If the polls are to be believed, tomorrow will deal a big blow to the “anti-establishment” storyline swirling around the 2010 election. John McCain, who looked like he’d be on the ropes early on, now has a huge lead over tea party favorite JD Hayworth, the Washington Post reports. In Florida, meanwhile, a pair of self-funded outsiders have fallen well behind their insider opponents.
“McCain took Hayworth very seriously very early,” a conservative strategist says. “If Bob Bennett had McCain’s political instincts, he might have been able to save himself.” He also poured a whopping $21 million into the campaign, Chris Cillizza notes. In Florida, GOP gubernatorial favorite Bill McCollum took the lead over self-funded billionaire rival Rick Scott thanks to help from outside groups. And in that state’s Democratic Senate race, billionaire political novice Jeff Greene lost his early lead when the media started airing out his personal flaws—like his extravagant lifestyle, connection to Mike Tyson, and harsh treatment of his staff.