3) An unwanted endorsement in New York
In what TheDC’s Neil Munro described as “an awkward problem,” a Democratic candidate for New York’s 10th Congressional District has earned the not-at-all-coveted endorsement of David Duke, a former Louisiana state representative and former grand wizard of the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan.
Duke endorsed Democrat Charles Barron in the Democratic primary on Thursday. Barron is black, which makes the whole thing even more confusing, but Duke said he felt an affinity with the city councilman because of their shared distaste for Jews.
“The possible election of a dedicated anti-Zionist has thrown the Zionist-influenced media and the Zio-political establishment in a tizzy,” Duke said in a video posted to his website.
He goes on to say that he will support Barron over his opponent in the primary, State Assemblyman Hakeem Jeffries. Jeffries is also black.
“In an election of limited choices, I think Charles Barron is the better choice [because] there is no greater danger facing the United States of America — and facing the world — than the unbridled power of zionist globalism,” Duke declared in a June 21 video.
Duke, by the way, now says he supports “diversity,” but advocates the separation of whites and blacks.
Speaking of unwanted attention for Democrats, the Tennessee Democratic Party is seeking “legal remedy” to get Senate candidate Thomas K. Owens’ name off the Democratic primary ballot after it came to light that he was charged with solicitation of a minor last year.
Owens is vying to obtain the nomination to challenge Republican Sen. Bob Corker.
According to The Tennessean, “Authorities say a 7-year-old girl riding her bike” by Owens’ apartment “was invited inside. According to authorities, the 36-year-old then allegedly hugged the girl, unzipped his pants and asked her to perform a sex act. The girl ran home and told her mother, who notified police, authorities added.”
A mental evaluation by Lakeshore Mental Health Institute determined that though he was mentally competent to stand trial, he had suffering from a “severe mental disease” during the time of his alleged crimes.
When asked to The Tennessean, Owens’ only comment on the matter was, “I have a problem with that.”
Brandon Puttbrese, a spokesman for the Tennessee Democratic Party, said they are looking for a way to legally take Owens off the primary ballot.
“There’s no place for a candidate like that on the Democratic ticket in Tennessee,” he told The Tennessean.
5) Utah Republican Senate primary
Tuesday’s Republican primary in Utah pits Sen. Orrin Hatch against State Sen. Dan Liljenquist, who is hoping to take down the longtime incumbent despite being dwarfed in terms of fundraising.
That is unlikely to happen, according to Utah politicos. Even FreedomWorks, which is in large part responsible for drafting Liljenquist into the race and has spent just under $1 million attacking Hatch, is downplaying expectations.
“Hatch wins by 20+,” one Utah political consultant predicted.
“FreedomWorks will try to explain this as a moral victory, but they got their hat handed to them,” the consultant added. “They always took too much credit for Bennett defeat in 2010 and all they did was waste a million bucks that could have been used to defend Heller or pick up Colorado or Montana.”
Utah political consultant Doug Foxley also predicted that “Hatch wins going away.”
FreedomWorks campaign manager Russ Walker said he was “hopeful” for Tuesday, but sounded skeptical that Liljenquist could pull it off.
“It’s a tough campaign … I think momentum is shifting our direction,” Walker said. ”I just don’t know if it’s enough to win the campaign on election day.”
“It’s very difficult to beat someone, especially in Utah, who has the full support of the fair-haired child of Utah — and that’s Mitt Romney — in a year when he’s running for president,” Walker added. “And that’s always kind of been an x-factor in this race, but you know, Sen. Hatch has tied himself to Mitt Romney’s coattails and he’s ridden them pretty hard.”
Liljenquist recently earned the endorsement of Romney’s primary opponent, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum.
Even if they didn’t win, Walker said, challenging Hatch had forced him farther to the right in his votes over the past two years, though it remained to be seen if he would stick to that level of conservatism after the election.
Nonetheless, Liljenquist himself expressed confidence.
“We feel very good,” Liljenquist told TheDC in a phone interview.
“This is a grassroots campaign and we’re working it to the end, and we’re confident we can win,” he said.
Hatch, though likely to win, sounded beaten down earlier this week, telling the Salt Lake Tribune: “This race has not been fun. The attacks on me have been tough.”