A sur-reply to Mark Levin

Mark Levin attempts to bob-and-weave around some of the inaccuracies that plagued his initial response to my post about the role of some conservative activists in the Delaware Senate primary. Other inaccuracies he simply ignores.
I’ll leave it to our readers to assess Levin’s efforts. I will point out, however, that Levin has introduced a new factual error on the core issue of Mike Castle’s voting record.
My initial post criticized Levin for exaggerated claims about the extent to which Castle casts liberal votes. I noted that his ACU rating is 52 percent. Taking up my challenge to look at data before opining, Levin writes:

Mirengoff pulled the 52 percent figure because it was the last ACU rating – in 2009. But the year before, in 2008, he received a 28 rating from ACU. I am citing the same organization and the same rating system as Mirengoff, and I think any rational person looking at those figures would conclude that Castle votes wrong — from a conservative perspective — most of the time.

Actually, the 52 percent figure is Castle’s “lifetime rating,” i.e., for his 17 years in Congress. His rating in 2009 was 56 percent.
Levin also claims that, based on the “Buckley rule” I should now support Christine O’Donnell because one poll has her leading Mike Castle. But this argument fails to grasp Buckley’s rule. It has little or nothing to do with who leads in polls among Republicans. The Buckley rule, in essence, is that, when selecting among Republicans, conservatives should support the most conservative electable option. “Electable” entails winning in November against the Democrat. Thus, it’s the polls that pit O’Donnell against the Democrat that matter for purposes of the Buckley rule. Last I saw, they showed her trailing substantially.
Levin’s misunderstanding of this concept also informs the portion of his post in which he criticizes me for saying that the Tea Party acted reasonably by supporting conservatives in several states. (Levin is unhappy that I didn’t name names; apparently he has forgotten that my iniitial post, about which he wrote a few days ago, discussed a series of states by name).
Levin notes that Joe Miller’s victory in Alaska, for example, was an upset win. The point, though, is that Miller is electable in conservative Alaska. Thus, it was consistent with the Buckley rule for conservatives who were so inclined to support Miller. Delaware is quite a different matter.
Levin also has difficulty keeping his story straight on my culpability if O’Donnell is nominated and defeated. At one point, he writes: “Just because I decided to engage him doesn’t mean there’s a single voter in Delaware who gives a damn who he supports or would support.” But a few paragraph later he says: “Mirengoff, et al, may well contribute to [O’Donnell’s] defeat in a general election, should it come to that.”
I may be a nobody or I may be a spolier. But as much as Levin might wish otherwise, I can’t be both in this context.

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