Preaching to the choir?


Aiming to cement Keith Ellison’s credentials as the most progressive candidate in the 5th District congressional race, his campaign is bringing U.S. Rep. Dennis Kucinich to the Twin Cities on August 31 for a fundraising concert (not sure if Kucinich will sing). Kucinich, you’ll recall, was the darling of progressive DFLers–including DFL associate party chair Donna Cassutt–in 2004 during this intriguing run for president.

What’s intriguing about the Kucinich visit is the questions it raises about Ellison’s campaign strategy. Surely, the Ohio Democrat will be a big draw for Minneapolis lefties, but I’m guessing that Ellison’s already cornered the market on the DFL left (though, not the so-called “far left,” which is Green Party endorsee Jay Pond’s territory), and that his major challenge is to pull some of the moderate vote away from challengers Ember Reichgott Junge and Mike Erlandson. Kucinich will put on a nice show, but he’ll be preaching to Ellison’s choir.