Saturday, July 15, 2006

The latest twist in CT politics

There's something interesting going on amongst the Repubs in Connecticut as well as amongst the Democrats. CQPolitics:

Top Republican officials in Connecticut are calling on candidate Alan Schlesinger to consider dropping his Senate bid after allegations of a gambling scandal, but Schlesinger maintained he has done nothing wrong and will not withdraw.

Schlesinger, a former six-term state representative, is the GOP candidate in the increasingly convoluted race for Connecticut's Senate seat - one that includes incumbent Democrat Joseph I. Lieberman facing a significant challenge in the Aug. 8 primary from Democratic anti-war candidate Ned Lamont, and the recent entry of state Republican Rep. Diana S. Urban as an independent anti-war candidate.

The allegations -- reported by Hartford Courant columnist Kevin F. Rennie and first published by National Journal's Hotline on Call, to which Rennie is a contributor -- came from the former commanding officer of the state police's casino licensing and operations union. Bradley Beecher alleged Schlesinger was a card counter who plays under an assumed name and has been thrown out of the Mohegan Sun casino in Uncasville, Conn.

Getting 86'ed from a casino for card counting hardly qualifies as a "gambling scandal". It's a smart way to play 21 that lowers the already lowest house edge of any game. Casinos don't want the player having an advantage. They want you to drink free booze and throw your money at them. From the 'comments' at CQ:

There's nothing wrong with counting cards. More power to blackjack players who count cards. It takes a lot of practice, brain power, and hard work. It is not immoral or illegal, and it is not cheating. It is only against the casino rules because it's the only way the casinos can lose money.

OK, so the CT Repubs are making a mountain out of a molehill. Why? Here's my SWAG:

They think Lamont may win the Dem primary and force Holy Joe to run as an independent. They see this as a good way to split the Democratic vote, and want to run a more viable candidate with a better chance of getting 34%. I don't know exactly how the former Rep running as anti-war candidate fits into the mix.

I don't really much care what the Reps do or don't do, but anything that screws 'em up a little is good, as I see it.

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