In which Goldy advises Dino Rossi

I don’t know that the Dems have been trying to scare Dino Rossi out of a U.S. Senate bid, but it is increasingly looking like Rob McKenna may have successfully scared Rossi into it. That’s my take, at least.

About a month or so ago when I started lasering back in on Rossi, I was pretty much alone in my conclusion that Rossi was just toying with the NRSC’s attentions. Most of the Dems I spoke with at the state and national level seemed pretty convinced that Rossi was gonna jump into the race, hence, I assumed, the recent aerial bombardment.

But I looked at the stark reality of such a late bid against such a formidable incumbent, at Rossi’s own indisputable gubernatorial ambitions, and McKenna’s out-of-character political misstep in joining the AG lawsuit against health care reform, and concluded that Rossi was both more focused on the governor’s mansion, and too smart to sacrifice those dreams for the sake of John Cornyn’s honor.

Oddly, it’s increasingly looking like I may have been wrong, even as Rossi’s slim chances of victory diminish with each day he drags out this process.

So if Rossi does challenge Sen. Patty Murray, here’s how I think it will have played out. Rossi was planning a 2012 gubernatorial bid, and had been none too subtle in dropping hints of his intentions to friends and political associates. This prompted McKenna to make a calculated, preemptive embrace of the teabagger wing of the party, thus solidifying his position in advance of a primary challenge. At the same time, the NRSC, no doubt with the encouragement of the WSRP under McKenna-flacky Luke Esser, redoubled its overtures to Rossi, offering an enticing outlet for his narcissism. (And to be fair, all politicians are narcissists.)

Rossi, in the face of McKenna muscle and NRSC flattery, now looks like he’s leaning toward a senate run.

Would the DSCC and the state Dems like to scare Rossi out of running? Sure. Why wouldn’t they want a cakewalk for Murray? But I haven’t spoken to a single person in the know who agreed with my earlier assessment, so it seems pretty damn clear that they’re just taking advantage of Rossi’s prolonged indecision process to soften him up in advance of an all out assault.

As for me, I’m not one to hide my motivations. I don’t want Rossi to run for the Senate, not because I fear for Murray (though a Rossi challenge certainly wouldn’t be a cakewalk), but because I desperately want him to run for governor. Quite frankly, Rossi would give McKenna fits, costing him millions of dollars and much of his faux-moderate image in a primary battle. And should Rossi make it to November — a not surprising scenario — I believe he’d offer an easier matchup against the inevitable Democratic nominee, Jay Inslee.

So this is one situation, in my absolutely honest opinion, in which my interests and Rossi’s self-interest are one and the same, for I genuinely believe that a Rossi senate bid would be political suicide. Good for the Party, as they need a sacrificial lamb to tie up Murray’s resources, but the likely end of Rossi’s star-crossed political career. I mean, how many statewide races is he going to lose before his backers stop shoveling money down that hole? McKenna on the other hand, he’s a winner, and we all know that given a clear choice, the Republican powers that be are going to coalesce around the candidate they believe gives them the best chance of winning the governor’s mansion in 2012, whatever promises are being made to Rossi now.

Sure, he’d make it a much tougher race for Murray than any of the political nobodies she currently faces, and he’d end up forcing Dems to spend money in Washington that is needed elsewhere. But the only real political strengths Rossi has are name ID and favorable opinion polls… and, well, those haven’t worked out too well for him in the past against a much less daunting and much less popular Democratic opponent.

So Dino, take it for what it’s worth, by my free advice to you is that you have a much better chance of being governor than you do of being a senator. But either way, I’m counting on you to provide me with plenty of blog fodder.


  1. 1

    rhp6033 spews:

    Any chance Dino thinks that after losing to Patty Murray in 2010, he can still go after the Governor’s seat in 2012? Maybe he thinks that a 2010 state-wide race will at least keep his name in the headlines for a while, keeping up his name-recognition for a 2012 run.

    Personally, I think as a three-time loser for statewide office, he won’t get much support for that battle. But will he recognize that?

    I agree that for the Democrats, a two-way battle between McKenna and Rossi would be great. Both would be competing for the crown of chief wingnut to appease the Tea Party element, making both of them poisonous to the independent voters.

  2. 2

    MikeBoyScout spews:

    Repeal the current slate of Republican candidates for US Senate
    Replace with Dino Darn I lost again Rossi.

    The state’s economy will benefit from the money spent by Rossi and his NRSC fellow travelers.

  3. 3

    Hallabalooza Bub spews:

    I’m sorry, but I can’t think of a single politician in this state’s modern history who was successful after 2 bites of the proverbial state wide apple. Dino is used goods, what’s more, he’s an unattractive human and a middling campaigner. Come on: he lost twice to Governor Christine, an unattractive human, middling campaigner but who could ace him on credibility, competence, and smarts.

  4. 5

    rhp6033 spews:

    Come to think of it, what appeal does Rossi have to the Eastern Washington wingnuts, other than “prefers GOP” after his name?

    On a personal level, he has all the charisma of a bad used-car salesman (or real estate promoter). He clearly doesn’t have any farming roots or care about their issues (except the availability of cheap farmland for real estate development purposes). A campaign video of him herding cattle from horseback, or driving a combine, would look just as silly for him as it did when some idiot put Dukakis in a tank.

    Surely there must be smarter, industrious, honest Republicans from Eastern Washington who could look out for their interests in Olympia?

    I guess not….

  5. 6

    Dr. Dre, Easy E, and MC Ren spews:

    getting election advice from someone who needs handouts to make the house payment is akin to getting financial advice from disbarred attorneys…..

    kinda doesnt make any sense…

  6. 7

    Mark1 spews:

    ‘In which Goldy advises Dino Rossi’

    Yeah, I’m real sure that:

    1.) He doesn’t know you even exist Goldy.

    2.) If he does, advice given by the chronically unemployed/unemployable who further has so-called “fund drives” as he cannot even pay his own bills on his own, means nothing and has no weight or relevance whatsoever. It is good for a hearty laugh and a little bit o’ pity however.

    But you are right about one thing: ALL this false mudslinging and lowlife sleazy tactics shows you little lefty Libtardos running scared, and will probably encourage Mr. Rossi to “run” after all. Ah, the boomerang comes back around….and will slam Little Miss Mommy in Tennis Shoes square in her mug. She’s had her chance, and she failed miserably. Maybe twice-beaten Ditzy Darcy will give her a job thereafter in whatever irrelevant entity she runs now. What’s it called again? LOL.

    Good weekend all, and to you O.C.D. Rodent: Take your meds and have a toke off your oxygen tank old timer. :)

  7. 8

    Zotz spews:

    @4: She burnt her bridges to the D base in last year’s (2009) leg session.

    The only way I see she has a chance is if somehow she ends up as one of the top 2 with Inslee.

    Come to think of it, that would blow up some wingnut heads into fine red mist, huh?

  8. 9

    sarge spews:

    @4) Because Inslee is the inevitable nominee. Brown verses Inslee in no contest. Don’t know why that is, Lisa Brown is a credible candidate, I just know that she has no shot.

  9. 10

    um spews:

    she has no shot because over here, in the part of the state where all the people are? no one’s ever heard of her.

  10. 11

    Robb spews:

    @5: There’s Mark Schoesler, who is very down to earth and bi-partisan, but has no name recognition and even less money.

  11. 12

    Chris Stefan spews:

    I think Gregiore running for a third term is more likely than Lisa Brown getting through the primary.

  12. 13

    slingshot spews:

    Rossi will run. Anti big government has always been his mantra, no? And now the right is boiling over with that sentiment. They also believe voters will turn out anyone with a D before their name. Their tea leaves say the iron’s hot and Rossi’s their hammering man.

    It’s flawed reasoning, of course. But when did reason ever guide the right?

  13. 14

    Ryan spews:

    Schoesler? Bipartisan? He’s great on agriculture, sure, but he’s also solid R on everything up and down the platform.

    Lisa’s good on details, but she doesn’t even have a high profile in the Senate and she’s supposedly the Majority Leader. In the special session everyone said that Frank Chopp would get his way, and sure enough–the Senate backed down.

  14. 15

    Mr. Cynical spews:

    You have become quite the Conspiracy Theorist.
    Everything is a vast right-wing Conspiracy for you.
    Are you seeing Karl Rove peeking in your windows?
    Grow up.