Grayson: Verbal Gunslinger Exits House
In just two years, Florida Democrat Alan Grayson went from being just another freshman Congressman to one of the most recognized faces in the House. But after a battle with Republican Daniel Webster this fall, Grayson lost his re-election bid.
Congress, he says, is largely dysfunctional.
“The Republicans don’t have a way to help people and aren’t interested in doing it. And that’s true whether you’re talking about health care or virtually any important issue.”
“A good description of what happened in my case is that they couldn’t buy me, so they decided to destroy me with negative ads [during the midterm campaign] that people in my district saw an average of 70 times,” he says.
Grayson responded with a controversial ad of his own. It called his opponent “Taliban Dan” and repeated clips in which Webster appeared to say about his wife “she should submit to me.” Although the spot was roundly criticized, Grayson says he was justified in running it.
“We had to do it because, in my case, he ducked every debate we were scheduled to have. And the result of that is that we had no way to communicate his record except for the fact that we could run ads that people called negative ads,” he says.
He’s determined to stay upbeat as he says goodbye to Washington:
“Life is beautiful. It is hard for me to believe that someone like me — who worked my way through college at Harvard by, among other things, cleaning toilets and by working as a night watchman on the midnight shift — somehow, someone like me could end up in Congress.”