It’s already a tough week for Democratic senators. Hard on the heels of Evan Bayh’s departure from the 2010 Senate race, rumors are floating that Maryland’s Barbara Mikulski is not going to run, either.
And 86-year-old New Jersey Senator Frank Lautenberg has been hospitalized after falling down in his home. He has since been diagnosed with a bleeding ulcer. A spokesman says Lautenberg “will be back to work soon,” though we imagine an 86-year-old who may have collapsed from blood loss might want to take it easy for a while.
Somewhat adjusting the partisan balance, a few prominent Republicans have recently suffered attacks — one from a fellow airline passenger, one from a rightwing challenger.
Someone took a swing at former Republican Massachusetts governor and Presidential candidate Mitt Romney on an Air Canada flight to Los Angeles from the Vancouver Olympics.
Romney asked the man, who was sitting in front of Romney’s wife, to bring his seat to an upright position before takeoff. The man physically attacked Romney and was restrained by the crew.
Romney was not injured and “did not retaliate,” said a spokesman, which may be a missed political opportunity for the once and future candidate, who might have mitigated his patrician image by claiming to have duked it out with his assailant. The Canadians would presumably have been too polite to dispute such an account.
Meanwhile former GOP Presidential nominee John McCain finds himself in his Senate reelection bid enduring a challenge on his right from former congressman J.D. Hayworth. McCain “campaigns as a conservative but legislates like a liberal,” claims Hayworth.
At Pajamas Media, Adam Graham agrees, arguing that the American Conservative Union’s rating of McCain’s voting record is a mere 81 percent, “and four years he has voted less than 70% conservative.” Also, “Serving in the military, while honorable, doesn’t mean you have the right philosophy.” The Tucson Daily‘s Jim Nintzel suggests Joe the Plumber, who has turned against McCain, might come to Arizona to campaign against him.