In the great state of Delware, the 2010 elections presented a chance for the Republicans to pick up an iconic Senate seat, that of now-Vice President Joe Biden, away from Senator Ted Kaufmann, the caretaker senator, and the Democratic candidate, Chris Coons.
Those hopes rested on former Delaware governor and current Congressman Mike Castle, who has consistently outpolled Coons at every point, and where 538 rates his chances of taking the Senate seat at 94.4% - a huge, overwhelming chance, if I do say so myself.
Yet, step in stage-right Christine O'Donnell, the Tea Party and Palin backed candidate to take on Castle in the primaries. She also lost to Biden back in 2008, 65-35.
You'd think, well, she doesn't stand a chance, right? And at first, she didn't. But today comes news that O'Donnell now leads Castle in the GOP primary field, gaining her votes from an overwhelming lead among self-identified conservative voters, while Castle has a huge lead among moderates - but it simply isn't enough for the latter. And for all the hulaballoo over Castle coming to the US Senate, O'Donnell may just kill that chance.
But, even worse for the GOP, O'Donnell will probably kill any chance for a Republican to gain the Delaware Senate seat. Why? Because against Coons, she consistently loses. In the latest poll, one done by Rasmussen, a polling firm not known to be kind to Democrats, O'Donnell was losing by an 11-point margin, 47-36. In 538's model, with O'Donnell as the GOP candidate, Coons goes from a 6% chance of winning the seat, to 84% - a very safe number.
I'm biased, so I say, let O'Donnell become the candidate! Yet I still can't imagine the stupidity that has to run through the GOP primary voter's minds in order for them to choose O'Donnell over Castle, the latter an excellent candidate with the best chance of winning by far. It disturbs me, really, and I hope they don't. But, idiots will be idiots, I suppose....
So, I say again: this is why sometimes, you just gotta appoint people. Save yourself the pain. I like primary/nomination fights, but honestly, when your electorate may end up being this stupid, you have to step in somehow. But, c'est la vie.