Cacciaguida

Defending the 12th century since the 14th; blogging since the 21st.

Catholicism, Conservatism, the Middle Ages, Opera, and Historical and Literary Objets d'Art blogged by a suburban dad who teaches law and writes stuff.


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"Too modest" -- Elinor Dashwood

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"Hat tip: me (but really Cacciaguida)" -- Diana Feygin, Editor, THE YALE FREE PRESS

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Who was Cacciaguida? See Dante's PARADISO, Cantos XV, XVI, & XVII.


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Wednesday, June 14, 2006
 
So James Fields of Fire Webb, former Navy Secretary under President Reagan -- and according to this book, the kingmaker of Gen. Al Gray's ascension to Marine Commandant -- has won the Virginia senatorial nomination as a Democrat, opposing incumbent George Allen.

RedState has an excellent analysis here. I would just add a couple of points.

The "Vote for me I'm a war hero" pitch will work better for Webb than it did for Kerry, because Webb actually is a war hero. And no military lightweight, either: Fields of Fire is taught in officer training courses at Quantico. (Source: a recently graduated officer.) For my money, it is, among other things, an interesting exploration of the balance of power between a rookie lieutenant, and two of the different kinds of enlisted men you (the lieutenant) encounter when you get to combat: the sergeant who's thirty years older than you and has been in more wars than you can name and who wants parade-ground standards in the midst of jungle ambushes; and the rookie-but-clever corporal who knows how the bush works and whose advice is always good -- except that he's not the lieutenant, you are....

Yes, James Webb over George Allen for Secretary of Defense any day. But he's not up for DefSec, he's running for Senator: as in, voting for judges (including cloture); organizing the Senate, including (if the Dems take the majority) making Pat frickin' Leahy chairman of the Judiciary Committee; etc. etc.

Allen is a superb election-winner, and few if any Virginia Republicans will have any reason not to vote for him. Meanwhile many Virginia Democrats will have reasons to stay home or vote for a leftist protest candidate. Webb is not a leftist, and he dissed a lot of state Democrats during the primary campaign. That he won the primary means little about his standing among Democrats: Virginia has open primaries, and there was no Republican primary, so there's no telling how many GOP voters strolled in to vote for Webb, for whatever reason (like, he's a good Marine).

One more thing RedState left out: any problem Webb has with black voters will be exacerbated by his most recent book, the title of which was also his campaign slogan. Born Fighting is a defense -- rather eloquent, if I may say so -- of our nation's much-maligned Scots-Irish immigrants and their descendants, a.k.a. rednecks.

Let the games commence.