Is This a Strange Election Season, or What?

Some notes from Election Season 2009 (in no particular order). President Barack Obama is acting like Tuesday’s gubernatorial election results in Virginia and New Jersey are some type of litmus test for his presidency. Maybe he’s been reading too many desperate newspapers, reading election polls, and watching too many cable talk shows.

President Barack Obama and NJ Governor John Corzine
President Barack Obama and NJ Governor John Corzine

He’s stumped for John Corzine in Jersey and Creigh Deeds in Virginia as if his life depended on it. Published reports say even the widest eyed optimist has given up the ghost for election results in Virginia. Deeds’ opponent, Bob McDonnell, has a double digit lead.

The New Jersey race has been too close to call heading into the home stretch. What makes election coverage of the Garden State race interesting is that in addition to the incumbent Corzine and challenger Chris Christie, there’s a third candidate, Chris Daggett, who could play spoiler.

U.S. Attorney Chris Christie
U.S. Attorney Chris Christie

That possibility led to the most bizarre event in the race so far. Former NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani injected himself into the race, supporting Christie and calling on Daggett to drop out. Daggett told Rudy to butt out of Jersey politics, but it’s interesting to hear the once and future candidate for something (anything!) telling another to follow his example (remember Rudy 2008?), and just give up.

Of course, one could question whether people in New Jersey have any interest at all in what’s going on in Virginia, and vice versa. That would tend to downplay the referendum on Obama theory, except the president seems to be keeping it alive. Oh well…..

The election update across the river in New York City, we’ve got a mayoral race where the incumbent is spending the mind boggling sum of $35,000 bucks an hour trying to win a third term. Mike Bloomberg may well do that, but he’ll forever be dogged by accusations he ignored the public will to run for a third term.

NY Mayor Michael Bloomberg
NY Mayor Michael Bloomberg

His opponent, Bill Thompson, is trailing in the polls by double digits. He also has the distinction of receiving a shout out from President Obama, angrily denying it constituted an endorsement, then running commercials saying he’s been endorsed by….President Obama!

NY City Comptroller, William Thompson
NY City Comptroller, William Thompson

And finally, there’s NY-23, which we wrote about in a previous blog. Much has happened since then. The Republican nominee for that congressional seat, Dede Scozzafava, Abruptly dropped out of the race over the weekend. Then she turned around and backed the Democrat in the race, Bill Owens. The conservative darling in the race, Doug Hoffman, has set off an endorsement frenzy, with every conservative this side of the late William Buckley falling over themselves to back him. They’re calling this a battle for the soul of the GOP.

If that’s the case, it’s a fight over slim pickings indeed.

I for one will be glad when this election cycle is over late Tuesday night. How about you?

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