Deadline Now: Congressional Candidate Graham Veysey
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Deadline Now: Congressional Candidate Graham Veysey

Friday, March 2, 2012

Ohio's 9th Congressional District in in the most competitive race anyone can remember. Democrats Marcy Kaptur and Dennis Kucinich are two longtime incumbents thrown into the same district, forced to fight for the party's nomination in the March 6, 2012 primary. But Graham Veysey, a 29-year-old Cleveland businessman, is hoping voters take a chance on a younger generation and new blood and elect him instead. Mr. Veysey is host Jack Lessenberry's guest this week on "Deadline Now."

Here are Jack Lessenberry's Final Thoughts for this edition of "Deadline Now:"

Twenty years ago, there was a hard-fought congressional primary race in a suburban Detroit district between a prominent state senator and a prominent circuit court judge.
They waged one of the most expensive congressional campaigns in state history, spending lavishly on TV commercials attacking each other. There was a third candidate in that race, too, a lesser-known man who had never run for office before.
He had some support, but was mainly disregarded by the media. He waged a low-key campaign based on the theme that Washington needed a fresh voice and not one more politician.
Most of the media were astonished when he won a stunning victory on election night, beating both the favorites by more than ten points. I am not saying or predicting that Graham Veysey is going to do the same thing. The odds are heavily against him. But stranger things have happened in politics. There’s also another common story.
Back in nineteen-seventy four, a twenty-eight-year old man just out of law school went south and took on a popular incumbent in a congressional race in Arkansas. He lost, but learned a thing or two.
Four years later, another young guy seeking to make his mark did much the same thing in another southern state. He lost too, but also lived to fight another day. The first of these two was named Bill Clinton; the third, George W. Bush.
There used to be a saying in politics that you run once to get known and the second time to get elected. Of course, history is full of men like Graham Veysey who ran, collected a mere handful of votes, and disappeared from the political scene forever.
We won’t start finding out which, if any of these scenarios will play out till after the votes are counted March sixth. What I hope, however, is that men like Mr. Veysey continue trying to make a difference regardless of whether they are in office or out.
And I hope everyone who is eligible gets out and votes.