The Swarm

Mix it up with The Bee's editorial board.

April 5, 2010
UPDATED: Mickey Kaus runs against 'state-of-the-art' Democrat Boxer

Mickey Kaus is living proof of how far a Democrat can get by criticizing teachers unions, questioning amnesty for illegal immigrants and opposing labor's goal of winning card check legislation that would make it easier to organize workers.

Kaus is the journalist who has been blogging since the dawn of blogging and decided to run in the Democratic primary for U.S. Senate against Barbara Boxer, explaining why in this posting. He's not delusional. He doesn't think he has a chance of winning. Nor does he have a beef with Boxer.

He calls her a "state of the art Democrat." But he does have problems with the state of the Democratic art.

Prolific writer on public policy issues that he is, Kaus figured he'd have a shot at gaining a way-off prime time speaking slot at the California Democratic Party's coming convention.

Shawnda Westly, the party's executive director, put the kabosh on that idea:

"We're sorry but we just can't accommodate your request to speak during the general session. We will return your check to you via mail tomorrow."

Westly explained that party leaders including Chairman John Burton concluded that Kaus' candidacy is not viable.

When The Swarm talked with Kaus, the blogger-candidate readily acknowledged that he is not likely to follow in the footsteps of Al Franken, the upstart politician who won the U.S. Senate seat in Minnesota. Kaus was still working on getting his web site up, a basic step in this age of Internet politics, especially for a blogger like Kaus.

UPDATE: Kaus' web site is up and, as you might guess, provocative.

Viable or not, Kaus is not without a following. How many long shots get real estate in both the New York Times Magazine and CalBuzz?

Kaus certainly has a perspective on governance and the Democratic Party.

He agrees with the Democratic overhaul of health care but worries about the next big thing, immigration and amnesty for illegal immigrants. Party elite believe their stand on illegal immigration is "the way to win the Latino vote."

Kaus also takes issue with the Democratic Party's embrace of all things labor, and of what he sees at the teachers' union hold on and mishandling of public schools. "Unions run the show in Sacramento," Kaus said.

Not viable, you say? In a Democratic primary?

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About The Swarm

The Swarm is written by members of The Sacramento Bee's editorial board. They meet daily and are separate from the newsroom. Views included here are those of individual writers, and do not necessarily reflect those of a majority of the board or the positions expressed in The Bee's editorials.

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