03.13.2014 0

Why is NRCC wiping egg off its face?

By Rick Manning.

As originally published at TheHill.com.

Oops. David Jolly won election to Congress in Florida’s special election to take the place of recently deceased Rep. Bill Young (R).

Republican hearts in D.C. should be leaping for joy, because early betting in town was that this was a near-certain Democrat takeover and Jolly upset that apple cart.

Everything pointed to a victory for Democrats. They recruited a candidate with high name identification who narrowly lost a race for the governorship in a district that voted for Obama in 2012, the ideal D.C. candidate-recruitment win.

The expectations on the Republican side of the aisle to retain the seat were so low that on the Monday before the election, the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) was anonymously spinning to Politico that the election was likely to be lost due to Jolly and those running his campaign on the ground.

Imagine the fear in some unknown cubicle at NRCC headquarters as Jolly calls Chairman Greg Walden (Ore.) and asks for an accounting of why the group, whose sole responsibility is to elect Republicans to the House, sought to undermine his campaign in the final day.

Today, all the D.C. “gurus” are taking credit for their brilliance in winning the race and giving short shrift to the newly elected Jolly. Jolly ran a campaign against amnesty for illegal aliens, against ObamaCare, and he refused to modify his conservative stands and move to the middle, as the political intelligentsia so often suggests. They cannot afford to give him credit or credibility, because his messaging directly contradicted their best advice. And in the next few days, he will be sworn in.

Now, Democrats in D.C. are scrambling for cover. And when they get there, chances are they’ll find a couple of NRCC staffers hoping to avoid the blowback from their almost treasonous attempt to submarine a soon-to-be-sitting member of Congress’s election campaign.

Somehow I think someone at the NRCC is going to find out the meaning of the saying “politics ain’t bean bag.”

Rick Manning (@rmanning957) is vice president of public policy and communications for Americans for Limited Government. Contact him at rmanning@getliberty.org.

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