This is my favorite moment in partisan politics: right after the primary when two politicians, who just yesterday we’re warning voters of the doomsday scenario that would be brought about by the other’s nomination, backpedal as quickly and completely as they can to present a unified front in the general election. And in the case of the Democratic primary in Maryland’s sixth Congressional district, it’s particularly satisfying.
The nominee, John Delaney, was gerrymandered out of the district by the party establishment in order to clear a path to the nomination for Rob Garagiola (the official choice to unseat 10-term Republican U.S. Rep. Roscoe Bartlett), but ran anyway. And his status as literally “an outsider” propelled him to a decisive victory (well, that and outspending Garagiola three to one). By now, most of the top party members have scraped off their Garagiola bumper stickers and come out in full support of insurgent Delaney as he challenges Bartlett to represent the New, Improved Sixth District — now with more registered Democrats!
I know I harp on gerrymandering alot in my posts here, but that’s only because it is one of the most overt and defiant displays of political corruption available — I can’t understand how our lawmakers can claim to be representing the people as they are blatantly manipulating the system to benefit their party. And with the sixth district, it couldn’t be more offensive if Dems redrew it in the shape of the middle finger, what with the obvious dilution of Maryland’s already embattled conservative voters, and the wonky border that zig and zag to avoid potential candidates’ homes, in the hopes they wouldn’t run.
Don’t get me wrong, more Republicans in the House of Representatives is not something that makes me feel particularly safe, but corruption is corruption.