The Happy Leftie

For lefties and other normal people who have considered suicide when the mainstream 'news' was enuf

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Monday, May 08, 2006

Jeb says Harris can't win

DON'T DROP OUT, KATHERINE, PLEASE! We told you we wouldn't forget 2000, and it looks like we meant it. But, in all honesty, we want you to stay in the race. Tough it out, by all means! Having your name on the ballot does more for our side than trumped-up felons lists ever did for the GOP. I don't want to contribute to your campaign, but heaven knows I'm tempted. (If you wanna know how we REALLY feel, check this out.) -hl

Gov. Jeb Bush said Monday that U.S. Rep. Katherine Harris has dropped so low in public opinion polls she cannot beat Democratic U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson in November.

"I just don't think she can win," Bush said at the Capitol in his strongest statement yet about his fellow Republican's struggling campaign.

The governor has made no secret that he hopes House Speaker Allan Bense will challenge Harris for the Republican nomination. Bense has not made up his mind, his wife, Tonie, said Monday from their Panama City home. The deadline for entering September's primary is Friday.

"With all due respect to the governor ... we know we can win," Harris told reporters Monday after filing her qualifying papers.

Harris has been dogged by staff turnover and her acceptance of $32,000 in illegal campaign contributions from defense contractor Mitchell Wade, who pleaded guilty to bribing former U.S. Rep. Randy "Duke" Cunningham, R-Calif.

Bush also noted that polls show Harris running about 30 points behind Nelson.

"There's not a complicated reason," Bush said of his assessment that she can't beat Nelson. "It's just that's she's not gained any traction, and it seems that, unfortunately through no fault of her own perhaps, the press coverage is all about the problems in her campaign."

The governor said he was unaware of any other Republicans considering the race for Senate.

Harris rose to national prominence as Florida's secretary of state during the contentious presidential election recount in 2000, the election that resulted in the governor's brother winning Florida by only 537 votes and the presidency. She has been unable to shake that divisive image dispute during two terms in Congress.

Bush said he wasn't worried about Harris dragging down the Republican ticket, including candidates for governor and state Cabinet positions, if she is the party's nominee in the November general election.

"Florida voters are pretty sophisticated," Bush said. "They discern the issues well. We're a purple state. Democrats can win. Republicans can win. I don't think anybody can take anything for granted."