McConnell Says Gregg will Be Replaced By a Republican
by Jonathan Singer, Sun Feb 01, 2009 at 07:59:51 AM EST
From the AP's Phil Elliott:
No change in the Senate's balance of power if New Hampshire Republican Judd Gregg leaves to become commerce secretary.
That's the word from the Senate's top Republican, Mitch McConnell. He says Gregg has assured fellow GOP senators of that.
McConnell says Gregg has promised he would be replaced by someone who would affiliate with other Republicans in the Senate.
Ben Smith's reporting cuts a bit in the opposite direction, with Smith writing that the Obama White House "is still trying to get a gaurantee from Governor Lynch that he'll replace Senator Gregg with a Democrat." If McConnell is correct, and Lynch is gearing up to appoint a Republican in Gregg's stead -- even a placeholder Republican, even a moderate or liberal Republican -- the value of a Gregg pick seems to decrease greatly, at least from this vantage. Yes, having Gregg out of the 2010 race would greatly increase the likelihood that the Democrats would win the New Hampshire Senate contest, so there is at least some upside. But if the point is merely to appoint a Republican, there are probably better choices who are significantly less conservative or stalwart.