Monday, June 19, 2006

Dog bites man; Dems endorse a Democrat

The announcement that Milwaukee County Democrats had endorsed Vince Bobot over incumbent Sheriff David Clarke in the Democratic primary could not have been a surprise to political insiders and activists.

The party was simply saying publicly that David Clarke is no Democrat. He is a phony, through and through.

Clarke is an elephant in donkey suit, a right-wing, closet Republican who runs as a Democrat because that is the only way to win a partisan office in Milwaukee County.

It's no secret that Democrats want him out of office.

The surprise is that the state party changed its rules at its recent state convention to allow endorsements by county parties in certain extraordinary circumstances.

Clarke's candidacy certainly is extraordinary.

"Vince Bobot is the only real Democrat in this race, and we are pleased to mobilize our party resources and support behind him," said Martha Love, Chair of the Milwaukee County Democratic Party. "We are united behind Vince, and we will work hard to oust David Clarke and finally put a Democrat in the Sheriff's Office."

Love said Clarke is an undercover Republican who has run as a Democrat in Milwaukee County because he knows he could not win as a Republican; Milwaukee County has not had a Republican Sheriff in 46 years. Clarke was appointed by former Republican Governor Scott McCallum, has taken a number of conservative stances as Sheriff, has written about what makes a Republican, has endorsed President Bush's nominees, is listed as a member of a national Republican group, and raises his money from Republicans. Clarke has also refused to join the Democratic Party, even after repeated outreach attempts by leadership with the Milwaukee County Democratic Party.
Bobot is a former police officer who has served as a Milwaukee municipal judge and is now an assistant city attorney. He's also an active member of the Democratic Party.

The question is whether most Democratic primary voters really care about a candidate's party affiliation, and the likely answer is no. Bobot's challenge is to reach beyond the party members and activists to build a majority in the September primary.

But being the only Democratic in a Democratic primary, and having the Democratic Party say so, has to be a plus.

If you'd like more detail, here are some greatest hits:

Tale of two David Clarkes: Independent Democrat is a Lying Republican.

David Clarke is no Zell Miller, but it's not because he's black

So, Sheriff Clarke, just what are you today?

Paper outs David Clarke as Republican.

Milwaukee Sheriff Clarke comes out as Republican

David Clarke: Elephant in a donkey suit


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