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epa01470114 Colorado Representative Mark Udall addresses the final session of the 2008 Democratic National Convention at Invesco Field at Mile High Stadium in Denver, Colorado USA, 28 August 2008. 75,000 to 80,000 people are expected to hear Barack Obama
Sen. Mark Udall
Third Way is supposedly a Democratic organization. Conservative Democratic, to be sure, but not actually Republican. But Lee Fang dug into their records and found that one of Third Way's fundraising consultants also does a whole lot of work for the Chamber of Commerce. The result:
While the Third Way op-ed made a point of claiming economic progressive economic policies wouldn’t play well with voters in Colorado, in 2008, their fundraisers’ client ran nasty attack ads against a Third Way leader in the state. In 2008, when Third Way co-chair Senator Mark Udall (D-CO) first ran for the Senate, the US Chamber sponsored an advertisement against him on energy policy, declaring, “Every time he’s blocked American energy production, he’s made the tyrants and sheiks happy. But we’ve paid the price.”

Last year, Third Way co-chair Senator Claire McCaskill (D-MO) faced a barrage of attacks from the Chamber. One ad during the election last year instructed viewers, “Call Claire McCaskill. Tell her Missouri doesn’t need government-run health care. Support the repeal. We need jobs!”

This is Third Way in a nutshell: The less-important client of one of the Chamber of Commerce's top lobbying firms. It's pathetic. It's also not a great argument for the media's "centrist Democrats" label for Third Way.

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Comment Preferences

  •  There are no Democrats at Third Way (16+ / 0-)

    There are only Republicans who, for one reason or another, were/are unable to run as Republicans. And they know the DCCC and the DSCC are more than willing to help get them elected so they don't run as a third party candidate either. That's "Third Way".

    "Given the choice between a Republican and someone who acts like a Republican, people will vote for a real Republican every time." Harry Truman

    by MargaretPOA on Fri Dec 06, 2013 at 02:58:25 PM PST

    •  While it's popular these days to bash Third Way (9+ / 0-)

      I do not accept that someone like Mark Udall is a Republican Wannabe.  At least not in today's Democratic/Republican divide.  He's been good on the environment, good on the NSA spying scandal, a reliable vote for Democratic pushes in the Senate and he's been okay on other issues.  Is he progressive?  Not on most things.  Have I posted disagreements I've had with him on his position on holding Buschco accountable?  Yes.

      If there's a progressive who'll run for Senate in Colorado, I'll take a look and consider helping them out.  However, I think Udall is a fit for Colorado and I will support him to the end over Ken Buck or whoever the Republicans throw up against him if he's the Democratic candidate.

      •  While I didn't mention Udall... (5+ / 0-)

        Of COURSE he's better than whatever psychotic bagger Colorado runs against him and I didn't remotely suggest otherwise. As for "bashing" Third Way "these days", sorry, Tim but I was bashing Third Way from the moment I first read about the group. Like being one of the 9 percent who still thoroughly disapproved of George W Bush on September 12, 2001, I was way ahead of the curve on Third Way.

        "Given the choice between a Republican and someone who acts like a Republican, people will vote for a real Republican every time." Harry Truman

        by MargaretPOA on Fri Dec 06, 2013 at 03:33:49 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  He was the picture used to illustrate this diary. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          SoonerG

          Literally the poster boy for the Third Way for this diary.  That was why I mentioned Mark Udall, and I have no reason to question your bonafides about your feelings on the Third Way.

      •  Udall seems very progressive to me. (0+ / 0-)

        In what way is he not? A lot of progressives didn't do their job holding Bush accountable, unfortunately. Is there more?

        •  He's supported many of the compromise and (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          LakeSuperior, Willinois

          Third Way style efforts in Congress.  I'll try and post more later - maybe a diary, but if you want to see what his positions have been, his website for his campaign is at http://www.markudall.com.  As I say, not bad overall, and certainly not a Republican-Lite.  He just doesn't strike me as progressive on a number of issues.

          •  Didn't he (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            ColoTim

            go on a statewide tour and came back saying that everyone was worried about the debt? Isn't he part of the austerity group?

            That's a big fat tell right there- if my recollections are correct.

            The banks have a stranglehold on the political process. Mike Whitney

            by dfarrah on Fri Dec 06, 2013 at 06:42:24 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  it wasn't because of any tour, he's always been (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              ColoTim

              big on getting rid of debt.

              “Conservation… is a positive exercise of skill and insight, not merely a negative exercise of abstinence and caution…” Aldo Leopold

              by ban nock on Sat Dec 07, 2013 at 05:53:56 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Regardless of the (0+ / 0-)

                cause of his position, being an austerian isn't sound economic policy.  So, it means he is fine with the growing divide in the U.S.

                But why not be an austerian?  He can get away with it - he is set for life now.

                People are always griping about the Clintons being some sort of dynasty, when the real dynasties are the Udalls and the Bushs.

                We really need congressional term limits.

                The banks have a stranglehold on the political process. Mike Whitney

                by dfarrah on Sat Dec 07, 2013 at 09:43:03 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

    •  Though I believe you're correct I think your (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Velvetus

      comment is at odds with your sig line. If Truman was correct then there would be no Third Way Democrats because the Republican would win every election against them. I don't think old Harry knew how evil "triangulation" and massive amounts of campaign contributions would be.

      There are lies, damn lies, and statistics but they all pale in comparison to conservative talking points.

      by ontheleftcoast on Fri Dec 06, 2013 at 03:10:22 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  There are exceptions to every rule of course (0+ / 0-)

        And if we're going to hold Truman posthumously responsible for those exceptions, then I see a long argument in the offing. Clearly he was exaggerating a bit but that's not exactly unheard of from a politician, is it?

        "Given the choice between a Republican and someone who acts like a Republican, people will vote for a real Republican every time." Harry Truman

        by MargaretPOA on Fri Dec 06, 2013 at 03:27:02 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  These Third Way types (4+ / 0-)

      ARE the Democratic Party and have been for at least 20 years now.

      "Americans have a strong devotion to afflicting the afflicted and comforting the comfortable. They have a hard time contemplating any meaningful overhaul of the rules of their political system" -- Alec Baldwin

      by Sagebrush Bob on Fri Dec 06, 2013 at 03:17:01 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yes, all three of the above comments (0+ / 0-)

        Are addressed by my comment immediately below.

        "Given the choice between a Republican and someone who acts like a Republican, people will vote for a real Republican every time." Harry Truman

        by MargaretPOA on Fri Dec 06, 2013 at 03:24:03 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  The Third Way dates from 2005. n/t (0+ / 0-)

        I'm a Vietnam Era vet. I'm also an Erma Bombeck Era vet. When cussing me out and calling me names please indicate which vet you would like to respond to your world changing thoughts.

        by Just Bob on Fri Dec 06, 2013 at 04:07:42 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  The Third Way philosophy, however (0+ / 0-)

          goes much further back.

          "Americans have a strong devotion to afflicting the afflicted and comforting the comfortable. They have a hard time contemplating any meaningful overhaul of the rules of their political system" -- Alec Baldwin

          by Sagebrush Bob on Fri Dec 06, 2013 at 09:43:12 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Well, yes, that goes philosophy goes all the way (0+ / 0-)

            back to antiquity.

            I'm a Vietnam Era vet. I'm also an Erma Bombeck Era vet. When cussing me out and calling me names please indicate which vet you would like to respond to your world changing thoughts.

            by Just Bob on Sat Dec 07, 2013 at 01:29:56 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  1992 (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ban nock, Velvetus

      The "Democratic Leadership Council" or the "Third Way" was formed back in the 80's to produce moderate Democratic candidates, because in the Reagan era it was impossible for real liberal/progressive Democrats to win elections, especially presidential elections. Well guess what, in 1992 the plan was successful and Bill Clinton was elected President. I don't fault the DLC/Third Way movement in the 80's and 90's because, coming out of the Reagan/Bush years the Democratic Party had to find a way to win elections. But its not 1992 anymore. Over the last 20 years the American electorate has moved left and the Democratic Party needs to catch up with the voters. Its time for the Democrats to let go of the centrist movement and move back home to the left where they belong.

      "For all those whose cares have been our concern, the work goes on, the cause endures, the hope still lives and the dream shall never die." --Senator Ted Kennedy

      by Blue Silent Majority on Fri Dec 06, 2013 at 04:27:24 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Where was our tea party (0+ / 0-)

        to block Reagan's policies?

        I do fault our dems.  They weren't an opposition party as they should have been.  

        So now we're here.

        The banks have a stranglehold on the political process. Mike Whitney

        by dfarrah on Fri Dec 06, 2013 at 06:44:21 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  I doubt that most Democrats (0+ / 0-)

        can actually move back home to the left where they belong.  Elizabeth Warren got elected in Massachusetts despite tepid support from our Third Way president, but she is the exception that proves the rule.  Most Dem candidates have to deal with an electorate that has been thoroughly brainwashed into believing that the national debt matters more than the climate-change debt we're steadily accumulating, and that austerity is the cure for recession.  And they are afraid to let go of the C of C tit because of all the campaign funds that flow from it.

        That's why I'm registered Green.  Some day, the GOP will choke on its own vitriol, and the Democrats will be recognized for the center-right party of Big Business, albeit with liberal social values.  That will leave room for a national opposition party on the left.

        "You may say that I'm a dreamer / But I'm not the only one" - John Lennon.

  •  The Chamber of Commerce! (10+ / 0-)

    Now that's an institution that everyone associates with Democratic Party constituents' interests!

    Yeah - uh-huh - right.

    Shaking head.

    •  Actually the Chamber of Commerce (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Pablo Bocanegra, divineorder

      represents the interests of the Democratic Party's constituents quite well but the constituency isn't us. The Democratic Party constituency is not the same as the people who keep voting for Democrats.

      "Americans have a strong devotion to afflicting the afflicted and comforting the comfortable. They have a hard time contemplating any meaningful overhaul of the rules of their political system" -- Alec Baldwin

      by Sagebrush Bob on Fri Dec 06, 2013 at 03:19:57 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Allyson Schwartz, Third Way and PA Gov Race (8+ / 0-)

    I live in Philadelphia and believe this issue is critical. Allyson Schwartz typifies Third Way politics, even though she is trying to distance herself and "embrace" Elizabeth Warren. John Hanger, another democrat running for Gov is the person that broke this story about Schwartz and the Third Way and people at DK need to take him and his People's Campaign" seriously. It is a chance to elect a real progressive. here is a link to his statement on Schwartz and the Third Way.
    Hanger Statement

    •  Unfortunately the DNC (5+ / 0-)

      Has a nasty habit of preferentially supporting the conservadem candidate over the more progressive one. They are so invested in the failed and continually debunked "pretend to be a Republican" strategy that are as obstinate about it as the most ideological Republicans are about "trickle down" economics. The best example of that I can think of is in HA-1 in 2008 when Abercrombie retired and very conservative Democrat Ed Case was supported by the DCCC over more, (but still not way), liberal Colleen Hanabusa. which resulted in a Republican named Djou taking that seat for the 111th Congress. It turns out the only people who really liked Case were almost all on the mainland.

      "Given the choice between a Republican and someone who acts like a Republican, people will vote for a real Republican every time." Harry Truman

      by MargaretPOA on Fri Dec 06, 2013 at 03:22:14 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I said it when they first were incarnated... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Shockwave, JeffW, indres

    ... and I continue to say it now,

    "The Third Way will always be The RIGHT Way."

    The sooner Democrats acknowledge this, the sooner our Progressive values will flourish.

    Listen to The After Show & The Justice Department on Netroots Radio. Join us on The Porch Tue & Fri at Black Kos, all are welcome!

    by justiceputnam on Fri Dec 06, 2013 at 03:06:51 PM PST

  •  Stake meet Heart ... (5+ / 0-)

    ... except that 3W policies have no heart.

    Millions of us – the majority – must come together to insist that President Obama and the Democrats stand up and fight for the things we sent them there to do ... Michael Moore

    by MT Spaces on Fri Dec 06, 2013 at 03:08:28 PM PST

  •  Hmmm...and Claire McCaskill (4+ / 0-)

    was the co chair of Obama's Presidential campaign in 2008.

    Obama's 2008 campaign was co-chaired by Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), former Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine and ex-Rep. Paul Hodes (D-N.H.).

    "I don't want to run the empire, I want to bring it down!" ~ Dr. Cornel West "It was a really naked declaration of imperialism." ~ Jeremy Scahill on Obama's speech to the UN

    by gulfgal98 on Fri Dec 06, 2013 at 03:13:19 PM PST

  •  The national Chamber of Commerce is a branch... (6+ / 0-)

    ...of the GOP.  These Turd Way guys are not turncoats, they are infiltrators.

    Daily Kos an oasis of truth. Truth that leads to action.

    by Shockwave on Fri Dec 06, 2013 at 03:21:13 PM PST

  •  Republican lite (5+ / 0-)

    Republicans without the christian right?

  •  If you can't beat 'em... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dougymi

    ...infiltrate 'em.

    but still, a progressive purity test is nasty thing to contemplate, isn't it..?

    •  I'm wary of purity tests (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JeffW, divineorder, indres

      But yes, it's good to keep an eye on Democratic office holders, and make sure they don't stray too far from the platform. I don't think anyone is reflexively anti-business, but it's wise to maintain a balance. There's already a party that goes whole hog for business and any rapacious policy they advocate to dick over working people. We need a party that's reliably on the worker's side.

      If the Third Way people know they're being watched and graded, they should at least be circumspect about being labeled too pro-business.

      We've seen a herculean effort in the last couple of years to bring the concerns of working people out of the shadows. Right now a hot topic is a minimum wage of $15 an hour, and big parts of that conversation have finally begun to focus on the subsidies enjoyed by big profitable businesses that don't pay their workers enough to live on while posting huge annual profits.

      Now is a really good time to let the Third Way folks know they could establish or re-establish some party bona fides by coming out in favor of working people, and ignoring the fallacious information peddled by the Chamber of Commerce.

  •  It's a bit ironic (2+ / 1-)
    Recommended by:
    Willinois, fcvaguy
    Hidden by:
    divineorder

    On this site, if you vote Democrat but aren't sufficiently progressive, then you're not a real Democrat.  However, if you vote for third-party candidates instead of Democrats, then you're a "real" Democrat.

  •  I wouldn't call Mark Udall conservative (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Thinking Fella

    He's too far to the left on too many issues. The issue I'd say he's the most R on and always has been is on deficit reduction, one of his quirks. Other than that, on most issues I can think of, he's L of center.

    “Conservation… is a positive exercise of skill and insight, not merely a negative exercise of abstinence and caution…” Aldo Leopold

    by ban nock on Fri Dec 06, 2013 at 03:40:03 PM PST

  •  I could put up with center-right democrats. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Thinking Fella

    But dumb democrats should not be tolerated.

    •  Udall ain't dumb. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ban nock

      He may be a sell-out, or a Chamber lackey, but he is not dumb. AND he is the best we here in CO can get at this point.

      I've been calling him & Bennett, voicing my displeasure about the Third Way poop, and been calling daily(since the shutdown) for weeks now re: NO CUTS TO S.S. or Medicare(reminding them they are the very foundation of The New Deal) or they lose my vote. I may work against them in a Primary--as if a better, more Progressive candidate should happen along--but will vote for them in a General. Udall is absolutely the best we can do here, now. He is a mixed bag, and a damn sight better than a Blue Dog.

      I am beginning to work for my local, somewhat worthless local Dem Party. Maybe...maybe we can rid ourselves of Congressional Douche Scott Tipton. Not holding my breath through. We're up against a LOT of pick-up trucks STILL sporting 'McCain/ Palin' bumper stickers, so...

      The better I know people, the more I like my dog.

      by Thinking Fella on Fri Dec 06, 2013 at 04:18:05 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  good to see you getting involved (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Thinking Fella

        Just last night I started googling to find out just who the heck these third way folks were.

        Udall and the supposed progressive Jared Polis in CO.

        Bennet who you would think would be a natural 3d way type because of his long ties to banking,,, isn't so much.

        I think they are an idea from twenty five years ago that hasn't kept up with the times.

        “Conservation… is a positive exercise of skill and insight, not merely a negative exercise of abstinence and caution…” Aldo Leopold

        by ban nock on Sat Dec 07, 2013 at 06:01:03 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  "The Third Way", sound like an outreach to (0+ / 0-)

    recidivist addicts.

    Welcome to the United States where 99% is alway less than 1%.

    by Sam Sara on Fri Dec 06, 2013 at 03:45:58 PM PST

  •  the only DINOs worth having around (0+ / 0-)

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "I’m not the strapping young Muslim socialist that I used to be" - Barack Obama 04/27/2013

    by annieli on Fri Dec 06, 2013 at 03:52:13 PM PST

  •  Everyone hates the Chamber of Commerce (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Willinois, DownstateDemocrat

    The Chamber of Commerce has been attacking the teabaggers, so they now refer to it as the "Chamber of Government-run Commerce".

  •  And yet today (4+ / 0-)

       Senate Agriculture Committee Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow was busy cutting a deal with House Agriculture Committee Chairman Frank Lucas to slice another $8 to $9 billion from food stamps (SNAP), according to a source close to the negotiations.

         With Dems like this, what do we do???

    •  WTF ? Link here (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      maryabein, KayCeSF, aliasalias
      Why Is a Senate Democrat Agreeing to Another $8 Billion in Food ...
      The Nation. (blog)-5 hours ago
      Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), the chairwoman of the Senate ... Agriculture Committee Chairman Frank Lucas to slice another $8 to $9 ...

      http://www.thenation.com/...

      Move Single Payer Forward? Join 18,000 Doctors of PNHP and 185,000 member National Nurses United

      by divineorder on Fri Dec 06, 2013 at 04:19:17 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  ... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        KayCeSF, aliasalias
        On the same day that President Obama eloquently described his vision of an economy defined by economic mobility and opportunity for all, Senate Agriculture Committee Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow was busy cutting a deal with House Agriculture Committee Chairman Frank Lucas to slice another $8 to $9 billion from food stamps (SNAP), according to a source close to the negotiations.

        “One study shows that more than half of Americans will experience poverty at some point during their adult lives,” said President Obama. “Think about that. This is not an isolated situation.… That’s why we have nutrition assistance or the program known as SNAP, because it makes a difference for a mother who’s working, but is just having a hard time putting food on the table for her kids.”

        Indeed it does, but the chairwoman consistently fails to get the memo.

        Move Single Payer Forward? Join 18,000 Doctors of PNHP and 185,000 member National Nurses United

        by divineorder on Fri Dec 06, 2013 at 04:21:11 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  out them/rout them (0+ / 0-)

    it tebble, it hobble; honey lu been shot. - harvey kurtzman

    by renzo capetti on Fri Dec 06, 2013 at 04:23:54 PM PST

  •  The problem with 3-ways, no matter how (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DownstateDemocrat

    you do it, someone always gets screwed.

  •  Chamber & the Democratic think tanks (0+ / 0-)

    CAP has unpleasant ties with the Chamber of Commerce, too:

    CAP doesn’t publicly disclose the members of its Business Alliance, but I obtained multiple internal lists from 2011 showing that dozens of major corporations had joined. The lists were prepared by Chris Belisle, who at the time served as the alliance’s senior manager after having been recruited from his prior position as manager of corporate relations at the US Chamber of Commerce. According to these lists, CAP’s donors included Comcast, Walmart, General Motors, Pacific Gas and Electric, General Electric, Boeing and Lockheed. Though it doesn’t appear on the lists, the University of Phoenix was also a donor.
  •  Thank you for the diary (0+ / 0-)

    I had not been aware till reading your diary that Sens. Mark Udall and Claire McCaskill were in the Third Way leadership..

  •  Turd Way (0+ / 0-)

    These are wolves in sheep's clothing. The current climate is so conservative now that a traditional republican would be viewed as liberal. These Turd Way people are not democrats when they're more conservative than traditional republicans. This is why we can't seem to pass any reasonable reforms or enforcement of Wall St. even if we have a democratic majority. What a bunch of Turds.

  •  I would rather elect a udall (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ban nock

    than any partisan fanatic, regardless of their political orientation.

  •  Abolish Third Way (0+ / 0-)

    It's the only way to be sure.  Blue Dogs will soon be totally extinct, so that takes care of the House - but, Third Way is not dying off fast enough.

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