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Dede Scozzafava: A Lesson to Moderates?

By Kelly Thomas - Posted on 10 November 2009

From MSNBC. Dede Scozzafava speaks out (tears and all) in this Washington Post article about what she experienced in her campaign for NY-23. I am ashamed that she was treated this way by the Republican Party and it makes me fearful for any future GOP candidates perceived as "too impure" to be a real Republican. With the NY-23 laying the ground work, what can we expect for Governor Charlie Crist (Florida) or Representative Cao (Louisiana)? What kind of lesson should moderate Republicans take from this?

A) Watch out moderates-the GOP purity machine is coming after you!

B) Stay strong! The Palin plan backfired and should empower moderates to make the GOP tent bigger

C) Time to switch parties. It is clear you are not appreciated or wanted. The Democrats will welcome you-diverse views and all-with open arms. 

GOUVERNEUR, N.Y. - Over Halloween weekend,Dede Scozzafava morphed from a rosy-cheeked Republican mom to apolitical figure of speech.

"My name's a verb now," she said.

A little-known state assemblywomanwith moderate Republican views and a mouthful of a surname,Scozzafava's bid for an open seat in New York's 23rd CongressionalDistrict drew trash talk from conservative leaders hoping to purge herfrom the party, mash notes from White House-dispatched Democraticsuitors that included Bill Clinton, and the unblinking gaze ofpolitical professionals fascinated by her role as the problem child fora dysfunctional Republican Party.

...At her desk, with a fuzzy elephant face downon a bookshelf behind her, she recalled the exhausting end days of hercampaign. Violet semicircles hung below her teary eyes as she recountedhow Sarah Palin, Glenn Beck and other conservative leaders excoriatedher for less-than-orthodox positions on gay rights, abortion andorganized labor. Her nose reddened as she recalled her abrupt exit fromthe special election to replace John M. McHugh, whom President Obama had appointed as secretary of the Army earlier in the year.

Theconservative movement's third-party candidate, Doug Hoffman, expectedher support but, she said, the newcomer accountant "had no integrity."Plus, the Democrats were so nice! They called. Theysympathized. They made her feel good about tossing her support to BillOwens, who -- with her help -- became the area's first Democraticrepresentative in more than a century.

"Oh,someone left chocolates for me!" she said, picking up a present fromher aunt and uncle. Her GOP family has been less supportive. And shewarns that what happened to her will happen to candidates like her.



Horrible circumstances and she didn't deserve this. That's why most everyone here was against Hoffman. That race was invaded at the expense of woman who has served her community, local party and district for over 20 years. She was ripped apart for her views because they weren't conservative enough, her party turned their back on her, then she was kicked to the curb while becoming a target for vicious conservatives across the country. And all of this to serve a national agenda and someone not even living in the district, at the expense of the people actually in the district. She was chosen by the local Republicans, that should have been the end of it.

Now they have someone who is more left than her. Great victory, idiots. The "leaders" of the conservative movement are vicious, poisonous and they should have kept their mouth shut.  But they didn't learn from this, in fact most keep insisting (and spinning) that this is a victory and only the beginning. Brace yourselves. 

The GOP stripped her of her leadership position in the New York Assembly. Time to join the Democratic Party. It's so sad, because these are the types of candidates that I want to see having a bigger voice in the GOP.

Sarah Palin continues to be the gift that keeps on giving for the DNC and Obama.

Just finished the article and now i'm reading the comments. There are some former Republicans speaking out about how the religious right and neocons stole their party too and turned against gays, science, and made Christianity the religion of choice etc. Interesting posts. Recruits for RFO? lol Someone get a spokesman in there.
They sound like perfect candidates for the "impure" site known as RFO. Maybe there are more of us out there than we realize...wishful thinking?

I wonder what effect the internet has had on all of our infighting.  When Republicans (MODERATE Republicans) ran New York state (not so long ago!), Republicans from other parts of the country didn't really seem to mind.  They "let" us do things our way (not that I always agreed with the way we did things back then).

Now that people from the south and other parts of the country get info from our neck of the woods just as easily and as quickly as we get it, they seem a lot less tolerant of our regional differences.  They feel like it's their obligation to interfere with our local GOP. 

Having fake news personalities like Beck define for our entire, enormous, diverse country what it means to be a good conservative doesn't help either.  


"Beck define for our entire, enormous, diverse country"

Not NY 23!!  They just didn't give Dede any


Have you been saving that.
I think he first posted that in another NY-23 thread.

It's sad that we've reached a point where 'government service' is a dirty word... If we're the greatest country on earth, maybe we can have the greatest government.

Lewis Black

I have a bunch of a videos to post tonight from last night's shows. I thought this fit best in here so I'll start here. Colbert did another one of his 'Better Know A District' segments and it was Delaware's moderate Republican Mike Castle.

He's a dying breed it seems. This was hilarious.

The Colbert Report Mon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Better Know a District - Delaware's Mike Castle
Colbert Report Full Episodes Political Humor U.S. Speedskating
From MSNBC. Rep. Cao (La) is already feeling some heat but I love how he stands firm behind his decision. Even Crist is trying to kiss up to the far right, now denying he ever supported the stimulus package.

From MSNBC. More punishment for moderates. Sen. Lindsey Graham is censured by the South Carolina GOP for not living up to their conservative expectations. Ugh! Does South Carolina really want to stay in the news?

The New York Times reports that Sen. Lindsey Graham has been censured by the Charleston County Republican Party -- in a unanimous vote.


“For many of the positions he has taken that do not represent the wishes of the people of South Carolina, such as: passing a ‘cap and trade’ energy bill, bailing out banks and granting amnesty for illegal aliens.”
The local chair said, “The feeling is if you’re not going to uphold the platform, then why bother to run as a Republican?”

Graham's office pointed to the senator being "ranked the 15th most conservative senator in 2008 by National Journal."

Remember, Graham also voted in favor of Sonia Sotomayor.

Another example of the GOP trying to "purify" the party.

 Don't they realize that if all the "moderates" leave (moderates by definition here means anyone who is not a right wing nutjob) the GOP will forever be a minority party? Is that what they really want?

What they really want is for everyone else to come around to their way of thinking. Know what... not going to happen!



Yes, that is what they "really" want.

Their "National Strategy?"

The Southern Strategy - in all states, all the time.

Tough outlook for Snowe as a moderate Republican. Check out this poll. Will she be better off switching to a Democrat, especially if she votes for health care reform? This has me convinced that the Tea Partiers are a huge majority of the GOP these days.

Asked how they would vote in a primary contest between Snowe and a more conservative challenger, just 31% of likely Republican voters say they would pick Snowe while 59% say they would go for the conservative alternative.

Don't you bet that the percentage of voters who identify as Republicans who have ever attended a "tea party" or have even thought about the "tea party movement" for more than a 5 minutes is miniscule?
If they're minuscule (sic), the GOP shouldn't fear them.

It's sad that we've reached a point where 'government service' is a dirty word... If we're the greatest country on earth, maybe we can have the greatest government.

Lewis Black

From Politico. Dede was on Rachael Maddow with a message to the GOP. Wow-that woman really should join RFO. I can really relate to her sentiments. For now, she is keeping the R but I wonder how long that will last if this horrible treatment continues.

I saw this in the link of my Sesame Street story. Not sure if the NY Daily News leans one way or the other but they had this story about a recent poll.

For the first time in years, the GOP has the lead in generic ballot preferences over Democrats. That is, if people are asked whether they’ll vote for an unnamed Democrat or Republican for Congress, 48% are saying they’ll back the Republican, versus 44% who will choose the Democrat.

We’re not sure of the last time that was true, but 2002 was the last especially strong year for the GOP, and the Democrats have been very strong since March 2006.

See below push-back on that poll for what it's worth (ofcourse, we see this often when polls don't have the hoped-for outcome.) I do find this result curious, however, given my personal sense of how people around me seem to be viewing the GOP-sort of as a joke these days. Most seem to see them as a "party of no" who are pushing away diversity in favor of purity. Now I do live in NY so if you live in the South, I'm sure it's different (but the GOP can't survive as just a Southern party IMO.) When another poll shows only 20-25% of people identifying themselves as a Republicans and others show the approval rating of Republicans in Congress holding steady around 25%, I don't think the GOP can take too much comfort from these generic poll numbers. I'm sure Democrats will take it seriously as they move forward and Republicans will pat themselves on the back, hoping all the lies and fear tactics are really working!

From MSNBC First Read:

*** Pushing back on Gallup: Yesterday, we mentioned a Gallup poll showing Republicans with a four-point advantage in the generic ballot. A Democratic pollster emails First Read that the party ID in the poll is a bit “whacky,” with Dems enjoying only a two-point party ID edge when you count leaners. Most national phone surveys, we’re reminded, have Democrats with a double-digit party ID lead. “In short, something doesn't seem quite right in the Gallup data,” the Dem pollster says. “I will grant that independents seem to be leaning toward the GOP on the generic ballot right now... But there is simply no way that Republicans and Democrats are essentially tied on party ID, and I think this calls their overall ballot numbers very much into question.”

I would love to see a poll asking people who they would vote for if their choices were: a) an unnamed Democrat, b) an unnamed Republican or c) a theoretical "center-right" (i.e., "moderate") candidate.  My bet would be on choice "c".
What the foxtrot...? Graham is one of the more longer-serving GOP Senators. They can't possibly keep that up, or the GOP will lose the filibuster option.

It's sad that we've reached a point where 'government service' is a dirty word... If we're the greatest country on earth, maybe we can have the greatest government.

Lewis Black

One of the comments after the article:

The New York Times reports that Sen. Lindsey Graham has been censured by the Charleston County Republican Party -- in a unanimous vote.


I'll take a guess....

His sheet isn't WHITE enough?

Try some Clorox next time there Lindsey...  lol lol lol 


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