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July 29, 2013 5:11 PM Know When To Fold ‘Em

By Ed Kilgore

The latest Q-Poll, in combination with the resignation of his campaign manager, is generally thought to confirm that Anthony Weiner isn’t going to manage another comeback between now and September 10, the day of the New York mayoral primary.

Quinnipiac shows likely primary voters urging Weiner to drop out of the race by a 53-40 margin. His support level has now dropped to 15%, where he was at the beginning of the campaign. But he’s running fourth behind Christine Quinn (27%), Bill de Blasio (21%) and Bill Thompson (20%). Let’s just say the trend-lines are not great for Weiner.

And so the Death Watch has already begun, and everything we know about Weiner suggests he’s not giving up easily. I’m reminded of Hunter Thompson’s hilarious fantasy in Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail ‘72 about an invincible spinner:

The man who has been called The Lowest Underdog of Our Time today denied rumors that all but one of his financial backers have stopped payment on checks formerly earmarked for media time and staff salaries in what some observers have called “a hopeless campaign.” Sen. Otto “Slim” Mace, under indictment on twelve charges of Tax Fraud, told reporters at a special news conference at the Ace Hotel that in fact he has “more money than I know what to do with” and that his headquarters phone has been tied up for days with calls from “extremely important people” now working for his opponent who say they plan to quit and come to work for Sen. Mace.
“Needless to say, I am not free at this time to release any names,” the Senator explained. “But I expect we will hire quite a few of them and then roll on to victory.”

Actually, with six weeks left until primary day, Weiner might have enough time to admit he’s a hopeless loser and then, like Gary Hart in 1988, relax and engage his opponents on substantive issues and emerge with some much-needed brownie points with the public. He could even have an impact on the final outcome.

Now a more normal person would drop out tomorrow and explore job opportunities for financial consultants in Estonia or something. But unless Weiner’s hit with a normalcy stick or has wisdom fall upon him from the sky, I doubt that’s in the cards.

Ed Kilgore is a contributing writer to the Washington Monthly. He is managing editor for The Democratic Strategist and a senior fellow at the Progressive Policy Institute. Find him on Twitter: @ed_kilgore.

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