As someone who normally votes Republican, I must say that I’m totally ashamed of the two leading GOP candidates for the 50th Congressional District, Carl DeMaio and Darrell Issa and their toxic, take no prisoners, scorched earth, leave nothing for the survivors campaigning for the top spot to face the Democrat Ammar Campa-Naajar.
These two have turned the nominating process into a political version of the Octagon cage match where only one can survive. Like “Fight Club” without the delicate gentility. When you see photos of the two candidates talking about each other, their faces are contorted like gladiators in some version of “Spartacus” simultaneously burying their swords into each other. Are you not entertained? In a word, it’s disgusting.
I’m tired of it. I’m tired of being bombarded with endless ads where each candidate paints the other as the Antichrist, or much worse as someone who occasionally disagrees with Trump on some fine theological point similar to how many angels can dance on the head of pin. It sounds like 2-year-olds bickering in a sandbox: “I’m the true Trump supporter!” “No! I am!” “If Trump said there was no gravity, I’d happily jump off a cliff to prove my loyalty.” “I’m so Trumpian I’m going to dye my hair orange.” Please! For the love of God, stop! The 3rd of March can’t get here soon enough for me!
To me this type of campaigning demonstrates that the two candidates can’t imagine any GOP victory that doesn’t include them. That they as individuals are far more important than the party itself, or for that matter the state or the nation. The only thing that is important is winning the primary, and if that is done in a suicidal manner that leaves the victory to the Democrat, well that doesn’t matter because winning is not only the most important thing, it is the ONLY thing! Let nothing survive!
Ronald Reagan’s 11th Commandment “Thou shalt not speak ill of a fellow Republican” is not only left as a smoking ruin, it is as if the Gipper had never existed as a political force in the Golden State. Except, of course, for quoting his words of wisdom and trying to claim his mantle. Acting like him? Forget about it! Some of us remember when Reagan turned away a nasty jab by Jimmy Carter with a smiling, gentle, “There you go again!” Well, there we go down the road of mutually assured destruction, where politics isn’t just a blood sport, it’s a cannibal feast.
I know several people who aren’t that deep into politics except that they favor conservatives— who have been so turned off by both of the leading candidates that they are casting about for alternatives. One woman in her 70s had been leaning towards one of the two, but after seeing them savage each other, and especially after having her mailbox and TV flooded by toxic attack ads, is leaning towards an entirely different candidate.
Certainly this can’t be the objective of DeMaio and Issa. Both are such talented public servants it is waste to see them destroying each other this way. Let us hope that winning a moral victory doesn’t become more important than actually winning.