Oh my. It sounds like theend of Katherine Harris’ political career will be anything but graceful.
Katherine Harris, who is trying to become a U.S. senator, says she is writing a tell-all about the many people who have wronged her. This includes, but is not necessarily limited to: the Republican leaders who didn’t want her to run, the press that has covered her troubled campaign, and the many staffers who have quit her employ, whom she accuses of colluding with her opponent.
She is vague about what, precisely, makes her a victim, but she says she has it all documented.
“I’ve been writing it all year,” she says in that kittenish voice. She often smiles and cocks her head as if she’s letting you in on a secret. “It’s going to be a great book.”
The Melt-Down Continues…
The Democrat she is challenging, Sen. Bill Nelson, was once considered highly vulnerable. Nowadays, according to recent polls, Harris is down by 26 or 35 points, approaching political rigor mortis.
“They can make the polls say whatever they want,” Harris says. She says pollsters sometimes call her house and then hang up ” ’cause we’re not answering them the way they like.”
The way Harris sees it, a vast left- and right-wing conspiracy, encompassing both the “liberal media” and the Republican “elite,” is attempting to keep her out of the Senate. She says anyone could see the way the panel of questioners coddled Nelson at their debate last week. Her voice gets all high and mocking as she imitates them.
“Ooooh, Senator Nelson,” she says. “I mean, come on.”
Former chief adviser Ed Rollins, who managed Ronald Reagan’s reelection to the White House in 1984, said working for Harris was like “being in insanity camp.” He likened her staff to dogs that have been kicked.
Before he became the first of three campaign managers to quit, Jim Dornan programmed his cellphone to play the theme song from “The Exorcist” when Harris called.
Dornan says he once infuriated Harris right before an event by setting it up so she could make a grand entrance. Instead, she wanted to greet supporters at the door as they arrived.
“She just goes completely ballistic,” Dornan recalls. He says she yelled at him for 10 minutes and accused him of ruining her life. “I literally held the phone away from my ear, and everybody within a six-foot circle of me could hear her screaming.”
[Harris’ campaign staff] worried about her clothes — suit jackets and sweaters that were too tight, skirts that were too short. Rollins says an aide was dispatched to take her shopping for more senatorial apparel.
They worried about what one former field coordinator called her sense of “religious mission.” Two former staffers — Rollins and another onetime campaign manager, Jamie Miller — have said Harris told them that God wanted her to be a senator. Rollins adds, “She told me that she thought she could be the first woman president.”
Sitting in the livestock arena, Harris laughs at the notion she’d ever want to be president. In the past she told the Palm Beach Post that she was complimentary of those staffers who performed well, but had problems with those who would “try to undermine” her. Now, she sidesteps the question of why she had problems with staff.
“It’s going to be easily explained in my book,” she says. “We have a great staff now.”
Harris turns stony when she’s asked what will happen if she doesn’t win.
“Haven’t even considered it,” she says in a tone that suggests a follow-up question would be foolhardy.
Later in the evening, while talking about her love for Queen Esther, she runs to the passenger seat of her SUV and seizes a Bible.
“I’ll give you one verse,” she says. “On the day that the enemies of the Jews had hoped to overpower them, the opposite occurred, in that the Jews themselves overpowered those who hated them.”
What does that have to do with this race?
“November 7th,” she replies.