This started as a comment to a blueman post, overlapping another blueman post, and by the time I had typed it into the "comment" form I saw its length equaling a post. He posts there. I post here. So, that said, here are the thoughts:
First, there was blueman's post: "Anybody But Bachmann" Syndrome will fail concluding, "Of the 2 remaining candidates in the race for the DFL endorsement, Bob Olson is the only candidate that can beat Michele Bachmann..."
I agree entirely. Then there is the matter of Olson calling Tinklenberg out on his lobbying, and his hiding the truth about Tinklenberg Group and what it is beyond "a consulting firm" on transportation.
The idea that one of the two major parties can sweep and keep a majority with a "lesser of evils" strategy and a mediocre but not blatently offensive candidate offering has never seemed sound to me. It allows the Dick Nixons and Spiro Agnews into things, to monkey around until thrown out in disgrace.
For the district -- The more I learn, the more compelling the question becomes in my mind, "Is Tinklenberg really the 'lesser evil' to Michele Bachmann?"
Too many people just seem to presume so. I am not totally certain.
It is a hard, daunting and discouraging question to even have to think about now, and one Sixth District voters should never have to face November 2008.
So DFL folks, get off the dime.
There's a sound alternative in the DFL mix.
Tinklenberg cannot defeat Bachmann.
Bob Olson might not be able to. That is a reality. Bachmann defeated Wetterling, a strong candidate who did not run a strong campaign. But Olson's integrity and the soundness of his vision has earned him the chance to try.
Tinklenberg on the other hand is just so much damaged goods looking to advance. Selfishly so, putting personal ambition over and beyond what's best for his party and his district.
Olson has none of the downside baggage Tinklenberg has. He has shown strong leadership potential, and a willingness to seize an issue that others might shy away from. In particular, it took courage for Olson to publicly call Tinklenberg to task for hiding who he is from the voters, his lobbying and the truthful dimensions of its extent, profitability, conflicting interests, and its duration and present continuance.
Tinklenberg has so far only ducked and covered. Ducking and hiding from a direct confrontation is not courage, it is cowardice. It is not the kind of bold and dynamic leadership and honest demeanor you'd want in Congress.
At least not that I'd want.
And if you would doubt that Bob Olson has the vision to call things as they are, and to know how they should be, there is his latest press release to ponder.
Members of Congress swear an oath to “support and defend the Constitution,” but this hasn’t stopped many of our representatives and senators from trampling on the very rights that make our country great.
By ignoring the principles set forth in the Declaration of Independence and codified in the Bill of Rights, Republicans and Democrats have compromised the basic strength of our nation.
Each time we consider retroactive immunity for the telecommunications companies that aid-and-abet the Bush administration’s assault on our freedoms, we weaken our country.
When we turn a blind eye to warrantless wiretapping, the suspension of habeas corpus and kangaroo courts for terror suspects, the killers who attacked us on Sept. 11, 2001, score a cheap victory.
Declaring the Constitution negotiable compromises our moral leadership in the world.
And casting aside our fundamental rights is an affront to America’s special place in history and denigrates the sacrifice hundreds of thousands of our service people made so we could remain free.
Bob Olson will not stand by and allow the Bill of Rights to be ignored for any reason because Benjamin Franklin’s basic truth of the 18th century is just as relevant now:
“Any society that would give up a little liberty to gain a little security will deserve neither and lose both.”
photos from the Olson campaign website