The NY Times Magazine has an article this week about Tom Davis, a moderate Republican congressman from Virginia who has decided not to run for re-election. His opinion is that the more extremist Republicans have poisoned the political atmosphere enough that it’s just not worth the effort any more.
I don’t really have a debate position on this–just posting the link since I thought some of you might find it interesting.
I don’t know whether to be glad or sorry. On the one hand, this may help to hasten the implosion of the far right Republicans, which would be good. On the other hand, heaven knows we can use all the moderate Republicans we can get these days, and while I prefer the Democrats, I don’t want to go to a one party system, even the party I quite consistently prefer. Uncontested power is not safe for anyone, no matter how well meaning.
I have no very deep thoughts on the article, but my father ran against Tom Davis in 2000. He seemed like a pretty decent, gracious guy when I met him (though, of course, it’s easy for people who get over 60% of the vote to be gracious :))
I read this piece earlier and found it very interesting. Davis did not only blame extremist Republicans for what’s going on, although he apparently has been no favorite of their and wasn’t shy about criticizing them.
The most telling and incisive remarks, as far as I was concerned, were what the author summed up as “Congress has become so infected with a win-at-all-costs mentality,” and this:
Sorry, I got to page 2, read that he’d vote for W again against John Kerry, and decided his opinion on anything was worthless. Anyone who can still say that, after the damage Bush has done to our nation, isn’t worth a teaspoon of warm spit, IMO.
That is an opinion, but Kerry was such a worthless piece of crap, barely more intelligent than Bush himself and with a joke of a VP selection, that voting for Kerry last time was one of the hardest things I ever did. I came damn close to not voting.
Be happy you have a smart, intelligent candidate that raises the bar of debate and intellectual intercourse this time. Kerry was a complete dud and it took a complete dud to somehow lose to Bush. That was one of the worst campaigns I have ever witnessed. Dukakis did a better job. Bob Dole did a better job.
To completely disregard Tom Davis’s opinion as he could not vote for Kerry probably says more about you than him. A lot of people voted for Bush, they are not all worthless. Some regret it and some do not.
Out of a pool of 100s, the democratic party picked Kerry & Edwards. This was not a ticket to draw Independent and Republican votes. This was a pick that could only look good to Democrats. As a Republican I hated Bush/Cheney so much that I did vote for Kerry/Edwards but their only redeeming qualities were not being Bush/Cheney. Now I was an old school moderate Republican, which means I am to the left of Davis and I was just barely able to vote for the Democratic ticket. How can you expect someone to the right of Nixon to vote for them?
In that case he should make the case that “they” should be exorcised from the Republican party. America needs at least a 2 party system that works with principled statesman/women politicians willing to debate, negotiate and compromise to form a greater union of States.
Sadly what we’ve had for quite sometime in the Republican party are extremist Right wingers and GOD complex politicians who think they have an inside track to all of the truths of the universe. Yes, Tom Davis is a quitter and that makes him a loser in my book.
How’s that going to work exactly? If you’re calling him a loser, I guess that’s literally true: he’s taken on his superiors to some degree and ultimately concluded that the fight is lost. Why that means you can’t read the rest of the piece, I’m not sure.
Well, strictly speaking, they picked Kerry out of a pool of about ten, and Kerry picked Edwards.
As a Republican, you saw something about George Bush then that caused you to vote Kerry/Edward even though you thought he ran a bad campaign, but my argument is that Tom “loser” Davis in hind sight would still vote for an extremist and a liar like George Bush. Geeesh!!
That was a pretty shallow pool as most Congressmen, Senators and Governors would have been about as good a choice if not better. Not the 11 that chose to run were great. It was hit or miss.
U.S. Senator John F. Kerry (Mass.)
U.S. Senator D. Robert Graham (Fla.)
Former Ambassador and former U.S. Senator Carol Moseley Braun (Illinois)
U.S. Rep. Richard A. “Dick” Gephardt (Mo.)
U.S. Senator Joseph I. Lieberman (Conn.)
Retired Gen. Wesley K. Clark of Arkansas
Former Vermont Gov. Howard B. Dean III, M.D.,
U.S. Senator John R. Edwards (N.C.)
the Rev. Alfred Sharpton Jr. of New York
U.S. Rep. Dennis J. Kucinich (Ohio)
the Hon. John D. Marx (Mass.)
Like I said in another thread yesterday, it really was a weak field in retrospect. Kerry did beat out the competition. Maybe stacking the primaries early gave him too much of an advantage, but he probably would have won anyway. Among the candidates who had a real chance, Dean failed to put together the kind of organization he needed, Clark was great on paper but did a lousy job campaigning, and Edwards has now proved beyond a doubt tha the didn’t have any substance.
I have just that much amount of time left using my eyes and noggins that once I’m able to determine that I’ve read enough, I look for more interesting and challenging data to occupy the remainder of my time. I do the same these days every time I see W or Jesse Jackson behind alive microphone. Click!! Next.
I haven’t seen much to recommend Kerry/Edwards in the last four years either. This is really a degree of how bad these four men are. We had 3 good candidates in 2000 and got the one dud. In 2004 the Presidential Candidates were bad and the VPs were terrible. I will concede that Davis should be able to admit that Kerry could not have done a worse job, but despite him being called a moderate in this thread, he is only a moderate by today’s frightening standards. He is to the right of the Rockefeller Republicans that use to be the moderates.
I just can’t see dismissing all of his views as he still thinks Kerry would’ve been worse. I don’t agree with him, but I am willing to listen to someone that has had to deal with the theo-cons and neo-cons that successfully hijacked the Republican party as he overall disagrees with their methods of staying in power.