Reidblog [The Reid Report blog]

Think at your own risk.
Sunday, June 14, 2009
The Clinton-Obama establishments vs. the Obama generation
They're the best of buds, and now Bill Clinton is hoping to do for Kendrick Meek what he did for his other pal, Terry McAuliffe ... ok that's probably not such a good example ... but make no mistake, the Clintons are very much on the ballot in the Florida Senate race.

Meanwhile, the Democratic party elders (outside Florida at least,) wonders: how do you stop a problem like democracy? First up: Joe Sestak, who, God bless him, is going to challenge Arlen Switcheroo in Pennsylvania:
“I understand the very short-term, expedient desire to have the insurance of a 60th vote,” Sestak said, speaking of the implications of Specter’s April party switch and why the longtime senator was so quickly embraced by the administration.

But he added of Obama: “I believe in his heart of hearts, he really wants a real Democrat to win this race, and I think he very much respects that we are pretty independent-minded in Pennsylvania and we should have a choice.”

Asked directly if a plea from Obama would make any difference, Sestak shook his head and said: “No.”
In New York, it won't be a Senate walk for the party's designated Senator, Kirsten Gillibrand, either, since Carolyn Maloney seems to be very much in the race, probably with Joe Trippi as her campaign manager:
Maloney, a veteran member of Congress who represents much of New York City’s silk-stocking Upper East Side, dispatched longtime Democratic consultant and her likely chief campaign strategist Joe Trippi to state her intentions about a potential challenge to Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.).

“She’s way past all that,” Trippi said when asked about how Maloney would respond to a request from Obama to stay out of the race. “She really believes the people of New York deserve a choice. She’s not somebody who’s going to back down.”
This should all ring very familiar to our president:
For Obama, there’s an added irony that isn’t lost on some Democrats — that the ultimate insurgent candidate is now in the incumbent-protection business.

In the case of Sestak and Maloney, Obama may be reaping what he sowed. While Hillary Clinton wasn’t an incumbent in the presidential race, she was the establishment figure who many Democratic elites rallied around early on in the primary. But the president proved that an insurgent can win and that Democratic primary voters can buck their elected leaders.

“Who do they think inspired these people to run?” asked Trippi. “They started this. They took on the established order of the party. If they had listened to the establishment, Obama wouldn’t be in the White House. It’s hard for them to argue with this when they blazed the trail.”
Amen, and Amen. Like it or not, President Obama has inspired a new thirst for the democratic process inside this country and out. Let's have at it and let the voters decide.

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posted by JReid @ 9:50 PM  
ReidBlog: The Obama Interview
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