Political Junkie : NPR
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So they need Chafee, they need him very badly. They're - You know, I would argue they're willing to postpone the Bolton vote just to save Chafee's seat.
Ken Rudin - Political Junkie
Ambassador to the United Nations. Right, correct - right, which they postponed last week, and that was because Chafee had a tough primary, and they want to make sure they keep control of the U.
Senate, and if that means getting into bed with Lincoln Chafee and accepting his constant defection from the party line, they seem absolutely willing to do that.
Ken Rudin here, Wendy.
I have a question, which is interesting. Why - Given the fact that there were no Democratic primaries for the governor's seat or the Senate seat, why didn't some Machiavellian Democrats switch over and vote for Laffey, figuring he's the easier to beat in November?
Well, I think you know, there's a tradition among voters in both parties, Republican and Democrat, and I think voters are only willing to go so far, and that's very true of Rhode Island. You may want Steve Laffey rather than Lincoln Chafee, but that would require you to actually sign up as a Republican and vote as a Republican, and I think for a lot of Democrats, that was an untenable position. They - it's trouble, it's inconvenience, and in the end of the day, what if Laffey won?
What if Chafee won? I mean, you're voting for a Republican. So it's a riskier proposition for voters to be that Machiavellian, that strategic. And I think a lot of voters can't quite swallow voting for the other side, even when it appears it might help them out in November.
And Bob, by the way, thanks very much. I forgot you were still on the line. And let me ask you, Wendy, as you look ahead now to November, the fact that Lincoln Chafee, as you say, came out of this primary stronger than he went in, but he still faces that tough race. Whitehouse, a great political name, that's not going to be easy.
He faces a tough competition. What's so interesting in this race is that Lincoln Chafee will emphasize Lincoln Chafee the man, Lincoln Chafee the Senator, the Independent, the maverick, identifying with the voters and the constituents individually, really trying to connect at a local level.
Sheldon Whitehouse, his challenger, is going to take the National Democratic Party line and say even though Linc Chafee may be a nice guy, he's still a Republican, and the Republicans have taken us in the wrong direction.
That's going to be the Democratic message nationally, and that's what the campaign's going to be about. It's going to be pitting a national message versus a local favorite son. And I think that's the only way Sheldon Whitehouse can beat Lincoln Chafee, who is a fairly popular guy, is to run a campaign that ties him directly not only to Bush but to all the Republican leadership in the House and Senate and Republican Party policies.
Political Junkie: Sotomayor, Burris : NPR
You know, that's the only way I think he can emerge really victorious. Because on a one-to-one basis they look quite similar, and I don't know that Sheldon Whitehouse can distinguish himself individually. He has really got to hammer Lincoln Chafee and make him responsible for the Republican Party policies that are enacted today. Wendy Schiller, thanks very much, appreciate your time. She came to us today by phone from her office there. Well, let's get some other callers in.
This is Sayid ph. Sayid's calling us from Detroit. Hi, thanks for taking my call. My question regards the 5th Congressional District in Minnesota, where there's a possibility of the first Muslim-American to be elected to Congress.
Wouldn't it be a sign of pluralism in America? I beg your pardon? I'm sorry, I can barely hear you. All right, well Sayid, thanks very much for the call, and we'll get an answer - ask Ken to talk about it.
Well, I would imagine the White House is going to ignore this race completely, not because Ellison is going to be the first Muslim ever elected to Congress, and he will win, you're absolutely right. It's an overwhelmingly Democratic district. It's in the middle of Minneapolis. Congressman Martin Sabo is retiring after a gazillion terms, and the Republicans don't have a shot. But what was interesting about the primary race is that Ellison was forced to defend his relationship with Louis Farrakhan, the Nation of Islam founder.
And every time Ellison was put on the spot, he deflected it with humor and charisma, and he's just a really sharp kind of candidate. So you know, in this age of divisiveness and wariness about Muslim relationships, Ellison's going to be a pretty interesting character to serve in Congress. And speaking of pluralism, he's also likely to be - we were talking about the word tantamount before this - but anyway, he's likely to be the first minority elected to Congress from the state of Minnesota.
Anyway, let's see if we can get another caller in. Justin's with us from Baltimore. I was calling to ask what's your opinion of the - Michael Steele's candidacy was in Maryland. He has made a couple of statements that make it sound like he's interested in being a moderate Republican, but the way he has done it has been kind of backdoor. He's made comments off the record and then admitted that he made them, and then some of his ads also seem a little bit… CONAN: Yeah, he doesn't mention the R-word an awful lot in his ads.
Michael Steele is currently the lieutenant governor in the state of Maryland, an African-American who has got the Republican Senate nomination.
Right, and Justin make a good point that in an off-the-record conversation with reporters, Michael Steele really basically trashed the Bush administration, trashed their policies, the war in Iraq, behavior to the cities.
And had he come forward and said yes, this is how I feel, he may have been, you know, somewhat attractive to independent voters because you can't win in Republican voters alone in Maryland, because it's overwhelmingly Democratic.
Political Junkie with Ken Rudin : NPR
But the fact is that first he denies saying them, then he you know, said well, I didn't really mean that. And I think whatever kind of independence that he tried - the message he tried to give to these reporters I think just got lost in the translation.
We're talking with our political junkie, political editor Ken Rudin, who also writes the Political Junkie column on npr. Here's an e-mail question from Tom in Arizona.
Can you please talk about Jim Graf's win in Arizona? And this is exactly what I love to talk about, because we're talking about Rhode Island, how the White House really worked hard to get the moderate liberal over the conservative, which was ironic. Well, the White House tried to do the same exact thing in Arizona eight ph. Jim Kolbe, the Republican, is retiring after a bunch of terms, and a very conservative, anti-illegal-immigration candidate, Randy Graf, won a three-way nomination.
The moderates couldn't unite behind one candidate. Graf won with I think 46 percent of the vote - and Republicans, national Republicans, told the voters don't elect Graf, don't nominate Graf.
He's not going to win the seat, he's not going to hold the seat for the Republicans in November. But given the fact that the moderates couldn't get their act together, they backed two separate candidates, and Graf seemed to win, I mean, won a plurality, but he won the Republican nomination. And Democrats feel this is going to be a good sign, a good chance for a pickup for them because Graf is very polarizing.
As a matter of fact, the way I found out last night that Graf won, I got an e-mail from the Minutemen, the group, you know, defending our border, you know, with Mexico.
And it was the Minutemen who was heralding Randy Graf's victory in the primary.
It's The Final ScuttleButton Puzzle ... For Now
I stayed up late for that one. Of course, a real, you know, cliffhanger in that. But a lot of people were interested, after Connecticut - where an out-of-the-blue anti-war challenger dethroned Joe Lieberman - and somebody else tried to do the same or at least mount a challenge to Hillary Clinton. Jonathan Tasini was an anti-war candidate who tried to emulate what Ned Lamont did with Joe Lieberman. Even the weekend before the primary, Jonathan Tasini was seen at subway stops saying hi, I'm Jonathan Tasini, and everybody's saying who, what?
Angry protesters repeatedly disrupted proceedings and were dragged out of the hearings. And Democrats themselves protested on the first day that they did not have sufficient time to review more than 40, pages of documents they received hours before the hearings were set to begin.
In their ruling, the judges left open the option to order redrawing the districts before the election. What impact could this ruling have on the midterm elections and congressional control? What do the results mean for the November elections? Will the stepped up efforts save the summit? Will this wave continue into the November midterm elections? What impact could this have on the midterms?
Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said the president would announce those new sanctions during her appearance on Sunday talk shows. In a news conference with Baltic leaders Trump said the U.
That shifting timeline has impacted the credibility of White House Chief of Staff John Kelly and spurred rumors of his firing. They want concessions including deportation protection for some young immigrants before giving their vote. Here are the buttons used and the answer to last week's puzzle: Bella For Senator on hat — Rep.
Bella Abzug, the fiery Manhattan congresswoman who was well known for her omnipresent hat, sought the Democratic nomination from New York in but lost a squeaker to Daniel Patrick Moynihan in the primary. Charles Sandman unsuccessfully sought the Republican nomination for governor of New Jersey in and Inhe knocked off GOP Gov. Old MacDonald Had a Farm. The famous nursery rhyme.