We gotta be honest: we're straying from the Democratic fold to endorse independent candidate Linnea Noreen against Rep. Jim McDermott in Seattle's 7th district.
(The token Republican running against McDermott is Steve Beren, a furious little ex-Trotskyite whose anal canal was stitched up sometime in the late 1980's).
We, for one, have grown weary of the lack of energy, the platitudinous and sometimes embarrassing meanderings from Sunny Jim.
When we talk to a Jay Inslee, or a Darcy Burner, we think- why can't we have someone like that working for Seattle?
We get by because McD is fortunate to have hard-working senators- especially Patty Murray- as well as the connected and experienced man from Boeing, Rep. Norm Dicks. they bring home the goodies we get.
McDermott, with his missteps and controversial headline grabbing, is not only a national flame-thrower who makes a plump target for the right-wing mudhoney machine, but his hotdogging has earned him the reputation of does-not-work-well-with-others.
Dick Armey, the former Gingrich protege, is now a lobbyist but also a critic of the religious right's influence in the GOP. He was quoted in the Sunday Times, "It's hard for McDermott to work with people because he is a militant partisan."
While that earns him street cred with some, the district suffers.
We'd rather eat poison than agree with Blethen scion Ryan, but in a breathless piece in the Times on Friday, he described Linnea in a forum with the 7th district candidates:
Noreen clearly wanted to talk about problems ailing the 7th District. She veered in her answer to ask, "Where are federal dollars for transportation?" Good question. Too bad the audience was more concerned about seeing McDermott in action than asking about what he plans to do for the 7th in his next term."
Although we might
question young Ryan's motives for slobbering over Linnea, (we're pretty
sure he wants to snog her), he's got a point: we're all satisfied with
McDermott being a self-proclaimed icon and congressman-for-life because
he stuck it to George Bush back in 2003 by going to Baghdad before the
war and criticizing the war plans. That got him into Michael Moore's movie,
But where's McDermott on the war ever since? He certainly hasn't been out there in the anti-war line of fire like John Murtha, who could have used some help. (it's possible, too, that Murtha might have eschewed the help of the tarnished McD.)
In all his local glory and, dime-a-dozen Seattle standing ovations, we delude ourselves into thinking that a politician doesn't have to be anything more than symbolic.
Where ARE those federal dollars for transportation? And where is that single player health care plan he's been been touting since the earth cooled?
As Alicia Mundy in the Sunday Times put it, "McDermott's favorite issues aren't aimed at making your commute faster, your paycheck fatter or your child smarter. He's best-known for his sharp rhetoric against the Iraq war and his efforts to battle poverty and AIDS in Africa."
Linnea Noreen says she doesn't expect to win, but she'd just like to pull 10% against McD to prove to strong Democrats (are you listening Jennie Durkan? Hey, Peter Steinbrueck! Nick???) to run against him. Noreen is an articulate, savvy, informed young woman who's spent some of her 29 years in the non-profit sector and helping progressive candidates. We're voting for her despite our vow to never vote for anyone except Democrats again.
To be able to write this; for Noreen to run against him, is a luxury of which we couldn't partake if Jim was in political trouble against a Republican. But since he's not (yet) we can, so we urge you to vote for Noreen and make a political statement in the safety of the blue zone that is Seattle.