Here’s what’s on my mind this week:
1. I think the news is going to get worse and worse for Jim Matheson in his race against Mia Love. I’ve been told that some Republican heavy-hitters, including House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, are planning on coming to Utah to raise money for the 4th District candidate.
Some of the other names being bandied about include some extremely familiar national figures. Until now, Matheson has enjoyed a decided money advantage over his opponents. This year, that may not be the case.
2. I think early voting and vote-by-mail is going to play a huge part in the June primary election. One party official told me more than 75,000 Republicans have already requested mail-in ballots, and they’re expecting about 75% of those to be returned.
In 2010, the Senate Primary between Mike Lee and Tim Bridgewater brought out more than 192,000 voters. If those numbers hold, more than a quarter of the ballots are set to be cast before Election Day.
3. I think having Orrin Hatch on the June ballot helps Mike Winder. Many of the Republican voters who come out in June will likely be attracted by the high profile race between Hatch and Dan Liljenquist. When they get to the other down-ballot races, name recognition will be key for many voters who really aren’t paying attention. Winder has a decided advantage over Mark Crockett in that area.
4. I think I’m a little perplexed as to when the term “archconservative” became a pejorative. In this week’s UtahPolicy.com/KSL Political Insider survey about Common Core standards, we described some opponents of the program as “archconservatives.”
Miriam-Webster defines “archconservative” as “an extreme conservative.” I can tell you there was no malice intended in the use of that word. But you could not tell from the reaction. Those offended accused me of “journalistic malfeasance,” and “extreme bias.” One person was so angry; they invented a word to express themselves – saying my use of “archconservative” was “repugnating.”
If we offended anyone, we sincerely apologize. That was not our intent.
5. I think this Saturday Night Live skit, while extremely stupid, also makes me insanely happy. Maybe it’s my deep and abiding love for Parliament-Funkadelic. Maybe it’s my unfulfilled dream of growing up to be just like “Bootsy” Collins.
A moderator named Michael “Monkey Sweat” James for a debate at “Booty Skank University”? Sold!
Shameless Self Promotion - If you’d like to come yell at me, I’ll be speaking on “Ten Things I Think I Think About the 2012 Election” on Friday evening at the weekly meeting of Drinking Liberally Salt Lake City. They meet in the back room of Piper Down in Salt Lake City at 6:30.
Parting thought –
“Do you ever get the feeling that the only reason we have elections is to find out if the polls were right?” –Robert Orben