Finally doing something that might just work:
Looking ahead to next year's elections, Democrats are trying to recruit at least two dozen military veterans to challenge Republican incumbents, arguing that candidates with military on their resumes appeals to independent voters and can help the party break the GOP grip on Washington.
"Veterans have had the experience of putting the country first, before personal politics" and party dictates, said Rep. Seth Moulton, D-Mass, who did four tours of duty in Iraq, left the Marines as a captain and was elected to Congress in 2014. That tends "to attract the kind of independent voters who are looking for a good leader," Moulton added.
While I may be a little prejudiced in favor of veterans, I have always believed it would be wise for the Democratic Party to field them as candidates. A lot of Democrats are veterans, but we've allowed the GOP to (falsely, in many cases) claim the high ground on veterans' issues, even those who never served. Richard Burr is a prime example, but there are many others. And it's not just Independent voters who may be swayed by a Dem in uniform. North Carolina has the third largest population of active and reserve military voters, with some 129,000 troops, not counting spouses. I've been there, done that, and the first question on my mind before casting my vote was, "Which ones have served in the military?" And as each day brings new embarrassments over Trump, that veteran angle will be even more effective:
In the Philadelphia suburbs, former Air Force officer Chrissy Houlahan is challenging two-term Republican Rep. Ryan Costello in one of 23 districts where Democrat Hillary Clinton topped Trump in November. Outside Denver, former Army Ranger and combat veteran Jason Crow, a onetime campaign adviser to Obama, is running for the seat held by another veteran, five-term GOP Rep. Mike Coffman.
Both mentioned President Donald Trump as factors in their campaign. "All the bravado and the wailing and gnashing of teeth isn't the way we conduct ourselves as professional service members," Houlahan said of Trump's rhetoric.
Said Crow: "I'm deeply troubled by President Trump and what he's trying to do to country and our democracy."
I know many reading this are either ambivalent to military issues or downright hostile to them, and I can understand where that comes from. The amount of death and destruction associated with US military conflicts over the last 15 years is ghastly, and have mostly failed to bring about the security and freedom the chickenhawks claimed it would. But that makes it even more important to get more veterans in Congress, people who understand the reality of war, and not the fantasy of it.