For the GOP, it's fraud, not festivities

Republicans in Washington aren't looking ready to party hard tonight.


Mark Benjamin
November 8, 2006 3:40AM (UTC)

Maybe the Republicans will be the ones celebrating at the end of election night. But if so, they sure aren't acting like partyers here in Washington.

One sign that Republicans aren't planning to boogie down after the results are in is that there is, apparently, no party scheduled. The Democrats invited the press to an "Election Night Watch Party" blowout at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill, slated to run until 3 a.m. The party there started early, at 3 p.m., hosted by House and Senate Democrats. But the one Republican bash closest to Washington that's open to the press seems to be a victory party being planned by Virginia Rep. Tom Davis -- set to take place at the Fairfax City Volunteer Fire Department in Northern Virginia at 8 p.m.

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Get crazy.

Republicans did invite reporters over to the headquarters building shared by the National Republican Congressional Committee and the Republican National Committee on Capitol Hill this evening -- but only to wait in the lobby of the building for GOP leaders to wander downstairs to provide an occasional morsel of wisdom. At least the NRCC promised that there will be a television there. That's kind of like a party.

Meanwhile, the GOP continues to celebrate one theme, at least: that voter fraud will have a lot to do with today's outcome. This afternoon, RNC chairman Ken Mehlman's office released a transcript of Mehlman's appearance on "The Rush Limbaugh Show" this morning, where he suggested that the Democrats might be stealing the election. "One thing I can tell you is this is part of the Democratic playbook," Mehlman said. "And in fact, if you look, Rush, at the whole country, we're seeing more problems on behalf of Democrats than any of the alleged problems on behalf of Republicans."


Mark Benjamin

Mark Benjamin is a national correspondent for Salon based in Washington, D.C. Read his other articles here.

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