Graham: Gomez run for Senate won’t help build GOP
Friday, May 3, 2013
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I knew that Massachusetts Republicans had to lower their ideological expectations if they wanted to win an election here in the Bay State.
I just didn’t know that included the Republican primary.
Once you start nominating Obama supporters who give money to uber-liberal Alan Khazei and were writing checks to Democratic congressional candidates last year, you haven’t lowered expectations. You’ve abandoned them.
That Gabriel Gomez “supported” Barack Obama in 2008 is not in doubt. He made that claim (“I supported Obama in 2008”) along with his pledge to support President Obama on amnesty and gun control, in a letter to Gov. Deval Patrick pleading for a free shot at John Kerry’s Senate seat.
What is in doubt, at least for Gomez supporters, is the definition of the word “support.” Gomez says that while he “supported” Obama, he didn’t actually vote for him.
Or as Gomez said (verbatim) on NECN: “What I meant by ‘I support the president,’ [sic] what I meant was that I support that the fact that the president is now finally, he campaigned on this before but didn’t do anything in his first term, he’s now elevated this to a national discussion.”
I don’t think that’s Spanish, but it’s sure not English …
So how did Gomez win? He won this election the old-fashioned way — he bought it.
Gomez outspent Michael Sullivan 4-1 … at least. But even worse, Gomez had the support of the state GOP establishment.
Why? Here’s former state GOP chairwoman Jennifer Nassour on Gabriel Gomez’s Republican bona fides:
“He’s a fresh face, he’s the new type of Republican, he’s Latino, he’s young, he’s camera friendly. When you look at everything he embodies — being able to go to his son’s Little League games — he’s who my demographic would want to see in office.”
So when the “Good-looking Latino Dads Little League Act of 2013” comes up for a vote, Massachusetts will have just the senator to sponsor it!
I know Republicans are worried about “low-information” voters, but is the solution really a “low-information” candidate? A guy whose entire campaign consisted of chanting “Navy Seal” and quoting the Pledge of Allegiance in Spanish?
Don’t bother asking Gomez supporters about his positions on the issues. It just makes them mad.
“In the Republican primary issues didn’t matter,” Nassour said.
Gomez is just the latest example of the Massachusetts GOP’s idiotic “magic bullet candidate” theory. Rather than doing the hard work of repairing the GOP brand, the super-geniuses of the state Republican Party look for candidates who they believe can somehow rise above it.
In most states RINO (Republican In Name Only) is an insult. Here, it’s official party dogma.
“But Michael, that’s the only way Republicans can win!” Sure it is. Just ask Congressman Tisei, Sen. Brown and Gov. Healey.
Being gutless, ideological sellouts is bad. But being gutless sellouts who keep losing is utterly unbearable.
No Republican can win this race because the party brand is too badly damaged. But imagine what a competent conservative could do to improve the GOP brand campaigning on the EBT mess, the immigration fiasco related to the Boston bombings and the Democrats’ obsession with tax hikes.
Instead the GOP is going to wage an
identity-politics campaign by a candidate whose core message is going to be “I don’t really like Republicans either!”
Worse, Gomez’s shaky public performances show a candidate not yet ready for prime time. I’m afraid that by the time this election is over, we may learn that Gabriel Gomez is Spanish for “Joe Biden.”
Thanks, Massachusetts GOP. Thanks a lot.
Listen to Michael Graham noon to 3 p.m. weekdays on WCRN-AM (830). Follow him on Twitter @IAMMGraham or at www.michaelgraham.com.