Florida's special election and liberals' delusions of underdog status

Reuters

Democrat Alex Sink speaks during a candidate forum with Libertarian Lucas Overby and Republican David Jolly, all candidates for Florida's congressional District 13, in Clearwater, Florida, February 25, 2014.

Article Highlights

  • Sometimes I think it's baked into the liberal mindset to think of themselves as the outsiders — the insurgents.

    Tweet This

  • Jolly and Sink both had about $6.4 million behind them in the election, with a slight edge for Sink.

    Tweet This

  • Tweet This

Sometimes I think it's baked into the liberal mindset to think of themselves as the outsiders — the insurgents.

This compulsion makes some sense of the bizarre claim by millionaire developer and presidential confidant Valerie Jarrett that she and her White House colleagues are "speaking truth to power." It might explain why Obama could pretend to be battling all the special interests while pushing legislation favored by Big Pharma (Obamacare) and Philip Morris (tobacco regulation).

The latest flare-up is in Florida's 13th District, where Republican David Jolly won a special election over former statewide candidate Alex Sink in the race to replace the late Rep. Bill Young, a Republican.

Florida's 13th is a fair-fight district. President Obama won the district in 2012 by 1.5 points. Young held the district easily for years, in part because he was a famous porker.

Also on Tuesday, a libertarian candidate drew 5 percent in the race. Tough climb for Republican Jolly. Yet he won, while railing against Obamacare.

More interesting than the cringeworthy spin by professional Democratic spinsters like Debbie Wasserman Schultz and Brad Woodhouse is the weird effort to paint Sink as the victim of big money.

That's the impression one might get from a quick read of John Nichols in the Nation ("Democrats are not going to be beat by Obamacare this year. But they could well be beat by money.")

Nichols, on a couple of places in the article, makes sure to note that Sink's actual campaign raised nearly twice as much as Jolly's. But while worrying about Jolly's advantage in outside money, he never gets around to adding the campaign cash with the outside money and laying out the bottom line: Jolly and Sink both had about $6.4 million behind them in the election, with a slight edge for Sink.

Oddly, the Center for Public Integrity never mentions that fact either in their piece headlined "Outside groups help boost David Jolly to victory: Independent campaign efforts spent nearly $5 million to elect new Republican congressman."

That's exactly the spin from the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee: "Alex put this district in play despite Republicans spending $5 million against her."

Timothy P. Carney, a senior political columnist for the Washington Examiner, can be contacted at [email protected] This column is reprinted with permission from washingtonexaminer.com.
Also Visit
AEIdeas Blog The American Magazine
About the Author

 

Timothy P.
Carney

What's new on AEI

Defeating ISIS: AEI experts weigh-in before the president’s address on Wednesday
image Degrading, defeating, and destroying the Islamic State
image Wealth Building Home Loan: Building wealth through homeownership and retirement savings
image The $3 iPhone
AEI on Facebook
Events Calendar
  • 15
    MON
  • 16
    TUE
  • 17
    WED
  • 18
    THU
  • 19
    FRI
Tuesday, September 16, 2014 | 5:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
The Constitution as political theory

Please join us for the third-annual Walter Berns Constitution Day Lecture as James Ceasar, Harry F. Byrd Professor of Politics at the University of Virginia, explores some of the Constitution’s most significant contributions to political theory, focusing on themes that have been largely unexamined in current scholarship.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014 | 8:10 a.m. – Thursday, September 18, 2014 | 1:30 p.m.
Third international conference on housing risk: New risk measures and their applications

We invite you to join us for this year’s international conference on housing risk — cosponsored by the Collateral Risk Network and AEI International Center on Housing Risk — which will focus on new mortgage and collateral risk measures and their applications.

Event Registration is Closed
Thursday, September 18, 2014 | 2:15 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Speaker of the House John Boehner on resetting America’s economic foundation

Please join us as Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) delivers his five-point policy vision to reset America’s economy.

Event Registration is Closed
Friday, September 19, 2014 | 9:15 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
Reforming Medicare: What does the public think?

Please join us as a panel of distinguished experts explore the implications of the report and the consumer role in shaping the future of Medicare.

No events scheduled this day.
No events scheduled this day.
No events scheduled this day.
No events scheduled this day.