Christmas week 2013 has been a bad week for the Republican Party in Massachusetts. Not for conservatives, mind you, but the Republican Party, and only if one understands the organization as best represented by “Mistah” Gabriel Gomez (per Ed Markey of Maryland/Malden/Medford) and two time (or two-timing?) Gubernatorial candidate Charlie “Half-Baked” Baker.
The party may not be dead, but certain elements are like an aggressive autoimmune disease attacking the very body politic of the conservative movement in the Bay State, with the latest dust-up revolving on the word “Klan” to describe two outspoken leaders of Red Mass Group.
Of course, the aggressive auto-immune dysfunction has some not-so-latent origins.
First, a socially liberal Republican (Richard Tisei, people) loses by one point in MA-6 in 2012 to a Democratic incumbent seared with corruption allegations. Then John Kerry resigns his senate seat to become the Secretary of State, with rumblings of a 2016 Presidential bid thumping slightly in the background (think zebras, not horses, people!) Behold, another US Senate seat opens up. 2012 US Senate incumbent and losing runner-up Scott Brown says “No!” to a third run for Washington, then he says “No!” to a bid for the Corner Office on Beacon Hill; then he says "Good-bye" to his Wrentham home and moves down (that's right, New Englanders, down!) to New Hampshire.
But I am getting ahead of myself.
The metastasizing issue today is the disaster of Gabriel Gomez. One of three candidates who threw his hat (or beret, or whatever) into the ring for the special election US Senate race earlier this year, he had first pandered to "Mister Governor" Deval Patrick for the interim senate seat appointment. He supported Obama in 2008, and even showered him a little campaign cash, so Patrick should have supported Gomez’ desire to get away from the hoi polloi and hob-knob with the hoity-toity of the Beltway. Wow! Can anyone spell "Opportunism"? Perhaps the growing number of students in failing Massachusetts schools cannot, but a picture perfect presentation in the dictionary would have smiling and serene Gabriel Gomez, crew cut and all.
Cut to the US Senate special election. The purple, wounded waffling of the “Republican” was too much for a strong conservative to ignore during the primary. Gomez was indeed “Obama’s Republican”. What’s the point of stumping for a GOP whose heart thumps for the other team, and their standard-bearer? Still, the Navy SEAL turned financier won the GOP primary. Does someone, anyone believe that Dems worked behind the scenes to vault the photogenic Gomez into the limelight? Let’s at least consider, if not embrace the idea. . .
Yes, Gomez paid more in taxes than Markey. He has a wife and kids, and he was for all intents and purposes an outsider. He’s also Hispanic (from my backyard, Los Angeles!) with a rags-to-riches story for the masses. But a great history means nothing without integrity for the present and trust for the future.
Gomez was a no-go on those last two accounts.
Following his loss, Gomez submitted an editorial to the Boston Globe, changing his stance on the assault weapons ban. He was against it, and now he is for it (channeling his inner John Kerry, apparently). Oh my goodness. Can anyone with any sense of self-respect stand by such political grand-standing? Gomez had a change of heart because the people of Massachusetts were right and he was wrong? His wife softened up her former Navy SEAL husband, and made him see the wrong thinking of his view. Right! And Markey still holds the mortgage on a mansion in Malden.
That’s not leadership, Mr. Gomez. That’s just sad. And this guy was the face of the GOP for three months this past year? Stage four metastasizing cancer has hit the Republican brand, and now must be removed.
Now to the “Klan” controversy.
Commenting on Facebook, Gomez attacked two leaders of Red Mass Group with the following invidious invective:
“[T]he level of ignorance and intolerance exhibited by them and their small ‘Klan’ are an embarrassment to our civil society. Merry Christmas.” (Source: http://www.boston.com/politicalintelligence/2013/12/23/former-gop-senate-candidate-gabriel-gomez-throwns-klan-label-activists/OGLRWk8iezBxHOaDISdwhO/story.html#sthash.GNeEjfb6.dpuf
Are you kidding me? How low can one go? Gomez has made quite a mess of things now. Gomez has gone Koo-Koo for kicking his party down. By the way, there is nothing civilized about playing the race card when a dedicated community, online or otherwise, makes the case that the Republican Party should stand for more than playing nice and blending nicely with the Democratic hegemony on Beacon Hill.
Since Gomez is Obama’s Republican, one would think that he had advanced beyond such divisive, insidious rhetoric. The current Presidency ushered in the tide-raising, oceanic post-racial society. Then again, Red Mass Group should appreciate that Gomez’ gainsaying was not nearly as offensive as Florida Democrat Alan Grayson’s outrageously offensive treatment of the Tea Party, complete with burning cross for “T” and Klansmen in the background.
Or is it? Frankly, who can tell, since Gomez stood by the kooky comment on Boston Public radio, then apologized, kind-of.
For the Massachusetts GOP, it’s time to cut the crap, and cut Gomez out for good!