Saturday, April 21, 2007

Your Democratic Consultants

I was perusing this article in the LA Times about why Democrats are scared of touching the issue of gun control. And no, it apparently has nothing to do with stupid advice from an overly cautious and completely elitist consultant class who also tell Democrats to shy away from public financing, universal healthcare, an Iraq timeline, opposing unfettered free trade and other issues that have the support of 70-80% of the public.

No it's that you can't win and be for gun control. Which is why Sherrod Brown lost in Ohio in 2006, for example. Oh wait, that's right HE WON. Standing up strongly for what he believes in. With the rest of the 80% that support a ban on assault weapons.

In any case, here is the wisdom of our consultants, replete with repetition of unbelievably simplistic and damaging stereotypes:

"A lot of people on the two coasts don't appreciate that hunting and being a sportsman are as much about the culture as having a latte and reading the Los Angeles Times is to them in Los Angeles, or having a latte and reading the New York Times in New York," Struble said. "The perceived infringement of those rights would be just as much an affront as saying you can't have any more lattes."
Where to begin. First of all, you couldn't, I don't know, stand up to the NRA and tell people you strongly favor hunting rights but don't support allowing terrorists, wife-beaters and bank-robbers to get guns, like Republicans do? Could one be so crazy bold?

Because that list of wonderful folks is only a small percentage of the minsanthropes who end up with guns when there are no reasonable background checks. I could go on about assault rifles, gun locks, etc., but you get the point. All, by the way, have majority public support (and often much more like 80%).

Additionally, nice to repeat Republican talking poins. I mean everyone in downtown Chicago hunts, while nobody in Upstate New York does, right? I live in Columbus, Ohio now. Shhh, don't tell anyone, but we have lots of Starbucks here. I lived in New York City growing up and was on a riflery team. I still have metals awarded to me by the freakin NRA. How is that possible? It doesn't fit with Struble's stereotype, it must not be!

So, in any case, this is a guy we have making a lot our ads. And you wonder why our candidates sometimes seem to have their heads up, a place where the sun doesn't shine.

Ok, I admit it, he's right. Ever since I moved from DC to Ohio, I do find myself no longer Jonesing for that 14th latte everyday, but desperately in need of an AK-47 and cop killer bullets.


PS This story lists all the candidates he's worked for who have won. I am sure it was all his doing. Now, can we see the rest of the list. Because he worked for at least one candidate in 2002 whose campaign I was on, and she most assuredly got her ass handed to her by 30 points by listening to ridiculous advice from up on high.

UPDATE: Quelle coincidence, as the French would say, or those from the East Coast like me who must love latte, hate guns and took the time to learn a whole other language! It turns out our consultant friend here, or so I have been told, went to Ohio State, which is mere miles from where I currently sit. All the more reason why he should know better than to rely on stupid stereotypes that harm the Democratic Party in places like Ohio, not to mention repeating them to major newspapers.


At 2:04 PM, Blogger Paddy said...

All that wasted money.

At 2:42 PM, Blogger ohdave said...

What Dems have to understand is that they are going to be attacked as pussies and fags no matter who they are, what they do, and what they stand for.

Look, if they can go after a war veteran like Kerry as being effete and soft, they will go after ANYONE, whether they are pro-gun or not. Kerry knows a hell of a lot more about hunting than Bush (and obviously, unlike Cheney, he's never shot anyone in the face.) But it didn't matter. They still made a big joke of him going hunting.

That said, Brown ran a great campaign, but I'm not sure it would have worked in 2000. The main issue in Ohio is that the GOP has run their brand into the freakin toilet. Hell, when Ohio 01 and 02 are competitive, the GOP is really in trouble in Ohio.

BTW Cliff I have a post up about collossal asshole Bill Cunningham. He was channeling John Derbyshire the other day.

At 4:45 PM, Blogger Jimmy the Saint said...

First of all, you have to tailor your campaign to the voters. The things that work in a state like Montana are not gonna work in NYC. Second, who are these so called consultants? They don't actually work for the DNC do they? Are they the Howsrd Wolfson's, David Axelrod's and Mandy Gruenwald's of the world? Basically, they work for a campaign every election and whore themselves on TV or in the media between elections?

At 12:31 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'd like to share a little story with you...

In the fall of 2000, when I was still in college, I knew a very nice, intelligent fellow through a local atheist/freethinkers group. As you can imagine, this was not a right-wing bunch. This particular man was an atheist, pro-choice, pro-gay rights, a card carrying member of the ACLU, strongly supported separation of church and state and detested the religious right.

He also planned to vote for George W. Bush for President. The sole reason: guns. In the end he brought himself to vote libertarian instead. But, there are a LOT of people in the midwest like him (this was in Minnesota).

Gun control is a losing issue for Democrats. No matter how much people may support certain restrictions NO ONE (and I mean no one) votes Democratic because they support gun control. But PLENTY of otherwise left-leaning souls do vote GOP out of a paranoid fear that the Dems are personally coming to take their guns.

Democrats finally began to understand this fact in last year's election cycle. While no Democrat should change his views just to appeal to the populace, down-playing such a polarizing issue is wise. Democratic candidates who oppose gun control should say so forcefully when dealing with NRA rhetoric. And candidates who support gun control should be honest and forthright about it, but focus on issues where they have more common ground with gun owners.

At 2:11 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great post! I guess I am as confused as you. I grew up in Oklahoma -- last I looked, not on a coast. My father, who also lived in Okla., lived the rest of his life in Kansas or Iowa. Also, not on the coast. He was a FANATIC anti-gun person. How can this be?

All along, I thought it was because I have lived in California all my adult life -- was why I hate guns. Go figure.

At 2:16 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

PLENTY of otherwise left-leaning souls do vote GOP out of a paranoid fear that the Dems are personally coming to take their guns.

With all due respect, that's primarily their problem. And the way to deal with it is to loosen the NRA's grip on the balls of American politicians, instead of empowering them further.

'sfunny how people who throw about the rhetoric of rugged individualism w/ respect to guns all do so in unison at the behest of the NRA's publications wing.


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