Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Foley won't matter; and, Pacers fight

I was just listening to a radio commentator talking about the Mark Foley scandal, and predicting that it'll hurt Republicans this election cycle. I don't think I buy that; the only election that'll be directly affected by naughty text messages will be in Florida (Foley's state, for those not paying attention). If a voter has been paying attention to what's going on for the last two years and is still going to vote for his Republican incumbent, then a completely different Republican committing a crime won't matter.

I'm picturing the Indiana Pacers: we just had an incident in which four players were involved in an altercation outside a strip club. One of the players got in a fight and fired a handgun, and police found a bag of weed in another player's car afterwards. So we've got sex, drugs, and violence all in one incident. Is this going to turn many Pacers fans into Bulls fans? Doubtful. Similarly, Foley's personal trauma isn't going to turn anyone away from the GOP. It's a nice, juicy scandal, but in the end I don't see it changing anyone's vote.

A side note: none of the Pacers were arrested in the Club Rio Debacle. The guy who fired the handgun in the parking lot? Not arrested, and they're saying they probably won't file any charges. The guy with the bag of pot in his car? Not arrested; the police claim that they can't tell exactly who the pot belonged to, so they won't file any charges. And, the police say they're going to handle this investigation just like any other. I think it stretches plausibility to claim that if the actors in this drama were, say, welders instead of Pacers, they wouldn't have been arrested. I don't have much faith in the police anyway, and this doesn't help.

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