This morning a headline caught my eye while I was browsing through the HuffPo politics section; the article was not at all what I expected. I suppose if a person read it without bothering to actually think about anything it said one might find it inspiring despite its sneering tone and total lack of logic, internal or otherwise. Personally, I can’t even see the point of publishing it in a national online magazine. Even with all benefit of the doubt regarding content the issues addressed belong in some high-level Democrat Party memorandum instead of a public polemic.
Let’s take it apart piece by piece and see what holds it all together.
Why Don’t Democrats Vote? I’ll Tell You Why.
Rep. Alan Grayson – U.S. Congressman for Florida’s 9th District
As you may have heard, Democratic turnout dropped off a cliff again last year, just like it did in 2010. I was wondering why, so I asked. I polled Florida non-voters. I found that the main reason why they didn’t vote last year was simple: They couldn’t see any difference between the candidates. When there is no difference between the candidates, Democrats don’t vote, and Democrats lose.
Take note of the phrases I have added emphasis to; we don’t need them yet, but keep them in mind.
I will skip over a wholesale and retail demonetization of Republicans plus a conflating of national and local politics.
The Democratic nominee was Charlie Crist, a REPUBLICAN former governor. Crist was so far to the right that he was known as “Chain-Gang Charlie.” In 2010, when Scott was first elected, Crist killed the Democrat’s chances for a US Senate seat from Florida by dropping out of his own Republican primary, where he was 25 points down, and running as an “independent.” That “stinking maneuver” (as Yitzhak Rabin would have put it) made Marco Rubio the junior senator from Florida.
Here is where anyone bold enough to actually attempt to think about what the kindly Rep. is saying will start getting very confused. If Crist was the Democratic nominee would that not make him a former Republican as well as a former governor; why not just say former Republican governor? Or is it Rep. Grayson’s contention that Crist retained his Republican identity and merely concealed it in order to conduct 5th column activity? Does he have evidence of this, or is this insinuation as mean-spirited and sense-free as the rest of his polemic?
Even more nonsensical is the notion that, (according to Rep. Grayson), a far right, conservative candidate dropping out of the Republican primary to run in the general election as an Independent somehow split the DEMOCRATIC vote to allow the remaining Republican to win. To put it mildly – this does not compute. Instead, it gives the impression that the Democratic vote was so light that even with the Republican vote split the Democratic candidate was defeated in the general election. It would be interesting to look up articles from just after Crist went Independent; I would not be surprised to see that the Democratic reaction was actually glee at facing a split conservative electorate.
Rather than shunning Crist for blowing that 2010 Senate race for the Democrats, the Democrats actually recruited him. They crowned someone who was a Republican just a few years earlier, and a conservative Republican at that, as the “Democratic” nominee for governor.
So, either the Florida Democrats are incredibly stupid, or their leadership thinks that they are, or maybe Crist was not seen by Florida voters as quite the Right-Wing dragon that the Good Rep. Grayson wants the rest of us to think he was.
Political strategists called this a brilliant move by the Democratic Party. And Democratic voters were appalled, as my own little poll showed. Democratic voters stayed home in droves, and the Democrats lost.
I wonder, did Grayson want the nomination only to be rebuffed? As I said at the start, this whole article should have been addressed to the Party’s insiders instead of the voting public, unless part of his intent is of spanking Floridians for not nominating and electing him?
…We offered the non-voters 12 different reasons to explain why they hadn’t voted. Reason #1, the most “popular,” was that “people did not like either choice for Governor.” Forty-one percent of the Democratic non-voters said that this was the main reason why people didn’t vote.
Remember the emphasized phrases from the beginning that you were asked to remember? I think Rep. Grayson had hoped that you wouldn’t because his own memory seems to be a bit faded, or maybe just a tad adjusted, like recalcitrant weather data in a report on global warming.
What was it he said? Oh, yes, he said that voters felt there was no difference between the candidates. But the actual response only said that the non-voters did not like either candidate for what I assume to be a wide range of unspecified reasons. To claim that “Don’t like either” is identical with “There is no difference between them” is not just disingenuous, it is dishonest!
By the way, the non-voters were overwhelmingly Democratic, whether or not they were registered as such. When asked whom they had had favored in the 2012 Presidential race, they chose Obama over Romney by 17 points. President Obama won Florida — among the actual voters — by less than one point.
I honestly don’t think that the honorable State Representative understood that this statement destroys his entire thesis regarding Democrats staying home because the candidates are too similar. Clearly, the Democratic presidential voters in Florida failed to turn out in numbers that reflected poll results, but Grayson thinks that this was because Romney and Obama were too similar? Seriously? Or is he just running his mouth to score emotional points without paying attention to how much damage each new point might do to his main thesis? Is he that dumb, or does he really believe, and act as though the voters are even dumber?
So, let’s be honest. When we put up a pseudo-Democrat or a neo-Democrat or a quasi-Democrat or a semi-Democrat for Team Blue, our voters are not amused. They are not fooled. And we only hurt ourselves.
The voters deserve a choice. In fact, they insist on it. Or they simply won’t vote.
Once again it is clear that this is not a message meant for the ears of voters. It is the adult conversation meant to be overheard by the children to reassure them that at least one of a pair of combative parents really cares. Or maybe he is just primping for the next run for governor?
Rep. Alan Grayson
P.S. Big news tomorrow.
Another chance at a run for governor? I never would have guessed!