- The Washington Times - Wednesday, August 11, 2004

Primary results

Republican brewery heir Peter Coors and Democrat Attorney General Ken Salazar won primaries for Colorado’s open Senate seat, while a Georgia congresswoman became the first black ever nominated to the U.S. Senate in the state.

First-term Rep. Denise Majette crushed millionaire businessman Cliff Oxford to win the Democratic runoff for the seat being vacated by retiring Sen. Zell Miller, the Associated Press reports. Mrs. Majette likely will be a heavy underdog against Rep. Johnny Isakson as Georgia has turned strongly Republican in recent years.

In Colorado, Mr. Coors and former Rep. Bob Schaffer sought the Republican nomination, while Mr. Salazar and educator Mike Miles battled on the Democratic side.

With nearly half of precincts reporting, Mr. Salazar had 74 percent, or 105,973 votes, while Mr. Miles had 26 percent, or 37,422 votes. Mr. Coors had 60 percent, or 125,412 votes, to Mr. Schaffer’s 40 percent, or 83,194 votes.

The race is being closely watched by both national parties. Democrats believe the retirement of Republican Sen. Ben Nighthorse Campbell has given them a golden opportunity to gain a seat and also hope Mr. Salazar can attract Hispanics to the polls and boost presidential candidate Sen. John Kerry’s chances in the state.

No longer shoving

Is a kinder, gentler Teresa Heinz Kerry now doing a more delicate tread down the campaign trail?

She may have undergone a public relations makeover, according to CNN, which devoted an entire segment on the subject yesterday titled “Teresa Transformed.”

The multimillionaire wife of Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. John Kerry has received mixed reviews for her feisty style, exemplified by the now-infamous “shove it” remark she made to a newspaper editorial-page editor.

With almost 400 mentions in print alone, it was the most cited phrase of the Kerry campaign in the days to follow.

Mrs. Kerry is “a little too exotic” for heartland America, CNN’s Candy Crowley observed yesterday during a discussion about the new and improved Mrs. Kerry.

Time’s Karen Tumulty acknowledged that campaign handlers hope Mrs. Kerry turns from “loose cannon” to the more palatable “outspoken woman.”

Teresa goes ouch

Meanwhile, campaign posturing goes on.

In an interview with the Nation yesterday, John Kerry said he reads four or five newspapers a day, notably “The Washington Post, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, papers like that.”

But Mr. Kerry was piqued by the broadcast networks’ decision to pare down their coverage of the Democratic convention, calling it “a derogation of their responsibility that goes with using the broadcast airwaves.”

But the Nation, a left-wing magazine, also lent a forum for the dynamics between Mr. Kerry and spouse.

“Asked if he thought the decision of the networks to downplay the coverage of the convention sent a signal that told Americans not to take what happened in Boston seriously, Kerry said, ‘I don’t know if it’s that message or not. I think most Americans are smart enough to understand that it does matter,’” the magazine wrote.

“But Teresa Heinz Kerry, who was seated next to her husband, interrupted him and said, ‘That is the message, I think. I agree that it hurts.’”

Love the gov

Californians love Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. Nearly two-thirds approve of his performance, according to a Field poll taken from July 30 to Aug. 8 and released yesterday.

The survey of 602 registered voters found 65 percent favored “the Governator” — the highest rating for a California governor at this point in his term since Jerry Brown drew a 67 percent approval rating in 1975 and Earl Warren 75 percent, back in 1947.

Mr. Schwarzenegger beat Gray Davis, who had a 54 percent approval rating, Pete Wilson (45 percent), George Deukmejian (51 percent), Ronald Reagan (58 percent) and Pat Brown (51 percent).

Farr away

Train conductors should punch rail tickets, not political tickets, according to Amtrak. The rail company has suspended Missouri-based conductor Leslie Farr from his job without pay after he told train passengers to vote against presidential candidate John Kerry in November.

Mr. Farr had his reasons, though. He was aboard a train delayed 84 minutes last weekend while Mr. Kerry’s “Believe in America” campaign train chugged down the track from St. Louis to Jefferson City, Mo., for a rally.

Mr. Farr told disgruntled passengers the delay was Mr. Kerry’s fault, and advised the riders to “vote accordingly.”

Irked Amtrak officials sent the conductor packing. But an irked Mr. Farr told Associated Press that while some passengers may have taken offense, “others likely were offended that Kerry campaign banners were draped over Amtrak property.”

But he’s still a political kind of guy. Mr. Farr — a Republican who will also serve as a delegate at this month’s New York convention — is currently challenging Rep. William Lacy Clay, Missouri Democrat, in the fall elections.

Rock around the Glock

Rep. John Hostettler, Indiana Republican, pleaded guilty yesterday to a misdemeanor charge of carrying a concealed deadly weapon and agreed to a 60-day sentence that would be suspended for two years.

Mr. Hostettler had forgotten the Glock 9 mm semiautomatic handgun he’d left in his briefcase and was subsequently stopped at a security checkpoint in Louisville International Airport on April 20.

As part of the agreement, the lawmaker agreed to give up the gun. In addition, Mr. Hostettler can purchase handguns only in Indiana or the District — his two places of residence — for two years and would lose his permit to carry a concealed weapon in Kentucky during that time.

In a written statement, Mr. Hostettler apologized “to my family, my constituents and the people of the Commonwealth of Kentucky for putting them through this ordeal.”

Lamb chops

Guests have included British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev and Presidents George H.W. Bush, Richard Nixon, Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter.

But after 15 years and 800 author interviews, C-SPAN chief Brian Lamb has pulled the plug on the Sunday night staple “Booknotes,” noting, “When you add it all up, I’ve committed about 1.8 years of my life to reading books for the series. It’s time to use all those hours in other ways.”

Mr. Lamb plans to replace the show with “Q&A;,” an interview program showcasing lesser-known experts.

“We’ll look for different, but topical issues and people who aren’t being seen and heard elsewhere on TV,” Mr. Lamb said yesterday, according to Multichannel magazine.

Contact Jennifer Harper at jharper@washingtontimes.com or 202/636-3085.

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