October 1, 2002
THE CURIOUS CASE OF THE DOG THAT DIDN'T BARK:
Senator Torricelli Bows Out
(NY Times, October 1, 2002)
With a month to go before Election Day, there is still time for a spirited campaign.Why Torricelli Crashed and Burned
Such a campaign would force Douglas Forrester, the Republican candidate, who until now has focused almost entirely on Mr. Torricelli's ethics, to start defining himself in terms of other issues.
(Howard Kurtz, October 1, 2002, Washington Post)
The flameout by the Torch is truly stunning.
Since when does an unindicted senator drop out five weeks before the election?
Yes, Robert Torricelli was severely admonished by the Senate ethics committee in July, but has that stopped anyone from running?
The reason, quite simply, is the media.
They wouldn't allow the campaign to be about anything else.
That, in turn, allowed obscure Republican businessman Doug Forrester to run a "Hi, I'm not Bob Torricelli" campaign. That was his only issue - and that's all he needed.
Torricelli was getting bashed regularly on talk radio by the likes of Sean Hannity and Don Imus, who called the senator a "dirt bag," "awful weasel" and "worse than Clinton."
The coup de grace may have come late last week when New York's WNBC-TV ran a 38-minute piece - without commercials - about Torricelli's acceptance of gifts from now-imprisoned businessman David Chang, featuring a jailhouse interview with Chang.
The polls just collapsed. Torricelli couldn't change the debate over whether or not he was a crook.
One can't help notice that the Times treats itself like Caesar's wife in its editorial, despite the years long vendetta it's run--to its great credit--against Robert Torricelli. As Mr. Kurtz aptly points out, it was the media not the cash poor Mr. Forrester that made Mr. Torricelli's ethics the overriding issue in this campaign. For the Times to castigate Mr. Forrester for something that they did themselves is really contemptible. And, of course, typical.
Posted by Orrin Judd at October 1, 2002 7:22 PM
It would be ironic, would it not?, and presumably bittersweet for Brother Orrin, if the Senate were returned to Republican control not because the voters embraced conservatism or Republicanism but only because of non-ideological mistakes by Torricelli and/or Harkin.
Republicans should be on their knees thanking their lord for Wellstone, a chance to vote against liberalism without any excess baggage.
You forget, we believe that the majority will never be conservative, wanting, as they do, something for nothing. We'll take a majority any way we can get it.
In my district, the 2nd of Hawaii, we are going
to re-elect the late Patsy Mink, Democrat.
I don't know why the New Jerseyites are
making such heavy weather of it.
By the way, I do not share your and the
Democrats view that the majority will always
vote for something (cheap drugs) for nothing
But as long as nobody is offering anything
more substantial, why not? Harry's rich, and
Baghdad is far away.
As a professional writer, I like to think that I
am now swayed by eloquence, though I can
admire it professionally. But lesser mortals are;
why else would people -- and not just
Democratic noodles -- be bowing and
genuflecting over the notion of collective
security, an idea with a perfect record of
failure? Because Wilson, the corrupt liar and
moron and racist that he was, was an
eloquent liar moron racist, and it's been hard
for people to get beyond that.
Change the name to Lloyd George, Trotsky or
even Mussolini, the refrain's the same.
"As a professional writer, I like to think that I
am now swayed by eloquence"
works better than now
in this instance.
At least Ms. Mink had the good taste to lie down and stop legislating when she died.
In my state, the Democratic but profoundly anti-democratic Commonwealth of Massachusetts, we are about to re-elect the Honorable Edward M. Kennedy by acclamation and without Republican opposition. (Hey, NYT, where's my competitive election.)
To see the man is to know that zombies exist and to be afraid, very afraid.
If the Massachusetts Republican party were to pull a Torch and put Ms. Mink on the ballot for US Senate, I would vote for her with enthusiasm. She would be every bit as eloquent, and her thinking as closely reasoned, as his Excellency the Senator for life. When you take into account that she couldn't actually do anything, she becomes my ideal political candidate.
A curious proposition, death near an election.
No one was going to vote for McDermott, the Republican. Well, I might have, just to narrow the huge gap. I don't like one-party states. I believe I voted for
Mrs. Mink's opponent last timem for the same reason.
McDermott was in a tough position. How do you run against someone in a coma? First he took the gloves off. Then, with very bad luck, he put them back on just a few hours before she died. (Her death really was unexpected. I talked with her husband on Thursday and although worried he clearly did think she would live.)
But if there was no reason to vote for McDermott when Mrs. Mink was alive, her death does not provide any reason to vote for him now. Therefore, I probably will cast my vote for Patsy with more enthusiasm this year than I ever did when she was alive.
Only nominate healthy persons, let that be your rule.
I've just realized that, contrary to what I said before, Ted Kennedy is not running this year, John Kerry is.
This makes me feel even worse about the Republican party, which can't even put up someone to challenge a potential presidential candidate.