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Bill Halter to challenge Blanche Lincoln in Arkansas

After months of whispers, Arkansas Lt. Gov. Bill Halter made it official this morning: he's taking on Sen. Blanche Lincoln in the state's May 18 Democratic primary.

"I am running for the United States Senate because Washington is no longer working for this neighborhood or families across Arkansas," Halter says in a video announcing his bid. "Washington is broken....Enough is enough. It is past time to put more Arkansas values in Washington."

Halter, who was elected to his current post in 2006, is the third prominent Democrat to challenge a sitting incumbent in a party primary this year. In Colorado, former state House Speaker Andrew Romanoff is running against appointed Sen. Michael Bennet while, in Pennsylvania, Rep. Joe Sestak is taking on party switching Sen. Arlen Specter.

With Halter now in the race, Lincoln's path -- already rocky -- becomes even more difficult. But, can he win? Recent political history provides a mixed bag.

The last two successful primary challenges to sitting Senators were in Connecticut in 2006 when Sen. Joe Lieberman fell to businessman Ned Lamont and New Hampshire in 2002 when then Rep. John Sununu ousted Sen. Bob Smith. (Senators losing party primaries is a rare thing; since 1960, only 20 have fallen -- one-quarter of those were incumbents who were appointed rather than elected to office in the first place.)

In each of those primaries there were two major elements working in favor of the challenger: a single issue in which the incumbent could be cast as out of step with the electorate and either establishment support or personal money on his/her side.

Let's unpack each element.

The "single issue" is the most critical element of a successful primary challenge to a Senator, the building block that justifies a campaign to fire the incumbent based on his/her out-of-stepness with the electorate.

For Lieberman it was his strident support of the war in Iraq in a state that had grown increasingly -- and passionately -- opposed to a continuance of the conflict. For Smith it was his inexplicable decision in the summer of 1999 to leave the Republican party to run for president, only to reverse himself six months later when the GOP seized control of the Senate.

Halter, theoretically, does have that single issue in health care where Lincoln has drawn the ire of liberal Democrats in the state (and, more loudly, at the national level) for her hemming and hawing over President Obama's bill, which she, of course, ultimately supported.

Halter is likely to use Lincoln's positioning (or lack thereof) on health care as a symbol of her broader unwillingness to take hard stances on issues of importance to the Democratic base. In his announcement video, Halter decried the idea of "protecting insurance company profits instead of patients and lowering health costs" -- an early indicator of where he is headed rhetorically in the primary.

The second factor necessary to a successful primary challenge of a Senator is either a) personal money or b) the revolt of the establishment from the incumbent.

In the Lieberman primary, the establishment broadly stuck with him -- don't forget that Barack Obama (among many others) endorsed the incumbent against Lamont in the 2006 primary.

But, Lamont, a cable television executive, had the personal money to end-run the establishment -- dropping, all told, $16 million on his race, which ended in defeat in the general election as Lieberman, running as an independent, ousted him.

In New Hampshire, Smith's leave/return to the Republican party did not sit well with party poobahs, a problem exacerbated that Sununu's family was a pillar of the Republican establishment in the state. (His father, also named John, served as the state's governor and as chief of staff in George H.W. Bush's Administration.)

While the White House was tepidly supportive of Smith, there was serious dissension in the ranks as chief of staff Andy Card as well as several sitting Senators endorsed Sununu.

It's this second criteria that would appear to encapsulate the problem for Halter. He is not personally wealthy enough to fund the race entirely on his own and it's hard to see the Democratic establishment abandoning Lincoln for Halter.

Of Halter, Rep. Marion Berry (D-Ark) said
: "I don't know anybody that cares what Bill Halter is going to do except Bill Halter. He is only of consequence in his own mind."

Berry's sentiment accurately sums up how the Democratic party establishment views Halter, according to one Democrat who has worked extensively in the state. "He had not earned his way into [the lieutenant governor's office] and the establishment knew he was only using that seat as a bench to run for higher office -- either against Governor Beebe in 2010 or against Blanche," said the source.

Not having the support of the establishment could actually be spun as a good thing -- particularly in an outsider election like this one -- if (and it's a big "if") Halter had personal money to fund his campaign ala Lamont. (The establishment may be hated by voters but one thing it is VERY good at is shutting down traditional sources of money for candidates it does not want in races.)

Lincoln's greatest strength in the race -- primary and general election -- is her bank account. She closed 2009 with more than $5 million in the bank and while neither Halter nor whoever wins the Republican nomination will likely outspend the incumbent, they must find avenues to stay within financial shouting distance or risk their message being totally obscured.

The central question for Halter is how much money the liberal blogosphere can raise for him. In the immediate aftermath of his announcement this morning, four liberal groups -- the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, Democracy for America, Moveon.org and Daily Kos -- pledged to raise $500,000 for his campaign in its first week.

"An early show of strong fundraising will help Halter's candidacy instantly gain momentum," wrote the PCCC's Adam Green in an e-mail announcing the fundraising effort. "This is the best opportunity we'll have in 2010 to show corporate Democrats in the Senate that when they oppose change, there will be payback."

It seems likely -- given their track record -- that these liberal organizations will be able to meet this first fundraising goal. But, how much further can they go and where else can Halter find money? (One interesting thing to watch: he is a Clinton Administration alum and will likely look to that vast network to help him raise money.)

Halter clearly has a chance in this race given the unrest toward Lincoln from within her own party and the anti-incumbent mood of voters. But, significant challenges -- particularly on the fundraising front -- remain if Halter wants to make Lincoln the 21st incumbent in the last 50 years to lose a primary fight for renomination.

By Chris Cillizza  |  March 1, 2010; 12:17 PM ET
Categories:  Senate  
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Comments

I couldn't care less who broadwayjoe and his pals were employed by (you may be right, but seriously, you are starting to sound like "scrivener50" on this ; )

Posted by: JakeD2 | March 1, 2010 7:53 PM | Report abuse

Noacoler and JackD2


I think broadwayjoe and his pals were employed by the Obama campaign last year - at that time, they had people on here on shifts harrassing the other posters.


The Obama people want to control the dialogue.


The purpose is to control the blogosphere - they beat Hillary in part because they were able to throw her people off of the Daily Kos.


I don't know what kind of operation is going on here - but they are here - it cold be that OFA Organizing For American group.

.

Posted by: 37thand0street | March 1, 2010 7:50 PM | Report abuse

yes, making you look stupid is exactly what I want. But I could never take money for it -- it's too easy.

Posted by: drindl | March 1, 2010 6:04 PM | Report abuse

37thand0street:

Just ignore them (even assuming they got paid to sow discord here, you are just giving them what they want ; )

Posted by: JakeD2 | March 1, 2010 5:51 PM | Report abuse

Think about it for a moment, 37th, presuming you have enough brain left after all that dope. Why would anyone get paid to post here? What could the gain be to make it worth any money?

You're worse than scrivener.

Posted by: Noacoler | March 1, 2010 5:49 PM | Report abuse

Pushing cartoonish hyperbole past the point of self-parody has made The Goracle an extremely rich moonbat; why should he stop now?

Posted by: drivl
-----------------------------------------
http://www.forbes.com/2010/03/01/al-gore-environment-climate-change-opinions-contributors-henry-i-miller_2.html

Posted by: leapin | March 1, 2010 5:49 PM | Report abuse

Wow and I thought Jake was obsessed with me. Zouk yhinks about me all day long, every day, works references to me in, Christ, 3/4 of his posts.

Posted by: Noacoler | March 1, 2010 5:34 PM | Report abuse

djmcfly

yea, how much of these postings are real, and how much is paid astroturf???

It is a great question.


.

Posted by: 37thand0street | March 1, 2010 5:21 PM | Report abuse

Even as the global warming hoax tumbles in ruins around him, Al Gore has climbed atop the soapbox provided by his fellow leftist ideologues at the New York Times to demand totalitarian restrictions on economic activity in the name of a crisis that clearly does not exist — and to blame America and Fox News for the destruction of the planet that will ensue if we do not obey his decrees. Guard your monitor from flecks of spittle — here he goes:

It would be an enormous relief if the recent attacks on the science of global warming actually indicated that we do not face an unimaginable calamity requiring large-scale, preventive measures to protect human civilization as we know it.
Pushing cartoonish hyperbole past the point of self-parody has made The Goracle an extremely rich moonbat; why should he stop now?

Posted by: drivl | March 1, 2010 5:16 PM | Report abuse


'
Aww how cute. dribbl and Ped are an item. but don't get your hopes up dribbl. Ped doesn't do girls or men. Even if you do have a mustache.'

i tell you, he's already had the lobotomy. what else could explain anyone being this infantile? i expect poop jokes next.

Posted by: drindl | March 1, 2010 5:16 PM | Report abuse

I'm not alone in my "prediction" of course:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/blog/2010/02/22/BL2010022202746.html

Anyone else want to discuss that in a civil manner?

Posted by: JakeD2 | March 1, 2010 5:13 PM | Report abuse

nw = be darn spellchecker winky winky winky

Posted by: Noacoler | March 1, 2010 5:12 PM | Report abuse

I "predict" that the Dems will lose both the House and U.S. Senate in November.

==

yeah just like you predict Sarah Palin will nw president two years later.

As if anyone cares about the political wet dreams if an immature loser with a two-digit IQ.

And what exactly is your understanding of the function of double-quotes? Did you even finish grade school?

Posted by: Noacoler | March 1, 2010 5:09 PM | Report abuse

Aww how cute. dribbl and Ped are an item. but don't get your hopes up dribbl. Ped doesn't do girls or men. Even if you do have a mustache.

Posted by: drivl | March 1, 2010 5:04 PM | Report abuse

I "predict" that the Dems will lose both the House and U.S. Senate in November.

Posted by: JakeD2 | March 1, 2010 5:01 PM | Report abuse

Does 37th's employer know he is leaving 4 minutes early?

Posted by: margaretmeyers | March 1, 2010 5:00 PM | Report abuse


Time to pack it in.


.

Posted by: 37thand0street | March 1, 2010 4:56 PM | Report abuse

If it's not enough that Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.) now has a primary opponent in the form of Arkansas' Lt. Gov. Bill Halter, she's also under pressure for not doing enough to prevent the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating greenhouse gases on its own.

Americans for Prosperity, a conservative group founded by David H. Koch, will kick off a campaign aimed at pushing lawmakers to block the EPA's scientific finding that greenhouse gases endanger public health and welfare.

The multi-million dollar campaign, which will include social networking and e-mail appeals as well as live events and paid radio and television advertising, will start March 22 in Hot Springs. Tim Phillips, the group's president, said that while Lincoln "has a decent story to tell" on the issue, seeing that she's joined Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) in trying to overturn the EPA's finding, she needs to do more.

"An effective legislator, sure, she can get the president of her own party to do something on this," he said in an interview Monday.

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/44/2010/03/blanche-lincoln-under-fire.html#comments

Posted by: JakeD2 | March 1, 2010 4:53 PM | Report abuse

ronjeske:

Why not get Cindy Sheehan to run against her? Seriously, though, I'd much rather see Sen. Lincoln defeated in the primary and someone more liberal to your liking run in the general election. Keep up these protests at least:

http://www.arkansasbusiness.com/article.aspx?aid=120558.54928.132687

Posted by: JakeD2 | March 1, 2010 4:49 PM | Report abuse

Blanche Lincoln deserves a hard way to go and a beating at the polls. She is not a team player and doesn't even represent her constituency as she should.

Posted by: ronjeske | March 1, 2010 4:43 PM | Report abuse

I wasn't aware that Arkansas and Kentucky had merged.

Posted by: JakeD2 | March 1, 2010 4:38 PM | Report abuse

Since last week, Sen. Jim Bunning (R-KY) has been obstructing legislation to extend unemployment benefits, telling Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR) “tough sh*t” when Merkley pleaded with Bunning to drop the hold on the Senate floor. Bunning blocked the measure, leaving 400,000 Americans in limbo after the benefits expired at midnight on Sunday. Today, an “angry” Bunning refused to answer questions about his hold, running away from an ABC reporter and taking refuge in a senator’s only elevator. Shouting “Excuse me!,” Bunning would not say whether he was concerned about people losing their benefits.

Off camera, when ABC producer Z. Byron Wolf tried to engage Bunning, he said, “I’m not talking to anybody” and gave Wolf the middle finger."

What's the wussie Bunning afraid of? Why's the little girl rrunning from reporters?

Posted by: drindl | March 1, 2010 4:30 PM | Report abuse

koolkat_1960:

Considering that you PROMISED TO NEVER POST HERE AGAIN, you shouldn't be talking, period.

Posted by: JakeD2 | March 1, 2010 4:26 PM | Report abuse

"a gerbil, however, is a daily pleasure.

Posted by: drivl | "

so that's what you use.

Posted by: drindl | March 1, 2010 4:26 PM | Report abuse

anyone who can't figure out that posts which self-identify internally or are datelined
aren't the posters own words is too pathetic for me to pay attention to.

Posted by: drindl | March 1, 2010 4:24 PM | Report abuse

Don't use a mouse for weeks sometimes.

Posted by: Noacoler


a gerbil, however, is a daily pleasure.

Posted by: drivl | March 1, 2010 4:23 PM | Report abuse

Is that all you do - copy articles from other web sites? Your post is word for word in this article.

Hahahahahahahahahahahahahaha

you found the secret link to dribbl's "brain".

Posted by: drivl | March 1, 2010 4:22 PM | Report abuse

'THE WHITE HOUSE & MOVEON HAVE ORGANIZED PAID CABALS TO POST PRO OBAMA, ANTI REPUB & TEA PARTY BLIPS ON OPINION SITES SUCH AS HERE. There are some posting here using word for word comments. ALL HAIL EMPEROR OBAMA, President For Life.'

so many fruitcakes and nutjobs out there...

Posted by: drindl | March 1, 2010 4:10 PM | Report abuse

@DDAWD: I go back. The mouse was originally supposed to be an entry-level interface for people who hadn't learned keyboard shortcuts. I only use it when navigation would take too many Tab keystrokes. Ever need a keyboard accelerator, ask me, I know them all. Don't use a mouse for weeks sometimes.

Posted by: Noacoler | March 1, 2010 3:53 PM | Report abuse

THE WHITE HOUSE & MOVEON HAVE ORGANIZED PAID CABALS TO POST PRO OBAMA, ANTI REPUB & TEA PARTY BLIPS ON OPINION SITES SUCH AS HERE. There are some posting here using word for word comments. ALL HAIL EMPEROR OBAMA, President For Life.

Posted by: djmcfly | March 1, 2010 3:49 PM | Report abuse

Whoa, I never know about alt-D!

Posted by: DDAWD | March 1, 2010 3:45 PM | Report abuse

I know Halter is kind of liberal, but I wonder if a liberal DC outsider might be more electable than a conservative DC insider. Perhaps neither one can win, but surely one of them has a better chance than the other.

And Halter is saying all the right things about the bailouts. He also doesn't have the lobbyist ties that Lincoln does and surely pretty much any Republican opposition will have.

Posted by: DDAWD | March 1, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

@drindl: please do take a moment to paste the link. Let it be the filth who uh "forget" to note that the posts aren't their own.

Alt-D

Ctrl-C

Esc

Ctrl-V

Posted by: Noacoler | March 1, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

"At least that's what "she" claims.

Posted by: JakeD2 | March 1, 2010 2:38 PM | Report abuse"

Considering the volume of claims you've made on here, you shouldn't be taking about anyone else.

Posted by: koolkat_1960 | March 1, 2010 3:31 PM | Report abuse

i forget to attribute at times. but at least i don't parrot rush limbaugh.

Posted by: drindl | March 1, 2010 3:07 PM | Report abuse

The longer it drags out, the higher the number of other Reps/Senators who will find themselves in the same pickle as Lincoln.

Posted by: mbcnewspaper | March 1, 2010 2:46 PM


I agree with you there about the other reps/senators. But it wouldn't help Lincoln. She's a lost cause. Any other Democrat in that state would also be unelectable because of health care.

Posted by: beltwaybro | March 1, 2010 2:50 PM | Report abuse

Lincoln, I'm afraid, is gonna be the model casualty of the healthcare bill - too moderate for the liberal base, too liberal for the general election in a place like Arkansas. The only way she wins both the primary and the general election is if the healthcare bill goes away - fast. The longer it drags out, the higher the number of other Reps/Senators who will find themselves in the same pickle as Lincoln.

Posted by: mbcnewspaper | March 1, 2010 2:46 PM | Report abuse

At least that's what "she" claims.

Posted by: JakeD2 | March 1, 2010 2:38 PM

Must be his meds.

Posted by: beltwaybro | March 1, 2010 2:44 PM | Report abuse

One more element needed to defeat an incumbent: a good media campaign. If Halter runs his race with the typical media (as seen in his video announcement) he won't excite Dems in Arkansas or elsewhere (who are funding his campaign). He needs to be different and creative.

Posted by: davidbrowne | March 1, 2010 2:44 PM | Report abuse

At least that's what "she" claims.

Posted by: JakeD2 | March 1, 2010 2:38 PM | Report abuse

Look at the past polling of Arkansas. Lincoln's polling in the 30s. No incumbent survives that, even this far out. Given the anti-incumbent mood right now, if Halter can play up Lincoln's corporate and Washington credentials he definitely has a shot. I expect the establishment to do as it did with Lieberman. A few may endorse Halter, many more will secretly support him, and the rest will wait until the primary is over to say they were on the winner's side all along.

That said, at last check ActBlue and MoveOn have raised over $300,000 for Halter in just the first half of the first day of his candidacy. That's got to make Blanche, well, blanch.

Posted by: thecorinthian | March 1, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

drindl = female

Posted by: JakeD2 | March 1, 2010 2:35 PM | Report abuse

Yes, that's all she does.

Posted by: JakeD2 | March 1, 2010 2:31 PM

She?? I guess you mean he. I was talking about the guy that posts as drindl.

Posted by: beltwaybro | March 1, 2010 2:34 PM | Report abuse

Yes, that's all she does.

Posted by: JakeD2 | March 1, 2010 2:31 PM | Report abuse

As the Republican Party becomes increasingly dominated by an implacably anti-Obama far-right fringe, it's becoming difficult for even mainstream GOPers to avoid endorsing the loonier rhetoric of the Tea Party wing.

Consider Ed Martin, a former chief of staff to Missouri governor Matt Blunt, who's mounted a strong bid to challenge Rep. Russ Carnahan (D-MO) in the fall. ...

Posted by: drindl | March 1, 2010 2:22 PM

Is that all you do - copy articles from other web sites? Your post is word for word in this article.

http://tpmmuckraker.talkingpointsmemo.com/2010/03/tea_partiers_call_obama_a_marxist_and_a_dictator_g.php

Posted by: beltwaybro | March 1, 2010 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: JakeD2 | March 1, 2010 2:27 PM | Report abuse

you clearly have the stuff, koolkat.

Posted by: drindl | March 1, 2010 2:23 PM | Report abuse

As the Republican Party becomes increasingly dominated by an implacably anti-Obama far-right fringe, it's becoming difficult for even mainstream GOPers to avoid endorsing the loonier rhetoric of the Tea Party wing.

Consider Ed Martin, a former chief of staff to Missouri governor Matt Blunt, who's mounted a strong bid to challenge Rep. Russ Carnahan (D-MO) in the fall. This weekend, Martin campaigned at a Tea Party rally at the Arch in St. Louis, and his campaign posted photographs of the event on his official website. Some show people expressing sentiments that -- though perhaps not so unusual for a Tea Party event -- might raise some eyebrows when they're being promoted by a serious candidate for Congress.

In one photo, which you can see here, a man holds a sign captioned "Presidential Advisors." Along with President Obama himself, the image depicts Josef Stalin, Karl Marx, Fidel Castro, and Mao. Next to the man, a woman holds another sign, which shows Obama speaking in front of an American flag -- but the stars on the flag have been replaced by a Soviet-style hammer and sickle.

In the other photo -- viewable here -- an angry-looking woman holds a sign that condemns "Obama's Marxist Way," which is said to involve "dictatorship," "suppression," "disenfranchisement," and, oddly, "sheep." This is contrasted with the "American Way," which is said to involve "God and the individual," "personal humility and dignity," "principles," and other 'good things."

These people just keep getting stupider. This guy deserves to lose big for associating with crazies.

Posted by: drindl | March 1, 2010 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Chris, you're wrong about Bob Smith's reason for coming back to the GOP. The Republicans had control of the Senate both when he left and when he returned. What changed in the interim wasn't party control, but the death of John Chafee (R., RI). Smith came back to the Republicans with the assurance that he would succeed Chafee as chair of the Environment and Public Works Committee.

Posted by: rayspace | March 1, 2010 2:20 PM | Report abuse

Future headline?

"Halter Tops Lincoln"

Posted by: koolkat_1960 | March 1, 2010 2:15 PM | Report abuse

Future headline?

"Halter Tops Lincoln"

Posted by: koolkat_1960 | March 1, 2010 2:15 PM | Report abuse

'One of the right’s biggest electoral targets for 2010 is Rep. Tom Perriello (D-VA), who recently condemned the Senate as “spineless” for being too hesitant in passing clean energy legislation and has been threatened with being burned in effigy by the local tea party movement.

This weekend, seven Republicans vying for the GOP congressional nomination to run against Perriello debated a variety of issues at a forum sponsored by the Lynchburg Tea Party. At one point, the candidates were all asked what they viewed as the primary national security threat to the United States. One candidate, Jim McKelvey, said it was the Obama administration; another candidate, Laurence Verga, said it was the voters who elected Obama, who he described as motivated by “political correctness run awry“:

Earlier, in response to a question about the No. 1 threat to national security, McKelvey got a round of cheers by saying, “The present administration is the biggest threat.”

Verga said the biggest threat is the Americans who voted the Obama administration into office. “That was political correctness gone awry,” Verga said. “There is a global jihad against the United States,” Verga said, “and we need to stand up to Iran with our allies and stop what they are doing.”

Reflecting on the debate, blogger Waldo Jaquith, who lives in Perriello’s district, writes, “Let’s just take a moment to consider that Verga meant by that. ‘Political correctness’ is conservative-speak for ’supporting minorities.’ There are many types of minorities, of course, but President Obama is only one kind: black. So what Laurence Verga is saying is that Obama is only president because he’s black. 69,456,897 Americans—52.9% of us—tossed national security aside because we supported President Obama over Sen. John McCain merely because Obama is a black man and, therefore, not a real American, so he can be known to be secretly undermining national security. .

Verga is not a racist, of course, he’s just keeping it real.”

“The present administration is the biggest threat.”

anyone who says this should be blessed with a suicide bomber sitting next to them on their next plane trip.

the gop beleives the biggest national security threat is american voters.

Posted by: drindl | March 1, 2010 2:14 PM | Report abuse

drindl:

That post has WHAT to do with Bill Halter or Blanche Lincoln?

Posted by: JakeD2 | March 1, 2010 2:10 PM | Report abuse

Poor Lindsay, he's sane. That means he can't last long:

"Last week, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) spoke with New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman to discuss clean energy legislation. During the interview, Graham warned his party that it will fall into irrelevancy if it continues to embrace climate change deniers:

I have been to enough college campuses to know if you are 30 or younger this climate issue is not a debate. It’s a value. These young people grew up with recycling and a sensitivity to the environment — and the world will be better off for it. They are not brainwashed. … From a Republican point of view, we should buy into it and embrace it and not belittle them. You can have a genuine debate about the science of climate change, but when you say that those who believe it are buying a hoax and are wacky people you are putting at risk your party’s future with younger people.

It’s a hopeful sign that at least one leading Senate Republican is acknowledging the fact that Americans want clean energy reform. According to the Benenson Strategy Group, 58 percent of voters in 16 battleground states support a cap-and-trade bill like the House-passed American Clean Energy and Security Act that invests in clean, renewable energy sources. The same poll shows that Americans desire regulation of carbon polluters so much that 59 percent of voters believe the Environmental Protection Agency should act on the issue if Congress does not."


Posted by: drindl | March 1, 2010 2:07 PM | Report abuse

Wow. This just handed the race over to the GOP for good. Not like Lincoln was going to breeze through before this, but still...

http://www.political-buzz.com/

Posted by: parkerfl1 | March 1, 2010 1:35 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: JakeD2 | March 1, 2010 1:32 PM | Report abuse

beltwaybro:

Did you see the latest poll where CHUCK SCHUMER is below 50% approval rating in New York?

Posted by: JakeD2 | March 1, 2010 1:30 PM | Report abuse

CORRECTION: Markos Moulitsas Zúñiga (born September 11, 1971 Chicago IL), is the founder and publisher of Daily Kos, a blog focusing on liberal and Democratic Party politics. He is also a weekly columnist at the Washington, D.C. newspaper, The Hill, and a contributing columnist at Newsweek. Moulitsas currently resides in Berkeley, California, with his wife and two children.

Posted by: JakeD2 | March 1, 2010 1:28 PM | Report abuse

At least we can agree that Moulitas (who runs DailyKos) is a blowhole. With friends like that, the Dems don't need enemies!

Posted by: JakeD2 | March 1, 2010 1:26 PM | Report abuse

She can spin Halter as the liberal and whomever is elected in the GOP primary as the extreme conservative allowing her to run as a moderate who is set on solutions not partisan agendas. If she can successfully shoot the middle than this may be a blessing in disguise.

Posted by: AndyR3 | March 1, 2010 12:54 PM

You're nuts. Lincoln is gone no matter what she does or who runs against her.

Posted by: beltwaybro | March 1, 2010 1:26 PM | Report abuse

In Arkansas one always has to consider the Clinton factor as well- what will they be doing?

Posted by: NYClefty | March 1, 2010 1:10 PM | Report abuse

This isn't likely to change anything. In the unlikely event that Halter wins the primary, he loses the general. Lincoln is also likely to lose the general, though she probably has a better chance than Halter. So this story is interesting from a process point of view (as primary challenges often are), but won't change the outcome of the election.

Posted by: Blarg | March 1, 2010 12:57 PM | Report abuse

As I said in the last post it seems to me that Lincoln can use this to her advantage if she attacks it the right way.

She can spin Halter as the liberal and whomever is elected in the GOP primary as the extreme conservative allowing her to run as a moderate who is set on solutions not partisan agendas. If she can successfully shoot the middle than this may be a blessing in disguise. Also don't underestimate the woman factor here. If Halter or her GOP challenger attack too hard other women may be put off by that and rally to her in response. And no matter where you are on the political spectrum if you dont' win the female vote than you will lose. It will be interesting to see if Emily's list back Lincoln or not in this. Also I would think that an endorsement from folks like Moulitas, (who runs DailyKos and who I think is a blowhole) would be a hinderance in Arkansas.

Posted by: AndyR3 | March 1, 2010 12:54 PM | Report abuse

beltwaybro:

ALL of the Democrats are in trouble! Did you see the latest poll where CHUCK SCHUMER is below 50% approval rating in New York?!

Posted by: JakeD2 | March 1, 2010 12:43 PM | Report abuse

Lincoln was already in trouble. Now the democrats hand her a pair of cement shoes.

Posted by: beltwaybro | March 1, 2010 12:41 PM | Report abuse

The left has to learn how to activate itself not only for primary elections- this is pathetic. Basically, if Halter wins, he is meat in the generals and if he loses, he reduces Lincoln to unwinnable in the generals. The idea is to make her feel the push by becoming active, writing letters, showing up in the street, organizing. Elections are often too late to change things or even when you think you did- without pressure the next guy just drifts to the path of least resistance (See Obama, Barack H.)

Posted by: NYClefty | March 1, 2010 12:40 PM | Report abuse

I'm shocked that Obama didn't try to bribe Halter to stay out of the race.

Posted by: JakeD2 | March 1, 2010 12:33 PM | Report abuse

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