“I can tell you that there is an enthusiasm drop-down compared to last time around. Now, what will happen as we get close to the race, who knows?”
In trying to get caught back up from the weekend in Providence, I failed to see this email when it first came in (reformatted here):
Was hoping to run into you at tonight’s Guinta kick-off. Just looking for some perspective on the Congressman from the GOP/Liberty side of things. If you can give me a call tonight for a phone interview before 10pm, I’d greatly appreciate it. Sorry for the short notice! I’m at XXX-XXXX. Thanks!
To be honest, I knew that Frank’s office was opening, but given that I was away the entire weekend, I just couldn’t muster the enthusiasm to let TMEW know: “Oh, btw, I’ll be in Manchester tonite”. There’s times when a man has to know his [wife's] limits, but more realistically, it was that enthusiasm gap – I just could not pump myself up to overcome the inertia to just stay home. Adam has proven himself to me to be a fair reporter so I called him up and chatted for a little while and then he recorded a couple of sound bites. Yes, the one that went over air was indicative of my current outlook. A lot of TEA Party type folks got behind him in the last cycle – and so did GraniteGrok. Expectations were high when he took office – me, the other Groksters, and a lot of those Liberty and Freedom activists that worked their butts off to the point that Frank beat Carol Shea-Porter in her hometown.
We activists promised that even if he voted “wrong” according to the Dems and the Republican Leadership, we’d have his back. Promised.
However, as the term progressed, his promise to cut the deficit and the spending quickly was sorely pressed – and found to be lacking when the Continuing Resolutions in that, in the Grand Bargains with the Democrats, the 50 or so stalwart Conservatives who kept their promise to limit the spending, to limit the deficit, were minus a name -> Frank’s. And yes, I let people in his office(s) know of that displeasure. I heard the reasons – I rejected them. We sent Frank for one very specific purpose. Apparently, his courage failed him. I guess I have to have Steve ship out a package.
Will this be sufficient to have folks thinking about voting for CSP as a “screw you” vote? Hardly. But I think that there will be a gap between the enthusiasm level seen in 2010 and what you may see now. Will people be as willing to give of their time and money as the did before? Will they be willing to take up the argument / discussion as forcefully as before? Will they continue to be the “influencers” the way they did last time? For those for whom Frank is the end all – be all, yes. For movement folks (be they Conservative, TEA Party, et al), not as much will be my guess.
In a very close election, where a percentage point here and a percentage point there can make or break the outcome, that may be a real problem.