Florida congressman Alan Grayson's outspoken assault on Republicans is paying off: He raised a whopping $800,000 in the first quarter of 2010. Grayson, however, bristles at the notion that he's simply a lefty version of, say, Michele Bachmann, writes Greg Sargent at his Plum Line blog. "It’s not a question of extremism,” he says. "It’s a question of concentrating on people’s actual priorities. It turns out populism is really popular.”
Sargent thinks Grayson's stunts are certainly part of his appeal, but he sees something else going on: Democratic voters are tired of seeing their politicians cower. Grayson's "appeal to Dem base voters resides in the fact that he’s not afraid of GOP attacks, that he doesn’t let Republicans own the debate, that he makes his case as aggressively as he can and hopes for the best—in short, that he fights."