You see, I have been enamored of the idea that it would be a marvelous thing to elect an African-American to the United States Senate. I gave money, not once but twice, to Harvey Gantt as he unsuccessfully tried to unseat Jesse Helms. When HF Jr. succeeded his father in 1997, I thought that he might someday move higher up, and looked forward to that possibility.
Then, late in Jr's first term, with President Clinton fighting for his political life, I saw him take the floor of the US House to join in the attacks. Even if it were mild condemnation, this was inexcusable, even for a first-termer. I should have seen what was to come.
He has essentially been running for the Senate ever since. He has appeared on Don Imus' radio show countless times to suck up to the aging DJ and trying to make his bones with the Washington Beltway insiders. He has appeared on Fox News many times as well, and I don't have to tell you that Fox News is the Al-Jazeera of the Republican Party.
Then, this spring, he was too busy eating at Speaker Naifeh's Coon Supper to be in DC to vote against the horrible 2005-6 Budget. He followed that stellar performance by voting for the Bankruptcy Bill, a virtual giveaway to the credit-card industry that hurts HIS OWN DISTRICT more than any other.
He did manage to vote against CAFTA, for which I gave him props. But after this speech, it's too late. Read here from the Flyer article:
Addressing the annual awards banquet of the University of Memphis Law School Alumni, Ford expressed his initial support of the war effort this way: “I support this war in Iraq. I supported it from the very beginning for one reason. Saddam Hussein was a bad guy. Now, there are those who criticize and quarrel with this, and make the point over and over again that perhaps we shouldn’t have done it the way we’ve done it, and I would agree. But I wouldn’t blame the president, or anybody else for that matter, from waking up on September 12th and wondering aloud what would happen if Saddam Hussein and bin Laden married.
"It would be very easy for us to sit back in the comfort of our own homes and say, Well, one is secular and one is religious and they won’t . It would be very easy for us to think that 9/11 wouldn’t happen, but it did.”
Bush’s “instinct” had been right, said Ford, who has visited Iraq three times in the last two years and plans a fourth visit, but there is “a lot of room for change” in how the president pursues operations in Iraq. “I love my president. I love him personally,” Ford said. “But he’s just wrong. – wrong for not being willing to admit that we’ve made some mistakes....It was right to take him [Saddam] down but wrong to think that we can’t right this course.”
If you happen to be a Democrat, I would hope that you find that statement offensive. Bush's instinct was right? WTF???
You have been accused by many critics, not just me, of being, shall we say, "soft" on the issues, willing to say just about anything, in hope of striking the politically-correct “moderate” pose that might possibly get you elected to the Senate as a Democrat in a state that's gone heavily Republican in the last two national elections. Others besides me have pointed at your recent voting record in Congress as an indication of this zeal for the middle ground. But talking out of both sides of your mouth doesn't qualify as "middle-speak," Congressman; it qualifies as "mush."
And that, at heart, is why I cannot support his candidacy for the US Senate. He has essentially proven that he will say anything to anyone to be elected to the US Senate.
He also makes the critical error that someone who is now supposed to be a national figure should NEVER make; he takes his base for granted. He assumes that he will be the nominee, especially with Chuck Schumer clouting for him. He has voted against the best interests of the working people of his district, and he expects them to flock to vote for him in August 2006 because he would be a historic figure.
Don't count your votes so quickly, Congressman.
I do have some qualms with Rosalind Kurita, but I feel like she has a better grasp on what the working people of Tennessee need: a tax structure that rewards work, not wealth, a better health care system for all, and someone who will be there for the average Tennessean, not the average CEO.
In the long run, I remember the words of Harry S. Truman, who noted that "if you only give people a choice between a Democrat who votes like a Republican and a REAL Republican, the people will take the real Republican every time."
And so it goes that I join Autoegocrat in asking you to support Rosalind Kurita for the United States Senate; at least she still knows what it means to be a Democrat.