Is this guy confused about what year we're in or is he simply a hack?
With 33 or so Senate seats in play in 2014, one would think that’s where pundits would be concentrating these days, but either Huffington Post blogger Ryan Grim doesn’t’ know which year is which or he simply can’t wait to get to 2016.
As a guest on the McLaughlin Group this past weekend, in the segment when the commentators are asked for predictions at the very end of the show, Grim said that Maggie Hassan will defeat Kelly Ayotte in her bid for re-election to the United States Senate.
This is the second time in a week that I’d heard of this potential match-up, but at least the first time, the commentator had the sense to point out that the election won’t be next year.
Grim missed that notation completely; a rather strange oversight for someone on such a show as McLaughlin…unless of course the left wing is making a concerted effort to minimize Ayotte and her influence; and Grim is in the tank. Ayotte, after all, was the reason Republicans did so well in New Hampshire in 2010. Without her coat-tails, especially in Nashua, not enough unqualified Republicans would have been elected State Representatives (remember The Peter Principle) to push Bill O’Brien past Gene Chandler into the Speaker’s chair.
Ah yes, tis true, blame it on Ayotte!
But our dear senator hardly needs help in opening gaping holes in her image. She’s already doing quite a job of that herself by her insistence on replacing Joe Lieberman as the third leg in the John McCain-Lindsey Graham triumvirate of stooges. Without a third stooge, after all, how could McCain and Graham continue to prosper in their media feeding frenzy?
Tis truly sad that our New Hampshire senator, whose voice could crack glass, insists on playing that role. She’d be far wiser to spend a portion of the time it takes to back up the other two stooges by taking elocution lessons.
The fact remains that the New Hampshire senator up for election next is not Ayotte, but rather Jeanne Shaheen. Grim (that’s his name; I didn’t make it up) would be doing McLaughlin and his viewers more of a service by focusing on that race.
I’d give Shaheen about a 90 percent chance of being re-elected. The only race she’s ever lost, as I recall, was in 2002 to John Sununu and that was most likely because pro-income taxer Mark Fernald at the top of the ticket (for governor) dragged all Democrats down that year. Also, Frank Guinta or whoever gets the Republican nod to face off against Shaheen is no Sununu; and Hassan is no Fernald!
As for Hassan vs. Ayotte, first Hassan will have to get re-elected governor in 2014, likely at this point but no certainty. If she overestimates revenue estimates, we could be in for a budgetary nightmare come next year. If she underestimates them, she may find her own Democrats unhappy with how little money there is to spend.
Perhaps come 2016, Carol Shea Porter (not Hassan; probably not Ann Kuster unless she starts paying her taxes on time) might be the best Democrat to run against Ayotte. After all, she’s won three times in the more Republican-oriented of our two Congressional districts. A win for Shea Porter in 2014 just might make her the better challenger for the third leg on the stooge stool.
Ryan Grim may be following the party line, but that’s not the purpose of this blog. As for now, let’s stay focused on 2014. Isn’t Al Franken up in Minnesota? Isn’t a Republican like to take West Virginia when Rockefeller steps aside? Isn’t a Republican likely to regain Alaska? The possibility of Republicans picking up five or six Senate seats in 2014 (even without the Shaheen seat) is much more intriguing that stepping into the unknown of Hassan v. Ayotte come 2016.
Just a non-Grim set of thoughts