Bill Nelson is one of the least progressive Democrats in the United States Senate, with a record that has earned him a progressive legislative score of only 33 percent and a right wing legislative score of 55 percent. It is no exaggeration to call Senator Bill Nelson a right wing Democrat.
Unfortunately, there is no progressive Democrat challenging Senator Nelson’s nomination this year. So, with no alternative within the Democratic Party, what is a progressive voter in Florida to do? The answer is simple: Look outside the Republican Party.
Republican Katherine Harris is out of the question, of course. She appears to be, in addition to being an extremist ideologue loyalist to George W. Bush, a criminally corrupt back room dealer as well. No self-respecting resident of Florida could support Harris for Senate.
With the Democrat and the Republican candidates both leaning toward the right wing, progressive Floridians had best look to an indendent: Brian Moore. While Bill Nelson has been a big supporter of the Iraq War, Briane Moore opposed the invasion and occupation of Iraq from the start.
However, Brian Moore is more than just an antiwar candidate. He is a genuine and thorough progressive. As chairman and co-founder of the Nature Coast Coalition for Peace & Justice in Citrus County, Moore has been working as an advocate of progressive values for years. Brian Moore is the real deal.
Will Brian Moore win the senate election this year? The chances are not good. Bill Nelson is a shoe-in, with Republicans abandoning the increasingly bizarre campaign of Katherine Harris in favor of Nelson’s Republican-lite approach. However, by voting for Brian Moore, the progressive citizens of Florida can send a message to Senator Bill Nelson and the leadership of the Florida Democratic Party that they can’t count on the votes of Florida’s progressives any more.
Bill Nelson’s record in the United States Senate is proof that we cannot simply assume that if a politician is a Democrat, he or she will promote progressive values in public office. If the Democrats want the support of progressives, they’ll have to earn it. In Florida this year, lodging a strong protest vote with Brian Moore for Senate is a great way to make that point clear.