Sunday, June 24, 2012

A Blue Dog-Connected PAC Is Supporting A Right-Wing Republican Against Progressive Democrat Sue Thorn


When I saw Josh Kraushaar's headline in the National Journal on Friday, Blue Dog Democrats Helping Their Own, I wondered if the story was about how "ex"-Blue Dog Steve Israel, now head of the DCCC, is funneling all the committee's resources into trying to elect and reelect Blue Dogs (and New Dems, basically Blue Dogs without the white sheets and hoods). But it wasn't about the DCCC at all. It was about a shady, lobbyist-connected Blue Dog group Inside-the-Beltway, Center Forward (formerly called the Blue Dog Research Forum), that is helping the worst of the Blue Dogs who weren't exterminated in the Great Blue Dog Apocalypse of 2010, namely John Barrow (GA), who has virtually no chance of being reelected , as we saw yesterday, Ben Chandler (KY), another probable loser, Joe Donnelly (IN), who's trying a Hail Mary pass by running for Senate and is likely to lose, even against far right extremist Richard Mourdock (even though Donnelly is more of a traditional conservative Republican than Mourdock is), Jim Matheson (UT), and Mike McIntyre (NC).

Center Forward is running $1.25 million in TV ads for the 5 Blue Dogs and, bizarrely, for 3 right-wing Republicans, the Koch brothers' Tim Huelskamp (R-KS), David McKinley (R-WV) and Todd Platts (R-PA). Their rationale for helping the 3 Republicans is that the three of them voted against Paul Ryan's deranged budget. Huelskamp, a freshman, is running unopposed; and Platts is retiring; and McKinley is running against a stalwart progressive, Sue Thorn, who is advocating raising taxes on the wealthiest Americans to make them pay their fair share, an idea that drives the Blue Dogs insane.

Center Forward is chaired by Alabama reactionary Bud Cramer, a former Blue Dog congressman-turned-sleazy-lobbyist and the groups' entire board is made up of defeated Blue Dog congressmen and slimy lobbyists (including John Tanner and Baron Hill who are each both). Blue America already went one round with them earlier this year when they spent $100,000 trying to save Tim Holden (Blue Dog-PA) and we backed Matt Cartwright. Cartwright wiped the floor with Holden, the longest-serving-- and most corrupt-- Pennsylvania congressional Democrat. I guess we should help Sue Thorn, right? The DCCC certainly isn't. She's an independent-minded West Virginia populist who's a lot more concerned with working families in the northern third of West Virginia than with enhancing profits for Big Business.

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