In the fifth district, I’ve received a number of rather odd mailings from a certain Dr. Sheldon Schwartz who is running in the Democratic primary against Katherine Clark. The most recent one reads as follows:
DR. SHELDON SCHWARTZ WILL TAKE ON POLITICAL PARALYSIS AND THOSE WHO ARE TAKING US FOR GRANTED.
Our Congresswoman is a career politician who blindly follows what party leadership dictates and takes us for granted. If we want to change Washington, we need to change the people we send there. It’s time to change Washington by sending a doctor to Congress. Dr. Sheldon Schwartz is not a knee-jerk Democrat who does only what the party dictates. He will break through political gridlock by reaching across the aisle to find meaningful solutions to our critical problems. In Congress, he’ll be the next Barney Frank or Bernie Sanders!
This is stunning in a number of ways:
- Does Dr. Schwartz really think that he’ll be the first medical doctor to join Congress? Perhaps, he has a deep abiding admiration for Senator Bill Frist, but there is no indication that being a doctor is any kind of improvement on, say, being a lawyer.
- Just what the hell does Dr. Schwartz think Barney Frank was doing since he joined the Massachusetts House in 1973? Rep. Frank was a career politician if there ever was one and he has been a damned good one. Bernie Sanders was first elected to office in 1981 as Mayor of Burlington. 33 years in public life sounds like a career to me.
- Rep. Clark is taking us for granted? Really? How? And no, one cannot blame actions of the Republican majority on a freshman Democratic Congresswoman.
- This is not the first mailing I’ve received from him wherein he describes his magical powers to “break through political gridlock”. This is sort of stunning. Is this political neophyte telling us he has some secret power of making Republicans un-Republican?
- In the current House, the minority’s ability to change things or get bills passed is sharply curtailed and party unity is pretty important. For example, when George W. Bush was pushing the idea of replacing Social Security with personal retirement accounts, it was Democratic unity in the House that scared Republicans enough to back off. The absolute last thing we need if Republicans capture both houses is some goofball in the House making promises not to be “knee-jerk”.