Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Figures don't lie, but liars figure, so it will be interesting to see how Blank Lincoln spins the latest poll numbers and legislative scorecard. She has done everything asked of her by her corporate masters, yet her numbers are in the tank. It is likely that she has been mesmerized by the size of corporate PAC checks and forgotten that corporations cannot actually vote, even if they can give you obscene amounts of money to help you buy votes. Next November will actually be about votes by people instead of who has the fattest FEC report.
Lincoln has toed the corporate line, now she must tote their baggage. Pushing repeal of the federal estate tax on billionaires. Making it more difficult for low income folks to discharge credit card debt in bankruptcy, then bailing out failed banks. Whoring for Wal-Mart to kill the Employee Free Choice Act. Whoring for giant agribusiness corporations for huge handouts while small farms dry up. Waffling on health care reform while people are turned away from hospitals. The list goes on, and it is getting worse. FiveThirtyEight, a national political website, documents that Lincoln's already low lifetime progressive voting record on crucial votes (68.8%) has dropped 21 points to 47.8% this year as she faces reelection in 2010. She and her corporate advisers think it is good politics to ignore the progressive Democrats in Arkansas and try to win the throwback Republicans.
Now, the latest poll numbers in Arkansas show that Blank's continuing sell-out has put her political future at risk. The latest Talk Business Quarterly Poll shows her with a job approval rating of 49% approving and 40% disapproving. Approval ratings below 50% for a two-term incumbent are dangerous, but the 40% negative should be of more concern for her financial backers. More telling is the intensity level, with 23% strongly disapproving and only 15% strongly approving.
The poll also asked respondents, "If the 2010 election was held today and you had to make a choice, would you vote to re-elect Blanche Lincoln as our United States Senator no matter who ran against her?" She got a 27% Yes, and a whopping 60% No. With those numbers, most incumbents would be checking the balance in their retirement accounts, but Lincoln might not be sweating it. At this point, there are no progressive challengers in the Democratic primary, and no announced Republican with a real chance.
Blank must have decided to just keep voting with the corporate party, go for the money, and buy the election with mediated platitudes. It could work and probably will, unless someone with both courage and good sense steps up.
Senator Lincoln will be in Northwest Arkansas this week to rake in some more corporate cash. She will also make two public appearances, if you want to ask her why she consistently votes against your interests almost as often as John Boozman. You'll find her in Springdale at the Holiday Inn and Convention Center at 9:30 a.m. on Friday, and she'll be in Rogers at the Samaritan House at 4:30 on Saturday. I don't think she'll be making any stops in the Democratic province of Fayetteville.