s skippy the bush kangaroo: breaking: dem party decides primaries are for sissies

skippy the bush kangaroo

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

breaking: dem party decides primaries are for sissies

the left side of blogtopia (yes! we coined that phrase!) was all a'twitter with the vapors yesterday over paul hackett's withdrawl from the race for ohio senator. asspress:

the political novice withdrew under intense pressure from party leaders in washington, clearing the field for rep. sherrod brown – a 30-year veteran of democratic politics with more than $2.5 million in the bank…

hackett would have probably won this seat,” david nir, one of three founders of the liberal web site swingstateproject.com, contended in a blog posting tuesday. “it's much harder for me to envision the 'northeastern ohio liberal' sherrod brown breaking the 49-percent barrier, particularly with dewine moving to the center.”

not everyone agreed in the world of weblogs, or blogs, but there was plenty of anger and many threatened not to help brown. matt stoller, a leading voice on the liberal blog mydd.com who wasn't involved in the ohio senate race, said hackett represented a failure by bloggers to compete.

“establishment democrats are still more powerful than we are, by orders of magnitude,” stoller wrote. “while we can put tens of thousands into a race, they can dwarf that with millions.”

hackett said the party's decision “highlights the challenge that's still there” to close the gap between washington and the party's grassroots.
the rumors are that dem insiders, such as harry reid and charles schumer, pressured hackett into dropping out, going so far as to call his supporters and donaters and urging them to give money to hackett's democratic primary opponent, sherrod brown.

while we don't know the specifics involved, here is what we've written on several other major blogs:

we think the biggest problem is that the dem establishment once again shot itself in the foot.

irrespective of whether the nuanced mechinations that kos explains are valid or not, the perception is that the smoke-filled back-room manipulations forced a good, honest man out of politics, and we can thank the dem. inside-the-beltway establishment for it.

we’re not saying that that's the reality, nor are we saying it's a fair interpretation. we’re just saying that that is the perception, at least amongst the netroots as we surf around today.

and, honestly, can you blame anyone for thinking that way? we on this side of the aisle like to imagine we are above the evil behind-the-scenes rovian manipulations of the right...so when it comes out that party leaders were calling contributors and telling them not to donate to hackett, well, it's pretty disheartening.

maybe the reality is politics is a chess game. but hundreds of thousands of netizens refuse to believe it, and don't want politics to be a matter of moving pieces from one district to another...they want honest men and women to speak their minds and let the chips (and votes) fall where they may...real democracy.

if the schumer and the dem leadership had thought two steps ahead (heaven forbid!) they could have seen this perception was the natural outcome of their manipulations.

but it continues on that the only people more dangerous than dick cheney at shooting is the dem party leadership when taking aim at their own foot.
for the record, both reid and schumer deny any involvement (see dbk's post on blanton and ashton's).

whether or not they did, the appearance of behind the scenes manipulations is very disheartening and discouraging to the grass/netroots.
posted by skippy at 12:20 PM |


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