The Corner

Inevitability

The tussle that is going on over the status of the majority leader race is pretty typical politics–the guy who is ahead (Blunt in this case) tries to make it seem it’s all over, so momentum puts him even further ahead than he would be otherwise. The guy who is behind (Boehner) disputes the front-runner’s level of support and picks away at the inevitability strategy. A Boehner supporter was arguing to me a little earlier that Blunt is running a “push campaign” based on intimidating members with the notion that he is going to win, so they better get on board now. “This is a page right out of DeLay, Inc.,” he added for good measure. The risk for Blunt is that if he doesn’t have the kind of votes his people are suggesting he has raised expectations, always a bad thing if you can’t meet them (and we are yet to see the new big list of names this afternoon). On the other hand, momentum can create landslides in these kind of insider races–witness Howard Dean’s overwhelming win in the DNC race. Few DNC members were enthusiastic about him, but no one wanted to be left behind once it seemed he was going to win.

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