Ford: I'll Stand Down, but Democrats Are Out of Touch

Primary battle with Gillibrand would weaken party, writes Harold Ford Jr.
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 2, 2010 4:00 AM CST
Former Rep. Harold Ford, Jr. addresses a meeting of the New York State Association of Black and Puerto Rican Legislators in Albany, N.Y., Sunday, Feb. 14, 2010.   (AP Photo/Tim Roske)
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(Newser) – A bare-knuckled Democratic primary battle in New York would only strengthen the Republicans and risk losing a Senate seat, Harold Ford Jr. writes, explaining why he decided to drop out of the race. But in standing down he takes a broad swipe at party insiders who tried to bully him out of the race as soon as it was rumored he'd be challenging Kirsten Gillibrand. Those same out-of-touch party bosses are the reason why the Democrats stand to lose their Senate majority, he writes in the New York Times.

Ford notes that positions he'd advocated, including moving the KSM trial out of New York and focusing on job creation instead of health care, have now "become part of the Democratic mainstream." He says the party has been woefully slow to respond to what voters want, and he pledges to remain an "independent Democrat" and continue "speaking out on behalf of policies that I think are right—regardless of ideology, party, or political expediency."

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