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14 May 2005

A Letter to Senator Feingold

On the various Draft Russ Feingold sites, there's always a page to write a letter to him asking him to run. I've struggled with that task for some time, because there are so many reasons I want to explain to him. But I think I finally managed to get it close to right. Here's the first draft-- well, the first I'm willing to share. Please, make suggestions. I'll send it next week.

Dear Senator Feingold,

On November 3, 2004, I felt sick. I felt as if everything I had been working for had come crashing down, and the emotional investment I made was for nothing. There seemed to be no good that came out of the election.

Then, I heard that, despite Democratic losses in the Senate and House, you kept your seat. I nearly leapt for joy when I learned of this, because, while I appreciate the hard work of Michigan's senators, Sen. Levin and Sen. Stabenow, I have always been a fan of yours With very few exceptions you have always taken positions that I would take. But more than that, you're even willing to speak out in favor of these positions even when you're the only one who does. You aren't afraid to be the only voice speaking. I've always respected that.

In the weeks that followed the election, I began thinking about what went wrong. I think everyone did. The election seemed like ours to lose, and somehow we managed it. However, where some embraced conspiracy theories, I, along with many others active in the "netroots", chose instead to look toward 2006 and 2008. I've got a senator and a governor up for reelection next year, and have a Republican representative in Congress who may be vulnerable, and I plan to devote a lot of energy toward those causes. But, of course, my thoughts also went to the White House and 2008.

I am by no means a powerful figure in the Democratic Party, not even on a local level. But every once in a while it's fun to play kingmaker, to think and decide who I would pick to be the next "leader of the free world." I did a lot of reading, looking at Democratic leaders from Governor "Teddy K" in Oregon to Senator Evan Bayh in Indiana. It's incredible to see the talent and potential the party has in it-- perhaps no John F. Kennedys or Franklin Roosevelts or Thomas Jeffersons, but men and women who are intelligent, dedicated public servants. But, as you can probably guess, all of my reading led back to you.

This has been, of course, a very round about way of asking you to run for president in 2008. In Wisconsin, a state critical to electoral success, you've won election after election. The people who work on your campaigns are genuinely excited by you and what you represent. Somehow, despite many years in the Senate, you've remained, well, a real person. I think that it's time for the rest of the country to get to know you the same way.

Ever since I came to the conclusion that you were the right man for the job, you have done nothing but impress me more. The return trip to Alabama, for example. There you were, listening to real people, trying to understand their positions and their points of view, in a state you don't even represent. Or posting on MyDD and Daily Kos, where even though many, including Markos himself, disagreed with you, I think all were impressed by your presence there.

Indeed, I've even started blogging in support of your candidacy. I started a Feingold for Michigan blog, where I write regularly about various news items relating to your potential candidacy, and trying to find ways to gain support for you in the Michigan primary. And there are more people who have taken similar steps.

I apologize for the length and style of this letter, but more than anything I wanted to somehow convey the reasons why I would like you to run for president. You're an inspiring leader, and between now and the primaries you'll be getting a lot more letters like this.

A while back, you told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that you'd run if people asked you to run, and told you that you could win. Senator Feingold, please run for the presidency. You're the right person, and you could win. And if you do run, I and many others will be working to ensure victory.


Suggestions? Errors? Any thoughts at all? Leave them in the comments, please.

(Cross-posted in the Russ for President and Draft Russ forums, and on Fox for Feingold.)


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Senator Feingold,

If you would stop beating up your wives, they would stop divorcing you. Duh.

Wed May 25, 02:30:00 PM EDT  

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