Fuck John Ossoff.
Fuck him and the blinkered logic that says to run a bland, technocratic neophyte to build on the automatic 40% vote they’ll get no matter what (literally… a phantom candidate named Rodney Stooksbury of whom no one has ever seen a picture nor did he raise nor spend so much as $1 in the 2016 race against Tom Price… that non-person garnered 38.3% of the vote in November) because that logic says that the path to victory lies across the center with the vain hope that by being juuuuuuust enough NOT a Democrat and juuuuuuust enough like a Republican, you can capitalize on anti-Trump sentiment and W-I-N!
Ossoff received 24 fewer votes than Stookebury in the 2016 general. Not 24,000 or 2,400 or 240… twenty-four… FEWER votes than a non-entity. The margin was only as close as it was (and it wasn’t close) because the Republican turnout was dismal. Rephrased: the Democratic turnout was for all intents and purposes IDENTICAL to November, but the Republicans (because of anti-Trump sentiment and the general awfulness of Karen Handel) just didn’t show up; hence, proportionately, the Dems won a greater percentage of a smaller overall vote, but convinced no one to switch sides. The Democrats swung for the fences, the Republicans did a face plant and still managed to pull out a comfortable win.
For fuck’s sake, if they had raked that $24M into a big pile and set it on fire, at least they’d have gotten light and heat out of it.
Some will claim a moral victory in almost winning a R+10 district and I’m not doubting the moral victory angle, I just don’t think it counts for much in a horseshoes and hand grenades kind of way. The Dems managed to get almost every single person who voted in the general to come back out again, but failed to win over one single new voter and still came up 24 bodies short of matching or exceeding their old number and they had to spend a ba-zillion dollars to do it. The GOP had an utterly dismal candidate who openly declared she didn’t believe people should be paid a living wage and still they were able to draw out enough people while sputtering along in second gear to beat a Democratic operation that was red-lining in high gear at full throttle.
In other words, the whole thing isn’t scalable to a national election.
The Dems are a party drowning in expensive consulting firms and the only purpose of the consulting firms, as far as I can tell, is to help Dems raise more money to pay consulting firms. Tom Perez, the darling of the centrist Clintonian wing of the party, only managed to raise $4.3m in May. All those damned special elections and the DNC only pulled in $4.3M, which is what you call a lack of enthusiasm.
Good job, Dems. Keep going. Perez, Pelosi, Schumer… yeah, keep going.
But since this author is rooting for a blow-out of the Democrats in 2018 to finally sweep away all that DLC/Clintonian dead wood, I am personally happy that Ossoff lost. He deserved to lose because giving the Third Way sell-outs even one single itty-bitty win would give them the firm place from which they would push back hard on every single attempt to shape the Democratic internal narrative in a truly progressive way. They need to sit down, shut up, accept that 2016 happened (and it never should have been close enough for any of their boogymen – Comey, Russians, misogyny – to play a role) and fergawdsake let the kids finally drive this fucking bus.