Kari Chisholm with an ode to Brian Schweitzer
Meet the Future. His name is Brian SchweitzerThere more to read, including a final line you won't want to miss.
Remember how you felt on Election Day 2004? That sinking, sick feeling deep in your gut that we weren't going to see the end of George W. Bush?
It hurt. And many of us were baffled. After all, how could it even be close? Couldn't Americans see through the reactionary idiocy that is Dubya?
Two weeks later, I wrote an op-ed in the Oregonian that tried to muddle out an answer. Rejecting the then-surging ideas of pro-life "values" Democrats or Southern cultural Democrats, I suggested that we look to the emerging swing states in the West:
Let us look west. In the mountains and ranchlands of the West, there are Democrats who understand real America. Out here, far from the nation's capital, there are Democrats who understand skepticism of the federal government. Out here, Americans will find Democrats comfortable in jeans and boots. In the West, we can find Democrats able to speak plainly in the language of real America.
Can a Western Democratic Party succeed? Absolutely. If the 29 electoral votes in Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, and Nevada had swung from red to blue, John Kerry would have won 281 to 257. And in all 50 states, a Western candidate would signal a fresh start...
A big shout-out thank you to Kari.