In a bizarre attempt to maintain control of the Republican Party in California, Karl Rove's hubris is beginning to take on almost paranoid features as he insists that if the Tea Party favorite -- Tim Donnelly -- wins the gubernatorial primary, it will tarnish all Republicans everywhere:
Karl Rove, the prominent Republican strategist, said Friday that Tim Donnelly will be a liability for Republicans nationwide if the tea party favorite finishes second in the gubernatorial primary election and advances to a November runoff against Gov. Jerry Brown.
"If the California Republican Party has as the leading candidate, the leading statewide candidate on the ballot this year somebody who has said the outrageous things that he's said and prone to the outrageous behavior that he routinely engages in, it will be used to tarnish not only the California Republican Party, but they'll throw it at everybody else on the ballot, and everybody else will, across the country, disavow the guy," Rove told the conservative talk radio host Hugh Hewitt on his show.
This paranoia is reaching scary proportions as Rove, Condoleeza Rice and Mitt Romney all came out to support -- Neel Kashkari -- who is the top GOP competitor against Donnelly in the primary. In my view, Kashkari's record could only qualify him as a "DIRC" -- Democrat in Republican Clothing:
They've lined up behind millionaire former Goldman Sachs vice president Neel Kashkari. The 40-year-old, first-time candidate ran the federal bank bailout known as TARP - the Troubled Asset Relief Program - as a Treasury official, favors abortion access and same-sex marriage rights, and even admits to voting for Barack Obama in 2008.
Why is this guy even pretending to be a Republican and why is the establishment so concerned about stopping Donnelly and supporting a man who is worse than a squish on every issue? In addition to being socially liberal, Kashkari actually voted for Obama in 2008 and has never run for public office.
My point in this article is not to try to push a Donnelly win -- although I think he will easily defeat Kashkari since he has all the grassroots and tea party support while Kashkari's campaign is failing to gain traction. Pulling off a win in November against Jerry Brown would take a few miracles and is not likely to happen, but at least Donnelly will give Brown a fun fight along the way.
But the bigger issue is just how obsessed the establishment elite have become in thinking "establishment knows best." Their arrogance is getting repugnant.
The Watercooler is always an open thread.