Thursday, February 16, 2006

Hackett Sacked

I have this cool email notifier. When I recieve an incoming email, a hip-hop looking kid on a skateboard rolls across my screen, and spray paints “email” in a really nifty graffiti style, accompanied by the sound of a police siren. It made me laugh, so I use it. Usually, I can hear it from my bedroom or the living room, and most of the time I’ll wander over and see who’s bothered to write to me. When I saw that this one came from Paul Hackett, I immediately assumed it was yet another contribution request for his Senate campaign. I almost just deleted it because I sent all I am going to send. For some reason, I decided to read it, and was shocked to learn that he is quitting the race. Just like that. Done. Thanks, y’all, but I’m quitting to, wait for it…..”spend more time with my family.” Yes, he really said that. Now, I’m a father, and a husband, so on the face of it I accept the explanation, but the more I thought about it, the less likely this all seemed. Hackett was politically green, to be sure, but he seemed to relish the fight, and was certainly more outspoken than any other politician I’ve heard out of Ohio. I was so happy when he ran against Schmidt I dropped what I was doing and spent two days canvassing for him in blue collar neighborhoods surrounding Cincinati. Ok, we lost, but it was way close, and there were at least some that argued a plausible case for vote manipulation. He had to know that a Senate bid was going to be even more demanding, and expensive, so I’m not buying that he abruptly ended a viable campaign to STWTF.(I can’t bear to type spend time with the family anymore). So, I made some calls. A few people I spoke with thought his alienation of the Christian Right doomed his campaign in conservative Ohio. Others thought that he had bucked the Democratic Establishment, and that another candidate’s time had come, so the Party muscled Hackett out of the race. While no one said it to me, I was left staring at a cashed check receipt, wondering if the Swift-Boaters had some delicious new lie cooked up about him that he couldn’t bear to defend, no matter how righteous he may be. So, to quote Graham Chapman, Paul, “you make me sad.” It’s ok with me to change your mind, but I felt your explanation was more than a little weak, and may end up speaking more about you than any campaign pledge you may have made….


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