Tea Party firebrand Steve Stockman may be running the worst primary campaign ever

The Texas congressman, who's challenging Sen. John Cornyn in the GOP primary, has basically disappeared

Published January 23, 2014 8:55PM (EST)

 Rep. Steve Stockman, R-Texas                (Facebook/congressmanstockman)
Rep. Steve Stockman, R-Texas (Facebook/congressmanstockman)

Texas Congressman Steve Stockman is probably best known for being a peerless practitioner of the art of the Twitter troll. But if he's not careful, he may soon have a new legacy: The guy who ran the worst primary campaign ever.

Granted, Stockman's challenge to incumbent Sen. John Cornyn never looked like anything more than the longest of long shots. One of the few polls released for the race found him trailing "Big Bad John" by an overwhelming 44 points, and the most noteworthy thing his campaign achieved in its first few weeks was getting called out for deceptively listing — and having to remove — prior endorsements on his website. He didn't get backing from the activist super PACs he needed. And his campaign finances were, to put it lightly, a total mess.

Yet inauspicious as his campaign's launch may have been, Stockman's follow-through has, arguably, been even worse.

According to a report from the Associated Press, Stockman has not only missed 17 straight votes in the House — after missing only about a dozen last year — but can't be found anywhere on the campaign trail, either. In fact, the only public appearance Stockman's made as of late was on a House Foreign Affairs Committee sojourn to Egypt. Stockman's staff, according to the AP, "won't say where he is" and has ignored "more than six weeks of emails, telephone messages and social media posts" from multiple news organizations.

Put it all together, and take into account the fact that Texas' primary election date is barely more than two months away, and there's a case to be made that Stockman 2014 is indeed the genuine article: The worst primary campaign ever. Considering this is Steve Stockman we're talking about, the question is, could it be any other way?

By Elias Isquith

Elias Isquith is a former Salon staff writer.

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Gop Gop Primary John Cornyn Republican Party Steve Stockman Tea Party Texas The Associated Press