I’m checking out early because I’m supposed to join Fox 16 tonight with Alice Stewart to throw some words around their election night coverage. Kind of a strange night for our first full statewide election with Voter ID (until, we can hope, a court strikes the law down.)
Turnout has been pitiful and Republican voting will likely exceed Democratic voting handily, as it should. Republicans have contested races for five statewide offices and two congressional seats, plus some vital races for state legislature pitting Obamacare (private option-style) voters vs. teabaggers. Democrats have virtually nothing.
STATEWIDE RACES: I expect Republican nominees to be Asa Hutchinson (gov.), Tim Griffin (lt. gov.), Duncan Baird (treasurer) and Andrea Lea (auditor) and anybody’s guess in the mixed nut race for attorney general. Leslie Rutledge started as the most establishment of the a.g. bunch, but has endeavored to run right of David Sterling, which is the equivalent of O.J. Simpson going outside the stadium to circle right end. Sterling benefits from a big dark money buy from anonymous gun nuts.
CONGRESS Bruce Westerman and French Hill, on account of 1) Westerman being an Arkie and 2) Hill being loaded with dough, will take the 4th and 2nd District congressional nominations.
DEMOCRATS: Mike Ross will be the Democratic gubernatorial nominee over Lynette Bryant (?). And finally start running against Asa.
LEGISLATURE: If my sense of prevailing general mood is correct, I’d think the private option backer Republicans in contested races — John Burris, Bruce Holland, Bill Sample, Sue Scott and a few others — would beat the Nobama crowd. But note I said “general” mood, not that of overheated primary wingers. I’m interested in a West Little Rock race for House where Jim Sorvillo (extremism is no vice) is facing Pat Hays. Democrat John Adams awaits the winner. An extremist winner helps him. Don’t forget, too, that the House barely passed Obamacare this year. Every winner there counts as much as the Senate winners do in the GOP primaries.
SUPREME COURT: I think you could make a case for either candidate — Appeals Court Judge Robin Wynne on a solid public record, Tim Cullen because he’s been unfairly villified by big outside dark money. For scoundrels like that anonymous hit squad from Virginia to hate him, he must have things to recommend his candidacy. I wouldn’t count endorsements for Cullen from the Crackpot Caucus’ Nate Bell, Justin Harris, Bob Ballinger and Bart Hester among those pluses, however.
What about this? What if all the statewide and congressional and legislative Nobama candidates lose to people who either voted for the private option — all the leading Republican legislators — or tried to finesse it, such as Hutchinson?
Wouldn’t this deflate the Obamacare onslaught for fall? Would the Republicans who survived Obamacare camapigns against themselves turn around and mount their own against Democrats?
Sigh. You know the answer. If John Burris wins, for example, he’ll be back working for a paycheck for Tom Cotton, who is devoted to tearing apart Obamacare, including the Medicaid expansion Burris championed.
My final question: How soon will Tommy Moll fly back to New York after losing the 4th District race? And would he please look for a place for Tom Cotton’s carpetbags to rest come January?
Finally, in the spirit of this dispiriting TV ad season:
This analysis provided by Max Brantley, a liberal, pro-choice, backsliding Methodist/Presbyterian sinner who owns no firearms (but keeps for home defense a “semi-automatic rock” given him as a Christmas present by a rare NRA nut with a sense of humor). Oh, and first-generation Arkie, though married to one that can claim three or four or so. Does it help if I say my great-aunt died in a house fire in Huttig?