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Remember this come nomination season, 2008: the key question for you deciding who to vote for in the primaries is not whether or not this or that candidate is "electable."

It is whether or not you agree with what the candidate supports. If you happen to line up best with Al Sharpton, vote for him. If it happens to be Feingold, vote for him. If it happens to be Clinton, vote for her. But, do not hold off voting for somebody with whom you agree simply because you think you have figured out what "electability" means. You don't. The very idea of what constitues electability in this country has been polluted by GOP talking points and the noise machine.  And you can't game the machine--you gotta become the machine.

I found myself saying that Clinton looked like she could win "if you look at the numbers" yesterday and I realized that I was falling into the electability trap again. We have to work extra hard to make sure we don't make that error this time around or we will never have a Democratic Party that speaks with conviction.  And that means continuing to lose elections we should win.

Corked Bats.  A "blog" unworthy of attention.

HEY, Texas Bloggers... Come and Take It!

Originally posted to Garemko on Sun Jun 05, 2005 at 05:09 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  I agree (none)
    That's why I won't hesitate to support Kerry -- he's the one I most believe in, never mind the CW that someone who's already run once has no chance (apparently people forgot to tell Nixon that back in the 1960s).
  •  Great Diary (none)
    Remember that "electability" was practically the entire basis of Kerry's primary campaign in 2004.  That isn't a very effective theme once you're in the General Campaign against the other party.  All of the other candidates had themes in their campaigns, with Edwards' two Americas and his economic populism, Dean's anti- war and anti- establishment campaign, Clark's military service.  Electability should not be the main reason to support a candidate.

    "You have the power to take back the Democratic Party."- Gov. Howard Dean- DNC Chair

    by maxgray7 on Sun Jun 05, 2005 at 05:26:10 PM PDT

    •  Kerry's theme (none)
      was competence, experience and responsibility.

      I've been going back over his speeches from that time period -- I haven't found any that mention "electability." Can you cite some sources for your claim that he referred to this?

      •  No (none)
        He wouldn't say that of course, but for his theme to be competence implies that the other Democrats weren't competent, to take on Bush.  Don't you remember the whole thing about Dean being "unelectable" and the "Dated Dean, Married Kerry" movement?

        "You have the power to take back the Democratic Party."- Gov. Howard Dean- DNC Chair

        by maxgray7 on Mon Jun 06, 2005 at 03:16:36 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  KERRY WON`T RUN (none)
    i doubt kerry will run because he will either have to run for president or re-election to the senate.after it`s obvious he can`t get the nomination he`ll stick with the senate.he probably  would have been a pretty good president but he had his shot and blew it.people don`t give a loser a second chance.by the way my computer is haunted, as i was typing this it somehow got posted, please excuse half wriiten one!
  •  please excuse (none)
    ok very weird previous half written post disappeared. never mind!!!!!!!!!
  •  Looks good for Kucinich! (none)
    While I doubt it will happen, if everybody who is a DK thought-sympathizer votes the way you suggest--on the issues--then DENNIS IS THE MAN.

    (If he runs again.)

    Nah, will never happen...  :-(

  •  Wait a minute (none)
    Are you claiming that every time a politician presents himself as competent and well-qualified, he's really just saying he's most electable?

    WTF?

  •  No (none)
    Look at the primary season exit polling.  This is coming from Democrats.  The number one issue for Democrats was electability.  Above health care, above Iraq, above terrorism, above retirement security, above choice, etc etc.  That is not the candidates' fault--it is the mentality of the rank and file that wanted so badly to get an "electable" candidate (by cable news standards) that they voted for Kerry.  I am saying we should not care what Republicans think we should do or what they think of us when we pull the lever in the primaries.  It is our party and the only way we will win is if  we reward Democrats who frame from our perspective and stop trying to be political scientists about everything.  We (Democratic voters) need to stand on our values if we seek to demand it from our candidates.  
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