Conservatives fire at Fiorina bashes Cary Fiorina saying:

When Carly Fiorina speaks on the campaign trail here in California, running to be the Republican nominee to unseat Barbara Boxer, she tries to prohibit recording of her speeches. However somebody snuck in an audio recorder to an event yesterday, and these clips seem to show why she would do that. The real, private Carly seems to be a bit different from the public, ‘conservative’ Carly.

Radical feminist and supporter of Jesse Jackson. That’s a two-fer of reasons to doubt her so-called conservative credentials and instead support Chuck DeVore for Senate.

The evidence for this alleged Jackson love and radical feminism however, is…rather lame.

A Romney run for Kennedy’s Senate seat: Smart or disaster?

If he did, Romney would then have a platform to actually introduce legislation modeled on the proposals he put forward as a presidential candidate in 2008 and planned to put forward in 2012. No guesswork. No empty rhetoric. Real ideas, on the Senate floor, that could be evaluated, debated, and perhaps even voted on.

It would be an intriguing thing if, after waiting a day or two out of respect for the late senator, Romney were to downshift and announce he will be a candidate in the upcoming election to fill Kennedy’s vacant Senate seat.

Such an announcement would likely be embraced immediately by the Republicans, who would like almost nothing more than to deny Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada his new, hard-won, 60-vote, filibuster-proof majority. As a self-funding candidate who has already been elected once statewide, Romney has nearly 100 percent name ID. And, in an environment where President Obama seems to be dragging the Democrats down, he would be a serious threat to the Democratic hegemony in Massachusetts’s congressional delegation. Meaning Romney likely would win.

The Hot Air blog responds:

Would he? Obama’s still near 60 percent approval in Massachusetts. Given the creepy dynasticism of the Kennedy cult, you can expect them to lend their weight to a campaign for the seat to stay Democratic (“Do it for Teddy!”). Romney’s not the same pol who won the governor’s race in 2002, either: Remember, his conversion to the pro-life cause came while he was in office so he’ll be demagogued inside the state as a cynical sell-out to the hard right today. And there’s more to lose in doing this than there is to gain. If he wins, he ends up stuck in the minority with the rest of the GOP with no way to pass legislation unless he compromises with the Democrats — not something a guy who’s already suspected of RINOism is wont to do. If he loses, it proves he’s a paper tiger who can’t even carry the moderate states to which he’s supposed to appeal as a potential Republican nominee.

Running and winning would lend him some extra gravitas and name recognition, which he’ll desperately need in a primary against Palin and media darling Huckabee. But even so … seems like a longshot with the potential for catastrophe. Let’s vote on it.

What happened in the Franken/Coleman recount?

Ed Morrisey writes in Town Hall Magazine:

The Franken team had a clear mission. Since they were behind in votes, they needed to either find new Franken votes or discredit Coleman votes in order to close the gap. Learning from the Gregoire campaign, they trained their volunteers to understand the limits of Minnesota law and to aggressively challenge ballots.

Coleman’s team, on the other hand, had a much more delicate mission, as they explained to their volunteers. Each of the precinct workers interviewed for this story had the same description of the instructions given by the campaign: Do not get overly aggressive in challenging ballots. They did not want to be seen as the campaign that “disenfranchised” Minnesota voters, as successful ballot challenges do by removing ballots from the count.

One Coleman volunteer explained the instruction as an explicit message from Team Coleman that “we don’t expect to be in the business of suppressing Franken votes, and we’re not trying to find new Coleman votes. … Don’t go out of your way to make what we think will be frivolous challenges.”

This instruction came specifically about overvotes, where a voter filled in two or more bubbles on the same race, which would have led the counting machines to reject the ballot for that race. Franken’s team latched onto the overvotes and tried to argue on as many as possible that the intent of the voter was to support Franken. Coleman’s team knew from the beginning that Franken’s volunteers would use that strategy, another Coleman recount worker said, but that “we should not engage them like that.”

But according to Minnesota law, as the state discovered during the process, the question of voter intent on overvotes is a legitimate area of challenge in a recount. In this case, it appears that both campaigns understood the parameters of action, but Coleman’s team simply didn’t want to avail itself of the entire range of action allowed by Minnesota statutes. They trained their recount volunteers to engage only on the most obvious cases and to refrain especially from giving the appearance that the Republicans wanted to invalidate ballots on a massive scale.

Predictably, this led to many missed opportunities for Coleman challenges. Because of the training received, the GOP volunteers assumed that many of the Franken team’s challenges in the precincts were invalid and would be tossed out by the Canvassing Board, the bipartisan panel that ruled on each challenged ballot. They were shocked to see the types of challenges later upheld by the panel, and they lamented the passive manner of the Coleman team’s recount effort, especially in the opening days. One volunteer estimated that he could have produced between 10-20 ballot challenges himself that the Canvassing Board would have upheld, based on their later rulings.

Franken’s team didn’t rest on its organizational edge during the recount, either. They gathered information from all the precinct recounts, even using tally sheets to note trends on questionable ballots, and apparently analyzed them overnight. Coleman volunteers recall seeing coordinated efforts to focus on new issues almost every day from their counterparts during the process.

Ed Morrisey adds on the Hot Air blog:

None of the people involved, most of them GOP partisans, believed that Franken “stole” the recount or did anything illegal. All of them insisted that the difference came down to two different approaches.  Team Coleman wanted a collegial, Minnesota-style approach, while Franken’s team saw this as an adversarial process that pushed both teams to use every legal advantage available for each client.  Put more simply, Coleman got outboxed, and badly, especially in the early days of the recount.

That’s a lesson Republicans need to learn.  Gone are the days when Congressional and especially Senate recounts will get conducted as a collegial effort between two candidates who want to act as referees as well as litigants.  Both sides had better be prepared for a process that looks a lot more like a lawsuit — or maybe a divorce — than anything else.  That includes preparation for a recount in races that look close months before the election.  Franken did all of these things, which is the reason he’s sitting in the Senate now.

Ridge won’t run

Ridge took himself out of the running today, however: Tom Ridge, the first U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security and former Governor of Pennsylvania, issued the following statement today on his decision not to seek the Republican nomination for Senate in his home state of Pennsylvania.

“After careful consideration and many conversations with friends and family and the leadership of my party, I have decided not to seek the Republican nomination for Senate.

“I am enormously grateful for the confidence my party expressed in me, the encouragement and kindness of my fellow citizens in Pennsylvania and the valuable counsel I received from so many of my party colleagues. The 2010 race has significant implications for my party, and that required thoughtful reflection. All of the above made my decision a difficult and deeply personal conclusion to reach. However, this process also impressed upon me how fortunate I am to have so many friends who volunteered to support my journey if I chose to take it and continue to offer their support after I conveyed to them this morning how I believe I can best serve my commonwealth, my party and my country.[“]

Toomey recently raised $500,000 in 2 1/2 weeks. Perhaps Ridge knows he couldn’t raise $500,00 in 2 1/2 weeks or possibly even successfully win in a Republican primary in PA. So he gets out. says Ed Morrisey of this:

According to some, with Ridge goes the GOP’s hope of wresting the seat back from Specter and his new colleagues in the Democratic Party.  Pennsylvania hasn’t been kind to conservatives, and some point to Rick Santorum’s loss to Robert Casey, Jr. in 2006 as evidence that a conservative can’t win in the Keystone State.  That’s what prompted the GOP to start looking for primary challengers to Toomey rather than start building support for him in a general election.  Now, they don’t have anyone of sufficient stature to push into the primary.

“jon1979” observes that: Getting a conservative Republican elected in Pennsylvania requires the same parameters that, say, electing a Republican mayor period in New York (that is, an actual Republican, not Michael Bloomberg). That is, Democrats have to:

A.) Hold all major state offices;

B.) Hold both the White House and Congess;

C.) Screw things up before the mid-term election.

That’s how Santorum was elected in 1994 — the Democrats tried to paint him as out of the mainstream, but voters were unhappy with the direction of both the state and the nation, and there were no Republicans in positions of power to blame.

That’s why it’s too early to write Toomey off, no matter what the current poll numbers show. Pennsylvania’s governor is a Democrat; thanks to Arlen, both their senators are now Democrats, Obama’s a Democrat and both Houses of Congress are controlled by Democrats. If Pennsylvania voters are unhappy with the way things are going 18 months from now and want change, based on what happened in 1994, it’s pretty easy to figure out what they’re going to do.

Ridge to challenge Spector?

Former Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Ridge is seriously considering a run for the Senate for the GOP nomination against Sen. Arlen Specter (D-Pa.), according to Roll Call:

Former Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Ridge is considering running for the Republican Senate nomination in his home state, according to a senior Republican aide with knowledge of the situation.

National and Keystone State Republicans have been publicly and privately urging Ridge to consider a Senate bid since Sen. Arlen Specter (Pa.) announced earlier this week that he was switching parties and would run for re-election as a Democrat in 2010.

Specter said he switched parties because he could not win a primary against conservative former Rep. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.), who is popular with the party’s base but whom many national Republicans believe cannot win the general election — especially against a 29-year incumbent who is viewed favorably and gets high marks from Democrats. Ridge’s moderate politics and national profile would make him a more viable candidate in the general election.

A former six-term House Member, Ridge is still popular in Pennsylvania, where he served as governor from 1995 to 2001. He left office to be President George W. Bush’s first secretary of Homeland Security but retired from the Cabinet in 2005 and joined the private sector.


Polls: Specter 53, Toomey 33; Specter 46, Ridge 43