Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Rubbing It In

I will leave it to the fine writers of the Lexington Herald-Leader and the Louisville Courier-Journal to talk about Governor Ernie Fletcher's gracious concession speech.

Here, we're gonna wallow in schadenfreude. Just how bad did Ernie lose?

  • Fletcher is the first sitting Kentucky governor to lose a bid for re-election.*
  • Out of 120 counties, he took 28. Twenty-three of those are in the south-central "Old Fifth" district where Democrats stay deep in the political closet. Even in overwhelmingly republican Wayne County, Ernie won by only four votes.
  • Ernie and running mate Robbie Rudolph both lost their home counties.
  • Ernie lost the 10 biggest metropolitan areas in the state.
  • Ernie lost all six Congressional Districts.
  • Ernie's losing 18-point margin is short of a record, but Beshear's 619,000 votes are the most ever garnered by a gubernatorial candidate in the state.

* OK, OK: Ernie's only the second Kentucky governor to stand for re-election since the 1992 constitution change permitted it. Geez, you people are picky!

But the biggest loser of the night was Kentucky's Republican Party. Not only is Kentucky now a purple state poised to turn deep UK Wildcat Blue next year, but two of the big winners are Democratic up-and-comers poised to win big races in the future.

(More after the jump.)

Attorney General-elect Jack Conway is not yet 40, and watching him light up the crowd last night it was easy to see him in eight years accepting victory as Governor. And doing the same in 2024 as President.

Re-elected State Auditor Crit Luallen got more than just cheers; the whole crowd sang along to her theme song "Kentucky Woman." The moment the polls closed last night, Crit became the front-runner to challenge Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell next year.

Mark Nickolas has the scoop: apparently DSCC Chair Chuck Schumer is telling people Crit is definitly running and will have the DSCC's full support.

I've said it before and I'll say it again: I'll believe Crit is running for another office immediately after winning re-election when I see her signature on filing papers in January.

Cross-posted at BlueGrassRoots.