Random commentary and senseless acts of blogging.
The first Republican president once said, "While the people retain their virtue and their vigilance, no administration by any extreme of wickedness or folly can seriously injure the government in the short space of four years." If Mr. Lincoln could see what's happened in these last three-and-a-half years, he might hedge a little on that statement.
Prisoners of Azkaban
Friday, July 19, 2002
The Post yesterday ran an article on the struggles of CA Republican gubernatorial hopeful Bill Simon. Some of the conservatives in the blogosphere made hopeful noises when recent polls showed that Gray Davis's lead over Simon had been reduced. I had meant to write a piece explaining why they will be disappointed when Davis wins in November, but Dan Walters pretty much wrote it for me. (Link from Ann Salisbury.)
Simon is running mostly on the premise that he is a business professional and therefore morally superior to any career politician. Sorry, wrong year for that one. (In the primary he ran on issues, but his issues work only in a GOP primary, and he'd rather ignore them between now and November.) Between his business history and his far-right positions on issues, Simon is plenty vulnerable to a negative campaign to make him less attractive. Davis has the money and the ruthlessness to run devastating negative ads. And the ads won't hurt Davis much - the supposed unpopularity of negative politics is exaggerated, and besides Davis is already not greatly loved. He doesn't have to be everyone's hero, which is lucky for him. He just needs to be a more attractive option than a guy who has no government experience, right-wing views inconsistent with those of most California voters, and a past shading the law and possibly violating it in his career as a money manager.
By November, this isn't going to be close. I think Davis will equal his runaway victory margin over Lungren in 1998, another race that in the summer many people thought Davis might lose.