Offering frequent news and analysis from the majestic Evergreen State and beyond, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's unconventional perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Mike McGavick's new campaign theme is the same as the old one

This morning, Republican Mike McGavick held a press conference at his headquarters to tout his "central campaign theme" with the local media. The event, which was announced earlier, was carefully timed to occur after this news from Washington D.C. became known:
In an abrupt reversal, Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens said Thursday he will not pursue legislation that could have loosened a law limiting oil tanker traffic in Puget Sound.

The proposal would have changed key portions of the 1977 Magnuson Amendment, which limits expansion of oil refineries and the number of oil tankers entering the Strait of Juan de Fuca and Puget Sound. The law, named after the late Sen. Warren Magnuson, D-Wash., restricts expansion of oil traffic unless it is "for consumption in the state of Washington."

Stevens said he decided to drop the legislation after discussing it with fellow Republican Mike McGavick, who is seeking a U.S. Senate seat from Washington state this year.

"I have never in my 38 years in the Senate asked to have any bill I introduced be permanently postponed, but that is my intention now," Stevens said in a speech on the Senate floor. "For years, I fought for Alaska's right to determine our state's future and develop our own energy resources, particularly on the Arctic Coastal Plain. I defer to this policy now because I believe the people of Washington ought to make this decision." nice.

If Stevens truly believes "the people of Washington ought to make this decision", then why did he introduce the legislation in the first place?

According to sources, McGavick used his event this morning first to declare victory over the withdrawal of Stevens' legislation, and second, to push his "central campaign theme" - which turns out to be nothing more than a repackaged version of Mike's earlier calls for "more civility":
I really believe that when we look to Washington D.C. right now we see a culture in which to many people are caught up in, of permanent campaigning. For every issue is an opportunity to raise money and issue press releases, have petitions that capture more names to raise more money, to issue more press releases but not to get together to have heart-to-heart conversation and try to solve problems.

I think that's exactly why people are so frustrated with Washington right now - with Washington D.C. right now - [this] is exactly the kind of voice of Northwestern common sense, of Northwestern civility, that I think by being added to the Senate I can help break that down and get Washington D.C. back to solving the problems that confront families.
McGavick would not say whether Stevens or Cantwell had been "uncivil" in the debates over the tanker proposal and Arctic drilling, instead preferring to stick to general assaults on the "culture of permanent campaigning" of the U.S. Senate.

Aside from attempting to take credit for persuading Ted Stevens to drop his tanker proposal, McGavick apparently had nothing new to say.

Unfortunately for Mike McGavick, a call for more "civility" is not going to help him win in November. A recent Elway poll showed that Maria Cantwell currently enjoys a 55 to 25 percent lead over Mike McGavick.

44% of those polled stated that a Democratic incumbent is more likely to reduce partisanship than a Republican challenger, while 26% disagreed. And even more alarming, McGavick polls seven points behind a generic candidate!

Mike McGavick has nothing to run on. His campaign appears stuck in first gear, unable to get any traction whatsoever. He only has one theme and it's not resonating with voters.

So far, McGavick's candidacy has been completely uninspiring, dull, and boring, filled with endless kickoff events but nothing of substance. If this is the best the GOP can do it's hard to imagine how McGavick will manage to get more than 40% of the vote next November.

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