McCain Keeps Lead Over Hayworth

A new Rasmussen survey in Arizona finds Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) maintaining a double-digit lead over J.D. Hayworth (R) in their Senate primary fight, 52% to 40%.

The primary is on August 24.

Is This Really a Republican Year?

First Read: “Here’s another lesson we learned from last night: A good campaign can overcome a tough political environment. In the only contest pitting a Democrat against a Republican, Mark Critz (D) defeated Tim Burns (R) in the special congressional election to replace the late Rep. Jack Murtha (D) in Pennsylvania. As we’ve pointed out, this isn’t a good sign for the GOP in its quest to take back the House in November. Why? Because this was a race that Republicans — in this kind of political environment — should have been able to win. Yes, Democrats outnumber Republicans in the district. And, yes, the Dem turnout in the competitive Sestak-vs.-Specter primary helped Critz (though the statewide Dem turnout wasn’t overly impressive). But this was the only congressional district in the country that John Kerry won in ’04 but Obama lost in ’08, meaning that it was ripe for the picking.”

“Remember, back in 1994, Republicans were the ones winning House special elections. But can this be ’94 all over again if the Democrats are the ones winning these things — four straight this cycle (PA-12, NY-23, CA-10, NY-20) and seven since 2008 (IL-14, MS-1, LA-6). By the way, there was a ton of finger-pointing among House Republicans after they lost the NY-23 special late last year; it could be worse internally after last night.”

The Fall of the Class of 1994

Dana Millbank: “With each passing year, the class notes for the famous House Republicans Class of ’94 get more lurid. The latest entry was submitted Tuesday morning by Rep. Mark Souder (R-IN). In his downfall, Souder appears likely to join classmates Mark Foley (lewd text messages to House pages), Mark Sanford (hiking the proverbial Appalachian Trail with his Argentine mistress) and John Ensign (whose parents paid the family of his ex-mistress $96,000) in the sex-scandal hall of fame. Another of their classmates, Bob Ney, did prison time for his role in the Jack Abramoff scandal.”

Special Election Winning Streak

For those keeping score, Steve Benen notes “there have been seven special elections for U.S. House seats since the president’s inauguration 16 months ago: NY-20, IL-5, CA-32, CA-10, NY-23, FL-19, and PA-12. Democrats have won all seven.”

The streak is likely to be broken this weekend in Hawaii’s first congressional district, but only because two Democrats are splitting the vote against one Republican.

Blumenthal’s Lead Shrinks in Connecticut

Following news he exaggerated his military record, a new Rasmussen survey in Connecticut finds Richard Blumenthal (D) just three points ahead of Linda McMahon (R) in the U.S. Senate race, 48% to 45%. Two weeks ago, he led by 13 points.

Blumenthal leads Rob Simmons (R) by 11 points, 50% to 39%. Two weeks ago, he led by 23 points.

Primary Results Complicate Wall Street Reform

No none is more upset that Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D-AR) was forced into a runoff yesterday than the lobbyists for Wall Street banks.

As the Washington Post reports, Democrats forged a compromise yesterday on a Lincoln amendment to the bank reform bill that would ban derivatives trading from banks, something the industry vigorously opposes.

“Dodd offered a clever Washington solution aimed to appease both friends and foes of the provision. His amendment preserves the tough language — but it postpones any action for two years so it can be studied. And it assigns that study to a new council of regulators, headed by Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner, whose members have serious reservations about such a dramatic measure and may very well kill it in the end.”

However, Lincoln based her campaign on the tougher amendment and fellow Democrats may now not want to do anything to weaken her chances in next month’s runoff.

Paul Refused to Take Concession Call

After winning Kentucky’s Republican Senate primary last night, Rand Paul (R) refused to take the call of congratulations from opponent Trey Grayson (R), according to Grayson’s campaign manager, WCPO-TV reports.

Interestingly, a GOP “unity rally” is scheduled for Saturday which both men are supposed to attend.

A Rebuke to the Parties

Anti-establishment anger remains the political narrative in media coverage of yesterday’s primaries which saw Sen. Arlen Specter (D-PA) lose the Democratic nomination, Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D-AR) forced into a runoff and the GOP’s preferred choice for Senate in Kentucky crushed by a tea party candidate.

Politico put it best: “For any politician with the usual instincts for self-protection, the lessons of Tuesday’s primaries could not be more clear: This could happen to you.”

A few more examples:

The Washington Post says Tuesday’s results “were the most powerful indicator to date of the voter anger and dissatisfaction that has shaped the political climate all year.”

The New York Times says the results “illustrated anew the serious threats both parties face from candidates who are able to portray themselves as outsiders and eager to shake up the system.”

Wall Street Journal: “Voters showed they were ready to sever ties with candidates too closely identified with Washington and its political leaders.”

USA Today: “A growing wave of discontent with government crashed down on ‘establishment’ candidates running in primaries Tuesday.”

Edwards Seeking Plea Deal

The National Enquirer — the newspaper of record on the John Edwards scandal — reports that the former presidential candidate is trying to work out a “plea deal” to avoid jail time as a federal grand jury investigating him appears to have wrapped up its case.

Math Teacher Questioned By Secret Service

An Alabama geometry teacher was questioned by the Secret Service after teaching his students about angles by using the example of where to stand and aim if shooting President Obama, the Birmingham News reports.

Said one student: “He was talking about angles and said, ‘If you’re in this building, you would need to take this angle to shoot the president.'”

Explore posts in the same categories: Candidates, National, Politics

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