Luck O’ The Irish? We’ll See Tuesday…
I knew there was something I liked about Tom Swan, Ned Lamont’s campaign manager. Turns out he’s an Irishman with a populist streak, and a history of fighting hard for the issues closest to his heart. The Hartford Courant has a feature on him that I thought would be a fun read for everyone:
To merely say that Lamont – a pedigreed, impeccably groomed multimillionaire whose great-grandfather was a partner of J.P. Morgan – and Swan – an Irish Catholic working stiff who until recently lived in a self-described "Unabomber shack" and eschewed marriage, money, and ironed shirts – are opposites is insufficient.
Not only is Swan, 45, Lamont’s inverse when it comes to appearance and wealth, but he has spent his entire career lobbying (some would say agitating) for the kinds of causes that people like Ned Lamont don’t really have to think about much – universal health care, for example, and workers’ rights – and some that would directly, negatively impact Lamont, like a higher tax on millionaires.
To be blunt – which is also a Swan characteristic – Swan has engaged in what many people from Lamont’s stratum would call class warfare.
But after a few meetings last winter, Swan was convinced that Lamont’s progressive politics were authentic. He agreed to take a leave of absence from his job as director of the Connecticut Citizen Action Group, and bring a few similarly minded friends with him, to run Lamont’s campaign.
That sound that you hear is beltway consultants grinding their teeth with anxiety that a campaign, run by beltway outsiders, supported by plain old people in Connecticut and around the country, with very successful campaign ads done by a firm from outside the beltway as well…will actually win.
You think they aren’t all on the edge of their seats watching this race? Hell, Joe Lieberman has imported hecklers from KStreet (how’s that Big Pharma connection working for you now?!?) — you tell me they aren’t worried about their Senate meal ticket getting canned by Connecticut voters.
Welcome to your future — and welcome to the moment when Americans get to sit in the driver’s seat for a change. Whatever happens on Tuesday, this is the wake up call for Washington, D.C. — and you’ve been a part of it. One raindrop can raise the sea, and a torrent of them can cause a whole lot of change. How does it feel?
PS — You know, the "Multimillionare Ned Lamont" schtick really ought to be dropped, considering Joe Lieberman is importing some of his wife’s KStreet Big Pharma cronies to heckle Ned Lamont at campaign stops and harass Connecticut senior citizens and WWII vets. The Liebermans also have their own pile of change — and, frankly, it just shouldn’t be an issue, despite the Lieberman campaign’s attempt to throw it up as a smokescreen. Ned Lamont took his inherited money, built a business to provide educational services to colleges around the country and then took it a step further as a volunteer teacher in an inner-city high school. That’s what I call character.