Political Animal


May 23, 2011 12:00 PM Monday’s campaign round-up

By Steve Benen

Today’s installment of campaign-related news items that won’t necessarily generate a post of their own, but may be of interest to political observers:

* The special election in New York’s 26th is tomorrow, and Republicans are starting to feel pessimistic. A Siena poll was released over the weekend showing Kathy Hochul (D) leading the race with 42% support, followed by Jane Corwin (R) at 38%, and Tea Partier Jack Davis (I) at 12%.

* On a related note, Public Policy Polling released its own survey this morning, and showed similar results. Hochul leads Corwin, 42% to 36%, with Davis a distant third with 13%.

* In case you missed it over the weekend, Mitch Daniels is officially out of the 2012 presidential race and Herman Cain is officially in.

* With Daniels passing on the race, other candidates are scrambling to recruit his backers to their campaigns.

* At a Memorial Day parade in Newton, Mass., yesterday, both Sen. Scott Brown (R) and Mayor Setti Warren (D) — who may face each other on the ballot next year — participated in the festivities. When Warren reached out to Brown to shake hands, the Republican senator waved him off and walked away.

* Herman Cain’s presidential campaign looked a little silly yesterday when the candidate struggled badly with a basic question about Israel. Cain also lectured Americans to read the Constitution, and then got confused, quoting the Declaration of Independence.

* In North Dakota, with Rep. Rick Berg (R) running for the Senate, state Public Service Commissioner Brian Kalk (R) will run for Berg’s House seat.

* Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R) reminded folks yesterday, “While I am flattered by everyone’s encouragement, my decision has not changed. I will not be a candidate for president in 2012.”

* And Tim Pawlenty’s hometown newspaper ran a story about his presidential campaign kickoff on the obituary page this morning. Ouch.

Steve Benen is a contributing writer to the Washington Monthly, joining the publication in August, 2008 as chief blogger for the Washington Monthly blog, Political Animal.


Post a comment
  • scott_m on May 23, 2011 12:18 PM:

    "When Warren reached out to Brown to shake hands, the Republican senator waved him off and walked away."

    Not too cool, Senator. Also not too smart. Remember Clayton Williams and Ann Richards?

  • markg8 on May 23, 2011 12:29 PM:

    Who is encouraging Jeb Bush to run for president and for God's sake why?

  • hell's littlest angel on May 23, 2011 12:32 PM:

    Perhaps Little George is encouraging Jeb. He thinks he may have left a pint of whiskey under a couch cushion in the Oval Office, and wants a way to get back in to retrieve it.

  • chi res on May 23, 2011 12:33 PM:

    Watch the video. Brown is a total asshole. I just can't imagine that MA can't do better than that.

  • DAY on May 23, 2011 12:46 PM:

    Although Tim Pawlenty is not blue, he still looks like a Smurf.

  • Jan on May 23, 2011 1:07 PM:

    That story about Brown not shaking Setti Warren's hand is false. http://blogs.wickedlocal.com/newton/2011/05/23/brown-spokesman-senator-shook-hands-with-mayor-warren-earlier/#axzz1NCDg9cbL
    I loathe the phony Brown, but you reported this with out double checking your facts. I live in this town and the local newspaper's blog just issued a correction.

  • chi res on May 23, 2011 1:22 PM:


    Your link repeats a report from Brown's office. What does Mayor Warren's office have to say about it?

  • June on May 23, 2011 1:23 PM:

    @Jan, saw your comment over at wickedlocal.com, too. The problem is, the rebuttal from Brown's camp is pretty impotent. The story, in itself, is obviously *not* false - the video footage clearly shows Brown waving off Warren - the best the Brown office can offer is to claim it is being viewed out of context. But, so what if Brown had shaken hands with Warren earlier? This was a parade -- he couldn't shake hands with Warren again? What Brown did was highly impolitic and has been caught on video. Not a good image for Brown, no matter the spin.

  • ComradeAnon on May 23, 2011 1:34 PM:

    Perhaps I've underestimated Herman "I'll learn how to be President on the job" Cain. He looks like he is imminently qualified to run as a republican candidate. He definitely has what it takes to make us laugh our asses off!

  • Ed, Watertown MA on May 23, 2011 1:42 PM:

    Don't believe this garbage from Scott Brown's political hack.

    Watch the video and tell me Brown didn't blow the Mayor off:


    Keep it classy, Scott Brown!

  • js on May 23, 2011 4:35 PM:

    Re NY26, I have heard reports of people in democratic neighborhoods getting mail telling them the polling place had been moved. New location far away, hoping it would deter them from voting at all, wonder if anyone else has heard this! The actual voting place had NOT been moved.