Are republican reinforcements on the way in Arkansas?

In my latest report about Arkansas Senator Blanche Lincoln, I noted that, although she is an inviting target for a Republican gain in 2010, the Republican candidates currently in the picture seem to lack credibility in part because of the gaffes they have committed. However, this report by columnist John Brummett of the Arkansas News suggests that, as Michael Corleone would say, Lincoln’s true enemy has not yet shown his face.
Brummett focuses on State Senator Gilbert Baker a respected Republican legislator (though Brummett’s respect for him seems to be qualified). According to Brummett, Baker originally contemplated running for Lincoln’s seat but was disinclined to do so. Now, in light of the weakness of the Republican field, he is thinking about filling the void.
Brummett also reports that Baker is expected to have lunch with our friend Tom Cotton. Tom, a native of Arkansas, has returned from a tour of duty in Afghanistan and will soon be leaving the Army. Readers will recall that he was the subject of quite a stir when the idiot left denied his existence on the theory that a Harvard educated lawyer working for a big law firm could not possibly have enlisted in the Army and ended up on patrol duty in Iraq. Brummett refers to this phony controversy when he calls Tom (jokingly, I hope) a “perhaps mythical figure.”
Brummett says that Tom “or his resume, is coveted by some Republican insiders as a potential Senate candidate.” He concludes that if Baker and Cotton “have that lunch, just the two of them. . .then I’m figuring the Republican nominee for the U.S. Senate will be at that table.”
JOHN adds: I’m really, really certain that Tom Cotton exists. I took this picture of him with an unidentified young lady at a function we hosted in New York last year. Note the name tag: proof positive!
Cotton118.jpg
If Tom runs for the Senate, or anything else, we will support him with great enthusiasm. He is a tremendously impressive guy, but, of course, a newcomer to public life. So it will be interesting to see how the Democrats who have given Al Franken plum committee assignments, apparently because of his impressive background as a cocaine-snorting comedian, try to attack Cotton’s readiness for high office.

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