To the Republicans, Independent, and disaffected Democrats (a number which is rising, I am sure) in the Valley:
I am a voter in the South Bay, and for some reason, Randy Newman (no relation to the two Democrats duking it out in the newly-drawn 30th!) decided to put our two constituencies together in the same verse in his hit song “I Love LA!” I have visited Sherman Oaks and Van Nuys in the past, and I cannot say I love the heat on the outside, but the heat (as in political in-fighting) between Howard Berman and Brad Sherman is generating a lot of interest for conservatives like me, who delight to see Democratic candidates burning through campaign cash to annihilate each other. Not that the Republicans do not have money problems of their own, but at least they can regroup.
Incidentally enough, Newman’s song was taken from his album “Trouble in Paradise”, and on October 11, 2012, there certainly was some trouble brewing between Congressmen Howard Berman and Brad Sherman at Peirce College. Although the quality of the taping is strained, the video releases enough. Berman, the “elder” statesman, called Sherman “delusional” – over what, no one could not tell, but as a conservative, I would say that Berman-Sherman’s policies of tax, spend, regulate and frustrate are both delusional and dysfunctional. Of course, Sherman did not take Berman’s slight sitting down, and the crowd roared with approval as Sherman stepped up to challenge the older Congressman, who with all the backing of the California Democratic Delegation, the two US Senators, and even a few Republicans, cannot clinch the election. The loud crowd cheered on Sherman, signaling that the 30th Congressional District is his district to win, with the July polls showing that he had a double-digit advantage over Berman. Then the slur almost turned into a slugfest when Sherman wrapped his arm around Berman, shouting “You Wanna Get Into This?!"
Right at the moment that Sherman put his rival in a weak shoulder-lock, a sheriff on site ran up to the front stage to keep anyone from getting hurt. I pity the voters of the Valley. Don’t the voters of the Valley deserve better than this? The Open Primary plus the Non-Partisan redistricting has forged the most expensive Congressional race, whose differences have carved out heated divisions over the slimmest of policy issues. Much like the Dreyfus affair in Third Republic France, everyone has taken a side, for the better of the worse. The mini-altercation reminded me of “Star Wars” Empire Palpatine getting owned by a balding Luke Skywalker. No light-sabers, but a lot of unsavory mud-slinging has turned a contentious race into a laughable bully-bully bash.
I am a registered Republican, and I would vote for Brad Sherman, only because Sherman voted against TARP and he represents the anti-incumbency temper sweeping across the Southland. It’s a symbolic support, of course, since I cannot vote in the region, but anything to bury once and for all the final vestiges of the Berman-Waxman machine. (And I have gotten involved in getting the word out to end the reign of Henry “The Taxman” Waxman visit “waxmanwatch.blogspot.com” for information on the 33rd and the 30th Congressional Race).
I am well-aware that there is barely a geld’s difference between these two Jewish Democrats. I also know that the Republicans, Susan Shelley and Mike Reed, were snuffed out after the June 6th primary in a heavily Democratic district. However, I believe that many “Republicrats” or “Democans” live in the Valley, and would prefer a candidate who can do more than name post offices or funnel funds to other political races. Perhaps Valley voters may feel inclined to support causes with a more conservative worldview, depleted of the empty infighting like the current clash between two caustic liberals who resort to personal attacks instead of enacting positive policy on behalf of their constituents and the country.
Not just Berman and Sherman, but Republicans across the state should “get into this”, capitalizing on the more damaging nature of a party which now advances identity as policy instead of sound economic proposals which would leverage less spending, limited government, lower taxes, and local control. Maybe an independent who blends the best of the Democrats and the Republicans will draw on these issues, along with a socially tolerant domestic agenda, and thrash the 2012 winner in 2014.
What do you think, Valley people? Like, tell me? Don’t you think moderate candidates who will honor your pocketbook and your privacy deserve at least a fighting chance, without the Berman name-calling or the Sherman headlocks? I can think of no contests where two Republicans are ripping each other apart over which side of the bed they wake up on.
Either way that anyone looks at the Pierce College upset, Sherman may have lost control in one debate, but he still has control of this race, for now. I cannot say that I wish him the best, but I do hope for the best for the 30th Congressional District, which deserves representation, not just posturing for the camera and promises with fisticuffs.