August 17, 2005

WHAT'S SHE GOT BESIDES LOOKS, BRAINS, AND THE BASE? (via Daniel Merriman):

Don't sell Harris short in '06 (David Hill, 8/16/05, The Hill)

Last week, GOP Rep. Katherine Harris of Florida kicked off her campaign to unseat Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson. While this should be a much-ballyhooed quest in Republican circles, too few GOP insiders seem to be excited by Harris’s launch. This is a mistake.

Katherine Harris is going to win this election for reasons that I’ll outline in this column. But before making the case that needs to be made, let me make a few disclosures. Yes, I did poll for Harris’s successful bids for secretary of state and Congress. But since 2003, I have not served Harris, providing me an opportunity for an objective view of her candidacy.

Harris’s advantages start with her celebrity status, coupled with the low expectations that surround her bid. Let’s face it: Voters today are more interested in celebrities than in politicians. More Americans read People than Time. More people follow “American Idol” than C-SPAN’s “Road to the White House.”

Celebrity commands attention. When Katherine Harris comes to town, people will want to get in on the action. And because of the nature of criticism that the media have aimed at Harris, people will expect her to disappoint.

But when voters see Katherine as she really is — a smart, vivacious and engaging woman — they will be shocked. Pleasantly shocked. There is no way that Katherine Harris won’t exceed expectations, and that’s a major plus.


Rick Perlstein wrote in a huff the other day because on a Fox News appearance Ms Harris stood at an angle that showed her assets to good effect. He was apparently serious.


MORE:
Fla. GOP courts Joe Scarborough (THE ASSOCIATED PRESS, 8/17/05)

Two local businessmen active in Republican Party politics say the GOP is courting cable TV host Joe Scarborough to replace U.S. Rep. Katherine Harris in the 2006 Senate race against incumbent Democrat Bill Nelson.

Scarborough, a former U.S. representative, has met with senior Republican officials, Collier Merrill, a Pensacola businessman told the Pensacola News Journal in a report for Wednesday's editions.

The other businessman, Eric Nickelsen, said he had contacted Scarborough and encouraged him to run, and he corroborated that other party leaders wanted the cable talk show host to challenge Harris.

Scarborough declined to comment late Tuesday. He was sent to Congress four times from the Pensacola area, beginning in 1994.

Posted by Orrin Judd at August 17, 2005 8:01 AM
Comments

Would Perlstein have complained if Arnold wore a speedo on the beach? We know Andrew wouldn't.

Posted by: ratbert at August 17, 2005 11:50 AM

Seriously, what's the GOP leadership got against Harris? All I can think of is that they're afraid that she would be the candidate who would best rile up the Dems, but so what? Jeb won easily in 2002, W won easily in 2004. And as in any red state, if you can get MoveOn to actively support the Dem, you (the GOP) have already won...

Posted by: b at August 17, 2005 12:32 PM

Yes, my reading of the online leftists was that being able to see she obviously had breasts was a big issue. You'd think she'd ripped off her shirt to show "W" tatoos on both of them from the carrying on. As far as I can tell, however, there was no actual wardrobe malfunction.

The funniest part is that Harris was placed there by Fox News. Just another example of how the corporate patriarchy exploits women…

Posted by: Annoying Old Guy at August 17, 2005 12:57 PM

What's Orwell's quote about the Left and ugly women?

Posted by: oj at August 17, 2005 1:05 PM

She has a somewhat manly face.

Any way, does any one have the scoop on the GOP's desire to keep her out? Was there a breach of loyalty somewhere? Some horrible skeletons in the closet?

Posted by: Jorge Curioso at August 17, 2005 1:26 PM

OJ,
I notice that you're a big fan of Orwell, yet at the same time a right-wing ideologue. I wonder if you take "1984" to simply be a criticism of the Soviet Union, (rather than of England) and are not aware that Orwell was a self-labeled socialist who vehemently detested British and American imperialism?

Posted by: Ralph at August 17, 2005 1:27 PM

B - G.W. easily won in '04? Well, maybe with a little help from his friends, and an pushover hypocrite democratic challenger. Perhaps he had already one at the end of the democratic primary. Put someone who know how to and has the balls to talk tough and G.W. would have had even more of a reason to corrupt the elections in Florida and Ohio.

Posted by: JohnnyFive at August 17, 2005 1:39 PM

JohnnyFive: Yes, W won Florida quite easily in '04.

oj: Quite a heavy traffic in trolls lately. Any idea where they're coming from?

Posted by: b at August 17, 2005 1:48 PM

Ralph,

Lots of conservatives love George Orwell (including myself). in National Review's 1999 list of the 100 best non-fiction books of the century, Florence King dubbed him "Every conservative's favorite liberal and every liberal's favorite conservative".

Posted by: Ed Driscoll at August 17, 2005 1:50 PM

I just sent Harris a $1,000 check an hour ago - after a Lefty loon (probably a friend of lonebud) spat on my car because of my Bush/Cheney and I Love Halliburton bumper stickers. That's my new policy in response to these fascists who support freedom of speech "for me but not for thee".

And I can afford it, being a rich Republican who steals money from the poor every day.

Posted by: obc at August 17, 2005 1:50 PM

I just sent Harris a $1,000 check an hour ago - after a Lefty loon (probably a friend of lonebud) spat on my car because of my Bush/Cheney and I Love Halliburton bumper stickers. That's my new policy in response to these fascists who support freedom of speech "for me but not for thee".

And I can afford it, being a rich Republican who steals money from the poor every day.

Posted by: obc at August 17, 2005 1:51 PM

Ralph:

Prepare to get shot down.

Posted by: Matt Murphy at August 17, 2005 1:54 PM

obc:

I was going to say, most of us can't afford to throw a thousand bucks at our elephant friends just because a jackass spits on our car! Kudos to those who can do it and follow through. The anti-Hillary forces will also need some help before long.

Posted by: Matt Murphy at August 17, 2005 2:01 PM

KH was encouraged not to run in the Republican primary against Jeb's hand picked candidate for Secretary of State back in '96. She ran, and won handily.

Posted by: Dan at August 17, 2005 2:11 PM

Matt:

I suspect this won't be my last donation. I smile, knowing how chagrined these jerks would be if they knew the result of their action.

Posted by: obc at August 17, 2005 2:13 PM

The Left complains about Harris showing off her boobs but says nothing when their own politicians do so

Posted by: carter at August 17, 2005 2:17 PM

Harris is a great pick because she became a hero to the GOP base in 2000. I imagine there are plenty of Republicans around the country who will send her money.

Scarborough's strength of character is testified to by his support for the exoneration of Charles McVay, captain of the Indianapolis who was wrongly court-martialed for its 1945 sinking. I once wrote a paper on this subject for a college class and I can tell you that Scarborough did everything he could to get a "sense of Congress" resolution passed even though he had nothing personally to gain from the measure except the admiration of one of his old campaign workers, the mother of the schoolboy (Hunter Scott) who brought the whole issue back to public attention. Scott himself told me of how important Scarborough's assistance had been and I remember thinking it was too bad he wasn't still in Congress. Time to send him back.

Posted by: Matt Murphy at August 17, 2005 2:17 PM

I just find it humorous that anyone who supports the current leaders of the Republican Party could be that big of an Orwell fan; he did have his conflicts with certain groups of communists, but at the same time, I'm guessing he would have been very critical of some of the more recent trends in the political strategies of both parties.
You'd think that 1984 has become a kind of playbook for government media and associated policies. Someone has posted an interesting response to OJ's review of that book. Check it out.

Posted by: Ralph at August 17, 2005 2:19 PM

obc:

I can just imagine said jackass telling all his buddies: "Hey, guess what I just did today?" They probably all got a real laugh out of it, too.

Meanwhile, the GOP is $1,000 richer. Who came out ahead here?

Posted by: Matt Murphy at August 17, 2005 2:24 PM

I don't think that Ralph has actually read "1984", or else it would know that its comments juxtaposing the story with reality make no sense.

Posted by: Michael Herdegen at August 17, 2005 2:29 PM

Ralph;

You mean such as the Democratic Party leadership siding with the forces of fascism (in their modern day form of caliphascists) against liberal democracy? Yeah, Orwell would probably not have smiled at that development.

Of course, one of the primary reasons the Modern American Left is suffering so much these days is that they can no longer memhole inconvenient facts as they used to be able to do. I don't think Orwell would have opposed that trend.

Posted by: Annoying Old Guy at August 17, 2005 2:38 PM

"What's She Got Besides Looks, Brains, and the Base?"

Money and not just OBC's $G. Her daddy was Ben Hill Griffin and she owns half of Central Florida.

Posted by: Robert Schwartz at August 17, 2005 3:01 PM

Annoying Old Guy

Im not excusing the Democrats, even though your comment is pretty stupid. Both parties have cozied up to cruel dictators around the world Even though perhaps the right has done it more, it doesnt matter. The only reason i pick on Republicans is because they hold the power right now, and should be held responsible for a lot of the totalitarian developments of the past 5 years (like, suspending the Bill of Rights for instance, encouraging corporate media, programmed press conferences, paying actors to be journalist, expanding the power of intelligence and security organizations to deny civil rights, paying journalists to be actors, concealing information that should be available to the public, abusing language in general). Like i said, I don't respect the Democrats, they do not represent the left, just as the Neocons in power shouldnt represent the Republican Party either.

Posted by: Ralph at August 17, 2005 3:06 PM

Carter, man, put a warning on that link!

KH is not the shallow socialite the MSM portrays.

She will crush Nelson here in Tampa.

Posted by: JackSheet at August 17, 2005 3:23 PM

Does anyone know if it's true that the pictures of Harris which appeared in the media during Gore's attempted coup d'etat were actually doctored to make it look like she had applied makeup with a trowel?

Posted by: erp at August 17, 2005 3:24 PM

Perfect !!

Insults and fact-free delusional ranting.

lonbud is a conspiracy theorist and totally misguided about how benign the world is, and yet he's the cream of the leftist crop.

There have to be some rational, knowledgeable leftist around, right ?

Right ?

Posted by: Michael Herdegen at August 17, 2005 3:24 PM

"encouraging corporate media"?

That would be news to corporate media.

"paying actors to be journalist"

Like Leonardo DiCaprio, for instance.

"concealing information that should be available to the public"

Down Sandy Berger's trousers, no doubt.

"I don't respect the Democrats, they do not represent the left"

Serious question: who would you say does in America? Or, who do you think should?

"just as the Neocons in power shouldnt represent the Republican Party either"?

Why not?

Posted by: Ed Driscoll at August 17, 2005 3:29 PM

Ralph:

Orwell was a conservative.

Posted by: oj at August 17, 2005 3:44 PM

Ralph;

What totalitarian developments of the last five years? The trend, forced by the President, is in the opposite direction from the Islamic world to Africa to Eastern Europe to SouthEast Asia:


http://www.brothersjudd.com/blog/archives/016327.html

Posted by: oj at August 17, 2005 3:51 PM

Ralph;

I'm not excusing the Democrats, even though your comment is pretty stupid.
Fighting fire with fire is my motto.

What I'm waiting for, in the way of an intelligent opponent of the Bush administration, is someone who actually explains and documents an anti-Bush point instead of spewing a laundry list of incorrect, irrelevant, and inconsistent points. We don't do magic incantations here (OJ burns witches, you know), we like to see actual arguments in the positive sense. I mean really, Bush is "encouraging corporate media" while at the same time undermining it by "hiring actors as journalists"?

Posted by: Annoying Old Guy at August 17, 2005 3:55 PM

b:

Site Meter doesn't show any unusual links, so I don't know. They are though a less adept crew than we're used to.

Posted by: oj at August 17, 2005 3:57 PM

JohnnyFive:

There were 30 states he couldn't lose--how much easier does it get?

Posted by: oj at August 17, 2005 3:58 PM

She seems like a persuasive candidate to me.

Posted by: h-man at August 17, 2005 4:15 PM

And of course the following comparison between Republicans and Democrats

Posted by: h-man at August 17, 2005 4:23 PM

Annoying Old Guy,

I'd love to sit down and take the time to give you links to the dozens of news articles that have come out that point out ALL of the points that i made in my above post, but even if i did you would still dispute their veracity anyway. There is really nothing i could do to convince you; I guess all of those 'actors' that the White House has hired sure have you convinced. Actual arguements in a positive sense? Even the corrupted mainstream media (that you guys for some reason think has a liberal bias, even though it is owned by the largest companies and the richest people in the people) has covered the stories concerning what i said in my previous post: armstrong williams, FCC deregulation, jessica lynch, valerie plame, robert novak, 9/11 report censorship and other concealing of information about 9/11). Either you are too lazy to look up these stories, or forgetful (willfully or otherwise), or you only pay attention to the type of news reports that confirm your personal biases.

Posted by: Ralph at August 17, 2005 4:49 PM

If anyone of you share the opinion with me that democrats and republicans are screwing this country up real bad, go to commondreams.org. Some of it might be a little idealistic (as if this website isnt), but it contains a lot more real information than the kind of opinionated hogwash that litters most of this site.

Posted by: Ralph at August 17, 2005 4:55 PM

The next spitter will ensure a $1,000 donation to Santorum's re-election campaign.

And beyond that, I'll have to see who else has a decent chance to defeat an incumbent Democrat Senator.

Posted by: obc at August 17, 2005 5:00 PM

obc:

Throw a little love to Shelley Moore Capito running against Senator "Sheets" Byrd. You could add her to h-man's list as well.

http://www.patrickruffini.com/archives/2005/08/capitos_the_blo.php

Posted by: Rick T. at August 17, 2005 5:41 PM

Rick!

She's number 3 on my list now, thanks to you. I'm sure it won't be long before she receives her check, considering how many jerks that still prowl the streets.

Posted by: obc at August 17, 2005 5:53 PM

Ralpn:

Ah, yes, Common Dreams, where all our problems could be solved by a healthy dose of Marxism... Too funny.

Posted by: oj at August 17, 2005 5:59 PM

OBC- Consider Mike McGavick out here in WA state, too. And Michael Steele, though he's not running against an incumbent.

Posted by: Timothy at August 17, 2005 6:06 PM

Does anyone know if it's true that the pictures of Harris which appeared in the media during Gore's attempted coup d'etat were actually doctored to make it look like she had applied makeup with a trowel?

It's called digital grading. The magazine/newspaper editor can alter the photo's color palette depending on how beautiful or ugly they want the person to look.

Posted by: GIdeon at August 17, 2005 6:20 PM

Ah, those Marxists, just a tad idealistic.

Posted by: David Cohen at August 17, 2005 6:22 PM
I'd love to sit down and take the time to give you links to the dozens of news articles that support ALL of the points that i made in my above post, but doing some research and providing documentation to bolster what i loosely term my "arguments" is, like, hard work, man. Besides, i'm not even sure that such articles really exist, i'm just sure that they SHOULD exist, dig ? There is really nothing i could do to convince you; i just come here to let off some steam, since constructing a logical position is difficult in my chemically altered state. Besides, either you are too lazy to look up these stories, just like me, or you only pay attention to the type of news reports that confirm your personal biases - just like me. At least i've opened some eyes, blown some minds, and raised some consciousnesses - all without once actually providing some supporting evidence to back up my assertations. Word to ya mother.

Posted by: Ralph at August 17, 2005 06:50 PM


Here are some choice tidbits from commondreams.org, real information, not the kind of opinionated hogwash that litters most of this site:

Politics of War Could Pivot on Mother's Vigil

Arianna Huffington: It Takes a Village to Smear Cindy Sheehan

Greenpeace: Democracy Fails as Genetically Engineered Seeds Allowed to Enter Europe

Niagara Falls Reporter: Bush a Coward

Peter Phillips: Election Fraud Continues in the US (Yeah, but by whose side ?)

Posted by: Michael Herdegen at August 17, 2005 6:56 PM

Gideon. Then you believe it's true that her pictures were digitally graded? How debased the left is.

Posted by: erp at August 17, 2005 7:30 PM

Even though he has made some of the right noises, I need to know a bit more about McGavick before I could start to support him. But on the other hand, the incumbent is Maria Cantwell. ..

And let's not be too free with someone else's money. Let's leave that sort of thing to the Dems....

Posted by: Raoul Ortega at August 17, 2005 8:27 PM

Hey, feel free to keep making your recommendations. I'm compiling my list and checking it twice.

Must go now. Must rob some more poor people so I can use their money to ensure a 60 seat Republican Senate majority.

Fact is, my energy stocks are raking in some good money for political donations.

Posted by: obc at August 17, 2005 8:54 PM

Ralph:

If you think conservatives march in lockstep behind Armstrong Williams and Maggie Gallagher, you've got bigger problems than Bush winning 51.6% of the vote.

And regarding Plame/Novak, you had better talk to David Corn, Tim Russert, Mandy Grunwald, and Judy Miller about 'corruption' in the media first.

Finally, which 'Right' in our Bill of Rights has been suspended? Are you accusing Bush of being Abraham Lincoln?

Posted by: jim hamlen at August 17, 2005 10:16 PM

Raoul-- I don't know who else there is besides Cantwell. Supposedly Susan Hutchinson was going to run, but I've heard nothing beyond that, and a quick perusal of the PDC shows that she's given squat to Republican candidates recently. McGavick, on the other hand, has been rather generous. I'm not totally sold, but his sheer wealth is enough to make this one competitive by itself (ironically, much the same way Cantwell got in office, but McGavick's money has the added bonus of actually exisiting).

Posted by: Timothy at August 18, 2005 2:35 AM

It is passing strange to see Orrin praising a practicing witch.

Practicing with public money, too.

Posted by: Harry Eagar at August 18, 2005 12:49 PM

Those witches all have mysterious seductive powers--it's what makes them so dangerous.

Posted by: oj at August 18, 2005 12:59 PM

obc,

Your posts just motiviated me to donate $2000 to Bill Nelson's campaign. Your $1000 donation has just been wiped out by your hubris.

Posted by: Charles at August 18, 2005 2:42 PM

Obc wins twice, you're throwing money away on an unwinnable race. It's a Republican state.

Posted by: oj at August 18, 2005 2:45 PM

oj,
If the Democrats can't win, then why is Obc wasting money on the 'undefeatable' campaign of Katherine Harris? How did Bill Nelson get elected in the first place? However, let's just assume you are right. Obviously the spitter was trying to get Obc so riled up that he would throw money in the wrong direction instead of donating it to more contestable campaigns...sounds like a big win for the spitter!

Posted by: Charles at August 18, 2005 3:01 PM

Charles:

You give spitters credit for more thought than they're capable of.

Posted by: oj at August 18, 2005 3:07 PM

oj,
That's only if we assume you are right that the Democrats can't win. Personally I assume you are wrong. I also assume you are a spitter.

Posted by: Charles at August 18, 2005 3:19 PM

How many seats do they have left in the South?

Posted by: oj at August 18, 2005 3:25 PM

Have you ever heard of Google?

Posted by: Charles at August 18, 2005 3:51 PM

Charles:

Yes. Google would reveal that only Mary Landrieu, who won in a run-off, and the two conservative Democrats in AR remain in addition to Mr. Nelson. Meanwhile, his more popular and formidable colleague Bob Graham retired rather than lose last time. Senator Nelson isn't a bad guy or a bad politician -- indeed, he should have switched to the GOP several years ago -- he's just the wrong party for his region.

Posted by: oj at August 18, 2005 4:05 PM

Sorry, I missed your sudden shift in topic. I was still talking about Florida specifically, whereas you decided to expand the subject to include the entire South. Unlike most of the South, Florida has been a swing state in at least the last two elections, so I don't see how the rest of the South is relevant. In any case...have you been following the approval ratings for Congress lately?

Posted by: Charles at August 18, 2005 4:20 PM

charles;

No, it hasn't. Both Bushes have won easily there since 2000 and the GOP has swept all the statewide seats except for Nelson's which they'll take this time.

Posted by: oj at August 18, 2005 4:27 PM

oj,

It's funny then how ALL the media--even Fox News--was referring to Florida as a swing state for both elections. Gore got more votes than Bush in 2000...so tell me how is that winning easily? Oh, wait...strangely that brings us back to Katherine Harris doesn't it? Interesting how that always happens. Anyway, I repeat...have you been following the approval ratings for Congress lately?

Posted by: Charles at August 18, 2005 4:47 PM

Charles:

Don't look to me to defend the media. Al Gore, a popular incumbent VP in a time of unprecedented peace and prosperity, couldn't hold the state in '00. Jeb won with 56% in '02 and the GOP won every statewide office and has the legislature. W won easily and they carried the other Senate seat after Bob Graham retired rather than lose it. Mr. Nelson can run a good campaign and he'll still lose the seat in what is now a Republican state.

Yes, I've seen that the approval ratings for Congress are returning to a more normal pre-9-11 territory. That's numbers for both parties. By next summer the troops will be coming home and the economy will have had another year of strong growth, so the numbers are un likely to be any worse, maybe better. Hard to see how an anti-incumbent effect helps a sitting Senator at any rate. Meanwhile, in an off year election the GOP has a natural advantage on turnout and they've built such a turnout machine in FL that it exacerbates that advantage.

Posted by: oj at August 18, 2005 5:08 PM

Non-responsive, Orrin.

She is as loony as Perot and will be an embarrassment to the party, win or lose.

More if she wins.

Posted by: Harry Eagar at August 18, 2005 5:26 PM

Non-responsive? It's a non-point. She's a disciple of Francis Schaefer, a hero of the Christian Right.

Posted by: oj at August 18, 2005 5:57 PM

oj,

"Don't look to me to defend the media."
You excel at tangential arguments. The GOP and the DNC, to name a couple of other sources, where also referring to Florida as a swing state...and the money they put into campaigning there is proof.

"I've seen that the approval ratings for Congress are returning to a more normal pre-9-11 territory."
You think 38% is normal? That's hilarious.

"By next summer the troops will be coming home and the economy will have had another year of strong growth"
This is also hilarious, but also sad. Your year of strong growth has been felt by few. If the troops actually start coming home that soon, it will be entirely politically motiviated and will not bode well for Iraq's future.

Posted by: Charles at August 18, 2005 6:32 PM

Charles:

Who won and by how much? What Democrat has won a statewide office there since 2000? It's not a swing state anymore.

Yes, that's a normal rating historically.

Our troops don't matter to Iraq's future. They should have come home by Labor Day '03.

Posted by: oj at August 18, 2005 7:27 PM

Actually, I was off--the approval rating of Congress is more like 29% now. It's low, even by historical standards. It hasn't been this low since 1996. Do you remember how the elections went in 1996?

Posted by: Charles at August 18, 2005 9:22 PM

Charles:

Yes, the GOP won both the House and Senate despite a popular incumbent Democrat at the top of the ticket. I'm afraid your point here is elusive.

Posted by: oj at August 18, 2005 9:31 PM

oj,

I think it's your understanding that's elusive. If the GOP was able to win the House and Senate in 1996, and the approval rating of the current Congress is as low then as it is now, then the Democrats could win it back in 2006. That's how it works when you're the majority party--you take the hit when the approval rating slides. That was the "Cliff Notes" version...do you get my point yet or do you want the "For Dummies" version?

Posted by: Charles at August 18, 2005 10:08 PM

Charles:

Didn't the Democrats keep Congress for probably 25+ years when the public rated its effectiveness lower than it did the press?

The most telling figure in FL politics is that the GOP controls both houses of the state legislature by almost 2 to 1. Nelson will lose to either Harris or Scarborough.

Posted by: jim hamlen at August 18, 2005 10:11 PM

Charles:

Yes, you could you make it easier for me, because the GOP had both houses in '95 and held them in '96 with those ratings and Bill Clinton carrying the nation. So why would their majority be threatened with the same numbers and no Bill?

Posted by: oj at August 18, 2005 10:15 PM

chirp

Posted by: cricket at August 18, 2005 10:39 PM

Schaefer?

I didn't know that but I am not surprised.

I take back what I said. She's goofier than Perot.

Posted by: Harry Eagar at August 19, 2005 5:13 PM

Harry:

Yes, goofy as your nation. No wonder you hate it so.

Posted by: oj at August 19, 2005 5:54 PM
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