Chris Christie set to be inaugurated today
Lou Dobbs quits CNN: Is Senator Dobbs from New Jersey next?
Corzine ad campaign makes New Jersey governor election Obama versus Bush
While it has been widely reported that blame is being passed from Democrat to Democrat in the wake of the stunning Republican victory in Massachusetts, there has been one place that few, if any, have pointed a finger.
Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) is in charge of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee. The group is charged with assisting fellow Democrats in their elections to the US Senate. Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY) held the job from 2005-2009 and saw major success. Menendez, on the other hand, has been on his heels from the start.
If anyone should have been aware of the perils that faced Democrats in what should have been “safe” areas it was Menendez. Unless he missed it, Menendez had a front-row seat to what was, until Tuesday, the most stunning victory for Republicans in many years, when Chris Christie defeated Democrat incumbent Jon Corzine. Fittingly, Christie was inaugurated on Tuesday. Corzine, Menendez’s former Senate colleague, chipped away at Christie, who led by a large margin early on, by trying to invoke as many images of Barack Obama and George W. Bush as possible. In the end, it failed miserably in a state that Obama won by 15% only a year earlier.
But rather than accept the reality that even last-minute, high profile visits by Obama did nothing to boost Corzine, Menendez was lulled into a foolish sense of security in Massachusetts as well. Politico reported that Menendez was unaware that the race was tightening until a week and a half before it was over. Menendez refused to recognize that the upheaval in New Jersey was not solely based on Corzine’s failure as governor, but also played into the national debate as well.
Instead of minding what was going on in his own backyard, Senator Menendez was absent from the race, only prominently weighing in after the votes had been cast.
“I have no interest in sugar coating what happened in Massachusetts. There is a lot of anxiety in the country right now. Americans are understandably impatient”
But of course, his mea culpa of sorts was not to last for long.
Sen. Robert Menendez, New Jersey Democrat and chairman of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, said the “special election in Massachusetts was just that: a special election, with a whole host of circumstances that are unique.”
“I would caution against taking a single unique election and extrapolating what it means for the midterms 10 months away,” Menendez said.
But Menendez admitted that the Democratic party needed to draw some lessons from the stunning defeat.
“We will sort through the lessons of Massachusetts: the need to redouble our efforts on the economy, the need to show that our commitment to real change is as powerful as it was in 2008, and the reality that we cannot take a single thing for granted and cannot afford even a second of complacency,” he said.
(via Daily Caller). The lesson that Menendez is ignoring is that if New Jersey and Massachusetts can fall in 14 months time, the rest of the nation cannot be far behind.
For more info: Joe Luppino-Esposito is a law student and a leading young conservative writer. He speaks nationally on winning activism battles for conservatives on campus. Joe is also editor of AverageJoeLE.com, a blog for recent conservative college graduates.