Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Harold Ford Jr: A Man of the People and of the Issues

Are issues in a political campaign really that important? Well, if you look at the Republican side of the 2006 Senate race here in Tennessee, one might be inclined to think not.

For several weeks now I have been calling on the Republican candidates for the U.S. Senate and the bloggers who support them to start talking about the issues rather than participating in slash and burn politics. Nevertheless, it seems my pleas have went unheard. It appears that instead of putting forth new ideas and solutions they would rather sit back and attack Congressman Ford and the Democrats. Simply put, they are the party of no substance.

The 2006 Senate race is a unique and important point in our history. And we as Tennesseans have a big decision to make. Will we send someone to the Senate who will continue down the current path of failure and offer Tennessee no new ideas or solutions, thus offering no hope for the future? Or will we elect someone who has a fresh new vision for Tennessee and is not afraid to tackle the tough issues of the day? The choice for a growing majority is clear.

The only candidate who is offering a fresh new vision for our state is Harold Ford Jr. While the Republicans sit back and bicker amongst themselves over such petty things as polls, fundraising, and debating Jane Fonda, Harold Ford Jr. is seeking real solutions to real problems while fighting for the people of Tennessee.

For instance, Congressman Ford recently has joined with Governor Bredesen in his fight to keep the much needed 118th Airlift Wing in Nashville. On the other hand, not one member of the Republican delegation from Tennessee, including Bill Frist, or any Republican candidate who is running for the U.S. Senate has spoke out against the President's plan to close this wing.

Congressman Ford has also recently stood up for Tennessee families who need relief when he called for a 30 day suspension of the federal gas tax, which is .18 cents a gallon. However, not one Republican from Tennessee has signed on to Ford's efforts. And as far as I can tell, none of the candidates for Senate have came out in support of this relief.

Harold Ford Jr. has also took the lead on other important issues such as education, energy independence, fair trade, and Iraq. The Republicans once again: Missing In Action.

On all accounts, the Republicans have failed the people of Tennessee.

We must also remember that it was the Republican led FEMA team that failed New Orleans and its people when it needed it the most. There are now dead Americans in New Orleans because President Bush and FEMA had no viable plan for the people of the Louisiana. And for days upon days after the hurricane hit, the Bush team couldn't even deliver food or water to the people who were devastated by this horrific event. Only one word can describe the actions taken by the Bush team: incompetence.

One would assume the Republican candidates for U.S. Senate would speak out on the concerns about the inadequate federal response to the disaster on the Gulf Coast. However, that is not the case. In fact, none of the candidates have even said one word about Hurricane Katrina. That is right; not one word. Their silence speaks volumes. They simply have shown no concern for the people of Louisiana, especially the children and the elderly.

On the other hand, Congressman Ford has been at the forefront of the relief efforts for the disaster victims. (See 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11) The difference in the priorities of the Republicans and Congressman Ford is striking to say the least.

Harold Ford Jr. said it best last week, "Now is not the time - in the face of pain, anguish and death - to be weak and uncertain."' This is America and the people of this great country deserve better leadership than what we currently have. That is where Harold Ford Jr. comes into the picture.