As They Regroup, Liberals Try To Make The Case They 'Won' In Arkansas

Bill Halter

hide captionArkansas Lt. Gov. Bill Halter had the support of liberal groups such as MoveOn.org in Tuesday's Senate runoff, but came up short against Democratic Sen. Blanche Lincoln.

Carlos Osorio/AP

For liberal groups and unions that threw their support behind Lt. Gov. Bill Halter in the Democratic primary against Arkansas Sen. Blanche Lincoln, today's a day for arguing that they didn't really lose — even though the millions of dollars they put behind Halter's bid didn't keep Lincoln from winning Tuesday's runoff.

Ilyse Hogue of MoveOn.org, which put about $3 million behind Halter's effort, just made the case to All Things Considered co-host Robert Siegel that liberals got their message across and that Lincoln now understands that "the Democratic base ... needs to feel like she's fighting on their side." Here's a bit of their conversation:

Ilyse Hogue of MoveOn.org.

Earlier today, on NPR's Tell Me More, Jim Dean of the liberal Democracy for America made the same pitch. "I'm actually very heartened by how well this campaign went in the state," he told host Michel Martin. Here's some of that discussion:

Jim Dean of Democracy for America.

But also on Tell Me More, Shelby Blakely of the conservative New Patriot Journal said it's now more likely that Republicans will take the Arkansas Senate seat in November, when Lincoln goes up against GOP Rep. John Boozman. "She'll be far easier to take out in November than an unknown (Halter) who doesn't have the albatross of 'Obamacare' or the stimulus or 'TARP Sequel' hanging around its neck," Blakely said:

Shelby Blakely of the conservative New Patriot Journal.

Let's see how the rest of us feel:

Click here if you want to find an NPR station that broadcasts or streams All Things Considered. The Tell Me More discussion with Dean, Blakely and our own Ken Rudin is here.

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