussing Christine O’Donnell’s victory with Sean Hannity.
Charles Krauthammer, normally the model of insightful and measured wisdom, laments the foolishness of a vote for O’Donnell.
The ballots had barely been counted and the Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee announces it will not provide any general election funding to O’Donnell.
Mike Castle, the defeated 40-year political professional, refuses to endorse O’Donnell.
Seemingly, the basis of these reactions is that O’Donnell’s victory lessens the chances of Republicans taking over the Senate. But, is that and should that be the ultimate goal?
What good is a Republican majority should it be made up of members who won’t aggressively support a conservative agenda? Have we not observed the havoc caused by Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe?
Mike Castle’s voting record has been well documented. It is reasonable to assume that as another ‘moderate’ Republican Senator he would adopt the Snowe/Collins model and vote with the Democrats at the most inopportune times.
Certainly, a conservative majority in the Senate and the accompanying chairmanships, etc. are worthy goals. But, what value is a Republican majority if it will not aggressively support conservative policies? Is a 51-49 Republican majority better than a 49-51 conservative minority? The question is even more relevant considering the vulnerable Democrat Senators who will be facing reelection in 2012 and be less likely to blindly support new progressive legislation.
The Republican establishment’s attacks on O’Donnell have focused on her life experiences, not her policies and philosophies. She’s been through a foreclosure. Over 1 in 10 Americans share that humiliating experience. She’s had problems paying her bills; who the hell hasn’t?
It may become surprising if what some consider personal weaknesses morph into strengths in the eyes of empathetic Delaware voters.
Can O’Donnell win? The pundits predicted 30,000 voters would turn out for the O’Donnell/Castle contest. The final tally was almost 58,000. Castle outspent O’Donnell 10 to 1…and lost by 6 percentage points.
O’Donnell has become the underdog’s underdog. She’s fought (and is still fighting) the Republican establishment. She’ll be battling conventional wisdom that flatly states she has no chance of beating her Democrat opponent in November.
But, she will become the poster child of the uprising occurring in the country today.
Will that translate into campaign contributions and support from all over the country? Is Delaware’s historically electorate as liberal as its image? Who knows?
What we do know is that a fired-up conservative base in Delaware believes the future of the country is a lot more important than preserving the power base of the establishment Republicans.
And, the establishment Republicans…as they did with senatorial primary victories by Rand Paul, Sharon Angle, Marco Rubio and others…continue to pout, and pout, and pout…