Monday, January 22, 2007

Pat Tiberi, Mr. Moderate.

I'm not sure how he does it. Consider this paragraph from the Dispatch, written in the waning days of the 2006 campaign:

The tenor of several Republicans’ late campaign ads has turned especially aggressive. For example, three-term Rep. Pat Tiberi, usually a mild-mannered moderate who decries intense partisanship, just mailed a flier to voters claiming that Democratic opponent Bob Shamansky, shown in a blurry photo, "voted to allow experimentation on live fetuses."

After the election, one conservative commentator reflected on the lack of success Ohio Democrats had in knocking off vulnerable incumbent U.S. Reps:

The other Democratic-targeted Ohio race that has gotten surprisingly little attention was the re-election of Rep. Pat Tiberi. With a lifetime American Conservative Union rating of 93 in a district that gave Bush just 51% in 2000 and again in 2004, Tiberi fundraised aggressively knowing he would have a tough fight. His opponent, former Congressman Bob Shamansky, poured in $1 million from his own pocket.

By staying on message—a conservative message—and localizing the race, Tiberi kept Shamansky at arm’s length the entire way. Building on President Bush’s 2-point win here in 2004 by 14 points, Tiberi routed his Democratic foe, 58-42%.

In the time since the election, Mr. Tiberi has been making statements about Democrats:

It certainly didn’t take long. Before they’ve even been assigned offices or picked up their fresh, shiny IDs, members of the new Democrat majorities in the House and Senate were told by a top former Clinton administration official that the first thing they should do is raise taxes.


Don't be fooled by the headlines. The minimum-wage bill Democrats pushed though the House of Representatives on Jan. 10 was just for show.

That last is from a recent piece called " CONGRESSMAN PAT TIBERI’S CAPITOL NOTEBOOK" on Mr. Tiberi's website.

I love it when Republicans insist that Partisanship is a problem that could be solved if Democrats simply stopped engaging in it. I did not once hear in the last six years a call from Mr. Tiberi to his fellow Republicans to not engage in "exercises of raw political power."

As a matter of fact, in a chamber that has certainly had its share of straight party line votes, Mr. Tiberi somehow fails to note that more than 40% of the House Republicans voted for this bill, including more than half of the Ohio Republican delegation. It's kind of stunning how our raw political power extends to the brainstem of Jean Schmidt.

So anyway, how do you have 93% Conservative rating, consistently vote with the Bush administration, write anti-Democratic Party polemics, engage in the ugliest sort of gutter political campaigning, and have anyone in your home district, let alone a reporter for the largest newspaper in your home district, refer to you as "a mild-mannered moderate who decries intense partisanship?"

I'd love to know, and apparently I'm not alone. In this weekend's D.C. Dispatches, the Columbus Dispatch notes the Pat is a frequent recipient of requests for face time with presidential candidates such as Romney and McCain. According to the CD, this is what Pat thinks the possible reasons are:

Tiberi thinks it is partly because he is a close lieutenant of House Minority Leader John Boehner, R-West Chester, and has served as a political monitoring post in Ohio for him. In addition, Tiberi served in the Ohio House and remains close to Jo Ann Davidson, former Ohio House speaker and current Republican National Committee co-chairwoman. He also was an aide to former Rep. John R. Kasich, R-Westerville, who made a presidential run in 2000.

Don't sell yourself short Pat. McCain knows all about the 2000 campaign. He doesn't need second-hand advice on what it took to lose that primary. What McCain and Romney need to know is how to make sure the wingnut contingent in Delaware County stays on board while you convince the swing voters in Franklin that you're a middle-of-the-road kind of guy.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I think perhaps Pat thinks he's running for U.S. Senate when Voinovich retires. He's hired some of outgoing Senator DeWine's staff, and well ... how else does David Goodman get to run for Congress?