Ned Lamont Hires Joe Abbey?

Friday, February 5, 2010

Hartford Courant political columnist Kevin Rennie reports.
Ned Lamont searched across the land for a campaign manager and found one in Virginia. Sources report that Lamont has hired Joe Abbey, fresh off the calamitous Creigh Deeds ‘09 campaign in the Old Dominion. Deeds took an 18 point dubbing from Republican former Attorney General Bob McDonnell in November. The Abbey hire suggests Greenwich millionaire Lamont will try to tack to the center after winning fame as the 2006 hero of the insurgent left during his long campaign against Democrat-turned-Independent Joe Lieberman.
I find this news to be...uh, "interesting" I guess. I must say, when I think of potential campaign managers for Ned Lamont, the first name that springs to mind isn't Abbey's. Why not? Nothing bad about Joe Abbey, but when I think of Ned Lamont - or at least the 2006 version - I think of a netroots activist-oriented, liberal/progressive candidate and campaign. That's simply not how I see Joe Abbey, whose last two gigs were with moderate-conservative, top-down Democrats Mark Warner and Creigh Deeds.

On the other hand, Abbey also worked for Chap Petersen -- who I'd describe as economically progressive/populist, socially moderate, and netroots friendly -- in his victorious 2007 State Senate campaign against Jeannemarie Devolites-Davis. Still, when I think of Ned Lamont, I think more of Markos Moulitsas, Jane Hamsher and Tim Tagaris than of Joe Abbey. It will be fascinating to see how this one plays out, and also if Kevin Rennie is correct that Joe Abbey's hiring means Ned Lamont "will try to tack to the center after winning fame as the 2006 hero of the insurgent left."