While some still believe that the leaked NRSC “poll” forced Daub’s decision, his earlier statements and his vehement charge about the accuracy of the poll (“bogus”), leads us to believe he was being honest when talking about the money. (And also, he said six months ago that he didn’t think Johanns would run, which affected his decisions.)
Consider that he spent his own cash on: His 93 county tour; a plane to fly across the state on his announcement tour; a media assistant; website design and website; TV and radio ad production; TV and radio ad time (at least $30,000); print materials; and probably a bunch of other stuff we’re missing.
That ain’t chump change for someone who’s not independently wealthy.
So what does this all mean for the rest of the field?
The road from New York to DC via Nebraska just got rockier for Bob Kerrey (if you believe Daub’s exit will make it smoother for Mike Johanns). Kerrey, who’s been playing footsy with the idea of running is thankfully going to make his decision soon. Depending on whom you read, Kerrey is “excited” about running, but it’s probably no, unless it’s yes.
He’s talking to farmers and ranchers, calling Don Walton and emailing Steve Brown and thinks Nebraskans should “worry” about the withdrawal of Chuck Hagel. (At least we think he means Hagel. It would make more sense if he meant Daub, but Daub served four terms. Larry Craig?)
So with Kerrey, the rest will just have to wait until the other Hsu drops.
And Dems, Mike Fahey is, for all intents and purposes, out. He ain’t gonna do it. So are you willing to support Earl B. Nelson’s BFF Tony Toni Tone Raimondo? Or will you just amp yourself up for the Mr. and Mrs. Kleeb campaign? (And you know the former Jane Fleming is just dying to show the cornhusking rubes what a real campaign is all about.)
And here’s a final question for the GOP faithful: Does Daub’s farewell fare better for Mike Johanns or Jon Bruning?
Some say it will help to clear the field for Johanns to jog in with fewer dogs nipping at his ankles. Others think Bruning can now focus on Johanns and avoid the Daub distraction. (And if you’re convinced that it helps Pat Flynn, well then be prepared for the volley of jokes that follow on the boards.)
Have a great weekend and say a prayer of redemption for the Blackshirts.