What do I think of David Brat?

I have received this question from many people.  I still haven’t read much Brat, other than a very quick browse of some (poorly written) passages (by the way, here is a piece on Brat’s theology).  In any case, my sense of him is this: he really believes in ideas, even if they are ideas a large number of people will find objectionable.  He wants to govern on the basis of those ideas, and he wants to debate those ideas on the floor of Congress.  He is authentic and thus he is exactly the kind of politician our Founding Fathers envisioned.  It is no surprise that at least some subset of primary voters found that appealing, especially compared to the what-can-only-be-called-cynicism of Eric Cantor.

You don’t have to agree with what Brat stands for (mostly but by all means not entirely libertarian), but if you don’t like him at all you need to perform a broader reevaluation of this whole America idea, at least as it was laid out in the Constitution and other founding documents.  This is in fact what it means to have citizen politicians, or alternatively we can call them amateur politicians.  Along these lines,  I also would like to see more candidates like Bernie Sanders — who basically seems to be a socialist — in Congress.

The victory of Brat also shows that money really does not rule politics these days.

By the way, he should learn to write “Deirdre McCloskey,” (p.60) instead of “Donald-Diedre McCloskey.”  LBGT rights remain a neglected issue outside of “the Left,” but they are a good barometer of our overall degree of tolerance as well as a desirable policy in their own right.  I am not sure it is an issue Brat is so likely to be good on or to make a priority.


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