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My Left Nutmeg

Avoiding A Lamont Backlash

by: imajoebob

Thu Aug 03, 2006 at 02:43:49 AM EDT

I'm writing this in the wee hours before the new Q poll is scheduled to be released, so I have no idea what the new reality will be on Thursday.  But I do know what the reality was on Wednesday, and it demands a careful balance.

Connecticut prides itself on a lot of things.  Most of them justly so.  Our schools, both public and private, and K-12 and Universities, are the best in the nation, if not the world.  We have great landscapes, seashores, and historical locales (and basketball!).  We've got good ol' Yankee ingenuity.  We're the Land of Steady Habits, with the famous puritan work ethic.  But another puritan ethic is we don't like people enjoying the misfortune of others.  And we really don't like self-righteous smugness.  And there's the problem.

imajoebob :: Avoiding A Lamont Backlash
A lot of the blogging of late is celebrating the fall of Joe lieberman as much or more than the rise of Ned Lamont.  There's a lot of self congratulatory posts, a lot of demeaning comments, and an almost vulgar "rip out his heart and show it to him" attitude.

Make no mistake, politics, even here in Connecticut, is a bare knuckle sport.  But it's still not yet the blood sport it's become in places like Texas and Missouri.  One of the (big) reasons Lamont is successful is that people recognize and appreciate his civility.  While some may fault us for it, Connecticut voters desire a genteel, amicable campaign.  We don't want someone representing us who'd do anything, say anything to win.  We want an advocate, not a hired gun.

This is likely a big reason Lieberman has been sinking in the polls (we'll see in a few hours).  His in-your-face attacks are discourteous, rude, and graceless.  At the same time, Lamont has kept his cool and presented himself as polite to a fault, and the epitome of grace under fire.  If you watch his commercials you come away with a memory of the people who are supporting him (those school kids are pure genius).  Lieberman commercials are very Joe-centric, and his off-the-cuff remarks seem self-righteous.  I can go on, but I think I've made the point.

All this is to urge everyone to keep this in mind for the rest of this campaign.  Use common sense in your comments.  Concentrate on what's great about Lamont, not why you think Lieberman is the devil-incarnate.  Don't gloat over the results of polls (says Mr. Dewey).  Keep it positive, keep it upbeat, keep it about what you like about Ned.

The only thing more offensive than a bad loser is a bad winner.  And here in Connecticut we can take offense easily.  Sure, we may have a stick up our as , uh, back sometimes, but we're quite willing to use it on someone especially vexing.  Take the lead from Ned Lamont.  Display intelligence, patience, and grace, and you'll be rewarded in the end.

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