I have to say that these last two weeks have been absolutely infuriating to me. Scandals left and left. NSA spying on our every move. Even big doings in my home state of New Jersey! And here I was with the worst case of writer’s block I’ve ever had, unable to write at all.
Well, that’s not exactly true.
When Senator Lautenberg died earlier this month, I was on top of it. I had half an article explaining the situation on the ground and what Governor Christie’s options were pertaining to how New Jersey’s Junior Senatorial seat would be filled…. Except the news cycle shifted under my nose, and the majority of my article became moot. I admit, that was pretty disappointing, discouraging even, but the good news was that I could at least write about Kim Guadagno, who certainly would be the top contender to challenge Cory Booker in the October 16 special election… Except that she didn’t try to get a single signature for a petition to be on the ballot of our August 13th special primary election.
I was pretty disheartened at that point; all the stuff I thought I was going to write about had been torn out from under me (twice!) and left me in a severe writing funk. It’s gotten so bad that I’ve been trying to force myself to write about anything (don’t ask,) a tactic that backfired I fear; I have sat many hours over the past week staring at blank screens, screens with half-cocked premises, screens that taunted me over my absence from writing.
And I’ve had just about enough of that crap. I’m in no mood to let my computer piss me off, particularly when I have 1,843,213,541 better things to be annoyed about.
Tribalism, for instance.
We in New Jersey haven’t elected a Republican senator since 1972. 1972, for those who are interested (heads up NSA, this means you) was 17 years before I was born, or 41 years ago. As a comparison, over the same time period Texas has elected 4 Democratic senators. Apparently my blue state is bluer than the most frequently touted red state is red. Super. That being the case, you’d think that every Republican in the state of New Jersey would be absolutely leaping at the chance to win ourselves a senate seat “fair and square” during what will almost certainly be a low turnout election this October, right?
In a word, no.
In several words, “That fat RINO bastard !@#$^* us AGAIN! We’ll NEVER beat Cory Booker!”.
Yep, that’s what we’re dealing with on the ground here in New Jersey. Somehow Cory Booker running for senate has become the latest addition to Chris Christie’s “why I’m awful” list, even though it was widely hinted that Booker was going to be running for this exact seat next year! But it’s not just the fact that Mayor Booker will (most likely) be our opponent this October that’s caused a chill in Republican enthusiasm. Many of the grassroots NJ Tea Party/”True Conservative”/”Anti-RINO” groups I frequent on Facebook have all but given up on this election – because it’s been “tainted” by the Gov’. That’s right, because it was Christie who “allowed” there to be a special election, the special election MUST be some kind of a kickback to Cory Booker or to Obama or George Soros; that goes without saying, right? Of course, that also means that the only rational course of action for “principled conservatives” is to boycott the special election and write in a candidate against Christie in the general so we can elect a “principled conservative” over Barbara Buono in 4 years.
Truly a plan for the ages. Ugh.
Honestly though, I get it. Christie is a pompous ass who has given up a ton of ground on more conservative issues than I care to mention. That’s made a ton of conservatives, myself included, seriously distrust the Gov. But even given all of his foibles and disappointments, Christie hasn’t done ANYTHING that would cause me to want the Democrats to win back the Lautenberg seat OR the governorship, particularly when the Democrats in question are rising star Cory Booker and Corzine crony Barbara Buono. Capitulating to the liberals because Christie isn’t ideal seems more than just incredibly idiotic to me, it seems suicidal. Thankfully, it also seemed pretty idiotic to current frontrunner in the Republican special primary, Steve Lonegan, who in 2009 campaigned for Chris Christie during the general election after losing to him in an extremely heated primary. I missed how important Steve’s decision to back Christie was at the time. I guess I just figured that the choice between a guy who’ll disappoint you a lot or a guy who hates all you stand for was a no-brainer. While it’s clear to me now that I was wrong about the “no-brainer” bit, I am greatly heartened to know that Steve Lonegan understands that even incremental increases in conservatism are far better than languishing under continual liberalism. That knowledge, combined with the fact that Lonegan has worked with Americans For Prosperity since 2007, has given me hope that maybe Steve can work to repair the conservative coalition here in New Jersey and possibly even make Cory Booker sweat a bit this October.
At the very least, he’s easier to support than the last Republican N.J. chose to run for senate… and for that, I’m extremely thankful.