Joe O’Dea Blows Meet The Press Lifeline

Mouth, insert foot. Repeat until defeated.

Over the past few weeks, GOP U.S. Senate candidate Joe O’Dea’s campaign has stumbled in a series of interviews and public appearances, denting Republican hopes that he could represent a viable fallback option among generally declining GOP prospects in the rapidly-approaching midterm elections. After an attempt in early August to put daylight between himself and ex-President Donald Trump ran aground as O’Dea clarified repeatedly that he would vote for Trump in the event Trump wins the 20224 GOP nomination, O’Dea took aim squarely at his own foot by announcing unbidden he had voted for 2020’s Proposition 115, a rejected abortion restriction measure that made a liar of O’Dea after claiming for months to “support Roe v. Wade.

In September, O’Dea compounded his problems, first by admitting to the AP that he didn’t consider “all the nuances” when he voted for Prop 115. This was followed just a few days later by an appearance on FOX 31 where O’Dea dodged the question about Proposition 115 saying “I don’t write that bill.” Then after all of that digging, O’Dea capped it off with with a historically cringeworthy interview with 9NEWS’ Kyle Clark, where O’Dea announced his quest to be the U.S. Senator who “brings balance to women’s rights.”

In the ten days since O’Dea’s self-immolation on 9NEWS, we’ve been watching for signs that O’Dea might be retooling his message to better withstand scrutiny–like substituting the word “bureaucrat” for “agent” when spreading misinformation about the IRS funding in the Inflation Reduction Act. But on NBC’s Meet the Press yesterday morning, O’Dea disabused us of the silly idea that he was learning valuable lessons from his stumbles in local media interviews.

CHUCK TODD: I’m curious, you voted for a ballot initiative that didn’t have [exceptions for rape, incest, or medical necessity]. As Dobbs been overturned, have you found yourself thinking about this issue a little bit differently?

JOE O’DEA: Well, look, it’s the center of attention in a lot of cases. And I’m exactly where I was when I started this campaign, haven’t changed. I didn’t write that bill. [Pols emphasis] But I believe that, you know, it should be a woman’s right in the first five months.

The great balancer of women’s rights has decided! Five months, ladies!

If you read closely, what Joe O’Dea is saying is that since his vote for Proposition 115 occurred before he launched his campaign for U.S. Senate, he has been “consistent”–since he started his campaign. That is Cory Gardner-level prevarication, but as usual O’Dea lacks the polished delivery that helped Gardner get away with such audacious deception. And just like it was to the local press, saying “I didn’t write that bill” is an intelligence-insulting defense of O’Dea’s vote for Proposition 115. O’Dea would show more character simply admitting he didn’t “look at the nuances” like he managed to one time–but that would only demonstrate that O’Dea’s credibility to bring “balance to women’s rights” is nonexistent.

Next up, O’Dea was asked about the recent political stunt by Republican governors to transport undocumented immigrants from the southern border to liberal northern cities, most recently last week when 50 immigrants were flown by Florida from Texas to Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts:

CHUCK TODD: One of the candidates you promoted is Ron DeSantis. Are you comfortable with the idea of using migrants as a political tool?

JOE O’DEA: Well, look, I think Ron DeSantis and Governor Abbott were right to bring some visibility to this issue… [Pols emphasis]

There’s growing evidence that after making political hay throughout the summer by busing undocumented immigrants to northern cities in political protest, this latest stunt of flying dozens of migrants to Martha’s Vineyard is backfiring politically on Florida Gov. Rick DeSantis. Dumping immigrants, sometimes reportedly under false pretenses of jobs and shelter waiting for them at journey’s end, is not a serious policy response to a serious issue–it’s just the cheapest of political grandstands, with no positive effect on either side of the debate. It’s not something any responsible politician should support.

O’Dea has expressed support for Gov. DeSantis already, but this is the first time we’ve seen O’Dea explicitly come out in favor of this highly controversial policy–and depending on how the story unfolds over the next few weeks, it could be a mistake O’Dea dearly regrets. The rest of this interview is notable mostly for how little O’Dea has improved his message after ample time to purge ridiculous statements like “I didn’t vote for that bill” from his script. That in turn only further highlights O’Dea’s silly semantic dishonesty about being consistent only since he started his campaign.

Joe O’Dea wasn’t ready for Denver market prime time, so we don’t know how he expected to do better on Meet The Press with the same message. For national Republicans deciding whether to throw more than lip service O’Dea’s way in 2022’s closing weeks, this was a performance that will close their wallets–in a place they are very likely to see it.

Was it Ken Buck proudly owning calling a rape case “buyer’s remorse” on MTP 12 years ago?

Longtime readers will debate that. But it was another terrible showing for O’Dea with time to change course quickly running out.

16 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. davebarnes says:

    Yet, the lamestream media keeps promoting Joe as a normal GOPer.

  2. MartinMark says:

    Using immigrants as pawns in a political stunt in this way is not only bad policy, and cruel.   What these governors are doing is downright sociopathic.  These are human beings the Governor of a state lied to and effectively hijacked, dumping them 1,500 miles away, without preparation or communication. 

    Human beings.  How is this not a crime?  How is it that there are not demands from the top that a sociopathic person willing to screw over helpless human beings in that way is not being forced to resign?

  3. notaskinnycook says:

    MM, to answer your last question, it’s Texas. That explains everything.               
    As for Anyway O’Dea, he needs to see his doctor. It seems he only opens his mouth to exchange feet. By now, I’m afraid he may have a nasty case of athlete’s stomach.

    • MartinMark says:

      Oh for sure, Texas is gonna be Texas.  And Florida, well….

      But my question is really about the media and Dem leadership.  I suppose it was rhetorical about the media.  But seriously, administration officials and people in the states affected should be taking the gloves off and make it really freaking clear that what the governor doing is using human beings as props in a 1,500 mile stunt.  If I was, say the Lt Governor of an affected state, I would be holding a press conference and asking why the Governor of Florida has not been arrested.  I would as the NY Time whey they are not using the term "kidnapped."  etc.

  4. Lauren Boebert is a Worthless POS says:

    And it was on Meet the Press ….

    Is it deja vu all over again? Wasn’t MTP the venue at which Ken Buck made his infamous remark about sexual orientation being like alcoholism twelve years ago?

    Memo to future GOP senate candidates. No Meet the Press appearances. Better yet, nothing to the left of Fox News. In fact, Newsmax, Bannon’s Podcast and the Daily Stormer are the preferred media.

  5. DawnPatrol says:

    Joe “Well, look” O’Dear: A portrait of mealy-mouthed, flip-flopping, obfuscating, evasive political opportunism.

    Mitt Romney (circa 2012) and Marco Rubio (all day, every day) have got nothin’ on this guy.

  6. JohnInDenver says:

    I've not followed details of the transport of people far from the Texas border closely.  But in a number of cases, these are not "immigrants."  At least some are asylum seekers from Venezuela,

    I certainly don't understand why Abbott and DeSantis want to pick on those fleeing a socialist, authoritarian government, those who believe they have or will be unjustly persecuted for their beliefs, actions, or status.  Seems to me they are in a similar situation of those fleeing Castro's Cuba in 1980s and 1990s. 

    • NOV GOP meltdown says:

      " Hey, Magats, look at me, I can be a complete asshole just like Trump" – Ron Desantis

    • MartinMark says:

      What Desantis did was lure helpless immigrant/asylum seekers, including children, onto planes with a modest bribe and a promise they were going to Boston where support etc would be waiting.

      Instead they were literally dropped at the curb 1,500 away from where they started in Martha’s Vineyard.  Dropped onto an unsuspecting and unprepared community.  As a freaking political stunt.

      This is so cruel, callous, sociopathic I am seething that it seems to be sliding by our media as mere everyday political posturing.

    • Lauren Boebert is a Worthless POS says:

      "Seems to me they are in a similar situation of those fleeing Castro's Cuba in 1980s and 1990s." 

      The comparison is precisely on point. This is no different that the legend of Ted Cruz's father fleeing Castro with all his savings sewn into his underwear when he boarded that raft and fled to freedom. Or the story of Marco Rubio's grandparents doing the same thing.

      The problem is that like many MAGA folk, they forget where they came from.

      Once they get up the metaphorical ladder, they pull the damn thing up so no one else can follow them.

  7. psyclone says:

    Seems to me that what the cReepublican guvs are doing is not much different from human trafficking.

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