If the polls are accurate, a convicted felon is likely to be the Republican candidate for Senate in West Virginia. That would likely be a repeat of the Judge Moore fiasco, where the Republican primary was won by the only candidate capable of losing to a Democrat. I watched a little of the debate last week and immediately hated both of the other candidates. They both spent most of their time slicing each other up. Blankenship, who served time in prison for violating mine safety rules that resulted in the death of 29 coal miners, simply said he was familiar with an unfair prosecution.
He then attacked Mitch McConnell and contrary to news reports, he had real ammunition. He did not pick on McConnell’s wife for being Chinese or for her family being Chinese. He pointed out that she is Secretary of Transportation and her family just bought ten, that’s right folks ten, Chinese ships. His opponents were too busy accusing him of racist to realize he had a point. The never Trumper WEEKLY STANDARD wrote about this and managed to completely miss the point:
If I didn’t know about the felony conviction, I probably would have declared Blankenship the winner. He definitely did a better job during the debate. The Weekly Standard views this as the naïve republican base voting for the “craziest son of a bitch in the race.” I do believe that Blankenship is likely to lose to Manchin. However, it is far from certain that either of the other candidates would be any better. Both of them were so focused on accusing the other guy of being a lying spineless coward that neither actually said what they would do for West Virginia. This was another case study in how the Republican establishment has perfected the art of losing elections they should easily win.
No matter who wins this week, I think the Republicans drew another blank.