Late last month I posted about the endorsement given to upstart Republican Christine O’Donnell in the Delaware U.S. Senate race. But perhaps the bloom is fading from the rose, or establishment Republicans in the First State have planted enough seeds of doubt in the minds of GOP stalwarts to push them away from the conservative challenger.
The most recent Rasmussen Poll in Delaware has Rep. Mike Castle handily defeating likely Democratic nominee Chris Coons by a 49-37 margin, with 9 percent undecided. While the margin has shrunk somewhat from earlier Rasmussen surveys, the pollster feels confident enough to state that the Senate seat now “leans Republican.”
On the other hand, O’Donnell, who trailed Coons within the margin of error last time around, now finds herself 10 points behind in a 46-36 race. Whether this is a result of Tea Party involvement or not is purely speculative, but one passage in Rasmussen’s report on the race raises some big questions:
If Castle is the nominee, the GOP makes serious inroads into the Democratic vote. Castle gets 81% of the Republican vote, while Coons carries just 56% of Democrats. But if O’Donnell is in the race, her GOP support is 66%, and 75% of Democrats support Coons. Voters not affiliated with either major party break close to even no matter which Republican is in the race.
Fifty-four percent (54%) of all voters in Delaware regard Castle as a conservative, while 61% feel this way about O’Donnell. Fifty-seven percent (57%) consider Coons a liberal.
My first question is what the 54% in Delaware are smoking to consider Castle a conservative, that is, unless Rasmussen is polling a group who thinks Ho Chi Minh was a moderate. (Given that Delaware has a Communist Party that just may be the case.) And where are the 34% of Republicans who wouldn’t support O’Donnell going to go if she gets the nod? Would they vote for the guy most Delaware voters think is a liberal just to spite the mostly downstate conservatives who are O’Donnell’s base of support?
Let’s just let this observer speak:
“She has debts she hasn’t paid from the last race. She sold her house that was in foreclosure so she could run for Senate. She has a long history of not paying bills. She sued a conservative think tank that dismissed her. She’s a candidate who runs for office that unfortunately lives off the proceeds. You just don’t have a candidate in Christine O’Donnell that is considered credible. I don’t know if I’ve ever seen a candidate with such a paper trail.”
When you come to find out this statement comes from Tom Ross, Delaware’s State Republican Party chair, perhaps it speaks volumes about the Delaware GOP. Apparently they would rather have a closet Democrat or the real thing. Yes, this is a state which sent Joe Biden to the U.S. Senate way too many times but you have to figure the lesson would sink in sometime.
Perhaps Christine O’Donnell isn’t the best representative of a conservative candidate, but that statement from the party chair demonstrates the Delaware GOP is in severe need of a housecleaning. No wonder O’Donnell is tanking in the polls.