Monday, August 07, 2006

Massachusetts Invades Connecticut

Well, I'm not sure if I'd quite call it a full-scale invasion, but my friends over at the Mass Roots project have collected their energy to effect electoral change in Connecticut. Kudos to them! I wish I could be there. It's great to see a progressive movement swell up all over the country. Liberal states as well as "red states" are joining in the fun. That's because it's not about liberal or conservative, it's about how we run government.

In Massachusetts, Deval Patrick thinks there's a better way. He's run a campaign from the ground up. It's all about grassroots and volunteering, about going town to town when no one believed he could win and maybe 5% of Massachusetts had even heard of him. Now, he's in good shape to win the whole thing, though the race is very close.

But this is happening all over the country. Kansas, where the modern day social conservative movement grew, is having a Democratic resurgence at the state level. Prominent state Republicans, sick of politics as usual, are abandoning the Republican Party and rebuilding the once-thought dead Kansas State Democratic Party. Montana's Jon Tester, a full-time farmer and part-time politician, is looking very strong against his Republican opponent. Tester doesn't share all of Patrick's political views, but he has this in common with Patrick: no one thought he'd have a chance at winning his Democratic Primary, never mind the entire election. But that didn't stop Tester from running a people-powered movement that defeated Conventional Wisdom from the ground up.

As Stephen Colbert would say, Big Money and Politics as Usual are "on notice." People are so excited about this change in Massachusetts that they're willing to go to Connecticut to help our neighbors. There's only one common denominator in this movement and, despite what pundits say, it's not merely the war in Iraq. It's about how we elect our leaders and run government. Massachusetts residents are so devoted to a more honest kind of politics that they've gone to Connecticut to canvas for Ned Lamont - I'm proud to know them.


Aaron said...

Seriously, dude...what makes you think Deval can win the general election? We don't even elect Democrats governor in Massachusetts, let alone super-liberal democrats. You really think the same state that elected Mitt Romney in a walk is suddenly going to elect the polar opposite just four years later?

Joe said...

Yeah, Aaron, you're totally right. You forgot to mention how unelectable Tom Reilly is, however. Everytime I see one of his ads I get this feeling like he's advertising that he's not a team player. Deval Patrick said to my face that the Republicans would never be irrelevent to him, but Tom Reilly's ads are basically "I hate Republicans, nya nya nyaaa."


Aaron said...

His ads state that Romney/Healey have failed to get the job done. Nothing in his ads suggest that he hates Republicans. The co-chair of the Reilly campaign is Wayne Budd, a former Republican U.S. Attorney. In an interview with Jim Braude on NECN several months back, Reilly was asked to name a few of his political role models. He named Paul Cellucci and Bill Weld as two of his top three.

Ryan Adams said...

Aaron, Kerry Healey is a very weak Dem. Deval has broad appeal and isn't any more liberal than Gabs or Reilly. People who know about Deval tend to like him; he's winning the primary race (albeit by a small margin) without having put a dime into TV commercials while Gabs alone must quickly be nearing 4 mil. Will we elect the polar opposite of Mitt 4 years later? I think the fact that Mitt's being chased out of Massachusetts for fear of losing a reelection bid answers your own question. People are sick of the status quo and want something different... like Deval.

Aaron said...

You make a good argument, but I don't think Romney is being chased out of town, I think he's leaving 'cause he wants to be President. And, I think it is safe to say that Deval is more liberal than Reilly. (Death penalty, income tax rollback, etc.)

A word to supporters of any Democrat, esp. those who will be supporting the nominee whoever he is: don't take Kerry Healey lightly. She has 13 million dollars at the ready, and she wants to win BADLY

Lynne said...

Make no mistake, Aaron - Mitt would have run for Gov if he was popular. The pulput he gets as leader of the state is worth it.

He was going to run, but only if it was a cakewalk, to put another feather in his cap for '08.

Deval is seriously electable. He's the only one, I think, who can totally mop the floor with Healey in debates (Gabby equivicates too much and Reilly just can't seem to connect to viewers/listeners/audiences).

Ryan Adams said...

I agree with Lynne. However, I think *all* the dem candidates have a chance to win. That's why I've said from the beginning to vote for the one you like best.

The "electability" question has REALLY come back to haunt us time and time again. John Kerry anyone?

What it comes down to is that very few citizens are "single-issue" voters. Furthermore, of those who are, many are liberals. Therefore, MOST voters pick candidates based on a number of different reasons... but, most importantly, the total package. Who they like best, who seems the most genuine, experience, etc. It also comes down to other elements, like the quality of the campaigns.

What I'm trying to say here is that just because Deval may be slightly more liberal than Reilly (and I *really* don't think there's a significant different - for every liberal position Patrick has that Reilly doesn't, Patrick has a more conservative position that Reilly doesn't share). And Gabs and Deval share many of the same positions too.

It's not going to come down to that. If voters voted strictly on the issues, we'd have a democratic Super Majority instead of a Republican near-Super Majority.

Anonymous said...

Frankly, I don't know who any of these people are, but for the love of God, I wish you relativist, liberal democrats would stay the hell out of CT politics or the politics in any other state. Run your own damn state into the ground. We don't need your help.

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