The Campaign Spot

Baron Hill, Earl Pomeroy . . . Tough Year for Guys With Names That Are Nobility Titles

You’re Earl Pomeroy. You’ve been representing North Dakota in the House of Representatives since 1993. It’s such a sparsely populated state that your district is the entire state. A Democratic senator who represents the same geographic territory, Byron Dorgan, suddenly retired, rather than face the electorate in November. The phenomenally popular governor, John Hoeven, will be running for Senate, and is expected to win by a landslide; he currently leads 71 percent to 17 percent. In other words, this November, in the toughest environment in many years, you can count on nothing from the top of the ticket.

You’re rumored to be a possible choice to be the next president of the American Council of Life Insurers, a nice cushy job heading up an interest group.

And now Nancy Pelosi wants you to vote for health care. You voted for it earlier, even though 64 percent of North Dakotans oppose the bill and only 30 percent support it.

You represent the state with the lowest unemployment rate in the nation, and so you should be doing a bit better than your average Democrat. Yet you trail Rick Berg 46 percent to 40 percent, and 46 percent of respondents have a negative view of you. Then you turn on your television and see this:

That life insurance job has to look pretty good, no?