Election 2012: Mary Matalin says GOP will fund a write-in against Todd Akin in Missouri
Admittedly this is the kind of thing that could change in another hour. As of now, however, GOP top strategist Mary Matalin is saying something pretty crisp about Rep. Todd Akin’s senate race. After dismissing Akin’s chances of getting funding from the Republican party, Matalin went on to say, flatly, “Wagner’s going to be our candidate.”
The reference is to Ann Wagner, the Missouri GOP chair now running for Akin’s House seat.
Speaking in ABC’s This Week with George Stephanopoulos panel discussion, Matalin went on to say “We have the money to do it”–i.e. fund a statewide write-in campaign for the U.S. Senate–and added that they’ve done it before. Presumably that last refers to Sen. Lisa Murkowski in Alaska. Matalin–New Orleans resident, wife of Dem strategist James Carville, and former diehard George W. Bush operative–is one of the nation’s most prominent pro-right discoursers on party politics and party policy.
The odds on a win for the hypothetical Wagner write-in in Missouri would be hard to calculate; in all likelihood the party would be counting on Akin to drop out, maybe at the last minute, in the face of a well-funded and serious write-in campaign from his own party.
The clear take-away from this Sunday morning’s talk shows confirms that the GOP establishment is indeed against Akin, as he says. Mitt Romney spent a few minutes of his lengthy one-on-one with Chris Wallace at Fox distancing himself from Akin, again, and calling attention to the fact that he is doing so. Former Florida Gov. Charlie Crist came out in favor of President Obama. Even Gov. Bob ‘vaginal probe’ McDonnell of Virginia mealy-mouthed around the rape-exception issue, saying, “The [national GOP] party didn’t make any judgment on that.”
With even fellow frothers like McDonnell bailing on him, Akin does indeed seem to face a tough rowing job. He is not completely alone, of course. Mike Huckabee is supporting him, front-pew, as are a number of Christian right organizations.
Outgoing Texas Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, on CNN with Candy Crowley, broadened the discussion a bit. Hutchison said firmly–speaking about abortion–that “We shouldn’t put a party around an issue that’s so personal, and also religion-based.”
Hutchison, like all the GOP and pro-GOP voices on the air waves, went on to use the line that ‘the economy’–’jobs’–should be the issue in the election.
You know the GOP is hurting in an election when it starts talking about jobs, the domestic economy, or hardships faced by ordinary people. It’s really hurting when it tries to switch the discussion to those topics, in preference to others.
To be continued