The revelations that John Walsh plagiarized a major paper in college have now completely torpedoed his chances for retaining the seat. To be fair, there was little chance that Walsh was going to win in any case. But the difference between "little chance" and "no chance" can be measured in hope. There is now no hope for Democrats in Montana, this year.
Over at the Columbia Journalism Review, Steven Brill has a "story he'd like to see." Specifically: What's the deal with "the Hillary alternatives?" You know, those other people who might compete in a Democratic primary in 2016. This is worth some discussion. Among the reasons I can think of that speak to why there isn't block-to-block coverage of other potential Democratic contenders (besides maybe Elizabeth Warren, more on that later) are: 1) it's 2014 at the moment, and maybe people are showing a modicum of restraint, and 2) Hillary Clinton is currently "freezing the field." Which is a way of saying that she looms so large over the landscape as a potential frontrunner for the nomination, despite not actually campaigning, that it's inhibiting other candidates from doing the sorts of things they need to do to carve out a place in the firmament.
The powerful, super-wealthy people at the top of the economic food chain have noticed all this populist stirring. Boy, have they noticed. In spite of all their power and wealth, they are offended that anyone is suggesting that the system should be tinkered with. They're speaking out -- in truly silly ways -- and putting their money where their mouths are.
No one else in the Democratic Party today can so effectively put together the broad coalition that elected Barack Obama and then add to that likely wins in states like West Virginia and Arkansas. Women, African Americans, Hispanics, and the young will all coalesce around Hillary if she is the candidate.