The DC Mentality

This torqued me the other day. Politico's daily Congressional news e-mail, Martin Kady's Huddle, led off with this paragraph yesterday morning (emphasis added):

From Hawaii to Arkansas to Pennsylvania, Democrats have lost the ability to hand pick their preferred candidates.

And in West Virginia, the fallout from Rep. Alan Mollohan's primary loss is still sinking in, as the Washington Democratic establishment realizes it can no longer steer the primary outcomes with money and high profile endorsements.

By the end of this month, Sens. Blanche Lincoln and Arlen Specter may be out, and Hawaii may have a Republican congressman who owes his victory to divided Democrats.

Um, what? No sir, Democrats have NOT lost the ability to pick their candidates. They are GAINING the ability to pick their candidates rather than letting the DC establishment do it for them. To suggest that Washington rainmakers are the only real Democrats and that voters should shut up and listen is undemocratic with a lower case d, and exemplifies much of what is wrong with Washington. Washington does not (or at least should not) run the rest of the country; the rest of the country runs itself by choosing its own representatives and having them assemble together in a central city. Overly idealistic perhaps, but we'd be closer to that model if the MSM were on its side.

Let's put a further dent in the establishment mindset by promoting Joe Sestak and Bill Halter next week.

Tags: Politico, 2010 midterms, Washington establishment (all tags)

Comments

12 Comments

Exception

Unfortunately the DC establishment had its way in the Ohio Dem Senatorial primary.  Menendez of NJ wanted Fisher over Brunner, the grassroots favorite, running TV ads for Fisher when Brunner was cut off from funding.

Too bad for Ohio - Portman (R) is likely winner in Nov.

by susie 2010-05-14 08:34PM | 0 recs
RE: Exception

Brunner didn't seem to do any better against Portman than Fisher did. I don't think that race is a lost cause at all.

by desmoinesdem 2010-05-14 11:09PM | 0 recs
RE: Exception

I live in SW Ohio, in Portman's former Congressional district, now held by Jean Schmidt.

Fisher has no charisma, really no message.  He will not appeal to southern Ohio; he hasn't won a statewide race in 20 yrs.

Although Portman should have much to answer for, after being in the Bush administration, he has a certain charm and is from a family with loads of money.

Brunner won most of the Southern OH counties along the Ohio River, as well as NW Ohio.  She ranked a point or two higher than Fisher over Portman, perhaps not significant, but pretty good considering the pols stacked against her. 

by susie 2010-05-15 02:04AM | 0 recs
No, you're dead wrong on Brunner's appeal and polling......

If Brunner had real appeal, she would have run a better campaign.  This meme from Brunner supporters that she was "cut off from funding" is horseshit.  No one controls campaign funding, it's completely dispersed, indeed the most dispersed it's ever been.  Candidates lacking establishment support routinely raise lots and lots of money, much more than her.

National Democrats got behind Fisher only after it became clear Brunner was an incompetent candidate.  And they were right to do so.

And the polling did NOT show Brunner doing ANY better than Fisher against Portman.  Indeed, they polled virtually the same most of the way, and at the end Fisher was slightly outperforming Brunner in November trial heats.  Pollster.com shows Fisher up 1.7 points on Portman, and Brunner up only 0.4 points, in the final trial heat regression.

by DCCyclone 2010-05-16 10:05PM | 0 recs
I love you, man!

 Isn't happy hour the best invention, ever?

by QTG 2010-05-14 09:00PM | 0 recs
it really bothers me

that some people think Democratic incumbents shouldn't be held accountable by their own constituents.

We had some Iowa House Democrats retire this year, and a couple of them waited until the day or two before the filing deadline to announce their retirement. Leadership didn't want them to go public, because leadership wanted to make sure that only hand-picked Democratic replacements were able to file for the seat. Lame.

by desmoinesdem 2010-05-14 11:10PM | 2 recs
"torqued"

I know, no one loves a pedant.

by marchingorders 2010-05-15 02:01PM | 1 recs
Don't Feed Politico

     It's an important point that the membership of the party is taking charge and rejecting the advice of the Washington Democratic establishment. But this comes down to a sloppy lead sentence by some DC insider nobody ever heard of writing for an organization nobody should pay any attention to.
     He got it right on the second pass by referring to "the Washington Democratic establishment". And the situation in Hawaii is attributable not so much to Democratic division as to a very poor state law mechanism for filling vacant seats with no primary and no run-off. But as to Politico generally, don't give them any notice--it only encourages them.

by Ron Thompson 2010-05-15 07:48PM | 0 recs
Um, this anti-establishment meme is a bit misplaced here......

Regarding HI-01, it's really the D.C. party establishment versus the Hawaii party establishment, NOT the establishment versus "the people."  Hanabusa is clearly down against Case in the 3-way among actual voters, so the D.C. establishment has a better sense of where "the people" are.  I'm no fan of Case, but I'm a fan of a Democrat winning over a Republican every time, and we're in trouble there on that effort.  I don't blame the Hawaii Democratic establishment, either, because Case for his part has gone out of his way to make enemies with nothing to show for it.  It's just a bad situation all the way around.

And regarding AR-Sen, Halter is clearly losing, he's not made up any ground at all over the last month.  I think Lincoln will win and might even avoid a runoff.  Halter is not going to be the nominee.

by DCCyclone 2010-05-16 10:10PM | 0 recs
The "Washington Democratic Establishment"

didn't apply to the race within West Virginia, as the Politico e-mail suggests.  The party itself was incredibly divided, in addition, over which candidate to choose.  Personally, I felt like they could conjure up a better one to face Mollohan, but most people were too afraid to run-against a 13 term incumbent for fear of alienating the party (hence why he hasn't had a challenger in nearly 20 years from the democratic party).  If anything it showed WV's willingness to part ways with incumbents for once.

Somewhat off topic but I felt it was relevant.

by Chuckie Corra 2010-05-17 12:00AM | 0 recs
In this spirit, Marcy Winograd is challenging Jane Harman in CA-36

My spouse, Marcy Winograd, a true progressive, anti-war, pro-worker pro-union (with enthusiasm, not entitlement) candidate and Democratic grassroots organizer, founder of Progressive Democrats of Los Angeles, is challenging blue dog Jane Harman in SoCal's CA-36.   At the Dem convention a few weeks ago, she faced off against the Dem establishment and put the "automatic" endorsement of Harman to a convention floor test, which the leadership procedurally bungled, to its embarrassment.  More fundamentally, there was a strong showing on the floor that Democrat rank and filers want a voice to challenge the "go along to get along" mutual back-scratching approach of the leadership, which can lead to complacency and candidates, like Harman, who have become out of touch with their constituents.  Marcy's challenge to Harman in 2006 and again this year have forced Harman rhetorically left, but Harman is only the wealthiest, and not the best or most progressive, candidate in the Dem primary.   Marcy's campaign would appreciate your support.  Please check out Marcy's website at http://winograd4congress.com and her Facebook page. 

by budlawman 2010-05-17 10:50AM | 0 recs
In this spirit, Marcy Winograd is challenging Jane Harman in CA-36

My spouse, Marcy Winograd, a true progressive, anti-war, pro-worker pro-union (with enthusiasm, not entitlement) candidate and Democratic grassroots organizer, founder of Progressive Democrats of Los Angeles, is challenging blue dog Jane Harman in SoCal's CA-36.   At the Dem convention a few weeks ago, she faced off against the Dem establishment and put the "automatic" endorsement of Harman to a convention floor test, which the leadership procedurally bungled, to its embarrassment.  More fundamentally, there was a strong showing on the floor that Democrat rank and filers want a voice to challenge the "go along to get along" mutual back-scratching approach of the leadership, which can lead to complacency and candidates, like Harman, who have become out of touch with their constituents.  Marcy's challenge to Harman in 2006 and again this year have forced Harman rhetorically left, but Harman is only the wealthiest, and not the best or most progressive, candidate in the Dem primary.   Marcy's campaign would appreciate your support.  Please check out Marcy's website at http://winograd4congress.com and her Facebook page. 

by budlawman 2010-05-17 10:50AM | 0 recs

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