Blue Dogs Aren't Centrists, They're Greedy

By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 5, 2009 8:19 AM CDT
Rep. Mike Ross, D-Ark., left, speaks to the media after a Blue Dog Democrats meeting with President Barack Obama at the White House in Washington, Tuesday, July 21, 2009.   (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
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(Newser) – Blue Dog Democrats might represent more socially conservative constituencies than their liberal brethren, but that's no reason to take pro-corporate stances on everything from the mortgage market to health care reform. Thomas Frank has a simpler explanation: They're in it for the cash. The Blue Dogs are "champion fundraisers," writes the Wall Street Journal columnist, who bring in far more in contributions than their left-leaning party mates.

As the Washington Post reported last week, the Blue Dogs have deep lobbyist connections that leave even Republicans impressed; only Mitt Romney's PAC was able to raise more money than they did. For Frank, there's little difference between them and the Republicans working with Jack Abramoff. The Blue Dogs are cashing in from the insurance and medical industries—only now, instead of Tom Delay-style ferocity, it's cloaked with "cuddly bipartisan righteousness."