Taking a few days off

As I leave for a short break, the news that Scozzafava endorsed Democrat Owens in the NY-23 race made my day

Published November 1, 2009 8:02PM (EST)

I have no illusions, the Cro-Magnon Conservative Party candidate will probably win the traditionally Republican open seat in the fascinating NY-23 race. But as Mike Madden just reported, rejected Republican Dede Scozzafava, who dropped out of the race Saturday after right-wing Republican titans backed Conservative Party Doug Hoffman, has endorsed the Democrat in the race, Bill Owens.

Good for Scozzafava. The loyal Republican assemblywoman was rewarded by conservative carpetbaggers like the jobless Sarah Palin, who found her moderate, pro-choice, Rockefeller Republican views distasteful, with a well-funded campaign against her. Seeing her funding dry up and her support wither, Scozzafava faced reality and withdrew from the race -- but quickly endorsed Democrat Owens. Here's part of her statement:

In Bill Owens, I see a sense of duty and integrity that will guide him beyond political partisanship. He will be an independent voice devoted to doing what is right for New York. Bill understands this district and its people, and when he represents us in Congress he will put our interests first.

Hoffman remains the favorite, but this very interesting piece in today's Albany Times-Union, written before Scozzafava endorsed Owens, offered a few reasons not to write off the Democrat. For one thing, Army Secretary John McHugh, who held the seat, was a moderate like Scozzafava; for another, the district voted for Obama. Scozzafava is just one more Republican woman who's seen her party reject her; Palin and her right-wing friends seem determined to make sure the GOP is small enough to hold its 2012 convention in the Wasilla Sports Complex.

On that note, I'm taking a few days off, and won't blog again until next week -- although an Owens upset might change my mind. Happy November!

By Joan Walsh

Related Topics ------------------------------------------

2009 Elections