Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Chafee Win Gives GOP Fighting Chance Of Holding Senate

Moderate Republican Sen. Lincoln Chafee (RI) gave his party a big sigh of relief tonight after he turned back a challenge from a conservative candidate, Cranston Mayor Stephen Laffey. Laffey just now conceded to Chafee , who leads with 54% of the vote with more than 90% of the votes counted. If Chafee had lost, national Republicans were planning to concede this seat to the Democrats, who have nominated Sheldon Whitehouse. Polls showed that Laffey would lose badly to Whitehouse, while Chafee holds a small lead against the Democrat.

In a state where Democrats far outnumber Republicans, there were indications that independents and Democrats crossed over to help Chafee, who inherited the seat his father held for many years. Some political observers think it would have been difficult for Republicans to hold their majority in the Senate if Chafee lost to a sure loser tonight. Although Chafee voted against the Iraq War and against Bush in the last election, Republicans know that his moderate Republican views are an absolute requirement for winning in this state.

In a hotly contested state senate race in Minnesota, Sen. Paul Koering led his Republican primary opponent by a 57%-43% margin. Kevin Goedker, at the urging the Christian right, decided to challenge Koering for the nomination after Koering openly acknowledged being gay. It looks like there's still some voices of moderation from within the Republican Party based on tonight's results.


Anonymous said...

Minnesota and Rhode Island.

At least some Repubs in this nation understand true tolerance and civil rights.

Are you listening, Speaker Pander, er, Bosma?

Anonymous said...

I hope this emboldens other Repubs to speak out against the Iraq war.

Anonymous said...

How can anyone speak out against the war? After all, according to Rummy and Chaney, it's Hitler-esque.