Tuesday, January 29, 2008

The Traitor Returns, as a Mitch Protege Drops Out

Today's 4 p.m. deadline for filing to run in 2008 elections in Kentucky arrived with some expected bad news and two surprise gifts for Democrats.

Criminal and Democratic Traitor Bruce Lunsford filed at the last minute to run in the eight-person Democratic primary for Mitch McConnell's U.S. Senate seat.

That had been rumored for weeks, but still came as a blow to those of us who thought Lunsford's 20-point loss in the gubernatorial primary last year effectively killed him as a candidate.

Note to self: Next time, chop the body into tiny pieces and bury it in a pit of lime.

(More after the jump.)

Lunsford and fellow Republican millionaire Greg Fischer were encouraged to enter the Democratic primary by Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Chair Chuck Schumer and other DLC/republican-lite types in D.C. and Frankfort.

I will have more to say about this intractable suicidal tendency later, but for the moment, just remember this: Lunsford/Fischer = Mitch victory.

But take heart, progressives: One of Mitch's original protege`s has thrown in the towel. Seven-term Congressman Ron Lewis, R-KY 2, is not running for re-election, throwing the 2nd District into real contention for the first time in more than a decade.

Back in February 1994, when Democratic Congressman William Natcher, who had represented the 2nd District of Kentucky for decades, died in office, then-freshman senator Mitch McConnell cast his net for a useful dupe to run as a republican in the special election.

He found itinerant preacher and religious bookstore owner Ron Lewis in tiny Cecilia, and never looked back. In 14 years, Lewis has distinguished himself primarily by doing nothing to draw anyone's attention. In 2006, the last year of the republican majority in the House of Representatives, Lewis' power ranking was below 200 - near the bottom of his party, despite 12 years in office.

As of this morning, only Owensboro representative David Boswell had filed as a Democrat for Lewis' seat, but immediately after Lewis' last-minute withdrawal, another dem and two repugs jumped in.

Another Mitch protege` announced her desire for a third electoral humiliation in 18 months. In the Third Congressional District of Louisville, former Congresswoman Anne Northup has filed to run against Democrat John Yarmuth, who beat every prediction to upset her in November 2006.

In 2007, Annie followed Mitch's advice to challege incumbent Republican governor Ernie Fletcher in the primary, only to lose big again in May.

Now rumors say Annie is very pissed that three other republicans have also filed in the primary. How tacky of them!

In the Fourth, two-term incumbent repug Geoff Davis has three - count 'em, three - republican primary opponents and one Democratic opponent.

In the Sixth, DINO Extraordinaire Ben Chandler has two republican opponents and, to the shame of every Real Democrat in the Sixth District, no Democratic primary opponent.

In the Fifth District, republican Congressman-for-Life Hal Rogers is unopposed. His constituents may all be Democrats, but they know the value of a congressman who will break any law to bring billions in pork to the home folks.

It's going to be one hell of a ride between now and the Primary on May 20. Check back here for updates as frequent as I can manage to make them.

Cross-posted at Blue in the Bluegrass.