Bill Halter Announces A Primary Against Blanche Lincoln
Blue America has been busy all year letting Arkansas voters know that Blanche Lincoln may have a "D" next to her name but when it comes to the key issues that impact ordinary working families and pits their interests against Big Business and Wall Street, she was, in effect, a dependable Republican shill. Politics for her has become cultivating K Street and then fast-talking the Democratic base back home. We helped make that more and more difficult for her. And now, with her approval ratings the lowest of any member of the Senate and with a virtual certainty of defeat at the hands of any Republican, she has a real primary on her hands.
This morning Lt. Governor Bill Halter declared the would enter the May 18th primary against her. (Next week is the deadline for filing.) I spoke with Halter a few months ago and he said he had no intention of running. I feel certain he didn't. But as Lincoln's approval in the state collapsed, he has come to realize that he is the only chance the Democrats have to hold onto the seat. He will run a populist campaign against Big Business and for ordinary working families. He should be able to defeat Lincoln among a Democratic electorate that now sees right through her, although the corrupt and reactionary party establishment in Little Rock will stick with the Blanche Lincoln suicide train.
Establishment Democrats, meaning party insiders, didn’t like Halter anyway, certainly don’t like him now and will rally the apparatus, to the extent it exists with effectiveness, to push him back.
Right away we need to see if Halter, whose impetus into this race is from the unlikely left, favors card check, cap-and-trade and the health care reform bill as advanced by Harry Reid and modified last week by the White House. Those are three good opening questions for him when he files tomorrow. The state’s business establishment, meaning the chambers of commerce, the Farm Bureau, the utilities, will be scared to death of Halter.
Meantime, there’s been an interesting dynamic lately as I’ve been around the state talking to this group and that. It’s that I deliver some remarks about the anti-Obama fervor in the state and how Lincoln is caught up in it, and then the first question I get is from some liberal mad at Lincoln from the other direction over health care or estate taxes.
Politics is largely about passion, and I see none for Lincoln and the potential for some for Halter.
Blue America just added Bill to our Send The Democrats A Message ActBlue page, in case you'd like to help him get his campaign message out. Blanche has raised over $7 million so far and has over $5 million on hand much of it from the sleaziest special interests in Washington (and Arkansas).