Steven Hale has a great, in-depth and nuanced look at the fall and ... um ... further fall of the state Democratic Party in this week's City Paper.
This is about as full an accounting as one is going to get, but there's no discussion of Rosalind Kurita in it. And I'm not sure if this is because the Kurita incident wasn't important or if it's because the Democrats don't realize that it was important — and so, when they tell their story of why they are where they are, they're missing a crucial component.
I could kind of be convinced either way. But I'm leaning toward it being a lesson the Democrats are resolutely refusing, still, to face. I think when Kurita voted for Ramsey over Wilder in 2007, then was primaried by Tim Barnes in 2008 and (even though she got more votes than Barnes) "lost" the election to him, Democrats felt they were within their rights to run out a politician who wasn't playing nicely with the rest of the party.
But I think that played to voters as evidence that the Democratic party was more concerned with preserving their good-ol'-boy network than doing what was right for the state as a whole. No one had to make an attack ad saying that. It was just in the news, story after story after story.
It also didn't go unnoticed among women that a party in which women have few leadership positions turned on a woman willing to (or at least giving the appearance of) voting her conscience was then pretty publicly demolished for doing so.
When voters were standing in front of the voting machines in the fall of 2008, what did they have to lose from trying something different? The message that Democrats were committed to preserving the same old same-old was pretty damn clear.
And with both parties being pretty abysmal on women's issues, is it so hard to understand why women would be comfortable voting for the party that contains an actual sizable cadre of women politicians, as opposed to the party that just stripped a woman of her place on the ballot because of their hurt feelings?
It's not enough to be better on women's issues. You have to be better to actual women than your opponent.
Like I said, I'm just not sure that's a lesson the TNDP even knows it has to learn.