Primary Season Ends With a Bang
By John Gramlich, Staff Writer
Paladino's win in New York, over a GOP establishment favorite, is the latest example of Tea Party-backed candidates finding electoral success on the state and federal levels. Also on Tuesday, a Tea Party-supported U.S. Senate candidate in Delaware, Christine O'Donnell, defeated congressman Mike Castle, the preferred choice of national Republicans, while upstart Republicans have already defeated establishment candidates for governor in Colorado and Florida.
With all but one state — Hawaii — having wrapped up its primary elections for governor, attention now turns to the general election in November and whether the Tea Party's momentum from GOP primaries will translate into mainstream success. In several states at least, the expectation is that it won't.
Karl Rove, the former adviser to President George W. Bush, views O'Donnell's victory in traditionally moderate Delaware on Tuesday as a loss for the GOP come November, Politico reported . "We were looking at 8 to 9 seats in the Senate...we are now looking at 7 to 8 in my opinion," a "visibly unhappy" Rove said. "This is not a race we're going to be able to win."
The New York governor's race, too, presents an uphill climb for Republicans, as the Democratic nominee for governor is powerful and well-recognized state Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, the son of former governor Mario Cuomo. New York media generally have considered it a foregone conclusion that Cuomo will win the job his father once had, and Paladino has made several significant missteps during the primary campaign.
Paladino's victory, The New York Times said , places "at the top of the party's ticket a volatile newcomer who has forwarded e-mails to friends containing racist jokes and pornographic images, espoused turning prisons into dormitories where welfare recipients could be given classes on hygiene, and defended an ally's comparison of the Assembly speaker, , who is Jewish, to 'an Antichrist or a .' "