Why Is Brian O'Dwyer So Angry?
by Scott Shields, Tue Feb 13, 2007 at 09:30:19 PM EST
When controversy strikes, it's often hard to keep up with all of the players and their allegiances. Take the latest dust-up over Edwards staffers Amanda Marcotte and Melissa McEwan. Sure, there were the usual suspects like professional offendee Bill Donohue and right-wing opportunist Michelle Malkin. But what about some of the other folks involved? Take, for example, the Christian Alliance for Progress, who accused Matt of "intolerance and arrogance." I know I'd never heard of them until this flap.
And what about Brian O'Dwyer of the National Democratic Ethnic Leadership Council? As reported by Ben Smith at The Politico, O'Dwyer pushed a statement to the media reading, in part, "Senator Edwards is condoning bigotry by keeping the two bloggers on his staff. Playing to the cheap seats with anti-Catholic bigotry has no place in the Democratic Party." Now, whatever you think of the comments made by Edwards' staffers, it's hard to imagine that any Democrat thinks Edwards was "condoning bigotry" by not putting them out on the streets.
Politics being what it is, I had trouble taking O'Dwyer's anger at face value. Sure, I can buy that he found the comments truly offensive. But why would a good Democrat like Brian O'Dwyer publicly bash a fellow Democrat like Edwards with such force? After all, Brian O'Dwyer is a good Democrat who has given money to candidates like Ned Lamont and whose family tree includes his father Paul, President of the New York City Council in the seventies, and uncle William, Mayor of New York from 1946 to 1950.
Could it be that O'Dwyer's anger is less about the words of one blogger and more about his own personal political loyalties? After all, O'Dwyer has given $12,100 to Edwards opponent Hillary Clinton since 2000 -- more than he's given to any other single candidate. And according to his official bio, he was the National Co-Chair or Irish-Americans for Clinton-Gore in 1992 and 1996.
I'm not accusing the Clinton camp of orchestrating this campaign against Edwards. After all, O'Dwyer was relatively late to the game. But it's simply impossible to believe that it was anything but his loyalty to Clinton that led O'Dwyer to join in the right-wing pile-on.
UPDATE: It seems that there's some discrepancy between the reports at CampaignMoney.com, which indicates O'Dwyer gave $3,000 on 1/13/06 and Newsmeat.com, which says $3,000 was returned to him on the same date.
Whatever the case, my original point still stands -- O'Dwyer has been a Clinton partisan and major donor to her political campaigns.