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Pablo Pantoja, State Director of Florida Hispanic Outreach for the Republican National Committee, deciding he's had enough of the beatings:
From: Pablo Pantoja

Subject: From Republican to Democrat

Date: May 13, 2013 5:57:11 PM EDT

Friend,

Yes, I have changed my political affiliation to the Democratic Party.

It doesn’t take much to see the culture of intolerance surrounding the Republican Party today. I have wondered before about the seemingly harsh undertones about immigrants and others. Look no further; a well-known organization recently confirms the intolerance of that which seems different or strange to them [...]

The complete disregard of those who are in disadvantage is also palpable. We are not looking at an isolated incident of rhetoric or research. Others subscribe to motivating people to action by stating, “In California, a majority of all Hispanic births are illegitimate. That’s a lot of Democratic voters coming.” The discourse that moves the Republican Party is filled with this anti-immigrant movement and overall radicalization that is far removed from reality.  Another quick example beyond the immigration debate happened during CPAC this year when a supporter shouted “For giving him shelter and food for all those years?” while a moderator explained how Frederick Douglass had written a letter to his slave master saying that he forgave him for “all the things you did to me.” I think you get the idea.

When the political discourse resorts to intolerance and hate, we all lose in what makes America great and the progress made in society.

A couple of weeks ago I might've made some crack about the GOP's rebranding efforts, but it's clear Republicans have long abandoned that. They're in perpetual scandal mode, and will be the rest of President Barack Obama's term. If you can't beat 'em with demographics (and they can't, see above), perhaps they can beat 'em with hysterical impeachment talk.

It's going to be a long three years, and then another long eight years after Hillary Clinton is elected president.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Looks like more of a reach-around than (20+ / 0-)

    outreach. I was going to say, "Wow, a principled Republican" but whoops! A new Democrat instead.

    I resent that. I demand snark, and overly so -- Markos Moulitsas.

    by commonmass on Tue May 14, 2013 at 07:37:17 AM PDT

  •  Link not working and I would LOVE to (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    commonmass, The Marti, Smoh, Aunt Pat

    read the entire piece.

    Why did Desiline Victor have to stand in line longer to vote in Florida than it takes to buy a gun in the USA?

    by mindoca on Tue May 14, 2013 at 07:37:19 AM PDT

  •  Why is Kos so invested in the "inevitability" (9+ / 0-)

    argument, re: Hillary Clinton?

    My other car is a pair of boots.

    by FutureNow on Tue May 14, 2013 at 07:37:41 AM PDT

    •  s'rsly, (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      FutureNow, Possiamo, sawgrass727, KayCeSF

      how'd that "inevitability" meme work out for Hillary last time out?

      "Show up. Pay attention. Tell the truth. And don't be attached to the results." -- Angeles Arrien

      by Sybil Liberty on Tue May 14, 2013 at 07:45:35 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  and this time is just the same (0+ / 0-)

        let us know of any potential primary rivals who remotely compare to Obama in '08.
        I supported Obama in the primaries in '08, but this time around I can't think of anyone I'd support over Hillary other than maybe Biden.  
        I'll go with the candidate I agree with on 3/4 of the issues at least, and most likely to beat any Republican in a general election.  
        Maybe she'll finally staff the judiciary and executive branches.  

        •  there's no question (0+ / 0-)

          I'll vote for the Dem presidential candidate, whomever...

          but at my age, I'm going to find it very interesting to watch who the young voters might prefer as their president by 2016

          Martin O'Malley perhaps? Or someone like him? I could support that.

          Any number of Dem senators could do the job well, but I think at this point we need them in the Senate. Maybe they can get it functioning again. Hopefully in my lifetime... and Hillary's.

          "Show up. Pay attention. Tell the truth. And don't be attached to the results." -- Angeles Arrien

          by Sybil Liberty on Tue May 14, 2013 at 10:03:52 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  I wouldn't read it as a guarantee. (0+ / 0-)

      It's the direction the leaves are pointing in right now, but I don't think Kos is calling his shot by any means.

      Godwin's Rule of Nazi Analogies: once such a comparison is made, the thread is finished and whoever mentioned the Nazis has automatically lost whatever debate was in progress

      by GoGoGoEverton on Tue May 14, 2013 at 07:45:52 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  If she runs she wins (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      red rabbit

      And we should all be OK with that.

      I would rather use her coattails and $$$ and landslide victory over Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio to bring the House.

      Scissors cut paper/Paper covers rock/Rock crushes lizard/Lizard poisons Spock/Spock smashes scissors/Scissors decapitate lizard/Lizard eats paper/Paper disproves Spock/Rock breaks scissors/Spock vaporizes rock

      by jgkojak on Tue May 14, 2013 at 07:51:27 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  this reflects my perspective now... (0+ / 0-)

        But 3.5 years is a long time. I hope though that we have a unified party and a lot of momentum going into 2016.  

        “If the misery of the poor be caused not by the laws of nature, but by our institutions, great is our sin.” Charles Darwin

        by ivorybill on Tue May 14, 2013 at 08:59:32 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Benghazi WILL die down... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MsPlasmodesmata

          ...given another couple years until the futile, feudal repug leadership will try, but fail to ignite a firestorm against HRC in 2016.

          I suspect this is in the back (or front) of Hillary's mind in getting out of direct line of fire, say being Secretary of State, now rather than wait.

          What stronger breast-plate than a heart untainted! Thrice is he arm'd, that hath his quarrel just; And he but naked, though lock'd up in steel, Whose conscience with injustice is corrupted. King Henry, scene ii

          by TerryDarc on Tue May 14, 2013 at 09:37:59 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  He should probably take more care (0+ / 0-)

      to include the snark tag in the future (although I can see why he doesn't since it kinda sorta spoils the effect).

    •  I don't think he is, per se: (8+ / 0-)

      After all, Kos was one of Clinton's loudest (and sometimes, nastiest) critics circa 2008.

      However, taking a look forward, who else is there who could credibly take the wind out her sails if she does run?

      By this point in the 2008 cycle (May 2005), Barack Obama had already unofficially declared, and in fact had started to build serious amounts of money. No-one else has done that by now.

      In c.2005 polling for the 2008 primaries, Hillary Clinton was in the lead, as she is now. However, in 2005, she had a ceiling of about 40% support, compared to the 55%-65% she's pulling at the same point in the next (2016) election.

      Finally, I daresay she's learned something from her mistakes (and there were several) in the 2008 election.

      It's not written in stone - nothing is until the event happens. But all the data points to the conclusion that if she decides to run, Hillary Clinton is in the catbird seat going into 2016 far more than she was in 2008, in both the primary and the general election (where she's absolutely smooshing the most likely GOP opponents in the polling thus far).

      What you call an "investment" in the inevitability idea, I call an acknowledgement of current reality. Things can change - but unless and until they do, the data point to an election that is Clinton's to lose, not someone else's to win.

      "Violence never requires translation, but it often causes deafness." - Bareesh the Hutt.

      by Australian2 on Tue May 14, 2013 at 08:10:11 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  "inevitability" (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Williston Barrett

      it's just called basic math and poll reading, which show her with a huge lead at this time.  

    •  I'd Rather Elizabeth Warren... (0+ / 0-)

      ...that HRC but better her than Marco Rubio/Chris Christie or whoever on earth that totally desolate party of privilege and power care to try foisting off on us.

      They MAY have learned their lesson with Rmoney but I'm sure Hilary will be a decent president. We DO need a woman and then another and another until, say, 40 or so fem presidents have been elected.

      Still, Hillary's more like Bill than Barack. She's very smart and tough but not convinced her heart is with the common person.

      What stronger breast-plate than a heart untainted! Thrice is he arm'd, that hath his quarrel just; And he but naked, though lock'd up in steel, Whose conscience with injustice is corrupted. King Henry, scene ii

      by TerryDarc on Tue May 14, 2013 at 09:34:28 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  If this doesn't wake a few of them up, (7+ / 0-)

    they deserve everything that is coming their way. Loss after loss after loss.

    We, however, could use a break from the constant scandal-mongering.  Especially when there is no "there" there.

    Ever Forward.
    Marti

    We cannot call ourselves a civilised society if we refuse to protect the weakest among us.

    by The Marti on Tue May 14, 2013 at 07:37:55 AM PDT

  •  I hadn't heard about this before... (14+ / 0-)
    “For giving him shelter and food for all those years?”
    Sadly, I'm not the least bit surprised.

    Conservatives seem to believe that the rich will work harder if we give them more, and the poor will work harder if we give them less. E.J. Dionne

    by blueyescryinintherain on Tue May 14, 2013 at 07:37:58 AM PDT

  •  And the scales fell from their eyes... n/t (5+ / 0-)

    When the union's inspiration /Through the workers' blood shall run /There can be no power greater /Anywhere beneath the sun /Solidarity Forever!

    by litho on Tue May 14, 2013 at 07:38:14 AM PDT

  •  Gosh Reince....dontcha just hate it when that (8+ / 0-)

    happens?

  •  I hope he joins the Dem Latino outreach group (13+ / 0-)

    I think some Floridians of Cuban ancestry could use some enlightenment.

    •  They're already starting to come around (7+ / 0-)

      From this week's Sun-Sentinel:

      "Cubans have traditionally voted more Republican than Democrat Now we're seeing those numbers get closer to 50-50," Toraño said.
      The guy quoted is identified as a "conservative Republican."

      When the union's inspiration /Through the workers' blood shall run /There can be no power greater /Anywhere beneath the sun /Solidarity Forever!

      by litho on Tue May 14, 2013 at 07:43:27 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Was hanging out last week in Florida (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      virginislandsguy

      at the state refugee consultation, where all the refugee agencies gather once a year for training and coordination.  The group is heavily dominated by Cubans, and particularly Cubans who really can't stand Castro - and you see a lot of SUV's with Christian fish and NRA stickers, driven by people who until now have swallowed the whole Faux News propaganda.  It's kind of unusual since the refugee resettlement world tends to lean Democratic in other states.  But... the GOP has problems even with this group. Even the more conservative Cubans support immigration reform.  Even these Cubans are surprisingly open about LGBT issues.  They are really not all so far from being Democrats.  It's always been said that the younger ones are chaning, but you know, some of the older ones are not all that keen in the Republican Party anymore.  And even some of them who work for the State of Florida roll their eyes a little when you talk to them about Rick Scott turning away all that medicare money.

      It doesn't surprise me that this guy dumped the GOP.

      The Cubans are changing, and with them, the electoral demographics of Florida.  I gotta admit, despite disliking much about their politics, it's really hard not to like the Cuban community on a personal level and feel some affection for them.  I'd so much prefer to be in Little Havana than stuck in some GOP suburb somewhere.

      “If the misery of the poor be caused not by the laws of nature, but by our institutions, great is our sin.” Charles Darwin

      by ivorybill on Tue May 14, 2013 at 09:09:19 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I hope he took his contact list with him. n/t (7+ / 0-)
  •  So... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    commonmass, kevin k, Mr MadAsHell

    As a response, I think the GOP should follow Buchanan's reset of the Southern Strategy.

    'Where free unions and collective bargaining are forbidden, freedom is lost' - Ronald Reagan, Communist

    by RichM on Tue May 14, 2013 at 07:41:44 AM PDT

  •  Whew! (4+ / 0-)

    I thought you were going to tell me that Pablo Pantoja has had enough, and was no longer going to be a Hispanic. He is/was a Republican after all.

    And they scream... The worst things in life come free to us... Cause we're just under the upper hand... And go mad for a couple grams.

    by glb3 on Tue May 14, 2013 at 07:42:59 AM PDT

  •  The letter goes on to say this... (15+ / 0-)
    I am also making a modest contribution (here: http://bit.ly/...) to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) for the efforts in helping protect the rights of immigrants and civil liberties in general.
    Heh...I suspect that's like salt in a wound to many in his former party.

    Conservatives seem to believe that the rich will work harder if we give them more, and the poor will work harder if we give them less. E.J. Dionne

    by blueyescryinintherain on Tue May 14, 2013 at 07:43:44 AM PDT

  •  There is absolutely nothing on RedState or (9+ / 0-)

    FreeRepublic about it.

    Only Benghazi, Benghazi, Benghazi.

    Actually, I usually expect SOMETHING on FreeRepublic. Usually with hateful "He was a Democrap plant in the first place" or something. But ..... crickets.

  •  This guys IQ must be lower than, say, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Roadbed Guy

    Log Cabin Republicans.

  •  We should be cautious with 'New Dems' like him. (0+ / 0-)

    Doubtful that single-issue or primary-issue voters who switch because their party doesn't support it can be counted on as reliable and trustworthy, at least right off the bat. IMO if you're going to announce 'Democrat' then I'd like to see an endorsement of at least the majority of the party planks.

    Godwin's Rule of Nazi Analogies: once such a comparison is made, the thread is finished and whoever mentioned the Nazis has automatically lost whatever debate was in progress

    by GoGoGoEverton on Tue May 14, 2013 at 07:47:44 AM PDT

    •  Oh for Christs sake. Maybe you can spy on him (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Hawaiiexpat, Miggles, toddsmitts, Jlukes

      and keep us abreast of his doings.

    •  Our party is the 'big tent' (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      OllieGarkey, Bush Bites, METAL TREK

      We are the real governing party since the GOP has gone off the rails.  Unless they come up with a special candidate, they may not win in 2024 either.

      Hillary's veep will be specially selected for that task.

      Scissors cut paper/Paper covers rock/Rock crushes lizard/Lizard poisons Spock/Spock smashes scissors/Scissors decapitate lizard/Lizard eats paper/Paper disproves Spock/Rock breaks scissors/Spock vaporizes rock

      by jgkojak on Tue May 14, 2013 at 07:53:04 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  We need to welcome people like this. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      GoGoGoEverton, Mr MadAsHell

      If they drift away eventually, well, it was still a mutually beneficial relationship.

      "Michael Moore, who was filming a movie about corporate welfare called 'Capitalism: A Love Story,' sought and received incentives."

      by Bush Bites on Tue May 14, 2013 at 08:14:36 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I didn't mean to imply an unwelcoming stance. (0+ / 0-)

        I just don't want to give anything on our platform or have TOO many blue dogs for the sake of the big tent, and that's coming from as big a Party animal as there is on this site.

        Godwin's Rule of Nazi Analogies: once such a comparison is made, the thread is finished and whoever mentioned the Nazis has automatically lost whatever debate was in progress

        by GoGoGoEverton on Tue May 14, 2013 at 08:28:07 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  too late (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          GayHillbilly

          you've basically demanded some sort of detailed rundown from him of all the Democratic  Party platform positions and whether he supports them.
          I'd say donating to the ACLU already makes him more of a progressive than much of the Democratic Party or many members here.

          •  Saying 'I'd like to see' and 'demanding' (0+ / 0-)

            are not synonymical terms.

            And it's ironic that you have an ACLU litmus test for 'real progressivism'...Rand Paul is all about civil liberties as well, and the ACLU helped Rush Limbaugh in his drug case.

            Godwin's Rule of Nazi Analogies: once such a comparison is made, the thread is finished and whoever mentioned the Nazis has automatically lost whatever debate was in progress

            by GoGoGoEverton on Tue May 14, 2013 at 08:58:01 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  We need to see if he supports Soc Sec cuts. (0+ / 0-)

      or the Patriot Act, drone warfare, indefinite military presence in Afghanistan, massive subsidies to private pharmaceutical and heath insurance companies, auserity for the middle class, etc. otherwise there's no way we let him in Obama's Democratic Party.

      I think chances are he looked out of his Republican bubble and noticed there wasn't much difference between what he thinks and Obama thinks.

      "If the machine of government is of such a nature that it requires you to be the agent of injustice to another, then, I say, break the law." - Henry David Thoreau

      by Jason Hackman on Tue May 14, 2013 at 08:35:26 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Yes, we should. Markos is/was a "new Dem", too. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      GayHillbilly, TexMex

      You know how untrustworthy he turned out.

  •  Don't mean to be a smart ass here, (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    commonmass, Miggles, OllieGarkey

    but what took him so  long?

    The GOP will destroy anything they can't own.

    by AnnieR on Tue May 14, 2013 at 07:48:40 AM PDT

    •  Emotion. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      aisb23, Mr MadAsHell, AnnieR

      Politics is a part of our identity.

      If this guy was big into the Republican party, there were obviously things he liked about it.

      When someone like this is driven away, it's because they couldn't keep doing the mental acrobatics required to stick around.

      An Fhirinn an aghaidh an t'Saoghail. (The truth against the world.) Is treasa tuath na tighearna. (The common people are mightier than the lords.)

      by OllieGarkey on Tue May 14, 2013 at 08:01:37 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Politics = Family = Social Network (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Mr MadAsHell, TexMex, AnnieR

      If you grow up in a political tradition it takes a lot to leave it.  Obviously, he alludes to things that have bothered him in the past.  And paradoxically, it's not even really the level of disagreement that makes you leave -- it's the level of investment, and the more you have invested of yourself the harder it is to admit that you might have been wasting your efforts.  People who are "lukewarm" and not really active are the most likely to leave without giving notice; they just start voting the other way, or maybe even not voting at all (I kind of wonder if this is what might have happened with all those "missing" white voters Romney's people kept talking about).

  •  If it's at the point where even their own (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Jlukes, GayHillbilly

    officials are bailing on the basis of their party politics, then perhaps it won't be such a long time of GOP obstructionism to come?

    After all, think of how put-off independent and non-voters must be by GOP policies and politics if the dog-whistling is getting to be too much for the choir! All the Democrats have to do is give them a reason to vote Democratic, and it won't be long before the Dems hold both chambers and the White House in perpetuity!

    And the way to do this is - the only way - for the Democratic Party, cohesively and as a whole, to adopt, support and advocate policies that are both effective at showing the ways that Government can make a positive difference in peoples' lives, and popular too.

    Policies such as a real stimulus package, one that helps Main Street and repairs America's decrepit infrastructure;
    Policies that actually do something to keep Too Big To Fail in check;
    Policies that lead to real, tangible and widespread benefits for the majority of the American people;
    Policies that punish, instead of rewarding, the corporate offshoring of jobs and profits and the McDonaldisation of the remaining work in America;
    Policies that, in short, tell Wall Street that this merry-go-round ride and endless plundering of the public purse has finally come to an end!

    If such policies are adopted in a coherent fashion by the House and the Senate leadership, and if the government can be restored thereby to some semblance of functionality (including some real filibuster reform that means that the obstructionists pay a real political price for their antics), then I believe we'll see people turn out to vote - and to vote Democratic.

    An excellent diary about some interesting news - and confirmation of the ramshackle state of the GOP in even its own partisans' eyes. This needs to be a wake-up call for Democratic strategists!

    "Violence never requires translation, but it often causes deafness." - Bareesh the Hutt.

    by Australian2 on Tue May 14, 2013 at 07:50:15 AM PDT

  •  The difference is Hillary has thicker skin (8+ / 0-)

    Obama has a good poker face, but bends too easily.  I think Hillary has had everything possible thrown at her (murder! Vince Foster!) There is pretty much NOTHING they can say or do that will sway her - and that will be refreshing (and I was not a Hillary supporter in '08 - she has earned my support as SOS).

    Scissors cut paper/Paper covers rock/Rock crushes lizard/Lizard poisons Spock/Spock smashes scissors/Scissors decapitate lizard/Lizard eats paper/Paper disproves Spock/Rock breaks scissors/Spock vaporizes rock

    by jgkojak on Tue May 14, 2013 at 07:50:19 AM PDT

    •  People may not like what Hillary C. stands for; (7+ / 0-)

      but no-one can claim with a straight face that she doesn't have a spine. Somehow, I can't see the woman who pushed for single-payer in 1993 negotiating herself down from the public option.

      "Violence never requires translation, but it often causes deafness." - Bareesh the Hutt.

      by Australian2 on Tue May 14, 2013 at 07:52:37 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  She'll play hardball (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Mr MadAsHell, OllieGarkey

        Not a huge fan of her policies or a lot of Bill's policies but they put their game faces on and they come to play and don't mind getting down and dirty.

        "The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it." -- George Bernard Shaw

        by Inspector Javert on Tue May 14, 2013 at 08:01:47 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I rather liked hillarycare (3+ / 0-)

          Of course, she bungled the job of selling it to the Senate (she didn't yet understand what a big role schmoozing played in Senate politics), but she gave her all to it.

          I rather liked SCHIP, which she supported in the leadup to the Congressional votes in 1997.

          I rather like her philosophical attitude toward the free market: that it's a powerful force that needs a close eye kept on it.

          I rather like her consistent, from-day-one opposition to Bush's irresponsible tax cuts.

          Sure, she's not a perfect progressive - but then again, I doubt there will ever be one in the White House. In this day & age, an imperfect progressive with a drive to fight is the next best thing available.

          "Violence never requires translation, but it often causes deafness." - Bareesh the Hutt.

          by Australian2 on Tue May 14, 2013 at 08:14:37 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  agree (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            OllieGarkey

            like I said upthread, I'll gladly support her this time around, for much of the same reasons you do.
            I don't view it as a lesser of two evils at all, I agree with her on most issues so it's very much a positive decision.  Not a default just because the Repub candidate will be so awful, which he will be.  

      •  And see, that's one of the things I've always (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Inspector Javert, a2nite

        liked about Clinton.

        I want leaders who are warhorses looking for an enemy line to charge, rottweilers in business suits.

        I may not agree with everything Clinton stands for. But I know she'll stand up and fight for the things we agree on.

        An Fhirinn an aghaidh an t'Saoghail. (The truth against the world.) Is treasa tuath na tighearna. (The common people are mightier than the lords.)

        by OllieGarkey on Tue May 14, 2013 at 08:21:50 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  The Clintons are better street fighters. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Inspector Javert, METAL TREK

      I'll agree with that, even though I supported Obama because I thought he was more electable at that time.

      "Michael Moore, who was filming a movie about corporate welfare called 'Capitalism: A Love Story,' sought and received incentives."

      by Bush Bites on Tue May 14, 2013 at 08:12:45 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  The crap the GOP is doing now (8+ / 0-)

    is the exact same crap they did to Clinton when he was Pres.

    The.exact.same.thing.

    Make up some scandal, blow it up all out of proportion, spend a bloody fortune looking for something, ANYTHING, as an excuse to impeach him because he has the GALL to be a Democrat and actually IMPROVE the economy.

  •  TL;DR = Pablo Pantoja went native :) (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    commonmass

    Don't let anyone tell you otherwise, before the police arrive ... teachers are first responders.

    by 8ackgr0und N015e on Tue May 14, 2013 at 07:50:53 AM PDT

  •  They are setting up a perfect storm if they don't (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite

    get a handle on this.

    The GOP blew a golden opportunity to take control of the government in 2012.

    The Democratic Party, if it's smart ( a fact not in evidence to date ), could break the "twice is nice, but thrice is lice" White House jinx, but could go far beyond that.  It could set up the kind of long-term Democratic dominance that FDR achieved in the 1930s.

     I don't see either of those things happening, but the GOP cannot continue to chase people away and remain relevant.

    LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

    by dinotrac on Tue May 14, 2013 at 07:58:56 AM PDT

  •  Let me be the first of many to say: (8+ / 0-)

    Welcome to the team Mr Pantoja!

    We're happy to have you! Especially when you point out that:

    The complete disregard of those who are in disadvantage is also palpable.
    Welcome to the big tent.

    A a Floridian whose ancestry goes back to the Alvarez family of St Augustine, I'm glad that you're going to be fighting for the rights of Spanish Speaking immigrants in my home state, and I'm glad you're doing it as a Democrat.

    An Fhirinn an aghaidh an t'Saoghail. (The truth against the world.) Is treasa tuath na tighearna. (The common people are mightier than the lords.)

    by OllieGarkey on Tue May 14, 2013 at 08:00:12 AM PDT

  •  Sanford (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    scyellowdogdem, GayHillbilly

    Since my new Congressman is Mark Sanford, proof that Republicans will vote for anything to spite the President and Nancy Pelosi, I have little to offer here.

    I never imagined my country, which was struggling to make progress when I was young, would make a U turn back towards racism, intolerance and violence.  

    I routinely see and hear things in public discourse that the most conservative Republican I knew thirty years ago would have disowned.

    William Hamilton practices Law and is a writer and community activist in the Charleston, SC area. He can reached through www.wjhamilton.com

    by wjhamilton29464 on Tue May 14, 2013 at 08:04:27 AM PDT

  •  That Frederick Douglass comment ranks right up (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    blueyescryinintherain, a2nite

    there with "LET HIM DIE!!"

    Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed. --Herman Melville

    by ZedMont on Tue May 14, 2013 at 08:06:51 AM PDT

  •  We need to pass Immigration Reform this year. (0+ / 0-)

    Politically, it will be a coup de grace.

    "Michael Moore, who was filming a movie about corporate welfare called 'Capitalism: A Love Story,' sought and received incentives."

    by Bush Bites on Tue May 14, 2013 at 08:11:31 AM PDT

  •  Hillary Clinton elected president? (3+ / 0-)

    She had a 30-point lead in 2007 and was "running away with it" (Kos' own words).

    Secretaries of state have long enjoyed high approval numbers (compared to say, AGs) because their scope of work involves representing the US to the rest of the world and is less political.  But that doesn't mean an SoS with high name recognition gets to sail to the nomination.

    I think it was clear from the 2008 primaries that Hillary Clinton, unlike her husband, is not an especially good retail politician.  Some of her serious negatives (as opposed to the BS ones drummed up by Rs), such not reading the intelligence estimate before voting for the Iraq war authorization, aren't going away.  Remember the nervous laughs, "he would not have been my pastor", being pinned down by sniper fire and the like?  There will be plenty more of that if she runs.

    She'll also be 68 by election day 2016.  Yes I know both Dole and McCain would have been 72, but I had a problem with that too and wouldn't vote for a Republican in any event.  Recall that Reagan was only a year older when he was inaugurated and got nailed by Alzheimers before the end.  Besides the "no presidents over 70 rule" isn't mine, it's Eisenhowers.

    Of course, this means Biden should definitely be out since he'll be 74.  The presidency is a physically grueling job, as anyone who'se staggered out of a 3-hour exam or a chess tournament should know.  Even the dumbass presidents like W seem to visibly age faster while in office.

    All this being said, I agree Clinton would be the favorite if she were to decide to run.  I suspect however that she won't, because she knows the process all too well and may decide it's not worth it.  Which is fine, since we have a great bench.  Gillibrand, Cuomo, O'Malley and Schweitzer to name a few.  I'd also love Brown or Whitehouse to get in, but I see them easily being eclipsed.

    •  I think your first two points are (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      GayHillbilly, virginislandsguy

      the most valid.

      Secretary of State is a position above the political fray and so they enjoy high approval numbers partly because of that. Her numbers will fall when she enters a political race. How much they fall remains to be seen. I think she would still be a formidable candidate though.

      She didnt run a good campaign in 2007-2008. Now, she is also not going to face a Barack Obama type candidate this time around if she does run. But hopefully, she has learned from some mistakes, such as a hiring Mark Penn. She went millions of dollars in debt to him so he could take that front runner campaign and turn it into a losing campaign. The only reason to choose him again is that he is a friend of the Clintons. Which would be a horrible reason.

      I dont think age matters, as long as she is healthy and runs an energetic campaign. I think the same is true of Christie and his weight.  

      •  I suppose it's a question of likelyhood (0+ / 0-)

        that mental faculties will diminish with age.  There's no question that people in their 80s and even 90s can be perfectly lucid, or that 40-somethings can have breakdowns.  But age shouldn't be irrelevant.  The military, after all, makes senior officers retire at 62 with few exceptions.  Bill Clinton, a pretty young president, claimed that nearly every bad decision he made was when he was overtired.

        It takes a pretty large ego just to run for the presidency.  Such people, I suspect, may place excessive faith in their own cognitive skills.  Reagan didn't resign his office even when it later became clear he should have.  This kind of situtation multiplies the risk that an unelected staffer is making key decisions for the president.

    •  Thanks for the chess tournament comparison (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Cream Puff

      My wife laughed at me when I told her how wiped out I was after a long 4 round in one day tourney. It is really a mentally/physically/emotionally exhausting process. Something you really have to experience to understand.

      "The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it." -- George Bernard Shaw

      by Inspector Javert on Tue May 14, 2013 at 08:48:11 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  4 rounds in one day? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Inspector Javert

        Jeebus.  Must have been a rapid tourney.  Half-hour games can be the worst.  You can't throw caution to the wind as in a blitz but you can't work out every line to satisfaction in your head either.

        Nothing made me want to nap more as a kid than coming home from chess tournaments.  I imagine juggling contingencies in a situation room would be similarly taxing.

        •  I think it was G/60 (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Cream Puff

          or 55 with a 5 sec increment. So 2 hours per game, about a 10 hour day.

          In the president's case he's playing chess with moves that will affect billions of people. Wow, stress!

          "The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it." -- George Bernard Shaw

          by Inspector Javert on Tue May 14, 2013 at 12:08:36 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  complete disregard of those .. in disadvantantage (3+ / 0-)

    What a strong, clear letter!  and this --

    The complete disregard of those who are in disadvantage
    just wowed me.  'Those who are in disadvantage'.  Such a kind construction.  'In disadvantage' as though 'disadvantage' is a bad neighborhood a person must walk through.  Contrast with  'disadvantaged person', which makes the disadvantage part of the person.  Beautiful word choice.
  •  Either Hillary OR Biden works for me in 2016 (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    GayHillbilly

    We also have some great folks in Congress & gov mansions. Our choices are (mostly) like choosing between chocolate chip cookies & brownies. THEIR (GOP's) choices are like choosing between being kicked in the nuts with an iron boot OR being punched in the nuts with brass knuckles (and the country will feel the same way if some batshit crazy Repuke gets in). I personally think the ONLY Repuke who stands a chance in 2016 is Christie but he's too sane for the Repuke primary voters so he won't make it to the general (notice I said sane, not moderate; Christie's no moderate).

    A village can not reorganize village life to suit the village idiot.

    by METAL TREK on Tue May 14, 2013 at 09:14:51 AM PDT

  •  Media Stenographers (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite

    Kudos, Mr. Pantoja! You've looked beyond most media stenographers who buy the GOP "minority outreach" meme, hook, line, and sinker. Look at the way they "anointed" Condolezza Rice, Alberto Gonzales,  and now, Mass.'s. right wing wonder Gabriel Gomez. For more on the fake GOP "minority outreach," and Gabriel Gomez, read   this

  •  great... (0+ / 0-)

    another republican that left the party because it was crazy (being too far right is another reason they seem to leave) which means we gain another right of center voting body. This to me is not good news. This is why our party gets too watered down. Does anybody really think this guy is on par with democratic principles? Nobody stays in a crazy party so the only place left for him is the Democratic party. Look, I am not a hard left ideologue but you don't go from being a republican, especially up until now, and then become a fierce advocate for left causes. It just doesn't happen that way. So for all those who are thrilled with these types of cross overs, don't whine that left ideas aren't being implemented enough. If you want left ideas that are fought for fiercely, usually you start out a Democrat, not become one. And I did say USUALLY.

  •  Oh my God! A Repuglican (Now Former R) comes (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite

    out and shouts the unvarnished TRUTH about his former Party. Thank you kos for writing this and a big THANK YOU to Pablo Pantoja for your truthfulness.

    "Three things cannot be long hidden: The Sun, The Moon, and The Truth." Buddha

    by Grandson named me Papa on Tue May 14, 2013 at 12:22:31 PM PDT

  •  W00t! This is a shot in the gut (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite, Remediator

    to the FL Republicans.  Hope this goes viral.

    Americans who vote against their own interests are driven by "the human need to find a strand of significance that will hold everything together that isn't on TV..." (quote is from P. Roth in "Sabbath's Theater")

    by ceebee7 on Tue May 14, 2013 at 02:48:21 PM PDT

  •  Gonna trade that old red car in for (0+ / 0-)

    a new blue one.  

    The red one was in pretty bad shape and could only make right turns.

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