IF YOU LIVED IN TENNESSEE, WOULD YOU VOTE FOR HAROLD FORD? THANK GOD I DON'T HAVE TO MAKE THAT DECISION!
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Last week a friend and ally asked me for some help with fundraising for his progressive Democratic organization. He had a great idea and I was extremely excited. But when I looked to see exactly who the fundraising would benefit I was sickened. First on his list: fake Democrat Harold Ford of Tennessee, someone I would have trouble even voting for, let alone giving a dime to! But what about making Harry Reid Majority Leader and what about all the committee chairs? Yes, that's where the trouble part comes in. If not for those factors I would never in a million years even consider voting for reactionary assholes like Ford (or either Nelson or Landreiu or... well, of course, there's Lieberman in his own category of treachery).
Like any other corrupt corporate whore-- regardless of partisan affiliation-- Ford voted for Bush's Big Business-oriented bankruptcy bill. And he voted to abolish habeus corpus in America and in favor of allowing Bush to torture anyone he likes. That's what I'm supposed to raise money for? The traitorous congressmen who voted to abolish habeus corpus should face treason trials someday-- along with Bush and Cheney. But today I should vote to give them more power?
After yesterday's New Jersey Supreme Court decision Ford made the following statement:
"I do not support the decision today reached by the New Jersey Supreme Court regarding gay marriage. I oppose gay marriage, and have voted twice in Congress to amend the United States Constitution to prohibit same-sex marriage. This November there's a referendum on the Tennessee ballot to ban same-sex marriage - I am voting for it."
Today he ran to a right wing radio host to repeat his anti-gay bigotry over and over again. Screw Harold Ford! If we want a grandstanding demagogue and bigot who is willing to trample on the rights of others, we have Corker. Maybe I'd get in the voting booth and hold my nose and weep a little and gnash my teeth and vote against an overtly rubber stamp U.S. Senate (and in favor of a slightly less rubber stamp Senate) and pull the lever for Ford... maybe. But pay for the privilege? Not a chance. Not a dime for Harold Ford.
And voting for this asshole moves the Democratic Party inexorably towards the reactionary values of the Republicans we're trying to get away from. "But he's a fighter," is what you hear from Democrats. True, he's a slimy opportunist with an outsized sense of entitlement (first African American president ambition) who fights... for himself. He's a Democrat by chance, not because the Democratic Party particularly stands for something. At this point, the reasons to hope he wins and the reasons to hope he loses are about in balance.
UPDATE: TWO COMMENTS AS TO THE PLACE OF TENNESSEEANS ON THE EVOLUTIONARY SCALE
Almost simultaneously I just got two e-mails; one was to approve the comment from Rick on this piece (please read it) and the other was from my friend Christy pointing out a piece by Attytood called "Can 6 million Tennesseans Be This Backwards? (No)."
Obviously I feel the same pain that Rick does about political compromise, particularly one this "stinky." Will Bunch has had the time to drink a cup of coffee and think it over some. As usual, his insights are worth considering. And, like myself, he comes to a harsh conclusion: "It's just too bad there's no lever in this race for "'none of the above.'"