We report in this week’s Evans-Novak Political Report (sorry, no link, we’re too expensive) that Cranston Mayor Stephen Laffey (R.) will jump into the U.S. Senate primary against Lincoln Chafee (R.) next month — the date will probably be September 15. Laffey’s been holding off since May, but now he’s hired a campaign manager.
Laffey will be challenging Chafee from the Right. It’s questionable whether he would win the general election, but his odds are not significantly worse than Chafee’s.
Laffey is really crossing swords with the National Republican Senatorial Committee and the RNC by doing this. Elizabeth Dole and Ken Mehlman have been begging him for months not to run. Bad, bad news for Dole, who may preside as NRSC chairwoman over a loss of three or four Senate seats, no small part of it her own fault. This only complicates matters.
No surprise that Republican researchers have already begun poring over Laffey’s divorce files. Get ready for an ugly primary.