Tuesday, September 1, 2009

The candidates strike back

There are some fascinating behind-the-scenes maneuvers going on in the Colorado Republican Party's efforts to find a nominee for the 2010 U.S. Senate race. It's a great party story. The quick version is that the NRSC appears to be attempting to invoke "Rule 11," a collusion with state party officials promising big early national support for a candidate long before the primary. This support is supposed to help clear the field of other candidates and make for a stronger nominee for the fall. This is exactly what the Republicans did in 2008 for Bob Schaffer, who ended up losing by nine points to Mark Udall in the general election.

So now the NRSC wants Jane Norton, a relative moderate, to run for Senate. This tipping of the hat was indicated by the NRSC's registering of two domain names in Norton's name. No doubt because of last year's disastrous election results and because of Norton's moderate record, local Republican aren't so keen about deferring to national party leaders this time around. Ken Buck, who had planned on withdrawing from the race last week, now appears to have gotten so angry about them DC boys messing with the race that he's back in. And some guy named Tom Wiens is jumping in the race. And now Norton is reconsidering the whole thing. Weirdly enough, state GOP chair Dick Wadhams is now complaining about the NRSC, even though he had to have been in on the whole thing from the beginning.

So this looks like an interesting case where the party tried to decide but the candidates pushed back.

1 comment:

Ben DeGrow said...

CompleteColorado.com broke the story about the NRSC registering the web domains for Norton.

My site bendegrow.com was the first to report that Norton definitely was planning to enter the race, as well as the rumors of the NRSC coming in on her behalf.

Great site, I'll have to check back here more often.