The New York Times has chimed in on the Colorado U.S. Senate race (and a few others)–“The party has nominated so many at the far right of the spectrum…that the Republican brand is barely recognizable”:
Ken Buck, the United States Senate nominee in Colorado. A former district attorney, he has said that the separation of church and state is too strictly enforced and wants to eliminate the Energy and Education Departments. Until recently, he supported repealing the 17th Amendment, which provides for direct election of senators. In the primary, he said he should win because “I do not wear high heels” — his opponent was a woman. As a federal prosecutor, he was reprimanded by a United States attorney after he gave information about the weakness of a case against gun dealers to the defense.
In an exclusive with Battle ‘10 earlier in the week, Buck addressed the issue of comments he has made on the campaign trail, and the issue of “authenticity”:
“Those [comments] cut both ways. There are a lot of people that came up to me and said, ‘You know what, you are who you are and I respect that about somebody,’” said Buck. “There’s a saying ‘you are comfortable in your own skin.’ I kept hearing those things over and over from women and men. When the negative commercials were out, and the ‘gaffes’ were being talked about, I don’t think it was a net plus in terms of votes but I don’t think it was much of a net negative either. I think that people appreciate authenticity. I’m not one that’s ever ducked an interview or a meeting or anything. I’m happy to talk to people.”
He also took issue with media attempts to label him, calling the efforts “nonsense”:
“That’s who we are,” exclaimed Buck, pointing to the “grassroots choice” sign hanging on the office wall. Buck continued, “I’m proud of my association with the Tea Parties, but I think that there are a number of groups out there that aren’t just Tea Parties that are part of the grassroots. That’s the key for people to understand, it is a broad grassroots movement. The liberal Democrats will try to portray it as ‘He’s just a Tea Party guy, he’s just this narrow person with narrow support.’ And they won’t see the tsunami coming, because it will come. Democrats are mad, unaffiliated voters are mad that Washington, D.C. is continually taking more and more from us. And if they just think it’s a little Tea Party segment in Colorado, they’re not going to see it coming.”
The gray lady’s appellation for Buck–”far edge”–isn’t the real thrust of the editorial:
These new Republican candidates are out of touch with mainstream American values of tolerance and pretty much everything else. They need to be challenged head-on.
The National Republican Senatorial Committee, perhaps in anticipation of just such an argument, released this video, noting that Democratic positions on key issues are, in fact, much more out of line with “mainstream” voters: