Despite President Obama’s repeated appearances on the campaign trail, Democrats lost both of the gubernatorial elections up for grabs yesterday. Does this mean that the president has lost some of his political clout? Or were local voters simply interested in local concerns? To assess the political implications of the Republican wins in historically blue New Jersey and purple Virginia, we speak to WNYC reporter Bob Hennelly and Washington Post columnist Robert McCartney.
In New York's 23rd, however, weeks of drama culminated in a Democrat taking the historically red congressional district. We speak again with Brian Mann, a reporter with North Country Public Radio.
It is voting day across the country, but a surprising amount of national attention has been focused on a special election in New York's 23rd Congressional District. The NRCC, Newt Gingrich and others had originally supported moderate, pro-choice, pro-gay-marriage GOP candidate Dede Scozzafava in what should have been a safely Republican district. Then, after national figures like Sarah Palin, Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh threw their words and broadcasts behind Conservative Party candidate Doug Hoffman, Scozzafava dropped out and officially endorsed … the Democrat in the race, Bill Owens. Politics makes strange bedfellows, indeed … and that was before Limbaugh's hyperbolic accusations of Scozzafava's "bestiality" yesterday. We talk to North Country Public Radio reporter Brian Mann, live from a polling station.
Tomorrow will bring three off-year elections that have garnered national attention: New Jersey and Virginia will elect governors, and a special election – which grew more special over the weekend as the Republican candidate suspended her campaign and endorsed her Democratic opponent – is scheduled for New York's 23rd Congressional District. For more on the New York race we turn to Brian Mann, reporter for North Country Public Radio. WNYC reporter Bob Hennelly has been covering the New Jersey governor's race. And Washington Post columnist Robert McCartney is watching the Virginia governor's race.