I’m sure that the Democrats are kicking themselves right now:
The South Dakota Republican — who also leads the Senate GOP Policy Committee and is widely viewed as a 2012 presidential contender —is up for re-election this year. But no Democrat or Independent filed to run against him, leaving him with plenty of time and money to help Republicans win seats this November as the party seeks to regain a true sense of relevancy on Capitol Hill.
National Republican Senatorial Committee Chairman John Cornyn (Texas) said Thursday he planned to meet with Thune soon to explore ways the up-and-coming first-term Senator could help the NRSC and GOP candidates from now until Election Day. Minority Whip Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) added that he fully expects Thune to be a strong political asset over the next 135 days.
Senator Thune is, after all, possessed of a dangerous combination: he’s able, popular, and not particularly busy this electoral cycle. Two out of three would be a net gain for the GOP’s 2010 electoral campaigns; three out of three is very welcome news. And since the DSCC’s recruiting program so spectacularly fell down on the job here*, you can even say that this bit of good fortune is ultimately due to the Democrats…
*Admittedly, this implies that there have been times when the DSCC has not fallen down on the job in this election cycle; examples of which are not immediately obvious. Mob-friendly bankers, false claimants of combat service, in-over-their-head legislators who might not even make it out of a primary, dead-women-walking, Martha Coakley… when your best shots for a Senate pickup are Fisher in Ohio and Carnahan in Missouri, that’s not a validation of the system; it’s an indictment of it.
Crossposted to Moe Lane.