They're So Crazy, They Just Might Win

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
Aug. 13 2010 9:07 AM

They're So Crazy, They Just Might Win

I have a piece up on the homepage attempting to debunk this week's storyline about Republicans nominating tea party candidates who are more likely to lose. Democrats should hear from former congressman Jeb Bradley, whose 2006 Democratic opponent Carol Shea-Porter beat the establishment choice, raised little money, then won anyway.

As it happened, Shea-Porter won, spending less than $200,000 andbeating Bradley by four percentage points. (In 2008, she beat himagain.) Bradley saw the upset coming, but almost nobody else did."There was a perception that I was OK after she won the primary," saidBradley on Thursday, reached while doing work in his current job as aNew Hampshire state senator. "The final tracking poll, the night beforethe election, showed me up by 10 points. My core campaign stayedengaged. I never worked so hard. But the next level of volunteers,activists, donors, those types of people—they assumed I was safe."

Bradleylaughed at the memory. "I like to joke that if I had a dollar foreverybody who slapped me on the back and said, 'Hey Jeb, you're allset,' I'd be retired now."

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David Weigel is a reporter for Bloomberg Politics

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