It has been one week since the GOP blew a winnable race for Governor. The Attorney General's race is still too close to call. The Lt. Governor's race was closer than I thought it would be.
The other day a long time friend, in discussing the race sent me a note saying, "I think Mark Levin has it right. Did you hear him on the way Cuccinelli was abandoned by the Chamber of Commerce and all sorts of establishment types." Well, I am sure in Mark Levin's mind that makes sense, but as usual the reality is different.
Ken was not a victim of a nefarious cabal of Establishment Republicans hell bent on defeating him because of his conservative stances. I love Ken, campaigned for him,contributed to him, but the fact is he lost the race, with some help of course, but he did some things which sunk his campaign.
I urged on this blog that Ken run for reelection as Attorney General and defer to the more experienced Bolling. Then 4 years down the road he'd be our candidate for Governor. But, instead he decided to push out the more experienced conservative. To that end, Ken, "stepped on toes", to be charitable, by packing the state central committee with his people and pushed for a state convention to guarantee his nomination and that in turn created a rift which could not me mended in time.
Many rank and file Republicans were turned off by Ken's power move. Reminds me of the old maxim, beware of a young man in a hurry. Ironically, I think Ken would have won a primary. And by doing so the Party might have been more united. Instead he elbowed out all potential opposition.
With the choice of Lt. Governor didn't Ken consider that EW would be a drag on the ticket? I know the gubernatorial nominee doesn't choose the Lt. Governor nominee, but couldn't Ken have seen the train wreck coming, and work behind the scenes to get a stronger candidate nominated? On this blog, I suggested Steve Martin.
Now, to the point of a Establishment Republican versus tea party wings of the GOP, I don't find that fits. I would point out that while in the state senate Bolling developed a solid conservative voting record. Indeed he had broad conservative support. So the appearance of unfairly leap frogging Bolling hurt Ken with a number of conservatives.
There is also the argument that the campaign should have done a better job presenting a positive agenda, instead, of just saying that McAuliffe is a slimy guy with no state experience, all of which is true of course, but alas the voters wanted more positive reasons to vote.
As far as lack of financial support from certain sectors, well, perhaps the polls showing ken trailing by 10 points in the closing weeks of the campaign caused fundraising to be stunted.