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Monday, February 13, 2006

OH-Sen: Rahm Urges Hackett to Drop Out, Run for OH-02

Posted by DavidNYC

Whoa man, this could get ugly:

National Democrats are turning up the pressure on Iraq war veteran Paul Hackett, openly asking him to leave his campaign for U.S. Senate and take a second shot at a Cincinnati-area House seat that he nearly won last summer.

Democrats have privately suggested for some time that Hackett, who has a national Internet following but faces the more experienced Rep. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, in a Senate primary, would be better off running again for the House seat held by GOP Rep. Jean Schmidt. Democrats acknowledge their chances of winning a district that voted 64 percent for President Bush in 2004 are slim without Hackett.

"This isn't talking behind the scenes; I'm saying it publicly. ... I'm petitioning Paul Hackett to run for Congress," Rep. Rahm Emanuel, D-Ill., chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, said Sunday.

The Ohio filing deadline is just three days away, so this is a hell of a time for Rahm to start talking about this openly. Personally, I don't really think this is about getting Hackett to run for Congress. OH-02 is a total booby prize, especially if Jean Schmidt isn't the Republican nominee. I think this is Rahm trying to damage Hackett by making him look like the "undesired" candidate, the guy who lacks institutional support.

Of course, I could be wrong - it's possible that Hackett could completely switch gears over the next couple of days. (The filing requirements in Ohio are pretty minimal.) After all Jeanine Pirro did something similar in NY. Then again, Pirro had Pataki pushing her, and Rahm is not the Democratic Governor of Ohio. (Though in some ways, Rahm might be more powerful, given that he's a serious party power-broker, and Pataki is a lame-duck presidential wannabe.)

If Hackett does indeed run for OH-02, and if Schmidt is still the nominee, then we might, possibly might have a fight on our hands. However, I just want to point out two recent examples which align with this scenario. In 2004, Ben Chandler in KY and Stephanie Herseth in SD both won special elections to the House and then both faced quick rematches that November. Herseth won her special 51-49 and the rematch 53-46. Chandler was 55-43, then 59-40. In fact, Herseth's opponent was the same both times. This is a small sample size, but it is not reassuring. The power of incumbency - however brief - can be strong indeed.

(Thanks to desi.)

Posted at 01:56 PM in 2006 Elections - House, 2006 Elections - Senate, Ohio | Technorati

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Disagree. Both Bob McEwen and Tom Brinkman are highly tained candidates in their own fun ways. McEwen for his ties to the House check bouncing scandal and DC lobbyists, and Brinkman for his behind the scenes help of Hackett to beat Schmidt in the special election.

I think that the 2nd is a very hot race.

Posted by: Ohio 2nd [TypeKey Profile Page] at February 13, 2006 03:06 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Man, the check-kiting scandal. Would love to see that rear its head 15 years later and bite some GOPers in the ass.

Posted by: DavidNYC [TypeKey Profile Page] at February 13, 2006 03:14 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

One advantage of having the other two run is that they have almost no support in the right wing blogosphere. They've been doing a lot of the opposition research for both candidates, and I've been saving a few cards up my sleeves just in case.

Schmidt's a huge draw, but I think we can still pack the house with those other prizes. The advantage with Schmidt is that her name will raise a LOT of money online. McEwen won't. Brinkman might because of his fanatical anti choice stance and recent attacks on gay rights.

Posted by: Ohio 2nd [TypeKey Profile Page] at February 13, 2006 03:41 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

There's also the small matter of this possibly being a wave election, Schmidt being stupid, Hackett having a massive volunteer following and time to build an operation here.

As for trying to make Hackett look bad, I'm a Sherrod supporter, but I don't think Hackett is raking his money in from insider circles.

Just guessing.

Posted by: Left in the West [TypeKey Profile Page] at February 13, 2006 03:48 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

It is interesting that Rahm has gone public with his request here in the 11th hour. Is this to give Paul cover for an about face? And does Paul have time to file petitions with enough qualifying signatures in the last few days before filing deadline?
On the other hand, no doubt Paul would be a strong candidate to run against any Republican competitor currently on the radar.
I wonder, though, about the conversation Paul would have with Thor Jacobs after he encouraged Thor's entry into the Democratic Primary race. If Paul decides to stay in the Senate race, don't discount Jacobs in the 2nd.
Staying tuned.....

Posted by: Seamus O'Neil [TypeKey Profile Page] at February 13, 2006 05:07 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

After the Patty Wetterling switcheroo in Minnesota, I'm inclined to suspect Hackett could have an 11th hour change of heart as well, although Hackett's odds at a Senate primary victory are far better than Wetterling's were. Assuming this isn't a staged race transfer for Hackett, it's another characteristically slimy move by Emanuel designed to sabotage the non-anointed candidate.

Posted by: Mark [TypeKey Profile Page] at February 13, 2006 07:22 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

This is typical. The establishment letting the senior Congressman take the Nomination over the charismatic new comer. I hope Hackett gives them the finger and continues his senate run.

Posted by: D in FL. [TypeKey Profile Page] at February 13, 2006 08:45 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

I guess Hackett decided to cut and run!

With friends like Schumer and Reid, who needs enemies.

Posted by: Mike [TypeKey Profile Page] at February 14, 2006 12:49 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

McEwen, of course, has the Rev. Russell Johnson pasted to his side for better or worse. I suspect it's a bigger advantage in the Southwest corner of the state than in my northeast corner, but Oh-2 could tell you better, since he's in that district. I'm in Oh-11.

But go to www. ohiorestorationproject.com and click on "events" and see for yourself.
The Siamese triplets: Johnson, McEwen, Blackwell.

Posted by: Ansatasia P [TypeKey Profile Page] at February 15, 2006 11:59 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment