Thursday, May 25, 2006

24th District Race Drops Below the Radar Again

There was a brief moment, after the retirement announcement of Sherwood Boehlert, when it appeared that New York's 24th District congressional race might be one of the most-watched from across America this year. It's a red hot congressional election year, so that's saying alot.

Lately, however, there just hasn't been that much to watch. On the Democratic side, there is no primary contest left, with only one candidate, Michael Arcuri, willing to place himself in consideration.

On the Republican side, Brad Jones once promised to make things interesting with a primary challenge from the right to Sherwood Boehlert. With Boehlert out of the picture, and right wing Ray Meier the new institutional Republican choice, the candidacy of Brad Jones seems less relevant, and is now far behind Meier's campaign in spite of Jones's head start in fundraising.

The candidates might take advantage in this lull in horse race campaign news to get busy talking about the issues, issuing press releases, giving policy speeches, and making appearances throughout the district. That's not happening. As I've noted, Michael Arcuri's campaign is mostly silent these days, and Ray Meier's last press release seems to have been his campaign announcement from back in March.

Do a blog search on Google, and you'll see that nobody much is talking about the 24th District race anymore, from either the Democratic or the Republican side. The race has lost its buzz. Even using the word "race" to describe this political contest seems misplaced. Both Arcuri and Meier seem content to saunter through the summer, uninterested in breaking a sweat.

So it is that a search for a story about Ray Meier turns up the most recent article as a story about comments by Ray Meier that the Mustang Softball Association needs to do a better job of getting money for the maintenance of its fields... in Oklahoma. Some guy named Ray Meier in Mustang, Oklahoma is getting more recent coverage talking about the financing of small town softball fields than the candidate for an open congressional seat.

I think that could go in the encyclopedia as an example of how to tell when a political race has lost its heat.

As a blog writer, all there is to talk about these days is what isn't happening. I know... hold back on your excitement at the controversy.

It feels like nap time.

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