Earlier this week, for one brief shining moment, our badly divided republic came together so gloriously that Paul Ryan and Barack Obama were finishing each other's sentences. Everybody agreed that the replacement refs were ruining professional football. This issue struck very close to home, because I am a Packers fan. It's a miracle I can sit up and take nourishment after Monday night, but that's my journey and not this column.
I'm sure somebody else already pointed this out, but what are we to make of the fact that the mania for meeting the refs' union demands pulsed most brightly in Wisconsin, the state led by the most prominent anti-labor politician in America?
That also is not the point of this column.
I've started wondering what will happen to the replacement refs now the official officials are back to work. I think some of them could some to Connecticut for the remainder of our political season. True, they haven't done well in the NFL, but as they've pointed out: Everybody moves very fast there and nobody really explained the rules to them.
Here it would be easier to throw flags. Let me illustrate.
Unsportsmanlike conduct (15 yards) to the DCCC, the congressional campaign arm of the Democratic Party, for its attack ad on Andrew Roraback, the Republican running in the 5th Congressional District against Elizabeth Esty. The ad linked Roraback to the tea party wing of his party. Roraback is a tea partier the way I am Madame Chiang Kai-Shek. He's the opposite. It's like claiming Dan Malloy is an ineffective governor because he's afraid to speak his mind. It's not even plausible. In fact, I'm tacking on an extra five yards for being stupid.
Offsides (5 yards) to Roraback for saying he'd have his lawyers pursue removal of the ad. C'mon, Andrew. Your lawyers can't do squat about those ads, and you know it. On a broader scale, I'm really psyched about Roraback's announcement that he's not going to let Esty push him around anymore. I believe his exact words were: "Although I am not a fellow of rash and splenetic humor, when I am pushed to the utmost margins of my good spirits by calumny so abominable, my gorge will be seen to rise." So, it's on!
Unnecessary roughness (10 yards) against Esty for a 10-year-old video that surfaced last week in which she, as a citizen addressing the Cheshire town council on behalf of school funding, told aggrieved seniors that they are "always welcome to move to one of our neighboring towns." Ouch! Ouch! Ouch! That is so not the warm, fuzzy, cuddly Elizabeth Esty we have … never … seen any … sign of.
Offensive interference (automatic first down) against WTNH's Mark Davis for his snappish question after Roraback expressed indignation over campaign tactics. "Did you think this was the Boy Scouts?" As a former Boy Scout, I'm enraged by that remark. No political campaign I have ever seen can match, for viciousness, personal violence and disregard for common civility, an average day in the life of Troop 44 circa 1967.
Delay of game (five yards) against Linda McMahon for her continued avoidance of detailed interviews with editorial boards and other journalists. Last week, she ducked yet another 50-minute interview with my WNPR colleague John Dankosky. She is the only candidate who consistently refuses to do these. I would not sit still for Dankosky either, because he would surgically expose my glaring inadequacies and the way my adult life is littered with instances of hideous behavior. I assume that's McMahon's reason, too.
Illegal formation (five yards) against Chris Murphy. McMahon has agreed to do only four debates. Murphy has scheduled five more with groups like the AARP, NAACP and the PWDDD. This allows him to complain that McMahon cannot be bothered to debate in front of minorities, older Americans and people who don't do dairy. Actually, I made up the PWDDD, but it really is true that Murphy has agreed to five "debates" which McMahon will not attend. How is this going to work?
Has anybody seen Clint Eastwood's chair lately?