There are several disturbing polls out there showing a Patty Murray vs. Dino Rossi race as way too close for comfort. According to several polling organizations a hypothetical race between Murray and Rossi is a statistical dead heat, while there are other polls such as Elway show Murray with a slight lead. It is particularly disturbing that the Murray lead over Rossi in Elway, which has consistently shown the best numbers for the incumbent senator, has gone from 17% on May 2 to 7% on June 13th. If the race remains this tight going into November, a motivated base within the extreme right wing of the Republican party could make the difference,
particularly if our base is somewhat disappointed with Obama's first term. Let's face it, it is hard to see the real change since 2008. Our troops are still overseas, Obama is sending even more troops to Afghanistan, the Patriot Act was reauthorized, single payer was dropped from healthcare reform, and the administration is letting BP dump millions of gallons of Corexit in the Gulf, which is more toxic than the oil itself. If others like myself are a little disappointed, then some might decide not even to show up and the skewed turnout could cause us to lose a race that never should have been close.
However, there is one way we can ensure that Murray wins. Many of you might remember back in 2008 how Rush Limbaugh tried to sabotage the Democratic primary by getting the Republicans to vote for Hillary Clinton after the Republican nomination was a fait accompli to create turmoil in the party. Well realistically speaking, Patty Murray has no strong competition on the left, so she is going to skate through the primary pretty handily. The same polls quoted above show candidate Clint Didier with a much larger deficit in a head to head with Murray. This is one of the reasons that the GOP elite in D.C. lobbied hard to get Dino to run at the last minute. On the other hand the Tea Parties and right wing nutcases are backing Didier. If enough Democrats crossed over and voted for Didier in the August 17th primary, then Didier gets through to the general election and should be handily defeated by Murray. The great news is because of the top two primary, one only needs to vote for the Republican in that one race. It might only take 10-15% of Democrats to swing the race given the support for Didier on the east side of the state. If the Tea Party in Washington wants to self-destruct and push Didier into the general, I say we help them!The diary has since been deleted, but the Google cache is still available here. "Stop Dino" also has a blog, http://stopdino.blogspot.com/.
This post illustrates a couple of points. First, the Democrats are obviously scared as hell the Mom in Tennis Shoes is going to be sent walking. Two, it shows how the "Tea Party vs. Establishment" narrative spun by the Didier campaign has played right into the Democrats' hands.
Now, it's not likely at all that "Stop Dino's" strategy would work any better than the silly "Crash The Tea Party" meme did earlier this year. Crossover voting has been a real concern of "top two primary" opponents in Washington and most recently California, and the Idaho Republican Party issued a warning about crossover voting by Democrats before the May primary. The Idaho GOP has even sued to change the primary to a closed one. But there isn't much evidence that crossover voting occurs in significant numbers. A 2006 Harvard study found "little evidence that these 'crossover' voters deliberately choose the weakest candidate in the other party’s primary to benefit their party’s candidate in the general election."
But the real damage could come in November when disaffected Didier supporters refuse to give their vote to the "establishment candidate shoved down our throats," Dino Rossi. Every poll has showed that the Senate race is going to be very, very close and Rossi will need every conservative vote to win.
Meanwhile, there is going to be a "money bomb" tomorrow for