Posts Tagged ‘Dino Rossi’
August 31st, 2010 at 11:35 am
Marco Rubio Is In a Class By Himself

Three Freedom Works-backed U.S. Senate candidates sent videotaped messages to the 1,000+ gathering of grassroots activists last Friday night.  The differences in quality and presentation were noticeable.

Dino Rossi (R-WA) stands in front of a campaign banner dressed in slacks and an open collar, long-sleeved shirt.  He thanks Freedom Works and the crowd for its hard work, and gives an earnest, seemingly impromptu riff on the problems facing Washington State and America.  Good, but not great.

Next was Rand Paul (R-KY).  Seated in an office environment surrounded by book shelves, Paul also sports an open collar shirt.  Like Rossi’s video, Paul’s looks and feels like a candidate taking a few moments out of a busy day to look directly into a camera held by a campaign operative, and doing his best to stay on message.

Then Marco Rubio’s video begins.  After the fade-in, Rubio (R-FL) appears leaning forward on a stool with one foot on the ground as if ready to walk forward and greet the viewer.  He’s dressed in a crisp dark suit and power tie.  His mannerisms give the subtle impression he’s studied how to interact with a camera.  His delivery is smooth and unhurried.  Unlike Rossi and Paul, Rubio doesn’t just talk to the audience members; he connects with them.  His video is certainly shot in a studio, and his communications team took pains to mold his stump speech to fit this grassroots crowd.

Judging by the audience’s reaction after each candidate’s video, Rubio won the straw poll. No wonder the Freedom Works organizers chose to end with his submission.

August 21st, 2010 at 2:32 pm
Third Place Tea Party Candidate Making Life Difficult for Republican Nominee

Former NFL player and third place U.S. Senate candidate Clint Didier isn’t ready to ask his fellow Tea Party members to back Republican nominee Dino Rossi.  After a closed door session with Rossi, Didier emerged unconvinced that Rossi – a two-time Washington gubernatorial runner-up – is committed to any specific policy positions.

One could make the argument that Didier’s explicit positions on spending, taxes and abortion contributed to his distant third place finish in the recently concluded primary.  It’s also conventional wisdom that Tea Party members are more likely to vote for a Republican than a Democrat if given the choice.

But that assumes that Tea Party members think that that must vote for either of the two remaining candidates; in this case Rossi or incumbent Senator Patty Murray (D-WA).  That’s a false assumption.  Many Tea Party members are active in the movement precisely because they think conventional Republicans like Rossi can’t be trusted.  If Rossi fails to woo a majority of Didier’s supporters, this November will be his third – and likely last – statewide defeat.  The Tea Party will just stay home.

As Didier points out, he’s not trying to back Rossi into a corner, but rather deliver him votes.  It’s time establishment Republicans realized that the Tea Party isn’t a slice of the electorate that can be ignored in favor of the ephemeral “middle” – it’s the conservative base.