There's a disease among certain southern Indiana career politicians. It's called Bloomington Syndrome.
Politicians seem to believe that what they say in Bloomington, stays in Bloomington, and nobody else out in the rest of southern Indiana will pay attention to what they say there.
Now, it appears that we have another case of this disorder.
From the Herald Times, courtesy of a Hoosierpundit reader:
Republican Todd Young isn’t afraid to criticize his party as he tries to win the Republican nomination and the right to face U.S. Rep. Baron Hill, D-Seymour, in the race for Indiana’s 9th District congressional seat.
Young, a Bloomington attorney, Orange County deputy prosecutor and retired U.S. Marine captain, said his primary campaign is going to be based on issues.
“It’s going to be a candid discussion amongst our Republican family about what our Republican Party should aspire to be and some different visions perhaps about where we should be headed,” Young said.
First of all, it's hard to stand in the most liberal community in Indiana--amid your country club buddies and moderate RINOs--and criticize the GOP and have anyone believe that you're honestly and sincerely complaining about the party not being true to conservative principles; it just doesn't work.
And when you are touting your base of establishment support as being an important element of your candidacy--particularly your support from the Indianapolis establishment--don't expect to be reasonably believed when you criticize the establishment of the party. The establishment of the party endorsed you.
Heck, it's right there on the front page of the campaign website right now:
Young has been campaigning for the Ninth District seat since January of last year. In that time, he has contacted thousands of voters across the district to hear their concerns; set new fundraising records for a Republican challenger in the district; and earned the public support of nearly every statewide officeholder and the bulk of the district's Republican county chairmen.
There you have it. The establishment's candidate. The Indianapolis candidate.
I bet Young has a hard time being critical of the establishment that has endorsed him while keeping a straight face. Even a lawyer would have trouble telling that whopper.
As I've already noted, the "setting new fundraising records" claim is bogus and unsubstantiated by facts.
It's also probably more accurate to say that Young has been campaigning for the 9th District seat since early 2007 (not long, according to his campaign bio, after he moved here).
Since that time, he created a front group called NOPIGS to give him an excuse to campaign across southern Indiana and get himself known.
Given that he named it the National Organization for People vs. Irresponsible Government Spending, you'd assume that it was, you know, national (and not just a slick acronym).
Show me a chapter of NOPIGS in Minnesota or Ohio or Texas or any other state outside of Indiana (or heck, any chapter outside of the person of one Todd C. Young) and it will be the first.
There are plenty of things to criticize about the Republican Party in recent years. Saying that Republicans should be more like "Republicans" (and I use that term loosely) in Bloomington and Carmel isn't a valid criticism.
It is also not a valid criticism to attack the party establishment when the party establishment (according to your own campaign website) is endorsing you.
The problem with the Republican Party is that it got away from its conservative principles. It won't return to them by looking to establishment candidates to lead the way.
Another the problem with the Republican Party is that its establishment doesn't reflect the values of its base. It won't get back to those values by nominating more establishment "chosen ones."
Todd Young may have a vision of where the Republican Party should be headed. Most Republicans aren't likely to agree with him about steering it back to the establishment.
Newspaper Reporting Quibble: The Marine Corps Retirement Guide says that an officer has to serve for 20 years before they can "retire." Todd Young did not serve in the Marine Corps for 20 years (he was on the five-year plan), ergo he isn't "a retired Marine." Reporters should get it right.