- The Washington Times - Sunday, August 10, 2014

Ken Cuccinelli, the former Virginia Attorney General and gubernatorial candidate is now the head of the Senate Conservatives Fund. On Breitbart News Saturday, Mr. Cuccinelli lamented about the primary debacle in Mississippi and how that set conservatives back, citing losses in Kansas and Tennessee.

The Senate Conservatives Fund was one of the Washington groups that decided it was going to make a splash in the conservative movement this year. These groups anointed some really bad candidates and made some really questionable calls.

In Kentucky, the Senate Conservatives Fund endorsed Matt Bevin against Mitch McConnell. Mr. Bevin’s qualifications seemed to be his love of cockfighting and the size of his bank account.

Mr. Bevin was crushed.

In Kansas, the SCF backed Milton Wolf against incumbent Sen. Pat Roberts. Heritage Action gave Mr. Roberts the same rating it gives Ted Cruz and gave Mr. Roberts a higher rating than it does for tea party favorite Sen. Tim Scott from South Carolina.

And then there was Tennessee.

State Representative Joe Carr was unknown a year ago. He came from nowhere and made an amazing run against the Tennessee politician who is the best known politician in the last generation in the Volunteer State.

Lamar Alexander is known among Tennesseans as “liberal Lamar.” At the end of 2012, Mr. Alexander stepped down from the Senate Republican leadership so he could spend more time reaching out and working with Senate Democrats.

Mr. Alexander is infamous for being one of the Republicans Democrats can count on to “reach across the aisle” in the name of “compromise” and sell conservatives out. Mr. Alexander was probably the most endangered Republican liberal.

Where was the Senate Conservatives Fund?

It wasn’t in Tennessee.

While it was spending a lot of money on futile campaigns, like Kentucky and Kansas, Joe Carr did not even get their endorsement. Mr. Carr did get the support early from one national tea party group and another national conservative group came into the fight and provided a lot of help to Mr. Carr.

The Senate Conservatives Fund was not to be found.

As Mr. Cuccinelli laments the loss in Tennessee, Mississippi is not to blame. The blame goes to some of the conservative groups that offered Mr. Carr no support. Mr. Alexander had a lot of special interest money supporting him. Mr. Carr had real Americans supporting him.

Occasionally life gives someone the chance to correct a prior mistake. Mr. Cuccinelli and the Senate Conservative Fund may have that chance.

Since Thursday’s election, Lamar Alexander has called Democrats who are supporting him, but has refused to take a call from Mr. Carr. How dare Mr. Carr challenge the crown prince of the Tennessee Republican Party?

On Facebook, there is now discussion about launching a write in campaign for Mr. Carr this fall.

Mr. Carr has not commented about this possibility publicly. Alexander did not take 50 percent of the vote in Thursday’s Republican primary. More people voted for other candidates in that race than voted for Mr. Alexander.

Some of Mr. Alexander’s support came from Democrats who crossed over. But with the Democrats having their first promising candidate on the ballot in years this fall, Mr. Alexander may well not get some of those votes.

A write in campaign is not without precedent. In 2010, Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski lost her primary to Joe Miller. She ran a write in campaign and is in the Senate today.

Mr. Carr is a conservative and if he runs a write in campaign, conservatives in Tennessee will have some hope this fall.

The question for Mr. Cuccinelli is, if Mr. Carr does run, is the Senate Conservatives fund willing to put its money where its mouth is?

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