I was really hoping that my next post would be a positive one. Unfortunately, Blanche Lincoln has made that impossible by calling the League of Conservation Voters (LCV) an “extremist” group.
The LCV named Blanche Lincoln as one of their “Dirty Dozen” who are not standing up for the environment in Washington.
LCV gave the moderate Democrat a lifetime score of 49 percent on environmental issues, the second lowest for any Democrat up for reelection this year.
“Most regrettable is the fact that Sen. Lincoln is walking away from her previous support for climate legislation — and given the scope, urgency and magnitude of this issue, she has more than earned a spot on LCV’s Dirty Dozen,” said Gene Karpinski, LCV president.
Blanche Lincoln used this as an opportunity to move further to the right and attack liberals and environmentalists as outside special interests.
A “dirty dozen” designation may be a good thing for Sen. Blanche Lincoln (Ark.), a Democrat facing a tough re-election in a conservative state. She gets to defend herself against attacks by a “Washington-based,” “liberal,” and “extremist” “special interest.”
In a five-paragraph response, the Lincoln campaign managed to slip in all those political pejoratives in reference to the League of Conservation Voters, which was responsible for the dirty dozen tag. The campaign reassured voters that “threats” from a “special interest” wouldn’t keep Lincoln from being a “strong and independent voice” for her state.
“Threats from extremist groups from outside our state tell me I’m doing something right for Arkansas.”
John Brummett questions if this is really smart politics. We can see first hand that she has abandoned her base on issue after issue.
The question is whether the rules aren’t so simple this time in Arkansas politics. It is whether the unpopularity of her party’s president and the widespread resistance to the health care reform initiative — and her own exasperatingly evasive style — have so eroded her support elsewhere that the farm and business communities can’t sustain her as she trades away the fervent backing of her party’s liberal base with its quotient of environmental activists.
Arkansas Democrats may have gone along with her in the past given that these anti-liberal statements and actions were only occasional annoyances in the past. However, they are a daily occurrence at this point. Her support among Democrats is so low right now that she faces a massive uphill climb just to get out of a primary (if a certain Democrat would get in the race), let alone the general election. As unpopular as Barack Obama may be in Arkansas, this does not explain her numbers at all. Mark Pryor is not anywhere near her low approval ratings. Democratic Governor Beebe is soaring in popularity with over 80% approval. This isn’t about an anti-Democrat feeling in general. It is about Blanche Lincoln.
PS – I promise I will get to that positive post soon.