Delaware republicans promised competitive races state-wide in November. Rob Tornoe wonders if that is enough. Here’s his spin.
If you don’t know who Jeff Cragg or Kevin Wade are, I don’t blame you. These practical unknowns, dubbed “real people” candidates by the Republican Party of Delaware, are apparently the GOP’s best hope at unseating powerful incumbents Gov. Jack Markell and Sen. Tom Carper, respectfully, in 2012. When last we checked, Markell was named by the Cook Political Report as having the safest bet among the eight Democratic governors facing re-rlection in 2012. Carper has won every statewide race he’s been a part of since 1982, and considering this is an election year where President Obama will be on the ballot, it would be tough for even a legitimate challenger to unseat him. Unfortunately for the GOP, their bench seems to have been so eviscerated by the Christine O’Donnell debacle of 2010 that they have been force to go with relative unknowns like Wade and Cragg, who in my mind represent only token challenges to powerful incumbents. I mean, I couldn’t even find a single picture online of Jeff Cragg. Not one. No Twitter, no Facebook, no Web site. And this is a guy who used to be a co-chair of the New Castle Country Republicans. Is this level of organization indicative of how he’d perform as Governor? Right now, Republicans only hold one statewide elected office, state auditor Tom Wagner. Short of an epic collapse or act of god, I don’t see that changing with the GOP’s crop of statewide candidates. The best known candidate is New County Councilman Tom Kovach, who is facing off against Rep. John Carney and has the backing of former Rep. Mike Castle. Yet the polling done so far indicates it safely remaining blue, and unless Kovach can get national Republicans interested in the race, I don’t see a path to victory. Maybe this is just a shower year for the GOP, a bunch of throw-away races intended to remove the tea party stink of O’Donnell and Glen Urquhart and return the party to legitimacy. Either that, or they’re hoping the Mayans were right.