An Open Letter to Nancy Pelosi and the Democratic National Committee

voting box with ballotHonestly, I have a lot of other things to get to this week, and within that, a lot of other pieces to write. But I have been so ubiquitously harassed by national-level Democrats that hey, I’ll take some time out this afternoon to respond to their litany of email.

Dear Representative Pelosi—

Perhaps there was a time in my life when receiving an email from the former Speaker of the House would have been at least a little thrilling, but the bloom is off the rose now. I don’t really even think you care about me, what with all of your messages—which are too many, honestly, it’s getting embarrassing—addressed to me as <FRIEND:VALUE!>. It feels half-hearted, Representative Pelosi. I know you are well networked in the legislative scene over on Capitol Hill. I used to see you around town from time to time when I still lived there. Okay; that’s a lie, it was Dennis Kucinich whom I saw, and mostly at the Greek restaurant on Pennsylvania SE that has sadly closed down. What I don’t understand, however, is how with all of your knowledge and connections and wealthy campaign contacts, you haven’t come across anyone who has mentioned even in passing that the Democratic National Committee’s strategy on getting donations for these midterms is abysmally bad. Here are the subject lines of just a few of the HUNDREDS of messages I’ve received these past few months:

  • painful loss
  • we. fell. short.
  • Friend we’re BEGGING
  • B O E H N E R wins
  • all hope is lost

The content in the actual email isn’t any better.

A new Koch Brothers front group just ambushed us with $1.8 million worth of attacks in 2 must-win races. We repeat: These are NEW last-minute attacks from the Koch brothers in 2 must-win races.

We’re still coming up short.
Tonight is the final federal fundraising deadline of this election. And let me repeat: we’re still coming up short.We wouldn’t be asking if it wasn’t important. This week, Boehner’s allies are spending $17 million attacking us. We’re getting completely outspent.
Oh I don’t know, I kind of think you’d still be asking, Ms. Pelosi.

Here’s the thing—I’m not really afraid of the GOP anymore. The scare tactics of a GOP-run Senate can’t be much worse than what’s already happened with Democrats in technical control of that chamber. We still all suffered through multiple financial cliffhangers over the debt ceiling and federal spending. Isn’t sequestration still going on, like right now? It’s been nearly a year since the President named an individual for Surgeon General, but nobody has pressured Senator Paul to remove his block, even in the midst of the Ebola hysteria.

On the other side of the aisle, we haven’t seen any immigration reform even though it’s been talked about for six years, and was part of what Barack Obama campaigned on in 2007. I run a syringe exchange program in southeastern Washington, which is about to exchange four syringes for every person living in the city of Walla Walla, but even though ending the ban on federal funding of syringe exchange was part of Mr. Obama’s pledge to public health advocates, it was only removed for one year, and in the Democrat-controlled conversations about the Affordable Care Act, was put back in place as an offer to the GOP. Your own House left undocumented and new immigrants out in the cold on health insurance, and it was your team that allowed the crack in the shield of contraception coverage by saying employers didn’t have to cover it when it had been part of standard coverage for decades, but by all means, let’s pretend the Hobby Lobby decision has nothing to do with that.

You want money from me, I get that. Even $5. And what would my $5 support? The increased deportation of individuals, stepped up by the Obama Administration since George W. Bush left office? The also increased frequency of drone attacks? The vigorous pursuit of whistleblowers? The unilateral attacks on Syria with no congressional approval? Would it support the closing of Gitmo, or more money into CHIP and TANF? Or would it just be a latte I didn’t drink that week, on your behalf?

I have been a card-carrying Democrat for two decades, and yes, I have given nominally before to earlier campaigns. But I think we both know that the midterm election in the sixth year of a White House term always goes against the party holding the executive branch. Between this very robust American political tradition and the fact that my Democratic Party looks less and less like the party I know, I will continue ignoring your shaming, guilt-tripping, sensationalized email messages. You may email me. FLOTUS may email me. The President himself may email me, but these are in name only, a facade as certain as the Democratic position papers are these days.

I will count on a series of vetos by the President once all of Congress is GOP-run, and I will hope with my dearest hope that a true progressive takes the reins of the party for the 2016 election. But for now?

I’m keeping my $5.

Sincerely,

Everett Maroon

 

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