Friday, May 05, 2006

Ben Nelson's "Nightmare"?

by Kyle Michaelis
More disturbing than scary
Political commentator Chuck Todd of The National Journal just moved Senator Ben Nelson's re-election campaign into his TOP 10 races to watch, commenting:
All signs point to a Ricketts victory next Tuesday -- a nightmare scenario for Nelson. Ricketts is running a “change” campaign in a year that appears to be a “change” election in a state that leans Republican. Can Nelson run a status-quo campaign in a national environment like this?

Now, despite Nelson's immense popularity, I'm not willing to say he's a lock for a second-term. Still, calling Ricketts Nelson's nightmare is more than a little bit of wishful thinking for a Republican Party desperate to believe it might avoid a total electoral catastrophe this November.

What's so amusing about Todd's hypothesis is the idea that Ricketts, aka Generic Republican R, could possibly run any sort of change campaign when he's running on the same empty promises of reform and fiscal discipline that Republicans have been making for years. This year, the American people are fed-up - not just with the lies of Washington D.C. politicians, but with those of the Republicans in charge.

Todd's talk of Nelson as the "status quo" is simply nonsense. In a government held hostage by Republican corruption and bipartisan bickering, Nelson's independent-minded representation of Nebraska voters has been anything but the norm. Here's a guy concerned with compromise and getting things done - looking past labels and doing what he thinks best for the country - rare qualities indeed across the current political spectrum.

America only wishes leadership like that were truly the status quo.

Yes, Ricketts will pose a stark contrast with Nelson on the November ballot. But don't be's Ricketts who would fit right in our dysfunctional Congress. Calling him an agent of change is like declaring running naked in the rain a cure for the common cold.

Of course, Nelson should still be a little bit worried by Ricketts. Anyone willing to spend $5 million to win a primary is making it pretty clear that the skies the limit in the general election. But, Nelson still has this ace in the hole - voters know him. They like him. They trust him. Those are three things that Ricketts' fortune and fancy advertising just can't buy.


Anonymous Lincolnnative said...

Holy, those nuns are the Pius X high school nuns. The first one of R's left was the head of the Social Studies department at my high school.


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