Update [2006-2-14 0:55:9 by BooMan]: Okay. I have to revise this whole post. Hotline didn’t have the story right. The New York Times has the whole sad story. It looks like Schumer and Reid tried to play hardball with Hackett and asked him to go back on his word of honor. Hackett had promised other Democrats that he would not run for Schmidt’s seat, and Schumer and Reid asked him to double-cross them. That’s pathetic. Schumer is really starting to piss me off. I don’t hold this against Brown though. He is still a great candidate. Maybe Hackett will forgive the party one day when we have better and more principled leadership.

From the Hotline:

Great news for Dems in OH; if Paul Hackett sticks to his plan, the party has killed two problems with one deft withdrawal.

Vet Hackett (D) opts to run against Rep. Jean Schmidt (R), the freshman he nearly beat — and Rep. Sherrod Brown (D) can concentrate on building a case against Sen. Mike DeWine.

We’re told that Hackett plans an official announcement tomorrow, unless he changes his mind.

Make no mistake: Hackett’s chances of defeating Schmidt are at least fifty-fifty, and Dems have credibly expanded the field of competitive races by one. (Can Dems clear the primary in OH-2?) Hackett’s re-re-recruitement is the second major success for the DCCC in recent days: they just recruited ex-Rep. Ken Lucas to challenge Rep. Geoff Davis in KY-4.

Jean Schmidt, as you might recall, is the women that questioned the courage of Rep. John Murtha on the floor of the House and almost got assaulted by Rep. Harold Ford, Jr. She narrowly beat Hackett in the special election, and her chances of beating him again are diminished.

By giving up his Senate run and focusing on the house seat, Hackett is doing a double favor to the party. Sherrod Brown can now concentrate on beating the very vulnerable Mike DeWine, and it puts an additional House seat in play.

Hackett has more starpower in the blogosphere than Sherrod Brown. But, Brown, if he wins, will probably be one of the body’s more progressive senators.

Here is a good article on Brown.

I’m pleased with this development…should it turn out to be true…

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