Thursday, September 14, 2006

When "Good" Republicans Go "Bad"

A while back, the Star Tribune's Doug Grow wrote a complimentary column about 5th District Republican candidate Alan Fine. Now, the Strib runs lots of puff pieces about candidates (look up just about anything with Rochelle Olson's byline), but rarely are those article about Republicans. And Grow is definitely a man of the left, so seeing him devote a column that painted a Republican candidate in a positive light was something of a shock to long-time Strib watchers.

We can now report that the honeymoon is officially over:

A few weeks ago, I wrote a glowing column about a fresh, moderate Republican running for the Fifth District congressional seat, which for decades has been owned by DFLers.

I couldn't come up with enough positive adjectives to describe Alan Fine -- business prof, author, swimmer, composer, pianist.


Somewhere between a recital/rally he held at the Varsity Theater in Dinkytown a month ago and Keith Ellison's Tuesday night victory in the DFL primary for the Fifth District seat, Fine changed keys. In the process, he lost any claim to moderation, thoughtfulness or originality, which were just a few of the attributes I poured on him.

Pick up the key words there? As long as Fine was one those nice cuddly "moderate" Republicans, Grow could tolerate him. He wouldn't ever dream of voting for him of course, but he could pat him on the head, rub his belly, and toss him a bone every once in a while. But now that Fine has dared to bare his teeth, growl, and bark at his DFL opponent, Grow is treating him like a rabid pit-bull that needs to be put down. He must be terribly disappointed to find out that his lapdog has turned out to have some bite.

[Also posted at Fraters Libertas]

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