Live Blogging the Utah Republican State Convention: A Wrap-Up
If you were there, or if you listened in, I'm curious how you felt about the outcome.
Updated 5/10/2010 with vote tallies for 1st and 2nd (and hopefully 3rd) rounds of voting.
In case you didn't see my other articles, the first one started early this morning, and the second one took over when the the US Senate race became very exciting. Here are links to those articles:
Live Blogging from the Utah State Republican Convention
Part 2 of Live Blogging from the Utah State Republican Convention
Vote Tallies. Thank you to a reader for the vote tallies for the 1st round of voting for the Senate race, as well as the comparison between total number of credentialed delegates and total number of votes:
- Mike Lee 982 - 28.75%
- Tim Bridgewater 917 - 26.84%
- Bob Bennett 885 - 25.91%
- Cherilyn Eagar 541 - 15.84%
- All others 91 - 2.66%
For the 2nd round, here are the tallies for the three remaining candidates for the Senate race:
- Tim Bridgewater 1274 37.42%
- Mike Lee 1225 35.99%
- Bob Bennett 905 26.59%
Bob Bennett is in the process of retiring. As you may have noticed in other articles on this blog, I have wanted Bob Bennett out of the Senate for a long time. I am rather satisfied that this happened today, and I'm also actually somewhat surprised, because I kept expecting some sort of bombshell or some behind-the-scenes machinations from the "party machine" that would bring Bob Bennett to a primary. I must admit that my faith in honest party politics has been at least somewhat restored.
I was a little miffed during the afternoon, however, when this story was posted on the Salt Lake Tribune. The conspiracy theorist in me jumped out a little bit, but I'll let them chalk it up to an honest mistake. At any rate, the story (see image link above) stayed on sltrib.com for close to an hour before being corrected. All during that time, convention delegates continued to wait for what turned out to be the real results.
Orrin, Thy Days are Numbered. You may also be aware that I don't care much for Orrin Hatch as a Senator, for essentially the same reasons that I haven't approved of Bennett's performance. A few of us spoke together after the convention wondering whether it might be more healthy for Senator Hatch to announce his retirement, rather than to risk suffering in two years the same ignominy as Senator Bennett.
Mike Lee vs. Tim Bridgewater Primary. I would be positively euphoric to the point of having fainted if Mike Lee had won the Republican nomination outright, but as things turned out, I am compelled to admit that (I hope) a Republican Primary will be healthy. I ran into some of my Democrat friends at the Salt Palace as our respective conventions were nearing completion, and they disagreed with me on this point. One said, "Your primaries are downright violent!" Here's to hoping that, regardless of who wins, THIS primary is respectful and talks to the issues. Which leads me to my next point...
What's With All the Mike Lee Character Assassination Attempts? Color me naive, but I really didn't expect some of the crap that was foisted on the Mike Lee campaign in the last few days before the convention. It was not surprising that Bennett and Bridgewater would challenge him on his stance on Afghanistan. As an Iraq war veteran, their attack ticked me off, but that issue is simply a matter of disagreement.
Some of the other issues, however, were downright despicable and turned off quite a few candidates to Mike Lee. (I'm prejudiced toward Mike Lee, so please correct my blinders if necessary...) Valid points were made about disagreements in Lee's, Bridgewater's, and Bennett's political lives, but it seems to me that assassination attempts were only practiced against Mike Lee, which tells me that SOMEONE wants at all costs to see Mike Lee defeated. Youtube videos and convention eve mailers making Mr. Lee out to be a religious bigot were almost without doubt carefully crafted attacks from supporters of either the Bridgewater or Bennett campaigns. It will be interesting to see if the culprits can be apprehended in short order so that the impending primary season can proceed along the lines of actual campaign issues.