Republicans must be reeling now that another “Pelosi/Schumer Puppet” has a seat in the Senate, right?
Well, they aren’t – they’re rejoicing, because Doug Jones was never as bad as he was supposed to be, and he was always better than the Roy Moore alternative.
Trump’s attacks on Doug Jones were always disingenuous, that much we should have realized all along.
Maybe that was just politics, but Trump and Co. had to frame this election as the end of all possible good in order to win.
That strategy’s failure raises an important question that, I’m convinced, few have thoughtfully examined: what will Jones be to the Senate?
Jones is a pro-choice Democrat who has vowed to “stand with Planned Parenthood.” An Obamacare defender, he errs on the side of government intervention in healthcare and setting wages, among other things. He will vote with his party.
Those are not good things, but Jones is so obviously a different kind of Democrat. We may have an actual moderate on our hands.
Here’s the evidence from what we have seen of him thus far:
1. He used a Confederate colonel, even calling him brave, to make a point about finding common ground.
It’s still not perfectly clear to me why Jones chose Colonel William Oates over countless other less controversial figures for expressing his intention to compromise as Alabama’s senator. In any case, Jones spoke of Oates in positive terms, recalling a story and telling it in a way that 9.8 out of 10 congressional Democrats wouldn’t touch with a 10-foot pole.
2. He said Trump shouldn’t resign, as have several Senate Democrats, including Sen. Cory Booker who campaigned on Jones’ behalf.
"Where I am on that right now is that those allegations were made before the election and so people had an opportunity to judge before the election," Jones said Sunday on CNN. Either Jones is out-of-touch with his party, or he has the courage to think differently than his colleagues.
3. He kept the campaign mostly about issues, even at the end.
After the Republican primary, Roy Moore talked about few issues other than media onslaught. The sexual allegations only encouraged Moore to zero-in on the anti-media kick. Jones certainly took political advantage of the allegations, at times overdoing it, and some non-sanctioned, pro-Jones ads about the allegations were highly undignified. I would have liked to see Jones condemn them. But considering the gravity of the allegations, and the state of our politics, it’s a wonder that gutter-talk didn’t overrun Jones’ approach in the campaign’s final month.
4. Jones gave a dignified victory speech.
It was gracious, and dare I say, hopeful. He might actually be willing to work with Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala., as he said in one of his ads.
Has this been a defense of Jones? It certainly hasn’t been a defense of his positions, but I do embrace his cordiality. His measured approach to politics, which I expect to carry over into his legislative efforts, is one that I wish more Republicans and Democrats had.
Jeremy Beaman (@jeremywbeaman) is a contributor to the Washington Examiner's Beltway Confidential blog. He is a senior at the University of Mobile and a former commentary desk intern with the Washington Examiner.
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