Wednesday, August 20, 2014

No Endorsement, Just Recommendation: George Sheldon for AG Primary

An endorsement to me means a solid backing. I'll be honest, I don't have as much a strong inclination to George Sheldon over Perry Thurston as I do for who I think will win over Pam Bondi. She is godawful, and I mean really, really godawful. Even rightwing extremists like McCollum occasionally fought for the citizens. PamBo never has. For a position that requires the trust of all Florida citizens, Bondi is the most ideological AG in our nation's history. Members of the Florida and American bar rank her worst in the nation.

PamBo has never taken action against a conservative: whether it be completely ignoring criminals who drew, in secret meetings, illegally gerrymandered districts; or dropping the investigation into Donald Trump's scam college. (Coincidentally, it was dropped at the same moment Trump made a donation to her campaign.)

Both Democrats challenging her are good men; and both have racked up separate endorsements. The Tampa Bay paper loved Thurston's passion, while the Miami Herald loved Sheldon's experience.

In the end, I made my decision based on the numbers. Unfortunately, there has not been a whole lot of polling being done outside of unreliable, wingnut polls like Gravis. However, PPP has polled. Public Policy Polling was ranked the most accurate in the past two elections. Currently, they showed Sheldon with only a 3% deficit with PamBo. Thurston had a 7% deficit. Anything over 5% at this point in the election is difficult unless you have a wave of support after the primary.

Here's the thing: as important as the AG position is, the FL Dem party and the standard donors seem to be hyper-focused on the governor's race. If Thurston had the money Sheldon did; or I believed there would be a floodgate of money and support coming, I would lean towards Thurston. No doubt there will be a boost to the primary victor, but I think it is what it is. For this reason I'm going with Sheldon.

Opposing view: My friend Howard made an excellent point about Perry Thurston:

I've decided to go Perry Thurston over George Sheldon because he might help Broward Turnout for Charlie and even though it's unlikely he will beat Bondi, I like how he talks about how The AG Office would be progressive like in California.

The African-American vote, which needs to be very high for Crist to win, will be encouraged by a very strong, passionate, articulate African-American in a high-profile race. I also agree that a Thurston victory would be more of a help to Crist. I went back and forth on this all day.

At the end of the day, though, I have to base a recommendation on who is best to beat an awful candidate for the position they are running for. I am going with George Sheldon.

Yet know that this is one recommendation that I will not die on the hill for. If Perry Thurston wins, he can expect all I can give to make him AG next year. Next to the governorship, it's the most important race in Florida. We can't let PamBo do any more damage.

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