Skip to comments.Barletta says he can win without Obama on the ballot
Posted on 12/10/2009 5:55:43 AM PST by Born Conservative
In his third bid for Congress, Republican Hazleton Mayor Lou Barletta is counting on a vastly different political climate than in his loss last year.
Barletta railed against President Barack Obama's policies in a video on his campaign Web site Wednesday as he launched a third campaign for the seat held by 13-term Democratic Rep. Paul E. Kanjorski of Nanticoke.
Barletta lost to Kanjorski in 2002 and 2008, but faces a potentially different race next year.
First, unlike his earlier runs, he has a Republican opponent aggressively attacking him.
Chris Paige, a Monroe County Republican challenging for the nomination, said it would be insane to nominate a two-time loser who had made "neo-Nazis and racists feel at home" and hurt the party and local business climate through his crusade against illegal immigration.
Barletta referred questions on Paige's statement to campaign manager Vince Galko, who denied that was true.
If he wins the Republican nomination, Barletta also could face a different Democratic opponent if Kanjorski loses the Democratic primary to Lackawanna County Commissioner Corey O'Brien.
But the biggest change Barletta is counting on is that Obama will not be running for president as the agent of change exciting new Democratic voters.
"If he (Kanjorski) was honest, he would probably say the same: in the last election, he didn't win, Barack Obama won," Barletta said. "I believe that with all my heart. The straight Democratic vote, first-time voters, that came out, you know, were voting for Obama. Obama won by over 15 (percentage) points in the district and Kanjorski only beat me by 3."
Barletta might be right. Mid-term elections draw far fewer voters, and Democrats might be hurt by the failure of first-time Obama voters to show up next year.
Republicans say Barletta remains wildly popular, and they believe Obama dragged Kanjorski, who had trailed by double digits in his polls early in the race, across the finish line during a final week that started with the mayor and the congressmen tied.
So does a local analyst.
"New voters went out just to pull the Democratic lever," said David Sosar, Ph.D., a political science professor at King's College. "That's not going to happen this time."
As Barletta pointed out Wednesday, without mentioning the president, many voters are upset. The president's approval rating has plummeted and polls - albeit none locally - show independent voters deserting Democrats.
Barletta criticized the president's $787 billion stimulus package for having "little effect" on an economy that only worsened since last fall, and his "health care scheme" that will "put our health in the hands of bureaucrats and politicians."
He aimed to tie Kanjorski to those policies.
"We need sane, sensible policies to restore our economy and encourage it to grow, create good jobs, and guarantee retirees' pensions and benefits," he said. "And we need a congressman in Washington who will work to make health care more affordable and accessible rather than destroy the best health care system in the world."
Barletta claimed the region's unemployment rate is "at an all-time high," though the region's 9.7 percent unemployment rate in October, the most recent available, lags well below the double-digit rates of the mid-1980s and earlier decades.
"Families are struggling to make ends meet," he said. "A second wave of home foreclosures is coming."
But counting on winning because Obama is not on the ballot might ignore other differences in the political climate that could upend Barletta's hopes.
If Obama's standing rises, the political landscape could change again, said Ed Mitchell, Kanjorski's campaign spokesman.
In his statement on Barletta's latest candidacy, Mitchell said it reminded him of a saying by Hall of Fame catcher Yogi Berra: "This is like deja vu all over again."
"Yeah, Yogi also said, 'It ain't over, 'til it's over,'" Barletta shot back.
Barletta's challenger in the Primary, Chris Paige, just switched from Dem to Republican prior to announcing his candidacy.
PA, OH and VA are ripe for conservative picking.
Barletta would be more likely to win if Obama were also on ballot. Obambi is a drag now, with 45 approval ratings and going down.
“PA, OH and VA are ripe for conservative picking.”
I call them “Taxpayer States”.
In a Democrat district such as that one, Barletta is better off with the low turnout that non-presidential elections bring. Barletta will get the benefit of Obama’s unpopularity, but will not have the disadvantage of Obama’s presence on the ballot bringing out all those idiots that had never even voted before 2008.
the only reliable income is for old folks on union and government pensions they paid into in the 50's when America was a wealthy and powerful nation. They vote Democratic in the belief that Harry S. Truman is running. They might admit they did vote for Ike ... maybe. Other than these old union men, there is no money left around the dead old towns, and no real jobs, except if you're a friend of Murtha's.
The young(er) white population that isn't on welfare left a long time ago, to be replaced by illegal Hispanics and Africa-Americans, the former working, the latter not so much. Both Democrat, and both are central to Democrat vote fraud, of which fast Eddie Rendell has made PA the capital.
Barletta is outspoken on illegal immigration and apparently a real conservative. But this is Democrat country and he may not have the "oomph" to get the job done, if the namby-pamby RNC doesn't help him with real money.
Good luck with the RINO Monkey Steele running the show. Millions for RINO's ... nothing for real people like Barletta. Disgusting. The RINO's can't wait for 2010 and to get back to their backslapping cross-aisle compromising business as usual Hispanic pandering bullshiite.
Perhaps now is the time to write the NRCC and remind them of the consequences of pulling a Scozzafava.
Thanks for the ping. Good news! BTTT for Lou!
Paige I take it is pro illegal immigration?
Here at our freeper desks, we know all about everything ...Natural born Citizens ...Climategate ... Cap and Tax ... Health Care ... The Wars in the ME ... the most abstruse legal cases ... our Constitution ... Military History
ButIgottatellya....OUR FELLOW CITIZENS, OR APPARENTLY, AT LEAST A LOT MORE THAN HALF OF THEM, DO NOT SEEM TO HAVE THE FAINTEST CLUE ABOUT ANYTHING WE TALK ABOUT HERE.
Nothing that should alarm them even wakes them the hell up. They get their news from TV, and resent even that as an interruption of their favorite shows. "Who's your Congressman?" is a question that just stumps most people. Who's your Mayor ... County Commissioner ... Police Chief ...City Councilman ... Zoning Officer? Nothin', pal... and then quite a few people even get hostile about it!
Granted my research methods, which largely consist of going to VFW and Elks Bars and shooting my mouth off are unscientific, but the pushback I get is just pathetic.
The GOP target Patrick Murphy? Under Steele, the GOP cannot target their sneakers with a pitcher of beer. Witness the Scozzafava fiasco. A couple of powerful endorsements and about $100large could have won us that seat. The economic diaster now looming is the only thing that will wake'em up. But the Democrats will promise 100% of nothing to every voter, stack the polls with illegal aliens and fake absentees, suppress the military vote and all in all, have an excellent shot at retaining a lot of those "vulnerable" seats.
I fear the Republican talking heads view 2010 as an heaven sent opportunity to get back to business as usual, not to do what's needed to assure the survival of the Republic.
Good luck, Barletta!
I wish these threads focusing on local races would at least (tell) us what state this is from?
We don't need another Specter! Go Lou - Go Toomey
Not only is the state listed, but also the area. All you have to do is look under the headline: Citizens Voice (Wilkes Barre PA). PA=Pennsylvania.
And he sure sounds like it.