Friday, August 13, 2010

Men Do Not Have The Monopoly On Wingnuttery In Today's Republican Party

There's been a lot of talk . . . er, blather recently about the surge of woman Republican candidates for gubernatorial and Senate seats and that normally would be a welcome development, especially for a party that has had a traditional aversion to women joining it's men club.

"This is a breakthrough moment," says Marjorie Dannenfelser of the Susan B. Anthony List, which raises money for woman candidates who oppose abortion.

Indeed. Fourteen Republican women are in the running for the Senate compared to just three in 2008 and I might even bring myself to vote for one or two of them if they were running in my home state.

But it is no accident that the two Republican candidates garnering the most ink are a woman who got filthy rich from steroid-filled men breaking furniture over the heads of steroid-filled men and a woman so loony that she believes God intends women to get raped so they can bring beautiful little babies into the world.

No, Linda McMahon (top) running in Connecticut and Sharron Angle (above, right) running in Nevada are no accidents, merely the result of a down-on-its-luck party that has careened far, far to the right.

It is way too early to predict the outcome of either race. But it is worth noting that both the Nevada and Connecticut seats seemed fairly certain to move into the Republican column in November. Harry Reid is deeply unpopular in Nevada and Christopher Dodd is retiring in Connecticut, but by putting a wackadoodle woman on one ballot and a another whose sole qualification is buying elections on the other, makes it more likely that both seats will remain Democratic.

* * * * *

Meanwhile, Republican takeovers of a Senate seat and the statehouse in Colorado seemed assured a few weeks ago, but then the candidates for both seats put on their crazy hats and those sure things have become anything but.

Tea Party darling Ken Buck (right) prevailed in the Senate primary this week over the party's establishment candidate. Buck's platform includes easing the separation of church and state and eliminating the Education and Energy departments, but it is unlikely he will eliminate Democrat Michael Bennet.

Then there is Dan Maes (left), who won the gubernatorial primary this week with the backing of the Tea Party over a candidate whose admission of repeatedly plagiarizing articles sunk his ship. Maes, meanwhile, has warned that Denver's bike sharing program is part of a United Nations plot, and that and his other nutty views will give a boost to John Hickenlopper, who is now expected to coast to victory.

One irony of the Republican Party's asshattery is that the November election was supposed to be a referendum on the Obama presidency but in the case of these races and a fair number of others it will be more a referendum on how crazy a politician can be and still get elected.

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