I’m having a bit of fun on Twitter tonight as there are a small few who firmly believe that I ran both the Akin and McCaskill campaigns and my refusal to walk away from a senate seat is the reason we lost the ENTIRE ELECTION. Ermahgerd! Just so you know, had I such powers, we’d be looking at a President Reanimated Reagan today and Nickelback would cease to exist. I kid! Kinda!
Despite what some say, there was no other option in the Missouri senate race. People who say that Sarah Steelman or John Brunner (who lost to Akin in the primary) could have stepped in have zero knowledge of our election laws. Missouri’s sore loser law prevents candidates who lost in a primary to run in the race they lost as either a replacement or write-in. By the time Akin made his remark, there wasn’t enough time left for a replacement to build the name recognition needed to mount a serious campaign against McCaskill, to say nothing of fundraising. I heard the buzz from the Missouri GOP and there wasn’t a politician who wanted to fall on the sword of waging such a replacement campaign. The party leadership failed Missouri in this race and everyone was split three ways. Who is left in the bullpen now? That’s a conversation for another day. In the end, it was Akin’s choice, and he had no intention of leaving. Elections have consequences. So do reactions. I still feel that if the reaction on our side had been contained, there would have been greater opportunity for victory. But that’s in the past. The reality was that Akin was the candidate and a general has to go to war with the soldiers he has.
Just know this: I’d fight like hell for that seat again because I wanted to win. I still do. Maybe in two years for another seat. Whenever there is a chance for victory, I will fight. I will always fight for a strategy available to me that gives conservatism its best chance in Washington. Especially in an election when everything counts. Je ne regrette rien.