Because Daniel is right.
While I am a true conservative with libertarian leanings, and Gordon Smith is pretty far from that, I have been saying for years that it is wrong for conservatives in Oregon to pile on Smith. Yes, he is much more moderate than we are. But our state is much more liberal than we are. Real conservatives don't fare so well here. We have a choice between "somewhat liberal" and "extremely liberal." Give me the somewhat over the extreme anyday.
This is not to say we shouldn't continue to elect real conservatives. On the contrary. But we need to pick our battles, and build from the ground up. We need to run good candidates for local elections first, and use their victories to build the farm team for statewide elections down the road. We can't do better than Gordon Smith because we have no better candidate. But perhaps Gordon will want to retire from the Senate in six years, or sooner (if we elect a GOP Governor in two years, there is a strong possibility of President McCain tapping Smith for a Cabinet post like Agriculture or the Interior). That means we need to focus on a few things here:
Re-elect Gordon Smith, so we don't get stuck with Jeff Merkley.
Re-elect Greg Walden, our only GOP Congressman (and an OK guy).
Re-elect Jason Atkinson to the State Senate and groom him for higher office.
Elect Rick Dancer Secretary of State.
Once we do these things, we can focus on 2010 and beyond, and gradually shift our alternative to socialism from "somewhat liberal" to conservative.
In the meantime, SUPPORT GORDON SMITH!