The Corner

Daggett Should Follow the Scozzafava Lead

When Assemblywomen Dede Scozzafava suspended her campaign because it appeared that her Conservative-party opponent, a Republican, stood a better chance to win on Tuesday she noted that she was a proud Republican. What she demonstrated was more than that.  She showed she had the integrity and humility to step aside so the team, the Republican/conservative (small “c”) party would have a better chance to be victorious. Clearly she was not a conservative and she took a beating from national conservatives, including me, for it. However, her announcement today is a lesson to all of us — that even those in our party who may not agree with us on many of our core principles and positions not only still want to be on our team, but want us to win.  

Over a week ago I announced my support for the Conservative Doug Hoffman stating that I was a Republican before I was a conservative and that I had never before endorsed a third-party candidate in a general election against a Republican. I did so not only because Hoffman was more conservative, but I saw that coming down the stretch Hoffman had the best chance of winning against the Democrat.

We are faced with another three-way race for the governorship of New Jersey. The state of New Jersey is in a free fall under the inept leadership of Jon Corzine. Would I ever consider supporting the Independent candidate Chris Daggett there? Perhaps, if I thought, in these final days, the situation there were anything like it was in NY-23. But it is not. If you take a look at the Real Clear Politics poll average, Daggett is at 12 percent while Corzine and Christie are tied at 41 percent. What has been clear in all of the polls is that Corzine can’t break out of the low 40s in support.

Daggett, meanwhile, isn’t a Libertarian or a Socialist. He isn’t carrying the banner for a cause or a party that he has embraced. He is running, I suspect, because he knows that another four years of Corzine would be a continuing train wreck for New Jersey and he thinks he could do a better job than Chris Christie.

Like Scozzafava, Daggett was a liberal Republican in the Tom Kean mold (Daggett worked for Kean) in New Jersey. Unlike Scozzafava, he left the party to join another cause, his own. Like Scozzafava, Daggett is not going to win the election on Tuesday. Scozzafava withdrew because she put what is best for her district and her country above her personal aspirations. Let’s see if Daggett can exhibit the same selflessness.

 – Rick Santorum, fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center, is a former United States senator from Pennsylvania. He is the regular guest host on Fridays on Bill Bennett’s Morning in America radio show.

Most Popular

PC Culture

Warren Is a Fraud

Senator Elizabeth Warren (D., Mass.) has been telling a story for years. It’s a deeply romantic story about her parents and their young love, fraught with the familial bigotry of an earlier time. Here’s how she told it this week in a video she released in preparation for her 2020 run: My daddy always said he ... Read More
U.S.

Two Minnesota Republican Candidates Assaulted

Two Republican candidates for state office in Minnesota have been physically assaulted in recent days, leading prominent Republican lawmakers to caution their Democratic colleagues against employing inflammatory rhetoric. Republican state representative Sarah Anderson was punched in the arm last week after ... Read More
Politics & Policy

The Origins of Progressive Agony

What has transformed the Democratic party into an anguished progressive movement that incorporates the tactics of the street, embraces maenadism, reverts to Sixties carnival barking, and is radicalized by a new young socialist movement? Even party chairman Tom Perez concedes that there are “no moderate ... Read More