Watching Dave Brat campaign on a platform of brazen, unmitigated dishonesty has been one of the most demoralizing experiences in all my years as a voter. Not only because my Congressman has abandoned any concern for telling the truth, but because he actually expects his constituents to believe him.
The way he faked a Washington Post “4-Pinnochio” fact check of his opponent, Abigail Spanberger, was an insult to anyone with even a modicum of critical thinking ability.
His Pavlovian debate performance made a mockery of civil discourse and showed that he is wholly uninterested in (or incapable of) engaging in an earnest exchange of ideas. His TV spots—like the ironically titled “Double Down” ad—pollute the air with insipid, facile and repetitive lies that have been routinely disproved.
Does he honestly believe people are going to buy this?
Yes. Yes he does.
In fact, Dave Brat not only thinks his supporters are dumb enough to believe it, he’s counting on it. And to be perfectly honest, I can see why. He’s run a laughably inept, infuriatingly dishonest, and notoriously lazy campaign.
He’s made no real attempt to reach out to people in this community, nor to make his presence known beyond road signs and purchased media. And the feeble, half-hearted outreach attempts he does make result in egregious unforced errors. (Consider the incident from the Congressman’s visit to Chesterfield County Jail on October 17. When an inmate opened up to him about her struggles with drug addiction and her concerns for rebuilding a life after confinement, he tried to one-up her by unloading his own problems.)
He’s the very model of incompetence, and he’s proven time and again that he’s woefully undeserving of a seat in Congress. In a perfect world, Dave Brat’s re-election prospects would be abysmal.
Yet the race is still considered a toss-up.
So, he maintains course and speed. His lies about his opponent continue unabated (and easily refuted). His community engagement remains sparse, exclusionary, and secretive. His deceitful approach hasn’t changed one bit, even when exposed for the farce that it is. Because he thinks he’s getting away with it. He’s counting on the ignorance and indifference of his base to nullify any consequences for it, and to carry him to a third term.
In short, Brat voters, he not only thinks you’re all idiots, he needs you to be. Boy I sure hope you let him down on November 6.
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