Saturday, October 15, 2016

Pat Toomey: afraid to commit

Incumbent Pennsylvania Republican senator Pat Toomey stays bravely on the fence, as New York's Jesse Singal reports
While most of the rest of his party grits their teeth and announces their plans to either support Trump or not, come what may the consequences (with some folks zigzagging back and forth), Toomey has instead adopted a strategy of radical ambiguity.
This has been going on for a while. In the run-up to Sunday’s second presidential debate, Toomey, who is locked in a tight race with his Democratic opponent, Katie McGinty (FiveThirtyEight has his probability of prevailing at 44.3 percent at the moment), had signaled that he could kinda, sorta, potentially see himself supporting Trump, maybe? He just needed to get there on his own terms, to really work through the process.
Then, a week ago, that explosive Access Hollywood tape was released, which would seem to settle matters. If you were on the fence before, shouldn’t that talk of pussy-grabbing knock you violently off it? Not for Toomey. “Toomey has previously said he hopes to support Trump, but needed convincing,” wrote Jonathan Tamari on in an article published Monday. “But after the release Friday of the recording showing the GOP nominee bragging about aggressively kissing and groping women, Toomey would not say if he will support Trump, or if he is still considering doing so, despite repeated questions this weekend from the Inquirer and other news outlets.”
And he keeps his fence sitting up, leading Singal to wonder:
This invites a fascinating thought experiment: If Pat Toomey thinks Donald Trump is too problematic to endorse now, in mid-October, what is the hypothetical event or revelation that would cause him to change his stance between now and the election? Evidence that Hillary Clinton has been dressing up as a clown and terrorizing kids? Leaked audio of her talking about a propensity for groping young women?
Perhaps Toomey is trying for a Guinness book world record for fence sitting. Nonetheless, he should remember the fate of Humpty Dumpty after he sat too long on his fence.

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