Friday, February 18, 2005

2006 senate ruminations

There has been a debate about the PA senate race(s), should Senate Judicary Chair Arlen Specter retire. It goes like this: do you give state Treasurer and son of popular ex-Gov. Bob Casey Jr. a layup against and open seat and let some poor schmuck (probabbly) lose to Senate Buffoon Rick Santorum? Or do you pit Casey against Santorum and let either ex-GOPer Barbara Hafer or 2004 Senate Candidate and ex-Rep. Joe Hoeffel run for the open seat against either Club for Growth pet project ex-Rep. Pat Toomey or ex-DHS ex-Gov Tommy Ridge?

Personally, I favor giving Santorum the toughest battle possible, because he demeans the Senate and the Commonwealth with his presence, which means pro-lifer Casey jr. should take up the gauntlet. Hopefully Arlen will get healthy, but if he has to retire, or tragically dies, then whom should Governor Rendell appoint? Casey, so he can be an incumbent running against Santorum and be even stronger? Or Hafer/Hoeffel, so they will have a better shot at the open seat? I say let the H's have their fun, Casey already has tons of built in advantages, like his Pittsburgh base, which is the same as Santorum which really hurts the old dog-on-man-love guy (since you have to have either Pitts or Philly to be competitive statewide, and Lord knows Philly ain't going GOP on Rendell's watch).

Now on to other senate races, there will be lots to defend, but first and foremost, Democrats have to make sure golden oldies like Byrd don't retire. Stay on buddy, isn't it fun to make speeches against Bush on C-SPAN? Next, fill in some good people to protect open seats, like MN. After that, help the vulerable incumbents, like Ben Nelson in Nebraska, or Bill Nelson in Florida. Then you can target more folks like little Rhodie's Linc Chafee, or other blue state GOPers or DINOs/putzes like Joe Liberman.

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