Picking a loser


Russell Saunders

Russell Saunders is the ridiculously flimsy pseudonym of a pediatrician in New England. He has a husband, three sons, daughter, cat and dog, though not in that order. He enjoys reading, running and cooking. He can be contacted at blindeddoc using his Gmail account. Twitter types can follow him @russellsaunder1.

Related Post Roulette

14 Responses

  1. Avatar NewDealer says:

    A very lovely essay.

    Though I would not count your friend out yet. Strange things happen in politics.Report

  2. Avatar zic says:


    I was pretty fond of Olympia Snowe.

    Collins? Not so much. I will happily support an alternative to the US Senate. Will have to find out more about Bellows. But truth be told, I’d happily see Chellie Pingree in the Senate.

    (I am really worried about my Congressional district should Michaud win the Blaine House. Don’t see a good replacement for him in the House on the horizon right now.)Report

    • I’d love to see Chellie Pingree in the Senate, too, but polling indicates she’d probably lose to Collins.

      And I’m not nearly familiar enough with your district to have any guesses as to who might take over with a plausible chance of extending Michaud’s progressive record. Frankly, it’s a risk I’m willing to take to give the idiot in Blaine House now the heave-ho.Report

      • Avatar zic says:

        And I’m not nearly familiar enough with your district to have any guesses as to who might take over with a plausible chance of extending Michaud’s progressive record. Frankly, it’s a risk I’m willing to take to give the idiot in Blaine House now the heave-ho.

        Hear, hear! Yes.

        Just an FYI, I sent Angus an email, expressing my concerns about personal privacy and NSA spying. I got back a long, and very thoughtful letter. Not taking a stance one way or the other, but laying out the things King wanted to find out about before supported legislation one way or the other. I’m sure it was written by an aide, but I was impressed that they addressed my concerns directly, that it didn’t feel like a form letter.

        I have, over the years, gotten many form letters from Collins in response to my communications with her office; often having absolutely nothing to do with my concern, question, or policy. Very ineffectual communication; except that it communicated very clearly that my views were not of interest to her.Report

      • In her defense, I just got a letter from Collins (or, as you say, one of her aides) about Syria that was exactly as well-thought-out as I’d want. (It helps that we are on the same page of that particular issue.) I’m pretty sure I’ve gotten mealy-mouthed crap before, but this was pretty good.Report

  3. Avatar Pinky says:

    There’s no shame in voting for a candidate who loses. I’ve never understood people who think otherwise. I once worked for a campaign that didn’t stand a chance, but it got the candidate’s name out there and shifted money around the area to protect a seat that otherwise would have been a cakewalk. Even if neither of those things happened, it was the right thing to do.

    Also, remember, every politician is one “Send” button away from career implosion.Report

    • I would never go so far as to assign shame in voting for someone you know is going to lose, and I agree with everything you say in your comment. It’s just a somewhat strange sensation to back a (potential) candidate you are pretty sure is going to get creamed.Report

      • Avatar Pinky says:

        You must have the luxury of living in a similarly-colored (red/blue) state. For at least a third of the US population, voting is understood to be a symbolic act.Report

      • Avatar J@m3z Aitch says:

        But if she gets creamed by a lot less than people expect her to get creamed by, it still sends a significant message. That’s worth working for.Report

  4. Avatar Burt Likko says:

    I can’t imagine why you wouldn’t support a candidate you like. Maybe she won’t win. More’s the pity if she doesn’t, but supporting her makes your voice heard.Report

    • I think it would feel slightly less weird if I really, really hated Susan Collins. As it is, I actually kind of like her, and would probably like her more if she weren’t forced to toe the party line when said line is a jumbled mess dictated by a bunch of ideological halfwits. I can think of several good reasons to vote for her.

      But of course, not this time.Report

  5. Avatar Kim says:

    Picking a loser is a protest vote. It says no confidence.
    I’ve done it myself, voting for Republicans.Report

  6. Avatar zic says:

    Doc, I have a question:
    I like Shenna, and I think she’d serve Maine well in the off chance she somehow won election. But really, I’m voting against a person who defended a law that has made American citizens vulnerable to bad actors, both from within and without the government. And there’s just no voting for that.

    I see politics as a bunch of separate acts; as engagement with the political system. But you only speak of voting (though writing this post is, in fact, engaging the system).

    So will you work on Shenna’s behalf? Will you put effort into helping her win? Because I assumed that’s what you meant, that you’re not just the considering your vote, but considering the commitment to help win votes.Report

    • Oh, I’m sure I’ll campaign for her, contribute to her campaign, slap a sticker on my car, etc. As you might imagine, I like to be pretty engaged in the political process, and the added motivation of having a friend as the candidate would certainly spur me to some kind of participation beyond the simple act of voting.Report