Thursday, July 29, 2010

Conway Plays For The "Middle"

Greg Sargent is apparently surprised that Jack Conway won't commit to Harry Reid as Majority Leader.
Wow. Do Dems really think Harry Reid is this radioactive all the way over in Kentucky?
Jack Conway, the Dems' Senate candidate in that state, pointedly refused to say he'd vote for Reid as majority leader, and also cast doubt on whether Reid will win reelection, according to a local news report:
Conway stopped far short of endorsing Reid as leader, and suggested that Reid may well lose his reelection bid for Senate.
"I don't know. We don't know the outcome of that race in Nevada. I don't know the outcome of a lot of these races and that kind of falls in the category of 'measuring the drapes.'"
"What I will do is I will go up there and cast my ballot for someone that I respect, someone that I think will be a good leader, and someone who will always listen to me when it comes to representing the interests of Kentucky."
Conway's opponent, Rand Paul, has been baiting Conway on this issue, trying to get him to say whether he would vote for Reid, apparently on the theory that this is a liability, because Reid has done more than any other Dem to advance the Obama agenda.
OK Greg, first of all this race is basically between two people here, a moderate Republican...and the other guy is Rand Paul, who is mostly insane. Jack Conway is playing the middle of the road right of center position because Rand Paul has ceded that entire ground to him on account he's basically Andrew Ryan from Bioshock and Conway's very comfortable hedging his bets here.

Second, since Conway's brilliant plan is to tell Kentucky Democrats they can go screw themselves or get Rand Paul as a Senator, Conway sees no reason to try to do anything for the base here in the Bluegrass State and feels like he safely play to the swing voters who may have second thoughts about John Galt Mark II over there.

Harry Reid isn't toxic, Greg.  It's completely a matter of Rand Paul being that crazy, and the fact that Jack Conway knows that he can go as far right as he wants and KY Dems will still vote for him just to avoid the horrors of six years of the Son of Ron.

Long story short, the very realistic threat of Rand Paul winning means Jack Conway can play as far down the right hand path as he wants.


Justin Faulkner said...

I think this is a bit unfair to Conway, he has staked out some very progressive positions on the issues, repeatedly calling for Medicare Rx bulk negotiation, strongly pro-choice, pro-health care reform, Medicare buy-in addon to health care reform, he supported cap and trade in theory but didn't care for that specific bill because of the effect it could have on KY electricity rates. What you said about Rand leaving the center and even center-right open for Conway to claim is true, but he has not exactly been a Blue Dog candidate either.

Zandar said...

Oh Conway talks openly about filibuster reform.

But he's clearly hedging his bets here on Reid. He did what he had to do to beat Lt. Dan in the primary but now that it's over he has to try to win rural Kentucky as well as NKY and the L's. We'll see what he says at Fancy Farm this year.

Justin Faulkner said...

I just know as a KY resident I've been very impressed with Conway, he is the most progressive candidate for public office we have had in a while, aside from maybe John Waltz who is running for Congress! Could be a good year for us here if things go well.

Zandar said...

I won't argue with you about Waltz. He is definitely one of the best candidates I've seen around here.

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