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Russ Feingold (Wikimedia Commons)
This shouldn't come as a surprise, but to some it probably will:
Former U.S. Sen. Russ Feingold, a Wisconsin Democrat, has told supporters that although he’s still considering seeking an elective office in the future, he will not appear on any 2012 ballots.

And more to the point:

In 2012, he says he’ll work for the reelection of President Barack Obama, but following the actions of Gov. Scott Walker, he says he also understands that “retaking the state governments from these corporate-backed operatives” must be a priority.

“The entire political climate is more infected by the domination of very wealthy individual and corporate interests than perhaps at any time in our nation’s history. That is why I founded Progressives United, an organization devoted not only to overturning the Citizens United decision but to challenging those involved in the political process who, for short-term political gain, are willing to seek and accept unlimited corporate contributions. This practice should be strongly opposed regardless of party and regardless of whether I otherwise support these candidates,” he said.

No Democrat who has any chance of ever becoming president will challenge President Obama in 2012, and as was the case immediately after the 2008 primaries season ended, when Hillary Clinton suspended her campaign and announced her support for Obama, anyone who thinks Russ Feingold has the character and judgment to be president in 2013 needs to consider his character and judgment in deciding who he wants to be president in 2013. It may not be the most savory option for those yearning for a more liberal, progressive, and yes—pragmatic— political agenda, but the only options for 2012 are President Obama and a batshit crazy Republican. And when every credible Republican candidate denies or wants to do nothing about climate change, and is otherwise at war with basic scientific facts, it is not hyperbole to call them batshit crazy.

Punishing the Democrats didn't turn out so well in 2000. The Democrats themselves weren't punished, but millions and millions of people around the world were. Many at the cost of their lives. This isn't a game.

Originally posted to Laurence Lewis on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 01:50 PM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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