When I think of an ideal Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate, the commander of U.S. troops in Iraq during the Abu Ghraib scandal doesn’t immediately leap to mind. But it looks like that is who DSCC Chairwoman Patty Murray has recruited to run for the open Senate seat in Texas. In fairness to Ricardo Sanchez, he acknowledges that the scandal effectively ended his military career even though a Pentagon investigation cleared him of wrongdoing. He hasn’t officially announced that he’s a candidate but he did have something to say about his politics:
“I would describe myself as during my military career as supporting the president and the Constitution,” Sanchez said. “After the military, I decided that socially, I’m a progressive, a fiscal conservative and a strong supporter, obviously, of national defense.”
Sanchez is certainly an intriguing recruit. I can’t say that his record in Iraq gives me any reason to want to support his candidacy, but I suppose I should look at that record more closely. As a general (sic) matter, I don’t like former military officers as politicians, regardless of what party they choose to align themselves with. But that’s not set in stone. Sanchez strikes me as someone who could (if he has any retail political skills) wage a competitive race and possibly even win the seat in Texas. That would be very helpful in preventing a takeover of the U.S. Senate by the Republicans.
This is still not something I expected to read in the newspaper when I woke up this morning.