As you might deduce from the above, Brian Judd can’t take a hint. The Barre Republican is raising the concept of “perpetual candidate” to heights unimagined by the likes of Cris Ericson or H. Brooke Paige.
Even as Judd was already running for House, it was only last week that his 2021 run for city council finally sputtered to its heat death.
Yes, Twenty-twenty-one. He dragged it out for fourteen months.
In that election, Judd challenged incumbent Democrat Teddy Waszazak and lost by a wide margin, too wide for Judd to demand a recount. Which he did anyway. And was rightfully refused.
That wasn’t enough for Judd, who filed suit against the city citing irregularities of some sort. Maybe chicanery as well. Possibly even skulduggery. It was kind of a “throw the spaghetti against the wall and see if anything sticks” legal strategy. And of course, Judd represented himself in court.
The UNH Survey Center poll of Vermont’s two Congressional races was laughably bad for Lt. Gov. Molly Gray. It was downright embarrassing for Nolan. The poll has her six points behind Generic Angry White Guy Gerald Malloy and 18 points behind “Undecided.”
More on this in a moment, but I wanted to add three thoughts to my earlier post on the Gray/Becca Balint poll.
First, this is not about Super PAC spending. Sure, three progressive PACs have spent a combined $600,000 on independent activities in support of Balint. But the bulk of that money was spent this month, and a 42 percentage point spread just doesn’t happen that quickly. Even people who run these campaigns would acknowledge that they’re working the margins, trying to move the needle by a few percentage points. The Super PAC support certainly makes Gray’s task harder but if she blames her predicament on them, she’ll be wrong.
Second, if a 42-point deficit wasn’t enough bad news for Gray, there’s also a favorability gap. Balint was seen favorably by 72% of respondents, and unfavorably by a mere 6%. Twelve percent had no opinion. The same categories for Gray: 42% favorable, 19% unfavorable, 8% no opinion. The gist: there’s only a small pool of gettable voters for Gray. Only 13% are undecided. If this poll is anywhere in the ballpark, Gray has a huge deficit and little room to make progress.
Third, Natalie Silver is a freakin’ genius. She’s run a seemingly flawless campaign for Balint. Maybe we should have seen this coming; TJ Donovan never looked better than when Silver was his chief of staff. (She was also involved in Gray’s surprising run to the Bucket of Warm Piss in 2020.) I suspect that if Balint goes to Congress, Silver will be in her inner circle because why the hell wouldn’t you want Silver at your side? But if Silver doesn’t go to Washington, she’ll be the hottest commodity in Vermont politics. And rightfully so.