October 30, 2002


HONOR THY MEMORY; VOTE FOR THY DEMOCRAT: I caught the tail end of the memorial service last night for Senator Wellstone and I must say I have mixed feelings- several of those present spoke very eloquently about an honorable and respectable man, yet I couldn't help find it a little embarrassing that the whole "memorial service" eventually devolved into nothing more than a run-of-the-mill political rally. It was one thing to extoll the virtues of the deceased, and to even admire his political views- but another entirely to somehow turn the election into a referendum on whether or not Wellstone deserves to be mourned. The absolute low point was when Rick Kahn, a former student of Wellstone's, demanded that Minnesota's Republican Congressional delegation, led by Jim Ramsted, "put partisan differences aside" and help win the election for Wellstone's replacement, and for the Democrats nationwide as well. It should be our lesson by now that every time someone suggests that we "put partisan differences aside," what they really mean is "put them aside and line up behind me." Would everyone in the room at last night's funeral/rally have suddenly turned Republican if Jesse Helms or Strom Thurmond had died? Slate's Will Saletan has a top-shelf piece on this topic.
And what do you know- I'm right now watching a new episode of "The West Wing," featuring a subplot about the continuing campaign of a deceased member of Congress. Ha, I take back everything I ever said about the show being irrelevant...
In the meantime (I should've known) that lunatic Ted Rall suggests that, you guessed it, Wellstone was murdered by a sinister, Bush-led government conspiracy.

Posted by Stephen Silver at October 30, 2002 09:33 PM
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