Thursday, June 03, 2004

The Prince of Memphis

This week's cover story in the Knoxville Metro Pulse weekly is about Memphis' own Harold Ford, Jr. The Instapundit provides a link, a short quote and an approving remark. If the article seems familiar it's because it already ran over two months ago in the Nashville Scene This is the famous article that the local media made so much hay of because it had a dis on Memphis.
The second complication is Ford's own hometown of Memphis, which has a reputation among many Tennesseans as a sprawling, urban, dysfunctional mess that, by historical accident, the rest of the state is stuck having to deal with. These Tennesseans think that while Memphis has its charms, those charms should stay right there in Memphis where they belong. They're going to be skeptical about any politician from that city, especially one whose controversial family is so closely connected to it.
Never mind that Abramson is right! We may not think that way about ourselves, but I assure you the rest of Tennessee does. You can argue truth, but the perception is definitely there.

It never helps that we love to pretend we are the capital of some mythic "Mid-South" region. We may be the biggest city between Nashville and Little Rock, St. Louis and New Orleans, but the region doesn't so much look to us as begrudge that we're there. The city puts on airs its behavior doesn't always merit.

The Metro Pulse version does appear to have been lightly rewritten or edited, but it's the same story. They even use a similar headline. So why did they run it? Summer recycling? Sweet deal for Abramson? Relevance with the Kerry campaign? Saw a good story in another market and wanted to run it in theirs?

I'm guessing Instapundit saw the big color cover of Ford and read the article, not knowing it had run in Nashville already. Ford is exactly the kind of Democratic that Instapundit would support -- a DLC "centrist" who can temper his worst liberal impulses to fool voters into thinking he's moderate. Read the article and you'll see that his voting record supports that. And Ford came out for the war early on, which is an issue so important to Instapundit that it can be a deal breaker with him.

So, there you go. Indeed. Heh.

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