What O'Donnell's Win Means

Pundits make sense of the morning after
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 15, 2010 7:52 AM CDT
Republican Senate candidate Christine O'Donnell jokes with a supporter while waiting to be interviewed at her election night party, Tuesday, Sept. 14, 2010.   (AP Photo/Rob Carr)

(Newser) – Christine O'Donnell's primary victory has rocked the political world. Here's what the pundits are saying:

  • Delaware native Dave Weigel “cannot remember a time when Mike Castle wasn't being elected to something.” Without his cross-party appeal, the GOP is doomed in Delaware, he writes in Slate. “No one like O'Donnell, a pure ideological candidate, has won a statewide race in Delaware in modern times. Maybe she'll be the first!”
  • Mike Castle belongs to “an endangered species,” writes W. James Antle of the American Spectator. “Conservative big game hunters like to call them ‘RINOs.’ … Conservatives have gotten tired of electing Republicans only to get bigger government.” So they “picked Christine O'Donnell over Mike Castle, electoral consequences be damned.”

  • Some Democrats are rejoicing today, but not Ruth Marcus. “I’m despondent,” she writes in the Washington Post. Even if O’Donnell loses, Republicans in the Senate will grow more conservative. They’ll look at Castle, and Lisa Murkowski, and Bob Bennett and think, “There but for the grace of Tea Party go I.”
  • A few weeks ago “it hadn’t even occurred to me” that O’Donnell might beat Castle, Nate Silver admits in the New York Times, “in the same way that one doesn’t think about a strong earthquake unless one lives in California.” The win was “an emphatic reminder that voters write the script. The rest of us self-proclaimed political professionals are just the stagehands.”
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