The Nation on Chafee

Rhode Island political observers are well acclimated, at this point, to Lincoln Chafee's appeal to the left. But in the long view, there is something remarkable about his transformation, in the space of a few years, from biggest name in the state GOP to progressive darling. That hit home when N4N saw this glowing talk out of lefty standardbearer The Nation:

Chafee, who is running roughly even with Caprio in the polls, is more than just a credible contender in the Rhode Island race. He is one of the few serious gubernatorial candidates anywhere this year who is talking seriously about how to maintain public education and public services in tough economic times.
That's not to say that Chafee is right in all his approaches, or on every issue.
But what he is doing this year is important.
Chafee's running as an honest player, who asks Rhode Islanders to trust him when he says that it is neither fiscally nor morally responsible to foster the fantasy that it will be possible to cuts taxes, balance budgets and maintain social services and public education. Chafee is leveling with Rhode Islanders, telling that the state's in dire financial straits and that the only way to set things right is with a combination of fiscal discipline and fair taxation.

As we've said in this space before, it's going to be fascinating to watch Chafee navigate his new lefty constituency post-election, if he wins the governor's office.

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