Daub stepped up to the podium at the Omaha Press Club and spelled out what he thinks a qualified candidate needs in order to run:
1) passion for public service
2) the time to commit to a campaign – to travel the state and learn from your consituents
3) the money to compete – yours and others.
Daub admitted that he couldn’t raise the money to compete in the (ostensibly) three-way primary. Being very blunt, he stated that in order to raise the real money you need in a campaign, you have to do it in the Omaha metro. With particularly Mike Johanns (who he didn’t think would get in the race) sucking it all in, he couldn’t mount a campaign that could compete.
Daub stated that he believed he could compete through January, but by February or March his money would dry up. He then made the bold statement that if one primary candidate outspends the other by a million dollars, that candidate will win.
So what about the recent National Republican Senatorial Committee poll showing Johanns at 58%, Jon Bruning at 16% and Daub at 12%?
Daub went on to elaborate that he spent nearly $28,000 (of his own money) on a benchmark survey which showed him very competitive, particularly against Bruning, and that Johanns numbers were nowhere near those in the leaked NRSC poll.
Daub stated that the science of the campaign – polling crosstabs and the like – showed that he could be competitive, but that his third tenet of a successful campaign could not be reached. And if he couldn’t win, he wasn’t going to stay in just to bloody up the eventual Republican nominee for the general election battle.
Daub said he will be returning to contributors ALL the money that has been rasied by his campaign, and which has been sitting in a trust fund.
He stated that he will be voting for Mike Johanns in the primary – though he didn’t consider that an endorsement. He said he felt that Bruning is deserving of compliments for his determination and organization.
Finally, showing emotion, Daub said of his decision to quit:
“It was a damned hard decision – the Senate has been a long time goal and dream. I believe I would have made a difference in the Senate.”
Leavenworth Street will provide more analysis later.