Nothing seems to be working out for Clint Didier, a Tea Party darling and former Washington Redskins tight end engaged in an uphill fight to win Central Washington’s 4th Congressional seat. Pitted against Dan Newhouse, the so-called “mainstream Republican,” Didier can’t catch a break. He’s been outspent, out-organized, and out-endorsed – though he did get some love from Sarah Palin, for whatever that’s worth these days.
GOP Rep. Doc Hastings, retiring after ten terms, recently threw his support to Newhouse, a state House representative from 2003 to 2009 and then ran the agriculture department under Gov. Chris Gregoire. Hastings’ endorsement irritated Didier to no end, but that pales in comparison to the unmitigated anger the Eltopia farmer with two Super Bowl rings must be feeling today about the National Rifle Association. Didier’s got to be thinking: “Man, I’m the king of gun nuts.” Indeed, back in June, Didier, looking to demonstrate his abiding love for the Second Amendment, held a raffle to give away an AR-15 rifle and two 9-millimeter Lugers.
Gun rights has been a signature element of Didier’s entire campaign. He even scored the backing up of other pro-firearms group, the National Association for Gun Rights.
But the NRA went with Didier’s Republican foe. Chairman Chris W. Cox praised Newhouse for opposing “all attempts to ban lawfully owned firearms and magazines” and said he “stood strong against President Obama and former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s gun control agenda.”
This triggered a fuming tweet from Didier “#NRA gives me thr highest rating 4 non-incumbent but endorses my opponent bc (because) “incumbent” even tho he’s NOT in office>Wonder who got to them?”
He declared in another tweet: “Dan Newhouse would let a single judge decide you can’t buy a gun but #NRA endorses him.”
In the August primary, Didier finished 6 points ahead of Newhouse and both advanced to an all-GOP showdown on Nov. 4, but Newhouse is considered the heavy favorite, as Didier is unlikely to win the votes of Democrats or moderates.