It’s a Grand Old Purging as moderate’s ouster spotlights Republican dysfunction
Since the GOP nominee dropped out of the race in New York's 23rd Congressional District amid pressure from conservative leaders, Dede Scozzafava has been swept into the national political conversation.
Gouverneur, N.Y. — Over Halloween weekend, Dede Scozzafava morphed from a rosy-cheeked Republican mom to a political figure of speech.
“My name’s a verb now,” she said.
A little-known state assemblywoman with moderate Republican views and a mouthful of a surname, Scozzafava’s bid for an open seat in New York’s 23rd Congressional District drew trash talk from conservative leaders hoping to purge her from the party, mash notes from White House-dispatched Democratic suitors that included Bill Clinton, and the unblinking gaze of political professionals fascinated by her role as the problem child for a dysfunctional Republican Party.
Even as she now hopes to return to her normal life of local politics, laundry and choir practice for next month’s big performance of Bach’s Christmas Cantatas, the political forces that swept her up have not entirely let her go. Last week, while watching a news show about the next sharply contested Senate Republican primary in Florida, her parents reported that one of the commentators asked whether the moderate was in peril of getting “Scozzafaved.”
Posted in National Politics, Sarah Palin - Private Citizen
Tagged ACORN, Andrew Cuomo, Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, Bill Owens, Charlie Crist, Chuck Schumer, Club for Growth, Dede Scozzafava, Dick Armey, Doug Hoffman, FreedomWorks, George Pataki, Glenn Beck, GOP, John M. McHugh, John McCain, June O'Neill, Marco Rubio, Michael Steele, New York 23rd, New York State Democratic Party, New York's 23rd Congressional District, Patrick Gaspard, Rahm Emanuel, Republican National Committee, Republican party, Ron McDougall, Sarah Palin, Sarah Palin New York 23rd, Sheldon Silver, Steve Israel, Vice President Biden, Weekly Standard
Wingnuts of the world unite. You have nothing to lose but election … after election … after election.
That’s the lesson from the far right’s stinging defeat in yet another Republican congressional district this week. Conservative Party candidate Doug Hoffman harangued GOP Assemblywoman Dede Scozzafava into dropping out – hailed as a huge victory for Real Republicans – and then the clueless teabagger-cum-carpetbagger went on to lose the upstate New York seat to a little-known Democrat.
But it’s one we’ve seen from Republicans over and over again, thanks to the shadowy anti-tax group Club for Growth. Its first scalp was right here in Michigan – moderate former U.S. Rep. Joe Schwarz (R-Battle Creek), who was ousted by preacher Tim Walberg in the 2006 primary.
For the extreme right, victory was sweet. And short-lived.
Posted in Op-Ed, Sarah Palin - Private Citizen
Tagged Arlen Specter, Barack Obama, Bill Owens, Blue Dog, Carly Fiorina, CFG, Charlie Crist, Chris Chocola, Club for Growth, conservatives, Dede Scozzafava, Dick Armey, Doug Hoffman, Erick Erickson, Glenn Beck, GOP, Heather Wilson, Joe Schwarz, Lincoln Chafee, Mark Kirk, Mark Schauer, Michael Steele, Pat Toomey, pro-lifers, Republican National Committee, Republicans In Name Only, Right to Life, RINO, Ronald Reagan, Rush Limbaugh, Sarah Palin, Tea Partiers, Tea Party movement, Tim Pawlenty, Tim Walberg, Wayne Gilchrest
Conservative supporters of Sarah Palin carrying protest signs.
Once you whip up a mob, can you control it? That may be Sarah Palin‘s next problem.
Before the votes were counted Tuesday night, the former Republican vice presidential candidate was already something of a winner. Though her candidate in the special election for a House seat in upstate New York, Doug Hoffman, lost to Democrat Bill Owens — in an area that hasn’t sent a Democrat to the House since the 1800s — Palin, by intervening in the race, had established herself as a successful ideological power broker. At first, Hoffman was merely a third-party conservative candidate in New York’s 23rd congressional district. Yet when Palin backed him over the official Republican in the race, a moderate assemblywoman named Dede Scozzafava, she helped turn this contest into an intra-party clash, which ended with the right wing of her party chasing Scozzafava out of the contest and forcing the GOP establishment to swing behind Hoffman.
Posted in Sarah Palin - Private Citizen
Tagged Bill Owens, Charlie Crist, conservatives, Dede Scozzafava, Dick Armey, Doug Hoffman, Glenn Beck, Joe the Plumber, Joseph Wurzelbacher, Marco Rubio, Mark Kirk, Michele Bachman, neoconservatives, New York 23rd congressional district, Republicans, Republicans In Name Only, RINO, RINOs, Robert Bennett, Sarah Palin, Sarah Palin 2012 GOP presidential candidate, Sarah Palin New York 23rd, Tea Party, Tea Party movement
Some Republicans think Crist has now cost McCain Florida…
In a somewhat big story, Florida Governor Charlie Crist has extended the early voting hours in Florida by an extra four hours a day, a move that Democrats were pushing for and Republicans were against. This decision will likely cause Obama to further expand his lead in Florida early voting, since the Republicans don’t seem to have have any large scale early voting GOTV program in place (they focused more on mail ballots).
At a hastily arranged news conference, Crist said the right to vote is sacred and that “many have fought and died for this right.” He said he consulted a leading Democratic legislator, Rep. Dan Gelber of Miami Beach, before issuing his order, and that Gelber knew of a similar order issued by Gov. Jeb Bush in 2002 that dealt with helping voters deal with new equipment.
As to the perception that more early voting helps Democrats, Crist said: “This is not a political decision. This is a people decision.”
One well connected Florida Republican had this to say about the decision, probably overreaching a bit.
“He just blew Florida for John McCain.”
So why does this help Obama and hurt McCain? Here’s a simple explanation of it. Obama’s base tends to be in big cities and urban areas. Voting locations in big cities tend to have very long lines on election day because a single voting location serves thousands of people. This is why Obama has made such a push for early voting — he doesn’t want people to show up on election day, see long lines, and go home. McCain’s base is mostly in rural areas and suburbs. Voting locations in rural areas and suburbs tend to have no lines, because they only serve a few hundred people at most. Extending early voting hours allows the Obama camp to get more of these people in urban centers to the polls and thus reduce traffic on election day which in turn will cause shorter lines and further increase turnout.
Last week, all nine Democrats in the Florida congressional delegation wrote a letter urging him to expand early voting and to order all early voting sites to be open on Sunday.
Early balloting in Florida so far favors Democrats, while Republicans hold an advantage in absentee voting. Waits of up to four hours have been reported in precincts in heavily-Democratic Broward County.
And finally, this video from an earlier voter in Broward County, South Florida, who from start to finish, was able to vote today in just under 3 hours.
Posted in 2008 Presidential Election, Barack Obama, GOP Presidential Candidate John McCain, US Presidential Race 2008, Vote
Tagged 2008 Presidential Election, Absentee Voting, Barack Obama, Broward County, Charlie Crist, Democratic, Early balloting, early voting, election, Election Day, electoral college, electoral map, Florida, Florida congressional delegation, Florida Democrats, Florida early voting, Florida Republicans, George Bush, GOTV, Governor Charlie Crist, Governor Jeb Bush, McCain campaign, Miami Beach, Obama campaign, Presidential Election, Rep. Dan Gelber, Republican, Republicans, Vote, vote early