All About Politics: Newt, McAuliffe, D.C. Races

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**Newt**

A few weeks back I commented on how Rudy Giuliani and Chris Christie were doing significant damage to their name and reputation by performing the role of second banana to Donald Trump.

I neglected to mention another pitiful pol who daily seems to be in a downward spiral and is proving to be a chronic embarrassment to himself and his party. That would be the former disgraced House Speaker and failed presidential candidate: Newt Gingrich.

Gingrich obviously misses the limelight and will do absolutely anything and everything to receive a modicum of public notice and media attention. Whether it be the dust-up with Fox’s Megyn Kelly or his other random mutterings about Trump and his campaign, Gingrich is so desperate to be seen or heard he will make a fool of himself as long as he gets some TV time.

Gingrich is a hellava lot smarter than Trump. He is informed and knowledgeable about public policy. But now in the twilight of his career he must believe that his only route to relevance is being attached to Trump. Will his final place in American political life be with this moniker: advisor to Donald Trump? Is this how he wants to be remembered?

What a trio — Giuliani, Christie and Gingrich. The GOP is obviously crying out for new blood and new faces.

**McAuliffe**

I’ll give it to the Virginia governor; he is not afraid of being specific. He publicly said on the radio that Hillary Clinton would win 328 electoral votes and win the popular vote 51 percent to 49 percent. Let’s check that out when votes come in.

The real big question is: If Clinton wins and Tim Kaine becomes veep, who will McAuliffe appoint to fill the Senate vacancy?

The conventional wisdom seems to say Representative Bobby Scott. He is an attractive choice but can he raise enough money in a general election?

Former Lt. Gov. and present Congressman Don Beyer I’m very sure wants to be chosen. Beyer lost for governor to Jim Gilmore and I’m positive would seriously consider running against Scott in a Democratic primary. Beyer could raise and give his own campaign the dough to be competitive. Beyer is as attractive as Scott and that would be a fascinating contest to observe.

Or McAuliffe, who can only serve one term and not succeed himself (he could wait a term and then serve again — Mills Godwin did just that), might take a huge gamble and appoint himself as interim U.S. senator.

Why not? It’s a huge gamble and the Virginia voters might say no to that political chutzpah of the highest order. The press should be asking him if he would do just that. Would he run, if only unconditionally?

**D.C. Races**

There are only two slots in D.C. They are for At-large Council seats.

Personally, I can’t bring myself to vote for either Robert White or David Grosso. What they have in common is that they both worked for Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton.

Norton has constantly held D.C. back. She talks good game on voting rights and D.C. statehood, but refuses to do the hard work necessary to achieve that goal. She needs to receive a huge ‘No’ vote. Vote for anyone else, or write-in somebody.

I’ve told this story before but it bears repeating. When I asked her in 2014 to contact uncommitted senators to move the D.C. statehood bill, she said the following: “You contact them.” This con game by Norton has to stop. She is no “Warrior on the Hill.” She should be called “AWOL on the Hill.”

*Political analyst and Georgetowner contributor Mark Plotkin is a contributor to the BBC on American politics and a contributor to TheHill.com. Reach him at markplotkindc@gmail.com.*

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