Today, a famous and much-respected diarist reiterated his faith in BIG MONEY politics by flat-out saying that John Edwards had almost no chance of winning the presidency because he "limited" his campaign to public matching funds. I suppose the prevailing winds in D.C. now blow across the continent, and once you've got a whiff of this hot air, even gravity won't hold your feet on the ground. But I'm here to prick the D.C. bubble that buys into the BS that MONEY is more important than MESSAGE.
The famous diarist who I have great respect for states that he'd love to vote for Edwards, on principle, because of his message, but principles must be damned! This is about electing Democrats, even if Democrats must become like Republiscams to get elected!
The diarist is simply wrong, on several counts.
John Edwards' biggest hurdle is the media, who follow the money as well, and who have the most to lose [financially] should Edwards' populist message win with the voters. The Obama-Clinton horse-race is like heroin to these people; they simply can't get enough of it, even if it means ignoring the voters in Iowa, who would be putting Edwards ahead of the pack if he got EVEN HALF of the coverage his rivals are getting.
But would Edwards really be at a money disadvantage, should he win the nomination? The answer is: he could be, AND he wouldn't be. It all would depend on how many small money donors would be willing to pony up AFTER the primaries were over. We know from Kerry's 04 campaign that that could be tens of millions of dollars.
In addition, State Democratic Parties would not be subject to the limits Edwards' campaign would be subject to, and they could creatively book-keep him into many State campaign events, which would be totally legal. In fact, does anyone here believe that Howard Dean would not do everything he could for Edwards, particularly if Edwards was barnstorming the nation raising money for State Parties? Puhleez!
The Kos community should not buy into this baloney about money, which matters more to the TV pundits and political consultants who feed off this largesse than it does to the voters. Edwards can save tens of millions of dollars in the general JUST BY ALLOWING THE DNC to do his polling; the only thing he'll be giving up is direct control of the message game consultants play with these numbers, but to that, I say " GREAT"!
I will always hold Gore as my number 1, and I STILL BELIEVE Gore can jump into the race, should none of the Dems pull away by february 6, but short of a Gore run, I support Edwards because HE UNABASHEDLY voices the Democratic agenda of support for the people who haven't got it easy. His approach to healthcare, while not as sensible to Al Gore's position on single-payer care, is far better than anyone else's because he would mandate 85% of the money spent to actually pay for healthcare, thus capping the profits of HMO's and Insurance companies.
Does Edwards TRULY BELIEVE his semi-populist positions, or is he simply pandering? Who knows. But at least he is pandering TO ME, and not the lobbyists for banks, insurance companies, and defense contractors!
I am a man disabled in the service to my Country, who is supporting a family on a fixed income. I pinch pennies and give to charity, and in the past have given 10% of my income to Democratic causes. I have given some this year to Edwards, and will give more should he survive past Nevada. And while I respect Obama and would vote for him in a general election, nothing he says or does makes me believe he needs my money or support right now. hillary clearly does not want my support, which she makes clear by standing by her votes on wars with Iraq and Iran, so voting for her in any election is simply not an option.