That is the backdrop of the campaign’s final stretch and it cannot be helping Democrats that a generalized anxiety about world driven by the virus and ISIS and a very specific set of incompetencies of President Obama and his administration –from the IRS to the Secret Service to the VA and now to the CDC– are framing the choice before the electorate, and not to the advantage of Democrats across the country.
On Thursday night in Mesa, I worked a rally for Doug Ducey, the Arizona GOP nominee for governor, an event headlined by Mitt Romney. Both Ducey and Romney spoke about the need for job creation and education reform, but as the affable, completely competent and in-command Romney spoke for about 15 minutes to the packed convention center, you could see on everyone’s faces –I was on stage in the back row looking out past the governor– the collective thought cloud forming over the voters: “What did this country do two years ago? How badly did we screw up?”
Those questions help a hyper-competent Ducey as well as every GOP candidate with real credentials, like the combat experience of veterans Tom Cotton in Arkansas, Joni Ernst in Iowa, and Dan Sullivan in Alaska. It helps to be a doctor, like Bill Cassidy in Louisiana, a very successful businessman like David Perdue in Georgia, or the real deal fifth-generation Coloradan like Cory Gardner versus the self-admittedly “a little brain dead” Mark Udall who has run what the Denver Post termed a campaign that insulted Centennial State voters, or Alaska’s mark Begich who saw and raised Udall’s epic blunder with a statement yesterday that sets the new bar for idiotic utterances.
“I did (vote for Obama), but that’s irrelevant,” Begich told the Washington Examiner. “The president’s not relevant. He’s gone in two years.” Great news for the military man or woman in Alaska that their sitting (but not for long) senator thinks that the Commander-in-Chief isn’t relevant. Seems Begich shares the opinion of the mullahs in Iran. (HT: Scott Johnson of Powerline and Adam Kredo of the Washington Free Beacon.) And Jeanne Shaheen is so spooked by her tumbles in the polls and the anchor around her neck named Barack that she’s taking to throwing credential reporters from her campaign events. Scott Brown’s momentum must be very strong indeed. So must be Thom Tillis’ as Kay Hagan flees the press at every turn as details of her family’s “Stimulus” ties tumble into public view.
The next 11 days will be full of tracing the NYC doctor’s contacts, revisiting the insane visa policy and wondering where the next jihadi will surface. The public rightly asks: What’s all this got to do with President Obama and his Democratic allies? It isn’t the question Democrats wanted to frame this midterm, but as the president himself has said repeatedly: he and his policies are on the ballot wherever a “D” appears next to a name. Vote accordingly.