....is a retired Army Lieutenant Colonel. His twenty-two years of service as an Infantry Officer, military diplomat and Russian and Eurasian specialist included troop assignments in the U.S., Europe, and the Middle East with mechanized, motorized, and airborne Infantry units, and concluded with consecutive diplomatic postings in Moscow as an Assistant Army AttachÃ©, and in Vienna, Austria at the U.S. Mission to the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. As a soldier and military diplomat, he has nine years of international experience in Europe, Russia, Central Asia, the Balkans, Egypt, and Africa.
Frankly, Raleigh's CV seems a bit light. After all, up until he resigned in disgrace, Congressional Republicans were led by an ex-cockroach exterminator. Now that's a useful background for a congressman. So, the big question for Raleigh is, "Why does he hate America?"
Needless to say, Mr. Raleigh has impressive credentials. He's been to places that Sweeney can't locate on a map and the President can't pronounce. Given his background, perhaps we may at least listen to some of the things he has to say on national security issues.
Raleigh is no lightweight. But, why is he challenging an incumbent Democrat? Well, in his own words:
Today we launch the first congressional primary campaign in this district since 1996. Between now and the Democratic Primary on 12 September, we will convince Democrats to convince fellow Democrats--neighbors, family, friends, and co-workers--that it is time for change in Washington. We will convince fellow Democrats that it is time to end the disproportionate importance of money in political campaigns, to end the unhealthy, sometimes sinister, influence of money in legislative decision-making. We will convince Democrats that it is time to send to Washington someone who will put the national interest and the common good above politics when it comes to addressing pressing domestic challenges; it is time to send to Washington someone who will choose cooperation and solutions over blame and gridlock. And during a time when the nation finds itself in the midst of a prolonged, complex, and extended war, we will convince Democrats that it is time to send to the Congress someone who has served in the Armed Forces, someone who has served in the intelligence community, someone who has served in embassies overseas, someone who understands--or at least appreciates--the complexities of the post-911 security environment, the post-Cold War world, and the nature of the threats confronting America and her allies. We will convince Democrats to choose leadership over complacency. We will convince Democrats to vote in the 12 September Democratic Primary and to vote for Tom Raleigh because they want their vote to count.
That's an interesting message. Some think that Raleigh is trying to 'Lamont' Mike McNulty. Only there, Lamont ran against Lieberman by criticizing the Connecticut Senator's lack of partisanship. Here, Raleigh is claiming Mike is too partisan.
We do not take sides in primaries. However, it seems a bit inaccurate to accuse McNulty of being too partisan. McNulty's record is very moderate, which accurately reflects the district. He's not generally known for being a partisan grenade thrower.
McNulty, despite being in the minority, has a proven knack for bringing home the bacon to the Capital Region, whether it's for the Watervliet Arsenal, the Stratton Air Force Base, the Port of Albany or other area projects. And despite what people say, when it comes to Congressional Representatives, it's all about the other white meat. Also, to his credit, he didn't duck a debate with his opponent like some incumbents are wont to do.
It looks like the Democrats in the 21st Congressional District have two good choices. The odds are against Raleigh. If Raleigh does lose, we hope he doesn't abandon seeking office in the future. He's a serious, credible candidate.
Why doesn't a serious Republican primary the doofus we have on this side of the river?