Sunday, August 06, 2006


One sad feature of winner-take-all elections is that the post-election narratives depend too heavily on who manages to get 50%+1. No matter what happens on Tuesday, the fact is that this should have never been a race. As big a wanker as Lieberman has been, he should have been able to easily swat away a primary challenge.

I had to think pretty hard about encouraging people to give money to Lamont. I probably thought his chances of winning were about 5% back when this began and I had to consider whether asking people to donate their time and energy for a long shot of a cause was really worthwhile. Ultimately I decided that it was, but I still never saw it as anything but a tremendous long shot.

The scariest thing about the campaign is just how inept Lieberman's campaign has been. I have to hope that this is the fault of the senator and not the people he pays a lot of money to do this stuff, because if Washington's crack team of consultants are this idiotic we're in more trouble than I imagined. As Digby writes:

All Lieberman had to do in the early going was ignore the sniping, distance himself that schmuck in the white house and it would have been very difficult for Lamont to get enough traction to get this far. Perhaps it would have happened anyway, but I have my doubts. In fact I sincerely believed when this whole thing began to bubble to the surface that the point of this challenge was to get Joe to distance himselof from that schmuck in the white house and keep him on the reservation. I never dreamed he'd be so stubborn about something so obvious.

And now to find out that he had originally been critical and then changed his mind (because of what is speculated to be petulance about his treatment in the 2004 presidential campaign) is stunning to me. I'm actually beginning to wonder if deep down Joe wanted out anyway. (Or perhaps he really does want Rumsfeld's job.)

In any case, this is a primer on how to screw up an election by Democratic Insiders Inc. Again.