It is time for me to tell you a bit more about the happenings in the Maine U.S. Senate race. Just when I thought it could not get any more surreal, there is a storm brewing between now and the election (and I am not referring to Hurricane Sandy that is bearing down on New England from the South).
The Democratic candidate Cynthia Dill decided it was prudent to hold a press conference on Friday. Was it to announce her endorsement by Obama and Biden? Well no, the national Democratic Party is still ignoring her. She had this press conference to tell her fellow Democrats that voting for her is something they should not be afraid of. No really, this is how it was reported.” But she held her ground, telling voters they should not be afraid of vote-splitting.” She also claimed there was no “deal” being considered to have her drop out.
The bigger elephant story is one that involves outgoing Senator Olympia Snowe and Charlie Summers, the GOP candidate. We read that the National Republican Senatorial Committee has “gone dark” on the Maine race and will spend no more here after October 30. This report came out on the same day as it was revealed that Senator Snowe’s husband and former Republican Governor McKernan is in rather deep trouble with the Feds.
Of course, Snowe has been telling everyone she decided not to run again because of gridlock in the Senate. It seems more likely that she didn’t run again because the scandal that is erupting would have seriously hurt her in the last few days of a campaign. Unfortunately for Summers, he is very close to Snowe (being her person in Maine for many years, and after his wife resigned from a foundation run by McKernan’s company EDMC, that is under indictment to run for state senate early this year). Summers is also vice-chairman of the MEGOP, of which Snowe and McKernan are senior and powerful members. To suggest that Snowe and Summers aren’t linked politically and professionally is nonsense.
What is unfortunate for Summers is that next week all the senate candidates are participating in 4 televised debates. It seems unlikely this issue will not come up in those debates.
What has been a surreal campaign is possibly about to get very ugly as Dill and Summers wallow in their desperation. The phony war has just ended and now it is time for real bloody combat to begin.