Monday, May 10, 2004

Throw Grandmama from the train

Well good and bad news for Democrats out of the Utah GOP convention on Saturday. The good news: Acting Governor Olene Walker (female for those of you who don't know Utah names) lost before the primary to run for Governor this fall.

"It's kind of like throwing your grandma from the train," State Democratic party Chairman Donald Dunn told the Salt Lake Tribune. Olene is in her seventies. "It just shows that the Republican delegates are nominated by kind of the right-wing agenda and I think they're out of touch with Utahns."

The bad news is, a moderate and wacko/criminal right-winger are paired together could win the GOP nomination (they still have a primary on June 22) and in November. Jon Huntsman Jr., whose Dad has given tons of money to the state and is a good old Mormon and ex-Bush ambassador to Singapore to boot got the nod, along with the a "moderate" Board of Regents Nolan Karras and his LG candidate, Enid Greene Waldholz.

Does Enid's name sound familiar? Remember back, way back, 10 years ago when Republicans first took over the House of Representatives? Well Enid had just beaten my family friend and previous Representative Karen Shephard, and Enid was sitting pretty with a seat on the Rules Committee, which was unheard of for a Freshman (let alone Freshwoman). Turns out her Husband Joe Waldholz, who was also her campaign treasurer, illegally funneled over $2 Million into her campaign in the closing weeks via the sale of his Dad's house. Joe, is out of prison now. Meanwhile, Enid pretended to be deceived by Joe and cried in the hospital with a pity parade about her new baby and a husband in the slammer.

Instead of resigning (or being investigated), Enid said she wouldn't run for re-election in 1996 and she disappeared ever since. Now, non-hacks must agree that either Enid was in on the scam (in which case she should have gone to jail too) or she was incompetent (how could you not notice $2M coming in overnight) and was unfit for office.

In the closest (Ok well second closest) congressional race last time around, Utah's 2nd district, the GOP couldn't get 70% necessary to have a single candidate and will also be having a primary. John Swallow, who lost to Congressman Jim Matheson by a mere 1600 votes last time, would seem to have the leg up. However, Tim Bridgewater bested Swallow in the" convention 54%/46%.Tim Bridgewater, who failed at this in 2002 as well. Tim is a millionaire, but has a horrible voice. I think both will not be as strong against Jim this time, although they will have more money than last time.

Jim has busted his hump in places he did poorly in, taking advantage of incumbency to get pork for Southern Utah and going out of his way to meet and get to know folks down there. It is much easier to hate a stereotype of a Democrat than an actual person, who is a pretty conservative Democrat anyway.

Let's just hope his brother Scott Jr. does as well against Nolan or Jon as his little bother.

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