date Feb 16, 2007 11:29 AM
subject "GOP Hopes to Catch a Wave in California"
Dear Mr. Allen,
Your piece in yesterday's Politico, "GOP Hopes to Catch a Wave in California," offers some nice spin but very little in the way of challenges to conventional wisdom or evaluations of counter-evidence -- you know, actual reporting.
You assert that "Giuliani and McCain are pro-business candidates with moderate images in the mold of Schwarzenegger" but never offer any evidence to support your assertion or any counter-evidence that would give your readers the opportunity to judge whether these "images" of Giuliani and McCain are accurate.
So let me do some of this work for you. You could, for example, have cited an August 2006 survey by the Rasmussen Reports that finds 36% of 1,000 people surveyed believe Giuliani to be a moderate. (The number goes to 43% among Republicans, 46% of whom also view McCain as a moderate.) Unfortunately this evidence is not terrible convincing given, for example, Giuliani's recent tack to the Right of the political mainstream with respect to judicial appointments and abortion. As the New York Times has reported, last week in South Carolina and on Fox News Giuliani embraced the judicial philosophy of "strict constructionists" espoused by the likes of Antonin Scalia, Samuel Alito and John Roberts. Many voters understand "strict constructionism" as code for what essentially amounts to conservative judicial activism that aspires to rewrite this country's legal code along strict conservative Christian moralistic lines.
Naturally, "California voters' overwhelmingly [sic] support for abortion rights," as you have it, will work against Giuliani's candidacy. But your "reporting" is too blind to its own internal contradictions to point this out.
[NB: glenn greenwald makes a much more realistic case for the success of giuliani's candidacy.]