While you were watching the playoffs (whether that be in the hockey or basketball variety), I was… ok, watching the playoffs too. But, I was also paying attention to last night’s primary results. See, who loves ya? Anyway here’s what went down last night.
The Tea Party Could Use Some More Sasse
Ben Sasse (pronounced “sass”) is a Tea Party senatorial candidate from Nebraska and in the eyes of the electorate, Ben Sasse is a nice boy!
In the months leading up to last night’s primaries, Sasse went around the state of Nebraska lecturing on the failings of the Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare). When he held these “town hall style meetings” there weren’t any outlandish allegations against the ACA or any righteous anger to how socialist policies were destroying the fabric of an America that never really existed in the first place. Sasse just talked about, what he believed, were some of the failings associated with the ACA.
Whether you agree with his criticisms aimed at the ACA isn’t the point here. What matters was that all of this was civil.
So last night when news came in that Ben Sasse, as a Tea Party candidate, won the Nebraska Senate Primary with 41% of the GOP vote, I wasn’t surprised. You know why? Because Ben Sasse was a former Bush Administration official that served in Human Health Services and the Department of Justice. Because Ben Sasse is a Harvard educated man with a Ph.D. Because, most of all, Ben Sasse is electable!
And sure he might not be as dangerous or as exciting as the guy that shoots Obamacare with his gun collection. But for one night Tea Partiers, you were dating a nice Nebraskan boy that you could finally bring home to your parents without having to ask if he was the one questioning us about “electile dysfunction.”
So I ask you Tea Partiers, wasn’t last night just wonderful?
“Two Chicks at the Same Time”
You know how good last night was? Last night was so good that come November, West Virginia will elect its first female senator ever! Last night was so good that two very accomplished women (Republican Rep. Shelley Moore Capito and Democrat Natalie Tennant) won their primaries convincingly, setting up this historical battle! Last night was so good that even my sexist use of a hilarious Office Space quote to describe a major moment for women in public office can’t ruin these good feelings!
Kudos, West Virginia, Kudos!
Framing Political Coverage, NBA Refs, and Other Existential Crises
Ok I’ll admit it, when the election results for the senate primaries in Nebraska were coming in I had to look up who Ben Sasse was again. There are just so many elections that you get lost in the shuffle sometimes. Though what I found was pretty interesting.
So it looks like for a few months leading up to the primaries, many conservative pundits were trying to figure out exactly who was the “Tea Party” candidate and who was the “Republican establishment” candidate between Shane Osborn and Ben Sasse. In fact FreedomWorks – Glenn Beck’s soapbox – originally backed Osborn identifying him as the Tea Party candidate, but later switched to Sasse because he wasn’t “conservative” enough. I guess.
Now this got me thinking, if someone like FreedomWorks, who has a legion of hired individuals studying Republican primaries paying attention to “who’s more conservative” are having trouble deciphering the more conservative candidate, then what really is the difference between the two conservative candidates? If we were to go further, what really is the difference between two candidates running for any office? I mean really now, what’s the difference? Both Democrats and Republican break party lines all the time for thousands of reasons. Hold on, have I been looking at this all wrong? Should we not be looking at what party the candidates come from? But I always frame issues between party lines! OH GOD! Have I been reporting all of this wrong this whole time!?! HAVE I JUST WASTED THE MAJORITY OF MY LIFE REPORTING ON POLITICS INCORRECTLY!?!?!?!?!?!
Just then the Oklahoma City Thunder came back in the fourth quarter against the Los Angeles Clippers to have one of the craziest finishes in NBA Playoff’s history. What was I thinking about again? Ohhhhh, Charles Barkley and Kenny “The Jet” Smith are doing post-game on TNT! Looks like they are having an existential crisis over NBA officiating. Fun!
Thank God for controversial out of bounds plays. Thank God for epic comebacks from OKC. Thank god for Doc Rivers screaming “OUR BALL” over and over again. But most of all, thank God for the NBA’s existential crises in officiating to distract me from my own.