The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

16 November 2006

A Lott of nothing

Four years ago, I titled an item "The last, dear God, the last Trent Lott entry." Obviously I spoke too soon.

Chris Lawrence says it better than I:

Senate leadership positions on either side of the aisle arenít exactly hotbeds of political power (thanks largely to the fundamental institutional feature of the Senate — the filibuster — that distinguishes it from the House), so the substantive effect of Lott being in the formal leadership will be approximately zero, but in terms of symbolism I canít say I can conceive of a choice from the 49-member caucus that is worse than Lott. I mean, that would be like the Democrats appointing a former segregationist as president pro tempore of the Senate or something.

Not that either party is inclined to take advice from mere voters, after all.

Posted at 6:19 AM to Political Science Fiction

You get the feeling that lawmakers and others in government are far too removed from actual people to know what they are thinking. And yet I get a conspicuous amount of hits on my site from the Senate, judiciary and other DC governmental institutions.

But considering there is very little content on my site related to national politics, I guess the problem is that they're too busy browsing silly blogs to read actual opinion. Maybe I should have told them Trent Lott is an idiot.

Posted by: Joel at 10:51 AM on 16 November 2006

Actually, the voters' advice was heard very clearly here in Mississippi when we re-elected Trent Lott.

Posted by: Jay Stribling at 11:59 AM on 16 November 2006

So Trent won the new Fox reality show, "Who Wants to Be Top Clown?"

What they didn't tell us is that he's the seven-time defending champion.

Posted by: McGehee at 12:29 PM on 16 November 2006

Lott is sort of the perfect storm of foolish decisions for the GOP. He's a Southerner, in a party that, esp. after this election, needs to lose its Southern image; he has a crappy record (to put it mildly) on earmarks; he's a retread in leadership when the GOP needs new faces; and there are the 1980 and 2002 Thurmond comments that are now back in the spotlight.

Apparently we have Rick Santorum to blame for this, as he had been the rival of Lamar Alexander, Lott's opponent. Rick, a good guy nonetheless, threw his support to Lott.

Posted by: John Salmon at 1:34 PM on 16 November 2006

I have to throw this in, simply for the sheer delight of it. The lovely E. M. Zanotti, writing in Got Detroit?:

Contrary to popular opinion, this appears to be a positive development: Trent has already publicly embarrassed himself, so there are likely no Foley-esque surprises, he may be vaguely racist, but toward a demographic that the Republican Party has never been able to capture anyway, and because of his vague racism, heís not trying to use his position to run for President, unlike Bill Frist, whose legislative incompetence was rivaled only by his ability to diagnose patients from an astoundingly long distance via television, and he has that scary ability to threaten people into submission to the party line.

Posted by: CGHill at 7:34 PM on 16 November 2006

He's a Southerner, in a party that, esp. after this election, needs to lose its Southern image

I'm baffled. I was under the impression that what this election shows is that the GOP needs to lose its "willing to sell out its principles to stay in power" image.

Southern's got nothing to do with it.

Posted by: McGehee at 7:16 AM on 17 November 2006