Man, this sketch by Ezra Klein, about the fallout of the very likely primary defeat of Richard Lugar, is depressing. If Lugar loses to the tea-partyin’ Richard Mourdock, here’s one likely scenario (assuming an Obama win in November):
Lugar loses and Mourdock wins the general election: This would be a signal that primary challenges remain a threat, and no Republican lawmaker can feel safe cutting deals or taking tough votes. This is a world where Republicans, having run and lost with a “Massachusetts moderate,” swear never to compromise on their principles again, and incumbent lawmakers realize that there will be a raft of primary challenges coming and so they had better spend the next two years shoring up their right flank. This is not a world in which you can imagine a ‘grand bargain’ getting done.
Lots of very casual observers might look at Michigan, where our attorney general and Republican-controlled legislature has recently gone crusading against two issues settled at the ballot in recent elections, and ask why. Why go after embryonic stem cell research, when it was overwhelmingly approved by voters in 2008? Why go after medical marijuana, approved by a landslide the same year? Because no one is listening to the people who voted, only the ones still making noise on the right. If there’s a bumper sticker for this chapter of the GOP history, it’s this: Don’t primary me, bro.
Tea Party Nation, what have you wrought?
How was your weekend. I went to a battle of the bands. Last year:
They lost their singer, gained a lot of confidence and finished third, which was pretty impressive. I think those judges in the middle were checking out the guitarist’s stems. I didn’t offer any wardrobe advice, but I did tell her the black dress made her look nice, and when you’re in showbiz, even church-basement showbiz, you should do your best in that department.
It didn’t hurt that they rocked it. Beyond that, I’ll say no more. I already edge close enough to toddlers-and-tiaras territory as it is.
Beyond that, it was just a swell couple of days. Long bike ride, Eastern Market, pleasant weather, a Tigers game. And they won.
How about you?