Those familiar with the "players" in Hamilton and Bradley County politics know that this race was never supposed to happen. Like the Kennedys in Massachussetts, the local repubs viewed this to be Zach's seat along with the right to annoint the successor, Robin Smith. The bullying with which her campaign treats all other contenders illustrates that she believes this as well.
This is anything but a two way race. The two candidates Congressman Wamp mentioned by name may be the two largest money-raisers, but ironically, they are two of the weaker ones in conveying substance to the voters. Van Irion, for those who aren't yet aware, is the fast-rising star of this campaign. While the Tea Party is beginning to prove that winning elections will no longer be just a function of raising and spending money Van is attracting thousands of dollars per week in individual contributions. Much better than that, though, Van Irion has a message of constitutional substance that frustrated voters want to hear but aren't hearing from the "leading candidates."