HI-SEN: Show Lamont-Backing Akaka a Big Volcano of Support, Y'all!
by schultzy, Thu Aug 17, 2006 at 07:24:34 PM EDT
Saturday over at dailykos.com I raised the then-new Rasmussen poll showing this primary race as a statistical dead heat - Akaka 47%/Case 45%. That poll still freaks me out. I do not mind all the love shown for Lamont, I just think it would be a shame if Ned Lamont were elected to serve as Connecticut's junior senator just to have his votes cancelled out by Hawaii's conservative DINO-DLC-Joementum-stealer, Ed Case.
My diary inadvertently caused a flame war because I was frustrated at the heaps of attention given to Connecticut's primary compared to the almost zippo amount of attention everyone seems to give to the Hawaii primary. I know! Many of you will think that every other race outside of that CT-SEN primary is saying that, but in this case the comparisons are all too relevant: it's a Senate primary where a Democrat is challenging a Democratic incumbent, and the ideological contrasts between these candidates are even more sharp.
Here is a bit more about the race, if you are not familiar with it. The incumbent, Dan Akaka, and the challenger, Ed Case, could not be further apart than they are and remain in a primary. It is fair to say that the contrasts between Akaka and Case are even starker than those between Lamont and Lieberman. Case is decidedly more conservative, and Akaka is likely to be more progressive than Lamont. The national attention given to Lieberman's support for Bush combined with the proximity of Connecticut to larger media markets made for a larger share of the attention pie for the Connecticut primary than is given to Hawaii's Senate Primary.
Here are some of the main points of contrast:
-> A proud progressive
-> Endorsed Lamont's general election campaign
-> Voted against the patriot act
-> Voted against Bush's failed war in Iraq
-> One of the 13 brave and just senators to vote for the Kerry/Feingold amendment calling for a withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq
-> Endorsed by Inouye, Kerry, Kennedy, Feingold, Obama, Kucinich, many labor unions, Peace Action, and Progressive Democrats of Hawaii
-> Is far more conservative than Lieberman
-> Endorsed Lieberman for I run for the CT Senate in the general election
-> Endorsed Lieberman for President in '04
-> Member of the U.S. House DLC caucus
-> Voted for the patriot act
-> Voted to rubber stamp Bush's failed war in Iraq
-> Actively pursing Republicans in the open Hawaii primary
-> Called bloggers, Akaka, and progressives in general extremists
-> Said some crazy things supporting Rumsfeld and his approach to Guantanamo Bay torture
-> Is clearly a Democrat in Name Only
-> Endorsed by pro-business groups that normally support republicans like Hawaii's governor
Now I am not in Hawaii and I have never been to Hawaii. The same things that motivated many of you folks to support Lamont are the same things that compel me to support Akaka. I hope you have room in your heart - and potentially in your pocketbooks - to donate. I also highly recommend you help me raise awareness by also researching on your own or blogging about this race. Since it is not as easy for many of you to get to Hawaii, I urge you to find your best way to help Akaka. Maybe your niece is in the Navy in Hawaii, and she has never voted? Maybe you are involved at a high level with ActBlue or MoveOn, or some other organization, and have the ability to influence your fellow organizers to include them on their targeted list to raise money or awareness of this key race. Maybe you actually can get to Hawaii to canvas and help. I am not sure, I just hope you can get involved in some way and help Akaka.
Then there's the "where do we focus our energies" factor, and before you read the rest of the paragraph, please understand this is by no means a knock on any work you may have done in CT, your choice for donations or your choice for your blogging energies. I respect you and have learned from your example. Ideologically, Lamont is a better candidate for me and a much better fit for the Democratic Party, and clearly, CT voters get that too.
But(and you knew a "but" was coming) I would rather work hard to protect a good incumbent from a primary challenge from a DINO like Ed Case than focus my attention on defeating a Democrat in a primary.
Primaries bug me, because we do not yet control the U. S. House or U.S. Senate or the White House. I would rather secure our base and control some things first. I felt it better to work hard where nobody outside of Hawaii is working hard, and that is to support the good incumbent Senator Akaka.
Sometimes I feel like the voice in the wilderness while trying to raise awareness of Akaka's race. I am not alone, though, because Senator Kennedy has... Senator Kerry has... Senator Obama has...
crossposted to my blog and www.dailykos.com