If I were supporting a candidate who recently switched parties to run for Senate, I might be careful about copying the exact language of the party my candidate has recently forsaken. Bob Brigham has not done so.
“Bob Brigham [email protected] Jan 29
Everyone with integrity should decry “back room deals” – just let the voters decide. ”
The website www.supportmtgop.com/ , which paid for me to see their Facebook ad:
“Tell Governor Bullock: No Backroom Deals!”
Now, of course it’s impossible to actually let the voters decide who will replace Max Baucus before the next election – that is constitutionally the governor’s job. But when Bob Brigham says ‘let the voters decide’, what he means is to pass up a chance to have a Senator effective on day one in Washington and to give our (and supposedly Brigham and Bohlinger’s, as well) party a chance to retain (or reclaim, depending on your view of Max’s ideological purity) Baucus’s seat.
I’m not saying Bohlinger, or much less Brigham, is a secret Republican. They undoubtedly want to accomplish progressive goals, and believe that Bohlinger in the Senate is a better path to that goal than Walsh in the Senate. And maybe they are right; maybe Bohlinger has completely reformed his pro-life, anti-union stances. But the claim that the best chance for Democrats to win the election is to appoint a caretaker interim Senator is rather contradicted by the fact that Republicans are openly campaigning for that same outcome, because they believe (with somewhat more plausibility) that an open seat in 2014 will be easier to win than one occupied by John Walsh. What this looks like, as a result, is a case of a politician and/or his strategists putting their personal careers above the greater goals of the party and the movement they support.
It’s the oldest story in politics, and honestly probably an impossible one to recognize when your inside it, and I certainly don’t bear Bohlinger any ill-will, and will support him if he’s the candidate facing off against Daines. But when a strategist like Bob Brigham sees himself parroting the lines of the party he’s about to run against, he needs to step back and re-evaluate his priorities.