The nascent Steve Novick campaign for the Senate picked up some useful support this week. During an interview on the Thom Hartmann talk show on KPOJ, the host disclosed he had donated to Novick's campaign and urged listeners to do likewise, as some evidently did. Not a bad early hit.
Today, he picked up backing from a clutch of Oregon attorneys, a substantial group - a useful starting point. Not everyone in the Democratic sector, apparently, is holding back and waiting for a better-known figure to enter the Democratic contest against Republican Gordon Smith next year.
Count these among indications that Novick is developing his campaign methodically, alongside demonstration of his trademark communications chops. On the attorney endorsement: "And yes, I know what the Republicans will say. ‘Novick's in bed with the trial lawyers,' they'll say. And I say to them: ‘I'm proud of my friends. They help real people. They protect consumers. They fight for justice. Who are you in bed with? The cigarette companies, the drug companies, the insurance companies, the criminally careless manufacturers.'" No Democratic defensiveness here (that being a lesson some other Democrats might learn from).
The Senate announcement by Novick, who has deep history as a Democratic issues and communications operative (his resume apart from that is worth a review, too), came with the feel of something akin to a demonstration project - it was preceded by a provocative cover story in Willamette Week ("If I Ran"), which in the main consisted of the case against Smith - or maybe like a prompt to others to run. Whatever Novick's original thinking (his seriousness about taking out Smith never has been in doubt), it is now a perfectly serious campaign, and Novick could well be the Democratic nominee next year.