Apparently, Ron Barber - the Democrat running to replace Gabby Giffords in the AZ-08 special election - has a bit of a problem with the entire 'Democrat' thing: "[Republican nominee Jesse] Kelly asked Barber to declare who he’ll vote for in November for president, and Barber - although a Democrat with an incumbent president of his party - refused, saying he’s focused on his own campaign." This is a somewhat eyebrow-raising evasion - one would think that a Democrat currently running in a Democratic-held seat with a Democrat in the White House would be less coy - and it tells us several things:
- As @chucktodd noted, this is a tacit admission that the AZ-08 race is very, very close. Close enough that Barber doesn't want people associating his name with the President's.
- And as The Madison Project noted, this is an incredibly disingenuous evasion anyway. Of course Barber will be voting for Obama. More importantly, if both he and Democrats somehow win in November Barber will also be voting for Pelosi to become Speaker of the House again. And he'll be voting for every stupid thing on the wish list of the liberal fringe running the Democratic party right now - with one or two exceptions, solely to make it look like Barber is independent. That was what they tried to do in the 111th Congress, after all; and there's no sign that the have Democrats learned any better.
- Finally, and this is me noting this: anybody who still seriously thinks that the Obama campaign has a shot at winning Arizona should consider that the people who actually have to run in Arizona apparently have a different opinion. If Ron Barber doesn't dare bring up Barack Obama's name in a special election in June, what are the odds that people are going to give that name a better reception in November?
Moe Lane (crosspost)
PS: Special election is June 12. Jesse Kelly for AZ-08.
[UPDATE/PPS]: Well, that didn't take long. Kind of futile - Barber's original statement was made during the only debate that they're having for the special, which means that this 'clarification' of his announcing Barber's support for Obama in November probably won't have the same legs - but then, said clarification isn't really for Barber's benefit. The Obama administration has a vested interest in acting as if they have a chance in Arizona; they don't particularly have a vested interest in keeping the AZ-08 seat. They should, but they don't.