Thursday, April 27, 2006

George Will and the Republicans' Roach Problem

Washington Post columnist and right wing cheerleader, George Will, weighs in on the impact of an Eric Roach challenge to Brian Bilbray in the 50th District Republican primary.

What with Roach back in Washington talking to the right wing true believers, Will must have gotten his orders from Grover Norquist to give Roach a positive write up. Will tries to be even handed, but he makes it clear that Roach is the real Republican and Bilbray is just a place holder.

And Bilbray, since losing the 49th District in 2000, has been a Washington lobbyist, with a home in Northern Virginia, where his children attended school. Because Busby is running against the Republicans' "culture of corruption," which to many people means lobbyists, Roach says "her whole premise goes away" if he, Roach, is the Republican candidate in November.

"If I don't run," he says, Bilbray "is going to for sure lose." Roach says that unless he is running June 6, disgruntled conservatives will stay home. And Democratic turnout will be higher on June 6 than it was on April 11 because of the hotly contested primary to pick the Democrats' gubernatorial nominee against Arnold Schwarzenegger.

So, the way Will frames it, a Roach run in the primary is the only way to get Bilbray elected. That is an interesting strategy. Of course, if Roach wins the primary, then Bilbray gets unelected six months later.

Will also captures a comment from Roach that pretty much sums up the paranoia that the Republican right feels come election time. Everyone is out to get them and in this delusion, Roach suggests that the Busby campaign encouraged Democrats to vote for Bilbray in the special elections so that Busby wouldn't have to face Roach. It is classic right wing victimization.

Roach says that when Busby's campaign and liberal bloggers concluded that she could not get more than 50 percent this month, they urged Democrats to cast some votes for Bilbray because they thought he would be easier to beat than Roach in June. Roach says Bilbray could lose to Busby on June 6 -- and if he, Roach, does not run, Bilbray will win the Republican nomination that day, a prelude to Bilbray's losing to Busby again in November.

The "Busby campaign and liberal bloggers" worked for Bilbray because they are afraid of Roach. Odd that no one in the 50th District, nor any of the liberal blogs picked up on this last minute shift in Democratic strategy.

It is easy to see why the "true believers" like Roach so much. He is clearly one of them.