I worked for his campaign, I hoped, I checked back in! And he betrayed me and all the others who stood, teary-eyed and lump-throated, when he spoke at rallies and when he made his acceptance speech. We progressives/liberals really thought this was it; well, there were little hints…but we assiduously blinded ourselves to the discrepancies, Ameriquest and so on. I waved away friends who warned me.
But it all became evident very soon after the coronation when,
“Asked what he thought was the biggest misconception about him, Patrick said, “the liberal thing.”
Now we have another chance, and miraculously, a real choice; a good person actually wants to participate in this mud-fest called politics, and for all the right reasons. We don’t have to blind ourselves this time.
But we do have to free ourselves, from the Deval we created in our own image, and from the self-defeating fear of the “Nader effect.” If we’re afraid of splitting the progressive vote and ending up with Baker, we should advocate for immediate passage of ranked-choice voting legislation, so we can fearlessly vote FOR someone we really want, rather than, yet again, voting AGAINST someone we don’t. Where has all this clever strategic voting gotten us? To this: incumbents can ignore us because their likelihood of winning keeps us thrall.
We lifted up Deval Patrick, who was a very unlikely victor back then, because he promised what we wanted. We can lift up someone else now, if we think she’ll give us the public service we’re looking for. That was BMG’s power. We’re not bound to a person, but to an ideal; that’s where we should put our allegiance.