Representative Rick Crawford, the Democratic incumbent of the 16th State House District, is facing Republican challenger Trey Kelley in November, but it appears that Representative Crawford is having a bed-side conversion in promising to switch parties if he wins in November. From Atlanta Unfiltered:
Rick Crawford was just nominated as a Democrat to serve another two-year term in the Georgia House, but he says he’s switching to the Republican Party if he wins re-election. Crawford, who had been pondering his party affiliation for a while, said the Democrats’ endorsement of same-sex marriage pushed him over the edge. “I thought, ‘My time here is done,’” he said. His timing precluded Democrats from fielding another nominee in 2012, but Crawford said there was no political calculation to his decision.
Ok, so his beef with his own party is their endorsement of homosexual marriage. Fine, but, as you may recall, President Barack Obama, the top Democrat in the country, gave his public support of homosexual marriage back in the early part of May. Qualifying started the last Wednesday of May, so if he felt so strongly against homosexual marriage, then why did he want to qualify as a Democrat? To me, if you qualify as a Republican or Democrat (or Libertarian), you are implicitly agreeing to the same general values and principles of your respective party. Further, why this promise now just a few weeks away from the election rather than after the Democrats’ passed their national platform at their national convention at the beginning of September? Is this a genuine conversion, or is there a poll somewhere that shows that the race between him and Mr. Kelley is a lot tighter than he expected? Something just doesn’t add up.
I know he said that there is “no political calculation to his decision”, but I don’t buy the statement at face value. He lives in a conservative area, and the man running for a second term as President of the United States is on the opposite end of conservative. He also has a strong conservative Republican running against him. Perhaps Representative Crawford misunderestimated (to borrow a Bushism) his opponent and now his opponent is giving him a run for his money. I believe that there is some political expediency to his promise of a defection if he is victorious.
The polls on November 6th will determine if Representative Crawford’s bed-side conversion helped his bid for re-election.