Dear Edward McClelland of the Ward Room


Worst analysis ever:

In 2008, Schock hadn’t even been sworn in as a congressman yet, but when I asked him whether he was frustrated that he wouldn’t turn 30 until 2011, he didn’t even deny that he was looking past his next job.
“In politics,” he said, “you never know who’s going to die, retire or — in Illinois — get indicted.”
He was prescient. The next week, Rod Blagojevich was arrested.
So you could say Schock has been running for the Senate for the last two years. His photo spreads in Details and GQ have made him the only congressman whose celebrity transcends politics (just as Obama was one of the few senators).
In Giannoulias, though, he’ll have a target — a freshman senator entering office under an ethical cloud. Giannoulias will be a slavish follower of the president, which means that in 2016, he’ll have to answer for any weariness the voters feel about the (presumably) outgoing Obama Administration. Also, Democrats won’t be able to use youth as an issue against Schock (not that that’s ever worked against him, obviously). At 35, he’ll be a year older than Giannoulias is now.

Ward Room’s prediction: if Giannoulias wins, Schock will make him a one-termer. Check back with me then, if the Internet is still around in 2016.

Yeah, if you think Illinois is going to become socially conservative.  Mark Kirk is essentially tied against Alexi and Kirk has long tried to paint himself as a moderate like John Porter.  On issues like the environment, gay rights, and abortion, and guns he has tried to tack to the middle, though not always successfully — he voted for the energy bill and then flip flopped .  Aaron Schock is a full blooded culture warrior type and very conservative.  So one has to demonstrate how anyone can win in 6 years who is more conservative than even Peter Fitzgerald and Alexi would have his bank issues and Bright Start well behind him.  Let’s recall the only Republican to win the US Senate in Illinois since the 1970s is Peter Fitzgerald who ran against a very weak candidate in Carol Moseley Braun.  Since then, Illinois has only become more blue.
And then there are the cheeky references in the article to Schock:

This guy was elected to the school board when he was 19, to the state legislature when he was 23, and to the House of Representatives when he was 27. Only the U.S. Constitution has been able to put a brake on his upward mobility, with that clause requiring ambitious young bucks to get some seasoning before joining the World’s Greatest Deliberative body. By 2016, Schock will have eight years in Congress under his turquoise belt.

To be fair, Schock has matured: people who once called him “Doogie Howser” now compare him to Neil Patrick Harris’s latest character, Barney Stinson of “How I Met Your Mother.”

4 thoughts on “Dear Edward McClelland of the Ward Room

  1. Don’t underestimate Aaron Schock’s ability to attract liberal and moderate voters. He represented a Democratic district in the state legislature. His successor is Jehan Gordon, a black female Democrat. Schock is a politician whose broad personal appeal has a way of making voters ignore his conservatism.

  2. Beating Ricca Slone wasn’t a big feat and it was before he began to take very conservative positions. He didn’t have to do that as a school board member.

    But keep on trying to sell that for him. I’m sure his 2014 campaign for Gov or Senator thanks you now. However, we’ve heard that same story before in Illinois with Jack Ryan. Personal appeal doesn’t overcome right wing politics in a blue state. You might notice the Aaron Schock before Aaron Schock may pull off a victory with a more moderate voting record and a terrible opponent in Alexi, but even that is close.

    I know your heart is all aflutter, but the median voter theorem works pretty well in most elections and Aaron Schock is nowhere near that in Illinois.

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