Thursday, August 03, 2006

Local Politics: Going Green

So Brainstormfront has sent me a note wondering why I haven't done much local politics, and sent me this link.

Well, the reason for no local politics is in part that I haven't much felt like it - I'm not some cable pundit that has to be perpetually indignant about something - and the fact that things have been pretty quiet. Initiatives are slowly making the ballot and candidates are officially registering and we've moved within the time frame where Dave Riechert's office can no longer use my money to tell me what a great job he's doing.

And the link, about McGavick's huge, golden parachute, is not news in itself. It is news that someone, as in a descendent of the firm's founder, is suing him about it. McGavick, who is crossing the state in a big winnebago, reassuring Washingtonians that he is just one of the guys, states that the suit is purely political. Probably. But then, someone giving you 28 mill when you're walking out the door to run for office, when they don't have to, may just be a little be political as well.

But that's not what caught my eye. Rather, its this little note from my home state, and former neighbor Rick Santorum. It seems that the Santorum/Casey fight has another candidate, a member of the Green party. Sound good - diversity is supposed to be good, and the candidates currently range from conservative to wingnut.

Except ... the Green candidate's coffers are swelling because of contributions from conservatives who are also supporting Santorum. Well, not all of them. The candidate himself put in 30 bucks. But the remainder of the 66 thousand bucks are from Santorum supporters. The PA GOP is funding the Greens.

Now, playing around with the party system is nothing new for the GOP. In 1996, the national party was stunned by Perot's Reform Party carving off a small but significant chunk of libertarian-minded Americans. So in 2000, a plucky band of conservatives fought their way into the convention, shut down everyone else, and nominated Pat Buchanan. The former Nixon speechwriter and talk show host then sat on his hands for the rest of the election, refusing to offer any real fight. So the GOP has a history with mixing it up in other party's parties for their own benefit.

Now in Washington State, we also have a Green candidate running in the McGavrick/Cantwell race. And I just bet the liberal blogs are checking over the Green's contribution list. (Ahem. I SAID "I just BET the LIBERAL BLOGS are checking over THE GREEN'S contribution LISTS!"). In particular since McGavick's "I'm just a regular guy in a Winnebago" tour is turning into a "I'm just a regular guy in a winnebago with a check from an insurance company worth 28 Mill in my back pocket and still down 11 points" tour. So opening another front on Cantwell, accusing her of being too conservative, is a win situation (and indeed, the local GOP applauds "additional candidates that promote diversity and don't steal voters from our base").

You would expect me to condemn all this behavior. And you would be wrong. Instead, I want to figure out how I can get a piece of the action.

I notice that there hasn't been any noise about a Green Candidate in 8th district, where Darcy Burner is surprising Dave Reichert both on fundraising and issues. This would be a perfect place to open up another front, on the left of Ms. Burner. For that reason, I am willing to make myself available as a candidate for US Rep, 8th District, but only if I get sufficient backing. And you Santorum supporters in PA know what I'm talking about here. Wink Wink. I promise to spend the bulk of the funds raised on wild fundraising parties, and the rest I'll just squander. But you know you can't resist the opportunity.

If you want to talk, you can reach me here at Grubb Street. I'll be standing out in the back yard, with my bushel basket, waiting for the contributions to rain from the sky.

More later,