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Friday, October 07, 2005

OH-Sen: Some Serious Voter Education Needed

Posted by Tim Tagaris

For me, the past two months have been something special. The past two days...not so much.

Back in July, I was down in OH-2 for Paul Hackett before the busloads came. I take a tremendous amount of pride in whatever role I played in helping to build on the local narrative that spurred his national success. As a Marine myself, I have a respect for the man than most would struggle to comprehend. It's unfortunate that lost in the shuffle over the past two days has been any discussion of the tell-it-like-he-sees-it candidate that threw around the word "chickenhawk" like most politicians use the words "no litmus test." As an enormous community we ralled behind the man when backpedaling Republicans reverted to "swift-boating" Hackett. And instead of fighting for him with the same conviction the campaign represented in July/August, it breaks my heart that a fraction of the community I am proud to be a part of has turned to submarining a Congressman that has steadily been a champion for all of us in the House of Representatives.

Think about this for a second.

Congressman Sherrod Brown is the same man that literally led the fight against the Central American Free Trade Agreement in the House of Representatives just two months ago.

He is the same man that bussed seniors from Ohio to Canada so they could purchase affordable medicine.

He is the same man that voted against the authorization of force in 2002, long before it was cool to do so.

He is the same man that co-sponsored a bill that would require the Bush Administration to disclose information about the Downing Street Memo.

The same man that stood up for voter rights and protection in Ohio after the 2004 election.

He is the same man that will tell you exactly how the GOP twists the rules, and arms, consistently in the middle of a Friday night, when they want to pass nonsense legislation like CAFTA and the Medicare bill

The same man that has led against the pharmaceutical industry's efforts to restrict African countries' access to prescription drugs for HIV/AIDS.

And now some "progressives" want to attack him for what, changing his mind?

And while I can understand why there are a few people upset about the way this week went down, this isn't like changing your mind about whether or not to eat the last slice of pizza when you said your friend can have it. This is the U.S. Senate, and I think we call all agree that this country is in some serious need of real leadership out there. So talk about why the candidate you support is the best choice to get this country off the wrong track most Americans think we are heading in. If it's Hackett, great. It's Brown, terrific.

Me? I think we in Ohio have two of the best candidates in the country running for any office on the ticket. It's as if Rod Parsley & The Ohio Restoration Project have been praying for us, cause we are blessed.

(Disclaimer: These posts are my own personal thoughts and have nohting to do with the fact that I write for Congressman Brown over at Grow Ohio. If you think this anything to do with a paycheck, like some have accused Jerome of at MyDD, then I am hardly concerned with your perception anyway. Apologies to David, before tonight I had no intention of even writing about the race specifically at SSP)

Posted at 11:33 AM in Ohio | Technorati

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I respect your post, I respect Mr. Browns fight for the working class people in this country, and I respect his decision to enter the race. However, I wish he would have went about this a little different or possibly met with Hackett before making this decision. I think its totally irresponsible and fcuked up to leave the ball in Hacketts court, and on the eve of his announcment try to take it back.

Im with Bob on this one, put me down for Team Hackett.

Posted by: nickshepDEM [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 7, 2005 12:22 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Put me down with Tim: Sherrod Brown all the way. There are few better men in our country these days with a real chance at a Senate seat. Senator Brown is precisely what we need.

Posted by: Left in the West [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 7, 2005 12:39 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

While I would have loved a Hackett run for Senate, I think the fact that many of the earliest Hackett supporters came from the Brown camp should say something about how Brown himself supports the Netroots.

We all change our minds sometime in life. That's okay. Better for him to admit it now than regret it late. Let's show him some compassion. It would be different if Hackett had officially announced or we were just six months out. There is still time for all Democrats to adjust to this new development.

As for Hackett, I hope that he now runs for a different office. I want him to stay in the public eye so that he can run for other OH senate seat.

Posted by: exlogcabin [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 7, 2005 12:40 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

What is "swing-boating"? Is that a typo or a play on the Swift Boaters?

Posted by: njdem [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 7, 2005 12:59 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

I agree with you. Sherrod Brown is a powerhouse in Ohio and has been looking out for the rights of ordinary citizens for years. He is the right choice (something I have been saying for a while now.) I can only hope that the netroots will rally around him the way they have other candidates.

Also...don't feel too bad. I think Paul Hackett should run for Lt. Governor with Ted Strickland at the top of the ticket. That places Hackett in line to challenge Voinovich in 2010 and Strickland in line to run for President in 2012 or 2016.


Posted by: Columbus Donkey [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 7, 2005 01:31 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

smells like spin. did brown NOT know aobut the serious need for leadership 3 weeks ago? please. you can do better than that. he didn't just change his mind. he set up hackett in a big way. a guy who has the potential to be an powerhouse ohio dem and everyone knows that.

no i'm not running. what you're running? well, then yes, i'm running! progressive are not attacking him for changing his mind. attack is a bit strong, but works for your polemic and i under stand that. we are criticizing him for created what can clearly be seen as division - division that i feel is not needed in a time when we should be presented a unified front to the culture of corruption and reeling republican party.

i hope it works out in the end, but dont' get a good feeling about it. consistent, long-term, coordinated attacks is what got us where we are...it will take them to get back in a position to advance OUR causes. I just simply don't see this as a sign of that.

smells like spin.

Posted by: ericv [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 7, 2005 02:55 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Brown is great! The way he handled this situation is not!

Regardless, Hackett will get more of the conservative vote in Ohio than Brown will. Brown will be labelled a politics as usual liberal democrat.

If they both run we will likely lose.

Posted by: -challis [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 8, 2005 09:51 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

I'm on Team Brown for this one and will support the nominee after the primaries whether it is him or Hackett.

Posted by: Daniel [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 8, 2005 08:10 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Tim, you are correct. Those who are attacking Sherrod are out of line. At the same time, Sherrod did a great disservice to our chances and to Hackett by his backhanded announcement. Long story short, Sherrod has reduced the Democratic chances of beating Dewine. Period. Now listen, I don't know Hackett, and I do know Sherrod. I wanted Sherrod to declare earlier and was upset when he declined. But a couple months changes the political landscape, and Sherrod's announcement, hurts.

Posted by: OH-09Dem [TypeKey Profile Page] at October 8, 2005 09:08 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment