I love, love, LOVE this speech. Right here, in less than six minutes, Virginia 6th District Democrat Andy Schmookler sums it all up, better than many better-funded and better-known Democratic candidates have ever done in their lives. Powerful, brilliant…just wow.
So, other than wishing that every Democratic candidate could speak like this and WOULD speak like this, I just hope (possibly against hope?) that this speech gets the attention it deserves. Watch it for yourself, and if you agree that it totally kicks a**, please spread it around, you know that whole “viral” thang? Also, see the “flip” for a rough transcript (I loved it so much I couldn’t resist). Enjoy – and once you’re done, please forward this around, as it nails it better than any speech by a Democratic candidate this cycle – at least one I’ve come across. Thanks.
…This Republican Party that we have now is not our fathers’ Republican Party. It is neither conservative nor interested in dealing with our problems. This is a party which has become unlike anything we’ve ever seen at center stage of American politics. We have to recognize that we’re dealing with something which is different from what we’re used to, which is showing a dark and sick and broken spirit that has taken over a once great party.
You can see this sick and broken spirit in various patterns…a spirit which never has enough of either wealth or power, even though we have the greatest income inequality that we’ve had in living memory, this force is working to widen that gap still further with the Ryan budget…with Mitt Romney’s tax proposals; all of them take from average Americans to give to those who already have the most.
…This force has given us a Supreme Court that’s handed down that disgraceful decision in Citizens United, putting our government up for auction. All men are created equal is getting swamped by the almighty dollar.
This is a force that makes a fight over everything. When Barack Obama tried to reinstitute cooperation as a dynamic in our political system by proposing Republican ideas as a solution to genuine American problems, all of a sudden what THEY had proposed as cap and trade became socialism, what they had proposed as an individual mandate became unconstitutional, what they had proposed became called death panels.
This is a force appealing only to the worst in people, not feeding our faith, hope and love, but feeding our hatreds and fears. And it’s a force which is consistently dishonest…and that is their Achilles heel, because the only way a force like this can have power is by deceiving people into believing that they are something that they are not.
Which is what brings me here, unexpectedly in my life cycle, to be a political candidate…When I was 15, my dad told me I was not cut out to be a politician. Dad said you’re too straightforward, you insist on saying what you really think, and that’s not how politics works. I saw that he was right. That was 50 years ago, and in those 50 years I’ve sought the truth about why it is that some societies serve their people well, while other societies hurt them. And in all those 50 years, I never thought I’d run for political office.
Until now. Now the dishonesty in our politics has become so bad and the lies from this gang that’s hijacked the Republican Party are so often defeating the truth, that I figured now is the time for someone like me, that truthelling needs its champions. And that’s why I’m running to replace Bob Goodlatte in Congress. [wild applause]
We’ve got a job to do here in the 6th district [of Virginia] that needs to be done on a national basis, which is to expose to the good, decent conservative people of our country and our district that the force that they’re supporting is not the friend of their own deep values. It is not conservative; and we can see that by the way they trample on our political traditions. Like on the debt ceiling which we don’t deal with that way; like the filibuster that we do not use that way. A conservative understands you don’t just sweep your traditions aside; you honor them, you protect them, they’re there for a reason.
But not this group, they’re not conservative, they’re not patriotic. We now know that even before President Obama was inaugurated, they met together to say, we’re going to make this president fail. I don’t think there’s been a single time that an opposition party has made that their priority, but especially at a time of a national crisis, when we had two wars that they had botched…especially at a time when the whole American economy and the global economy were on the edge of an abyss. You don’t want the president to fail if you’re a patriot. If the president fails – we’ve only got one at a time – the country fails, and tens of millions of Americans suffer. No real patriot would ever want to do that! [APPLAUSE]
This Republican Party is a fraud, it is based on lies, you can see in Ryan’s speech last week…I can see it in the emails I get from Bob Goodlatte. They pretend to be one thing, they are another. The truth is our weapon, let’s go fight that battle and win it!