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  [Gen Wes] Clark strikes a Southern chord
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Last EditedArmyDem  Oct 11, 2005 07:33pm
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News DateWednesday, October 12, 2005 01:00:00 AM UTC0:0
DescriptionPosted 1:54 pm | Printer Friendly

I noticed that Wesley Clark was in Alabama yesterday, speaking at a local party rally and a state Dems' fundraiser. According to a news report of the event, Clark was very well received, but more importantly, I think he used language that can resonate in the region.

"Retired Gen. Wesley Clark, former and possible future presidential candidate, delivered a fiery charge to Alabama Democrats here Monday, telling them to convince voters in this conservative Southern state to reject "incompetent" GOP leadership and embrace a party of "genuine" patriotism and family values.

"This is our flag," Clark said, as he stroked an American flag in the atrium of the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame downtown. "We fought for it. Some of us bled for it — and nobody is going to take it away from us."

Clark asked veterans in the audience to raise their hands. When a significant number of hands went up, Clark asked, "Why aren't we the party of patriotism?" He also asked for a show of hands for those who go to church. When nearly every hand went up, Clark asked, "Would you say this is a party of faith?"

"It comes down to a common morality," Clark said. "We believe in helping people. We believe in lifting people up. What does the other side believe in? They want to tell you that morality is only about sex, so they talk about gays. They talk about abortion. And they tell us, 'Greed is good.'"

Amid growing applause, he continued, "They stand for bettering individuals at the expense of everybody else. In the Democratic Party, we stand for the common good. Those are values Americans and Alabamians can understand."

Granted, this was a crowd of loyal Dems. Nevertheless, it was Alabama.

If recent history is any guide, it's going to be a while before national Dems can compete well in the South, but I'm wondering if maybe, just maybe, Republican support is slipping a bit in conservative Southern states.
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