I was taken aback by the overwhelming support for establishment Republicans in the May 18 primary. I thought there might be a runoff between John Boozman and Jim Holt. Not a chance – Boozman walked away with nearly 53 percent of the vote, leaving Holt a distance second at 17 percent. I also did not anticipate Cecile Bledsoe to do so well, forcing a runoff with Steve Womack.
But there’s a lot to be said for name recognition and apparently the party’s relatively small size in Arkansas does not preclude its ability to organize for its candidates.
I think others among the conservative/Tea Party/Constitutionalist/libertarian wing of Arkansans were as surprised as I. It’s been an emotional week for some, and there are calls for backing independent candidate for Senate Trevor Drown.
Enough people doing that would guarantee returning a Democrat to the Senate.
Besides, John Boozman has an American Conservative Union lifetime rating of over 92. Yeah, I wish he were a bit more aggressive a la Oklahoma’s Tom Coburn, but John Boozman is a conservative. And he’s a decent man. And in Arkansas, where everybody knows everybody, it says a lot about Congressman Boozman’s reputation that he won so handily.
Being so caught up in the Senate race supporting Randy Alexander, I did not follow the Third Congressional District race closely; but I liked things said by Cecile Bledsoe and I intend to vote for her in the runoff.
By the way, one of the people I met during the Alexander campaign was Aaron Szabo, who has a production company, Imagine Film Company. We had great comments on our TV commercials and that stems not only from the image Randy projected, but how Aaron was able to capture it. We had very little money to work with, but Aaron put together some very simple productions that were really good. He was very affordable and easy to work with. A real pro.
Here’s my favorite of the spots: