Saturday, May 10, 2003

Well. Looks like "The South Knox Bubba" has made a really nice find. He's hit the RNC website, and come up with the talking points that you're likely to be hearing from Republicans and their mouthpieces about the various Dem candidates over the next year-and-change. Knox quoted the headlines:

WHO IS HOWARD DEAN? An Ultra-Liberal On Social Issues Who Is Out Of The Mainstream And Wrong For America.

WHO IS JOHN EDWARDS? An Unaccomplished Liberal In Moderate Clothing And A Friend To His Fellow Personal Injury Trial Lawyers.

WHO IS DICK GEPHARDT? An Ineffective Leader And Traditional Liberal Democrat Who Is The "Keeper Of The Liberal Flame For Organized Labor And Party Activists." Bonus: GEPHARDT HAS BEEN TRIED, TESTED AND REJECTED

WHO IS BOB GRAHAM? A Tax-And-Spend Liberal In Moderate's Clothing. Bonus: Graham As governor: A Tax-and-SPEND liberal Who left Florida in disarray


WHO IS DENNIS KUCINICH? A Flip-Flopping Liberal Extremist. Bonus: Kucinich voted in favor of a bill making it a criminal offense to injure or kill a fetus during the commission of a violent crime. (Huh?)

WHO IS JOE LIEBERMAN? The Lieberman persona is so inventive, has been so creative, has been so gymnastic in its many shapes and forms, that only he can even begin to explain it. . . . Many politicians look a bit oily, a bit uncomfortable moving across and around the political spectrum, but our Joe looks as comfortable as if he's merely changing clothes.

WHO IS CAROL MOSELEY-BRAUN? A Controversial Liberal Who Was Rejected By Her Own State. Bonus: A Romance And Alliance With A Former Nigerian Agent Sparks Controversy

WHO IS AL SHARPTON? A Liberal Democrat Out Of Touch With America. Bonus: Sharpton Supports Universal Government Run Health Care, Public Campaign Financing, Abortion And Gay Marriage.
(Bubba included links to all of the articles... these are just the headlines.)

Forewarned is forearmed, so it might be a good idea for those a little less inclined to employ these talking points to give them a look-over too. I'm sure the Dems already have responses put together, but everybody else is probably going to have to deal with tertiary versions of these as well.

One thing from the Dean page I'd like to mention... a big and prominent section focuses on how Dean is "at odds with fellow democrats":

Dean Disagrees With Every Other Major Democrat Candidate On The Tax Cut. Dean is the only candidate advocating a repeal of most of the President's tax cuts, while Kerry, Lieberman, and Edwards have called for freezing various portions of the tax relief act. Gephardt has not taken a clear position on freezing or repealing.
This is just one section... there are five. In fact, on the RNC site, there is an entire article named "Dr. Dean Diagnoses Gephardt's Big Gov't-Run Health Care", which details Dean's criticisms of Gephardt's plan. This shows something that should be obvious, but should also be repeated:

"Divide and conquer" is going to be the order of the day!

The Republicans want this to end in the primaries. They know for a fact that the biggest weapon they have is a brutal, bruising Democratic primary that creates enmity, backbiting, and distrust among Democrats and (most importantly) bleeds the candidates' coffers dry. The worse it is, the better it is for their anointed candidate, who can spend every single dollar he amasses during primary season on building up his own brand and attacking the various Democrats. The cost of attacking each on his (or her) own would be as prohibitive for him as it is for the Democrats, but if Republicans can let Democrats do it for them, they can not only save money, they can let the Democrats do their job for them.

A word to the Dems out there... let's not let them play that game, hmm? You're all Democrats, you're all part of the same team and the same historical tradition going back to Kennedy, Roosevelt and beyond, and you're on the right side on the domestic issues that Americans care about. (You also won in 1992 by recognizing the importance of domestic issues... 9/11 made national security an issue, but it didn't make it the only issue.) It's time to take a page from the great Republican leader that the current party repudiated and cheapened when they pursued their "Southern strategy", when the Democrats moved to the side of civil and human rights:

"A house divided against itself cannot stand".

Neither can a party.

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