I’ve made my decision, and it way not easy to come by. I think I’m willing to give Lamont a chance to prove himself. While I appreciate Joe’s willingness to cross party lines for some issues, I know that he certainly doesn’t cross them for every issue. And many of his “crossings” have to do with the Gang of 14 group in the Senate – the people who won’t filibuster the President’s political appointees, and (for the Republicans) won’t vote to use the so-called “nuclear option.” That’s great in some cases, but I’m not sure how many crossing he does to actually write bills.
So, I’m willing to give Lamont a chance. I’m still a little indecisive on the 2nd District House race. Simmons hasn’t done much to piss me off, so my leaning is still toward him. As for Governor, no question there: Rell gets my vote. I like the reforms she’s enacted since taking office. No, she doesn’t support gay marriage, but honestly, how many Democrats do you think really support gay marriage? I’m guessing that, while there are some (like Lamont, apparently), I’m guessing that many do not. There’s also the question of what Rell knew about Rowland’s dealings, but until evidence comes out to say she did something wrong, I’ll presume her innocent.
Back to Lamont…as of October 20th, the latest Quinnipiac poll, Lieberman is leading Lamont by 17 points. That’s huge! They still have the majority of Democrats voting for him, but Independents and Republicans are for Lieberman, according to the poll. I think that this is because Lamont hasn’t been doing enough to appeal to the moderates. He did great in rallying the core Democrats on the issue of Iraq, and that’s part of what won him the primary. However, since then, I feel he’s kind of been staying on the same track instead of adding to his scope in order to reign in more people. His method of campaigning so far appears to consist of attacking Lieberman on his closeness to President Bush, Lieberman’s attendance record, how great a teacher he was, and of course, Iraq. Well, that’s great if all the people you want voting for you are Democrats. But, that won’t convince some of the moderates, and definitely not the hardcore Republicans.
Instead, I think Lamont should be using all the commercials he’s been putting out to discuss his position in other areas. Two particular ones he seems to care about the most (besides Iraq) is healthcare and renewable energy. He’s always talking about how he drives his Toyota Prius (I think) around everywhere, so he should use his commercials to talk green energy. He could use them to briefly present his ideas on healthcare. Should he also talk about the record on voting for the issue in Washington? Sure, but link it to something else than just Iraq. Not everybody shares the same view, and just because it’s the hottest issue right now doesn’t mean it’s going to help you. Personally, I think people are starting to get sick of hearing politicians talk about Iraq (gods knows that Chris Murphy and Nancy Johnson have never touched on Iraq, they’re too busy with taxes).
Lamont has a lot of work to do if he wants to win that seat on November 7th. As time goes on, his chances of getting it become slimmer. Could things go down differently on the day? Sure could, but the numbers seem to show what’s going to happen. Mr. Lamont, if you want to win, you MUST appeal to the moderates. I know I had a hard enough time deciding on who to support, and while I’m willing to give the chance, many others may not be so nice.