Thoughts from a Yellow Dog Democrat living in Olympia, in the great BLUE state of Washington

I am a liberal because it is the political philosophy of freedom and equality. And I am a progressive because it is the political path to a better future. And I am a Democrat because it is the political party that believes in freedom, equality and progress. -- Digby

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

I'm Disappointed in Edwards

Salon is reporting that Edwards fired his 2 bloggers. If he can't stand up to a little heat from the likes of Michelle Malkin, how would he ever stand up to a hostile Congress and Senate or GAWD forbid Osamma Bin Laden? If this is true, he's lost me as a supporter. I'm really disappointed -- I liked his 2 America message and thought he was a leader.

Edwards campaign fires bloggers
The right-wing blogosphere has gotten its scalps -- John Edwards has fired the two controversial bloggers he recently hired to do liberal blogger outreach, Salon has learned.

The bloggers, Amanda Marcotte, formerly of Pandagon, and Melissa McEwan, of Shakespeare's Sister, had come under fire from right-wing bloggers for statements they had previously made on their respective blogs. A statement by the Catholic League's Bill Donohue, which called Marcotte and McEwan "anti-Catholic vulgar trash-talking bigots," and an accompanying article on the controversy in the New York Times this morning, put extra pressure on the campaign.

Speculation from sources that the two bloggers might be rehired was bolstered by Jennifer Palmieri, a spokeswoman for the Edwards campaign, who said in an e-mail that she would "caution [Salon] against reporting that they have been fired. We will have something to say later."

This isn't the first Internet-related misstep for the Edwards campaign, which had been making an effort to reach out to the "netroots" but has found its popularity dropping in a straw poll done on the landmark liberal blog Daily Kos. Though he still leads the poll by one point over Sen. Barack Obama, Edwards' support has dropped nine points in the past three weeks. He has also come under fire in the liberal blogosphere for his statements on Iran and his campaign's failure to return the calls of supporters and press, and was embarrassed when his Web site mistakenly revealed his candidacy a day before his official announcement in New Orleans.

Leading the charge against Marcotte -- and to a lesser extent McEwan -- have been bloggers like the National Review's Kathryn Jean Lopez and Michelle Malkin. Malkin originally accused Marcotte of trying to scrub Pandagon's archives of material that could be embarrassing to the Edwards campaign. When that proved untrue, Malkin posted a correction, but said that the fact that she had been wrong was "even worse for the Edwards campaign" because "its blogmaster left crackpot posts like that one up and hired her anyway."

Malkin, it should be noted, is hardly innocent of being involved with what ABC News' Terry Moran termed "hate speech" when applied to Marcotte. Malkin has long maintained ties to VDARE, a Web site tagged as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center that has published works by people like Jared Taylor, one of America's leading white supremacists, and Sam Francis, who was fired by the conservative Washington Times for his own white supremacist remarks, given at a conference held by Taylor's organization. The liberal press watchdog Media Matters has also noted Donohue's long list of controversial statements.

-- Alex Koppelman and Rebecca Traister

UPDATE 1-8-07 3:15pm

Ewards responded:

Statement on Campaign Bloggers
John Edwards in News
2/08/2007 at 11:36 AM EST

The tone and the sentiment of some of Amanda Marcotte's and Melissa McEwan's posts personally offended me. It's not how I talk to people, and it's not how I expect the people who work for me to talk to people. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, but that kind of intolerant language will not be permitted from anyone on my campaign, whether it's intended as satire, humor, or anything else. But I also believe in giving everyone a fair shake. I've talked to Amanda and Melissa; they have both assured me that it was never their intention to malign anyone's faith, and I take them at their word. We're beginning a great debate about the future of our country, and we can't let it be hijacked. It will take discipline, focus, and courage to build the America we believe in.


John Amato says at his blog at

But the netroots' work isn't done. This particular gambit might have failed, but there will be more and we must be prepared to face them and push back. Many people–on both sides of the aisle and in the media as well–were surprised by the increasing power that you collectively exercised as a member of the netroots during the 2006 elections and they were threatened by it.

So let's give props to Edwards for some "outside the Beltway" thinking, but keep alert for any more Swiftboat attempts to derail Democratic campaigns.

I HATE this 2 year campaigning!!

----- UPDATE 2-12-07

David over at Orcinus has a great post where he gives the background of "holier-than-us-all" "Big Mouth" Bill Donohue.

Worth checking out at

Why, oh, why? Do these hate filled warts on society like him and Coulter, Malkin, et al get access to a microphone at all???


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