A friend and I were talking about Tuesday's primary -- yes, that's all I talk about -- when my pal encapsulated why so many 6th District Dems are passionate about the Christine Cegelis campaign.
"It's about respect," he said. "During the 2004 campaign against Hyde, the Republicans didn't take the campaign -- or the 6th District Dems behind it -- seriously. But Christine and her grassroots team worked with dogged passion, and in November 2004, we held Hyde to his lowest total ever.
"And that got the GOP's attention. We got their respect. Republicans nationwide now take the Democrats of this district seriously. Seriously enough to have Tom DeLay sponsored fundraisers even as DeLay is indicted for campaign fundraising violations. Seriously enough to bring Dick Cheney in for a 6th District fundraiser. Serious enough to stockpile a cool million for the race.
"And now, unfortunately, we must demand the respect of the D.C. Democrats," he said. "It's a damn shame and a waste of resources, but that's where we are: Karl Rove respects the 6th District grassroots, but the DCCC doesn't.
"But the Republicans didn't just give us their respect," he reminded me. "We demanded it. We took it. And if that's how it has to be with the Democratic 'leadership' during this primary, so be it.
"We did it before, dammit -- we can do it again."
And we're doing it again here.
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