A couple of minutes ago I logged onto Twitter.
I checked out news on March Madness.
I checked out information on Donald Trump ruining America.
I checked out spring training and the Jets-Colts trade and some guy who really likes ice cream.
And then, to my great chagrin, I arrived at this …
Seriously, I feel like screaming. Or, if I had much hair, pulling my hair out. Instead, I’ll just note that this Tweet, from Rachel Payne, absolutely infuriates me on 800 different levels. With good reason.
Payne, for those who don’t know, is one of our Democratic candidates for the 48th congressional district. This is her website, and while I don’t know Rachel personally, I have no reason (truly, no reason) to suspect anything but pure and decent motives. She’s a longtime volunteer to different causes, which means she cares and has empathy and … and … and …
Rachel Payne ain’t winning this election.
Like, it’s not happening. It can’t happen. It won’t happen. She’s Coppin State in the ongoing NCAA Tournament (Coppin State didn’t qualify for the ongoing NCAA Tournament). She’s Young MC in a rap-off against Tupac, Nas, Drake and Biggie. And I take no pleasure in writing this sort of thing because—again—I’m certain Rachel has good intentions. What she doesn’t have, however, are these things:
• (Unless she’s sitting on a secret treasure that has yet to be reported) The money to match Dana Rohrabacher and Scott Baugh—not to mention Harley Rouda, Hans Keirstead, Omar Siddiqui, Michael Kotick or Laura Oatman. Here, this is from a Feb. 1 Daily Press article headlined, DANA ROHRABACHER’S CHALLENGERS RAISED MORE MONEY THAN HE DID FOR THE SECOND QUARTER IN A ROW.
• Name recognition (She entered the race way too late).
• The support of the Democratic Party (which Hans—for good or bad—does have).
So … why run? Why stay in the race? Why do this?
I’m taking my overflowing frustrations out on Rachel, and perhaps somewhat unfairly. But there are Democrats who (factually) are no longer viable. And that’d be fine and dandy were we experiencing a traditional primary. But, alas, we’re not. Come June, two candidates will be selected for the November ballot—and right now, it’s, oh, 60/40 that those two are Baugh and Dana. Why? First, because we’re still a Republican-dominant region. Second, because the party screwed up and threw its weight behind Hans’ severely flawed (and uninspired) campaign. Third, because no one was willing to step aside (aka: Predictable-yet-sad candidate-wide egomaniacal selfishness).
Not all that long ago, every man and women in the race said (in one form or another) that this wasn’t about personal triumph, but ousting Dana Rohrabacher. Hell, I believed them. Yet here we are, a stone’s throw from the vote, and Rachel Payne is bragging about having her name atop the ballot—where she will, almost certainly, take away some votes from the leading Democratic hope.
I see nothing virtuous in this.
I see, simply, selfishness.
PS: And I don’t want to hear the ol’ tried-and-true “Some people insist I don’t belong in this race. Well, to them I say …” Bullshit. This isn’t about that. Every Democratic candidate is better than Dana Rohrabacher on his best day. But if we’re being honest, (politically speaking) there’s nothing overly unique about Harley. Or Hans. Or Laura. Or Rachel. Any of the Dems. They’re all good people, they’re all liberal enough, they all will represent us well. Right now, we just need to win. Period.