Sleaze has always been an aspect of politics, and whining about it won’t make it go away. It especially rears its ugly head among the professional political consultant class, and this is one reason why so many people refuse to donate money to any political group like the RNC, NRSC, American Crossroads et al. The problem is that even giving to an individual candidate can make you feel dirty if they engage in sleazy activities.
An example of sleaze is when incumbents pony up their own money to help one of their colleagues defeat a primary challenger. I could almost forgive a fellow colleague of the same state donating since he also is voting in the primary, but the ‘special club incumbency protection racket’ premise of the rest of the colleagues is sleazy.
An argument could also be made that for a colleague to pony up some money for the challenger to an incumbent is to divide and polarize and disrupt the conference. So the best form is to simply remain neutral and leave it up to the incumbent to handle the challenge on his own. Not only is this the best form, but it’s also how it’s been done until recently.
Thirty-two of the incumbent GOP Senators ponied up money out of their own pockets for their colleague, Thad Cochran. You can go to this link to see their names and the amount of cash donations that they each made to Cochran. Below are the twelve who did not donate and enable the sleaze. It’s sad that there are only a dozen, and some may have other reasons to dislike them. However, from the sleaze aspect, this dozen are clean instead of dirty.
Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions
Arizona Senator Jeff Flake
Florida Senator Marco Rubio
Kentucky Senator Rand Paul
Louisiana Senator David Vitter
Maine Senator Susan Collins
Oklahoma Senator Tom Coburn
Pennsylvania Senator Pat Toomey
South Carolina Senator Tim Scott
Texas Senator Ted Cruz
Utah Senator Mike Lee
Wisconsin Senator Ron Johnson