There seems to me some confusion, Chris, in your opening sentence: "Bob Goodlatte can sound partisan in press releases and on the campaign trail, but by and large, the Roanoke Republican is more comfortable with a lower-key approach to politics."
There's a difference between tone and content. Bob Goodlatte's tone may be "low-key." Goodlatte's demeanor is impeccable, if stiff and artificial. He seems a bland and well-behaved gut. But as for whether or not his content is "partisan," what could be more partisan than being a rubberstamp for your party. That's what Goodlatte is, 94-98 percent of the time.
And let me say most strongly, when we're talking about being partisan in behalf of today's Republican Party, there has never been, in the history of the United States, a political party so consistently destructive and dishonest as what today's Republican Party has become. Bob Goodlatte has given his support to one destructive policy and tactic after another, and he's not hesitated to reinforce the lies and distoritions of the Republican Party line.
It is the worst kind of partisanship, to work to deceive the people in order to help one's party get power at the nation's expense.
In my campaign against him this past year and a half, I called him out on his lies about the budgetary implications of Obamacare. I accused him of hypocrisy and inconsistency on his big theme of opposition to "big government." I labeled as "the politics of dishonesty and distraction" my Goodlatte's channeling of the deliberate Republican distortion of the President's "you didn't built that" statement. I tried to show that all these lies were examples of the Republican Party line that's been degrading our public discourse, turning politics into war, disabling our government from coming to reasonable decisions to deal with real challenges facing our nation, and thus damaging America.
That's why I was willing to spend more than a year and a half of my life, and expend all the energies (physical, emotional, and spiritual) at my command, in order to campaign against this rubberstamp for the terrible thing that the once-great Republican Party has become.
Andy Schmookler recently ran for Congress in the 6th Congressional District of Virginia, challenging the incumbent Congressman, Bob Goodlatte. An award-winning author, political commentator, radio talk-show host, and teacher, Andy moved with his family to Shenandoah County in 1992. He is a summa cum laude graduate of Harvard University and holds a PhD from the University of California at Berkeley, published as the book The Parable of the Tribes: The Problem of Power in Social Evolution..
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