[As I was prepared to hit “Publish” I noticed that Emo Cole already posted about this. I’m posting it anyway. I’m out of control. I must be stopped. -ABLxx]
I read this little news item in Politico this morning, and my immediate reaction was a predictable “WTF?!”
No matter who wins West Virginia’s special election race for governor Tuesday, it’s already clear who the loser is: President Barack Obama.
A last-minute carpet-bomb of anti-Obama television ads and robocalls has transformed what was once a 30-point contest into a margin-of-error nail-biter that has Republicans emboldened and Democrats anxious as voters head to the polls.
If Democrat Earl Ray Tomblin can withstand the late surge by Republican drilling executive Bill Maloney, it will be in spite of the toxic drag of an unpopular president in this traditionally Democratic state. If Maloney can cap off his unlikely comeback, the White House will shoulder the blame for yet another special election loss — potentially the third in three weeks.
“Frankly, with [Obama’s] approval rating at 30 percent, it’ll be easy to do,” said Jim Dornan, a GOP operative who worked on John Raese’s unsuccessful 2010 Senate bid. “Even if it’s close, I think any Democrat running in the 1st Congressional District and [Rep. Nick] Rahall run pretty far away from the president in 2012.”
Obama was largely absent from the campaign until late last week. But that’s how the cash-flush Republican Governors Association planned it, betting a late stealth attack would pad their previous messaging on Tomblin as an ethically challenged politician who embodied “go along, get along” politics.
Well, think again, hosers:
Democrat Earl Ray Tomblin beat back a torrent of late Republican attacks linking him to President Obama to win the West Virginia governorship Tuesday night.
“We all came together to tell outside groups that no one is going to tell us what to do in West Virginia,” said Tomblin in remarks from his victory party in Charleston. “We may be open for business, but West Virginia is not for sale.”
“Tonight the people of West Virginia sent a clear message to national Republicans. Even in the most competitive circumstances, Gov. Tomblin was able to highlight his record of effectiveness and withstand Republican attempts to nationalize the race,” said Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, chairman of the Democratic Governors Association. “Ultimately, the people of West Virginia elected Gov. Tomblin because they know he is best suited to create jobs and expand opportunity.”
Hey, Politico! Fancy a steaming mug of STFU to wash down that crow?[cross-posted at Angry Black Lady Chronicles]