Monday, August 07, 2006

The Ford Gamble

We've focused quite a bit on Tennessee in recent days, particularly Rep. Harold Ford, Jr.'s chances to clinch the open Senate seat being vacated by current Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R). It's very tight and a toss-up - but, don't count him out completely, especially if TIME profiles him:

"Although Tennessee has not sent a Democrat to the Senate since Al Gore won re-election in 1990, the race is starting to look far closer than just about anyone would have expected a few months ago. And with Democrats leading in the five other states that are considered their best opportunities to pick up Senate seats this fall -- Pennsylvania, Montana, Rhode Island, Ohio and Missouri -- it is conceivable that a victory by Ford could give them the sixth one that they need to take back control of the chamber."

Still, some problematic developments for Ford, Jr., especially if his brother Jake decides to run as an independent for his vacated 9th Congressional District seat. Does Ford endorse the winner of the primary, White & Jewish candidate State Sen. Steven Cohen (D-Memphis) who may be the next Congressman for a majority Black district? Or does he support his brother? Either way, he risks his Senate bid.

Still, Ford has the strength of personality and charisma on his side, a feature heavily underscored in this article.