Mike Ditka announced yesterday that he won’t face Barack Obama in the Illinois Senate race, and now Taegan Goddard is reporting that the GOP may turn to rocker Ted Nugent. In addition to a live album called Full Bluntal Nugity, the Nuge has given America records such as Cat Scratch Fever, Penetrator, and If You Can’t Lick Em…Lick Em. He’s on the board of the National Rifle Association, has hosted a right-wing radio show in Detroit, and sells his own beef jerky.

In other news, a few days ago, Freepers called for a boycott of “SlimFast’s foul-mouthed spokesperson, Whoopi” Goldberg — who “fired off a stream of vulgar sexual wordplays on Bush’s name in a riff about female genitalia” at a John Kerry fundraiser last week. Correlation may not equal causation, but yesterday Slimfast shed the weight of an entire adult woman, dropping the comedienne from its ad campaign.

tbogg is going after Howard Fineman for “using a Beltway myth” about late Pennsylvania Gov. Bob Casey to make a point. Fineman wrote that Casey “was so anti-abortion that he was denied the opportunity to speak at a Democratic convention,” but Media Matters says that, according to those who doled out the convention speaking slots, Casey was denied a speech in 1992 because he hadn’t endorsed the Clinton-Gore ticket. Writes tbogg: “But that’s not what Lloyd Grove told Sally Quinn who dictated to Steno Sue Schmidt who told Chalabi who slipped a note to Judith Miller who…”

Eugene Volokh, meanwhile, has set his sites on Rick “you can say I’m a hater, but I would argue I’m a lover” Santorum. Coming off the failure of the constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage, Santorum argued on the NewsHour that all constitutional lawyers agree that the Defense of Marriage Act — the law that presently addresses gay marriage — is unconstitutional. (Thus the need, by Santorum’s logic, for a constitutional amendment.) Santorum claimed that last year’s Lawrence vs. Texas Supreme Court case “signaled clearly that the Defense of Marriage Act was not going to stand,” but Volokh responds that “it seems to me incorrect to argue that somehow the courts’ striking down DOMA is a foregone conclusion — and especially to argue that all or nearly all constitutional lawyers make such a prediction.”

And speaking of the FMA, Andrew Sullivan is, not surprisingly, pretty happy about how the whole thing turned out. “Even I didn’t anticipate quite how humiliating the FMA debate would be for the religious right,” he writes. “…[F]rom one perspective, that of the gay community, President Bush has done what no Democratic candidate has been able to do for a couple of decades: he has united the entire community around the Democrats. The effort by many of us to persuade gay voters to consider the Republicans, to give Bush a chance, has been rendered almost comically moot this fall. Bush won a quarter of gay votes in 2000. I wonder if he’ll even get a tenth of them this year. He deserves fewer.”

Brian Montopoli

Brian Montopoli is a writer at CJR Daily.