28 October 2010

The Meek Shall Inherit...Good Will?

There have been persistent rumors from the three way Florida Senate race that Democrat nominee Rep. Kendrick Meek (D-FL 17th) would drop out of the race to clear the path for Governor Charlie Crist (?-FL) to beat frontrunning Republican nominee Marco Rubio. Like any good politician,  Meek has vociferously denied the gossip, despite being in third place and only polling around 20%.

It seems that whether by hook or by crook there are efforts to diminish Democrat Meek to the background.  The Politico is reporting that Meek had twice signaled that he would drop out of the race.  The Miami area Congressman was a longtime Clinton supporter, so he was approached by former President Clinton’s top aide Doug Band.  After Meek expressed serious consideration of this modest proposal, President Clinton followed up.  The White House was apprised of the situation but did nothing.

Apparently, Democrat grandiose learned from the Sestak situation and no political offices were proffered for dropping out of the race.  But Clinton argued that Meek would be seen as a hero for dropping out and defeating Rubio.  Meek seriously considered it a week ago but was swayed by his wife’s belief that Meek could still win the race.  When asked about Crist’s evolving positions in the campaign during the last debate in Orlando,  Meek joked: “When I hear flip-flops down the hall, I think it’s the Governor”.  That does not sound like Meek wants to submissively clear the path for Crist to the Senate

Adding to the intrigue is Charlie Crist’s appearance on MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann Show. Of course it is the height of hypocrisy for Crist who anointed himself as a guy “who is about as conservative as you can get” to appear on the Lean Forward news network. But Crist’s likely motive is to appeal to left leaning viewers of MSNBC in the sunshine state with the argument of inevitability.  Currently, Meek is polling at 15% which puts Crist within 7% of Rubio.  If Crist can convince another 5% of the electorate by dispiriting Democrats to his cause, Crist could win outright or “win” it through recounts.

This Crist strategery (sic) has several flaws.  Florida has been early voting for 10 days.  It’s a little late to effectively force Meek to drop out.  Secondly, NBC’s David Gregory hit Crist hard on multiple occasions for his flip-flops.  It is dubious that Democrats would see Crist as a political savior instead of a self-serving opportunist. Thirdly, the aftermath of Democrat gubernatorial nominee Alex Sink (D-FL) being caught cheating during the last debate, combined with a national conservative tide and distaste over the Florida Senate race, Democrats might prefer to stay home rather than help a tan turncoat.

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