January 9, 2016

IT'S NO COINCIDENCE THAT ALL OUR WINNING NOMINEES HAVE GOVERNED BEFORE:

The Republican Governors' Advantage (Joe Klein, Jan. 6, 2016, TIME)

"It hit me like a brick wall the first day I campaign here last year," said Jeb Bush, whose daughter has fought addiction problems. "Two people in the hotel lobby told me they had lost loved ones to drug overdoses. I met two others before the day was over."

Bush is extraordinary on this issue, in his restrained way; the other two governors were excellent, too. The problem is horrendous, but it was a pleasure to hear politicians speaking about an issue that they had really worked on and worried about. They were fluent on the value of drug courts, where addicts can choose a course of treatment rather than punishment. They were united in their belief that addiction-as opposed to drug-dealing-needs to be treated rather than punished. Each had a story about the careless pill-pushing of the medical profession. [...]

John Kasich, dressed casually in a blue shirt, showed emotion-he told a story about a woman he knew who'd overcome addiction-and an easy fluency on the issue. At one point, Kasich gave credit to the Democratic Mayor of Cleveland for his cooperation in establishing a treatment policy. "You can't have wars between the parties on this issue," he said. "It's too important. I know this is a Republican primary, but too bad!" He added, to cheers.

And it was striking how different-how refreshing-the tone in Hooksett was from the rabidly soundbitten demolition derbies on television. It was also a nice reminder that governors have a presidential advantage that doesn't manifest itself in the quick-draw world of debates: they know stuff. They've studied issues and decided things. In this case, all three had come to very similar decisions-and could cite optimistic statistics to support the policies they had enacted. There were no wild claims or attacks; they were specific in their answers before a tough, concerned audience; sanity prevailed.

Posted by at January 9, 2016 10:50 AM

  

« THE GREASY POLL: | Main | IT EVEN MAKES CAT TASTE GOOD: »