The DGA’s spin on Frank Caprio’s defeatNovember 3rd, 2010 at 2:09 am by Ted Nesi under General Talk
The Democratic Governors Association spent well over $1 million this year on behalf of Frank Caprio’s gubernatorial bid. That’s on top of the roughly $3 million spent by Caprio’s actual campaign.
Yet Caprio finished the night in a distant third place, winning just 23% of the vote in a three-man race. National pundits will blame his loss on Shoveitgate, but our final WPRI 12 poll of the campaign showed Caprio was already fading fast even before his controversial comments about President Obama.
Just before midnight, DGA Chair and Delaware Gov. Jack Markell issued a statement about Caprio’s loss. “In a state hard-hit by the national recession, Frank Caprio ran as a strong Democrat committed to the principles of our party, but even a strong campaign couldn’t overcome the national wave,” Markell said. “We appreciate his dedication to the people of Rhode Island and wish him the best in his next endeavor.”
It seems like a stretch to attribute Caprio’s loss to a “national wave.” I don’t think many people are going to describe the midterm elections of 2010 as a high-water mark for Chafee-style Rockefeller Republicanism.
More importantly, at this writing Democrats have already lost the governorships of Ohio, Iowa, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, New Mexico, Kansas, Wyoming, Michigan, Wisconsin and Oklahoma. Plenty of people will be able to imagine more productive ways the DGA could have spent the seven-figure sum blown on Caprio’s double-digit defeat.