Dickinson poses these silly rhetorical questions:
... if Sherrod is really the top Democrat for the job -- if his name truly is "gold" with Ohio voters -- shouldn't he be able to prove that through, you know, an electoral process? What does it say about his electability that top Democrats felt it necessary to play king-maker and shield him from his popular, populist competition?I think Brown almost certainly would have defeated Hackett in a competitive primary. The point isn't whether Brown would have won the primary, but whether he would emerged so politically wounded and so financially strapped after a tough primary that he couldn't mount a credible campaign against DeWine in the fall.
Dickinson's article includes a quote from Hackett complaining that the pressure he felt to leave the Senate race amounts to "a second betrayal .... First, my government misused and mismanaged the military in Iraq, and now my own party is afraid to support candidates like me."
The truth is that Hackett has betrayed himself on several occasions. You don't win over independent voters (who frequently decide elections) by calling the president of the United States a "son of a bitch." Even if he is a son of a bitch. Voters expect a little more civility out of their candidates.