Chopp’s Regret

Steven Gardner writes:

David Postman at the Seattle Times’ Postman on Politics blog and Chris McGann at the Seattle Post-Intelligencer’s Strange Bedfellows blog included House Speaker Frank Chopp’s one regret from the 2007 Legislature.

Said Chopp:

“Let me say, actually I thought I made a mistake when I talked about Petty, Richard Petty. I just thought that was, well, stupid and thought it was inappropriate. And I really get down on myself when I do something wrong that might have hurt somebody. I had no right saying that. I meant it as a joke. But I agonized over that. I think it was wrong what I did.”

34 thoughts on “Chopp’s Regret

  1. I hadn’t checked the blog in awhile but I am glad I did.

    “…Republican activist Richard Petty”

    That is priceless Jacob! You have a “far left” jab for every situation…classic.

  2. Jake,
    Do a little more research and you would note that His son Kyle Petty was instrumental in forming the Victory Junction Gang Camp for ill kids. The camp was begun in memory of Kyle’s son who died in a NASCAR (Busch series) practice session. Yes, Richard Petty ran for office then admitted later that politics wasn’t for him.

    Stop making assumptions based on someone shaking the Presidents hand.

  3. It doesn’t. What matters is that Chopp made a mistake and was big enough to later admit it. Had he decided an apology wasn’t needed because the object of his bad behaviour was from an opposing party, it would have been a most petty decision which chipped away at his leadership potential.

  4. He is not just a former race car driver. He ran for state office on the Republican ticket, the ISC’s executives are major republican donors and they let the Republican National Committee and Bush 04 Campaign use their races as political events in Florida in 04. NASCAR and Grant Lynch were a major factor in insuring that Bush would win Florida in 2004. If Florida voted the other way Ohio would not have mattered and we would be talking about President Kerry and VP Edwards right now. Then you have who’s who of the Kitsap Republicans in 2006 backing the ISC. Ron Bohme, Lois, Bob Oak, Jack Hamilton, Bev Woods and those guys who ran against Sherry Appleton and Derek Kilmer. The NASCAR legislation had a lot of anti-environmental things that the Washington State Republicans have been trying to do for a long time such as ditching the Growth Management Act, extending sewers beyond urban growth boundaries and it included lots of corporate tax loopholes. The very concept of tax handouts for a corporation is going to increase tax revenue and pay off the bonds can’t be any more like Reagan/Bush Voodoo Economics.

    The act of promoting the corporate welfare for NASCAR is a major political action. NASCAR and the ISC are political and rightwing. I don’t know about other Democrats but knowing about NASCAR’s previous rightwing political activities set me off against it. When I first met Grant Lynch in late 2004 at the Port Orchard high school “NASCAR Open House” I had an open mind but the more I learned about NASCAR’s political activities and the more about the actual details of the proposal the worse it started to look.

  5. Jake,

    Let me be more specific. If you bring up that Petty is Republican in relation to the track issue, that’s fair.

    When you bring it up only in relation to Chopp’s DUI comment, how does Petty’s party affiliation matter?

  6. “…NASCAR and Grant Lynch were a major factor in insuring that Bush would win Florida in 2004”

    Wow all this time I thought it was the fact that his brother was the GOVERNOR. You’re losing it pal. Goofy party politics has got you out of touch with reality. My suggestion is to take a break for awhile, maybe some of the rhetoric boiling up inside of you will subside.

  7. I don’t think it was a factor when the speaker misspoke. But the later media campaign of Fox and NASCAR nationwide fans that vilified Speaker Chopp was most likely counter productive towards the ISC’s lobbying efforts. I asked Larry Seaquist’s Olympia aid if she has been getting angry comments from the 26th LD. She said that the vast majority of angry comments came from across the country. The ISC needed the support of Seaquist and Chopp but vilification of Speaker Chop and Rep Seaquist galvanized views against the ISC’s proposal in Olympia. That did not help them at all.

  8. In Florida in 2004 Bush got 3,964,522 votes and Kerry got 3,583,544 votes.

    That is only a difference of 380,978 in a state of 15,982,378 people. If Grant Lynch of the ISC did not let the Republican National Committee and Bush C.R.E.E.P. use their NASCAR races in Florida as political rallies with massive voter registration the state might have gone the other way.

  9. Jacob,

    Are you serious…you can’t be?

    I feel like I am discussing this with a fanatic.

    BTW: Do you think ISC would be able to freely headquarter and operate in Florida if they snubbed the Governor’s brother?
    Chicken or the egg buddy.

  10. The partisan angle remains irrelevant. Petty wasn’t running for office when the comment was made. Nor was he doing so when Chopp wisely expressed his regrets.

  11. Bronson, it has been shown that self absorbed, self promoting egotists use shock value to gain attention so as not to be ignored. So let’s unite and ignore. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, but we are also entitled not to respond to garbage. Don’t pick up the verbal litter and it will just blow away.

    Many large events are used as an opportunity for voter registration by both sides. I am happy Florida registered more of their eligible voters. King Country prefers to use the optional method of ineligible voter registration ie..criminals and deceased individuals.

  12. Chopp could have faced defamation charges as a result of his DUI “joke”. Leaders should be encouraging informed participation at a much higher level, whether it be regarding ISC, the Sonics, or any other project or issue on the state’s agendae.

  13. Jacob, by that extension you should be oppossed to Hillary Clinton becuase she used to be on Wal-Mart’s board. Look, unless someone or a corporation links themselves to an openly racist or obscene group, I could care less what their party affiliation is. If they are selling me a product or service I want, I will buy it from them.

    The sick part is that you think Chopp and Seaquist are the victims in all of this. They deserved a good whack over the head from all of the nation for their stupid comments.

  14. I am not supporting any presidential candidate in the primary. It is all going to be set long before we get to vote for it and I am sick of Washington Democrats being used as an ATM by national campaigns that don’t turn around and help us in State wide efforts like when Rossi tried to steal the election in 2004.

    My three favorite candidates Howard Dean, Al Gore and the late Paul Wellstone are not running in 2008. Senator Clinton past experience with the “DLC” is going to keep me from supporting her in the primary but I am going to support the eventual nominee of the party. Honestly I have no idea who that is going to be but we will find out on Feb 5th. What ever Democrat that wins the California primary is going to go on and win the whitehouse.

    Besides it’s not like any Republican presidential candidate has a shot in heck in winning Washington State. The last time a Republican won any electoral votes from Washington State was in 1984. That’s 24 years from this election. The Republicans are going to nominate someone who is Anti-immigrant, Pro- Corporate Welfare, Anti-Choice, Pro-Deficit, Pro-Iraq War Deaths, Anti-Healthcare for all, Anti-Secular government and Pro-George Bush. That is simply a loosing combination in Washington State. Look how well it worked for McGavick, Rossi and Nethercutt.

  15. Political gamemanship does not include violating the law, and players who believe “all’s fair” had better have a trust fund, a team of attorneys from a top 10 law firm, or live in a fortress with armed soldiers in case they cross the line with a person who thinks Virgina Tech-like tragedies are the remedy instead of a courtroom.

    No matter the party, if a politician puts hit foot in his mouth, he should man up and own it. Hiding behind the petticoats of extremist rhetoric or archaic political gamesmanship won’t protect him from bankruptcy if a multimillion dollar lawsuit cleans his clock for crossing the line.

    Partisanship might rear its head and give a favoured leader or party a pass per double standards, but this dumbs down the process and renders visionary governance a bit of a joke.

    If Chopp wants to appeal to coliseum attendees who are unlikely to ever experience the responsibilities of true leadership, go for it. But he’ll cut his career short and lose credibility. Looks like he chose the adult solution.

  16. “players who believe “all’s fair” had better have a trust fund, a team of attorneys from a top 10 law firm, or live in a fortress with armed soldiers in case they cross the line with a person who thinks Virgina Tech-like tragedies are the remedy instead of a courtroom.”

    Your talking about Grant Lynch of the ISC right? No doubt he lives in a gated fortress with armed guards and many man servants.

  17. Well Dona why don’t you move to the 43rd LD and try to run against Frank Chopp. The Republicans have had a hard time recruiting candidates to run against him. Speaker Chopp got 90.7311% of the vote. I am sure that you might be about to beat 10% in that district with your Pro-corporate “green Skillz”

  18. You know, I got in trouble on this blog for telling people to “man up”. I do agree that politics shouldn’t be part of any sensible solution, but that isn’t possible these days. NASCAR is a very red sport and they wear it on their sleeve. I can understand Jacobs reaction to it, just like I know why people from the South denigrate the North westerners.

  19. “Your (sic) talking about Grant Lynch of the ISC right? No doubt he lives in a gated fortress with armed guards and many man servants.”

    No, I’m a bit more broad in my thinking. I was referring to anyone who thinks “all’s fair” to the point of violating the law. I don’t really care where or how Grant Lynch lives. As for running for political office, I’m not interested – but do enjoy advising and not being owned by a party when I speak my piece.

    And Rich, I didn’t say I couldn’t understand Jacob’s reaction: I’ve been in or around the political arena for nearly 50 years and am quite used to the less enlightened partisan jockeys. My point was that this doesn’t give others, particularly political leaders like Chopp, the right to slander or libel.

  20. What you also have are too many citizens who don’t understand it. Just as you’ve exhibited.

    Free speech isn’t absolute, nor does defamation does not enjoy protection under the law.

  21. Individuals in our society have been so busy pushing the envelope to show how free they are from any moral rules, that they have forgotten mutual respect and common courtesy.

  22. “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

    Why do you think you know more about free speech than President Jefferson?

  23. The better question is which school or instructor incorrectly taught you that Jefferson’s knowledge of free speech was omniscient. Or, which one failed to help you discern the difference between an excerpt – and analysis regarding framer intent and case law which addresses the First Amendment wherein defamation does not enjoy protection under the law.

    Thought it’s not really fair to blame your school or instructors at this stage of the game. However, when one juxtaposes your self-described enmeshment in politics with your failure to get it, this sheds more light on what the average person outside the arena understands.

    In any case, what I wrote earlier in the thread stands. Chopp did the right thing by owning his foolish comments regarding Petty. Perhaps it will serve as an example to younger and less experienced individuals who may join future political ranks with the mistaken belief that real life is like a video game.

  24. Jacob,
    Not once have I read anything in Ms Keating’s comments that inspire or condone hate. Whereas you sir, promote bigotry, separation, stereotyping and slander every time with the negative labels that you attach to everyone and everything you don’t agree with. Enough!

  25. Jacob,

    Dona is correct. “Freedom of speech” is not at all the same thing as “speech without consequences”.

    You do have the right to speak your mind, but you don’t have the right to falsely accuse someone of something. That’s why we have libel laws. Chopp came close to violating those laws. So did the local Republican (I forget who it was) who publicly accused Josh Brown of falsifying his educational credentials. It remains to be seen whether James Olsen crossed the line with his accusations against Brown.

    The best example of a libel case that I know of is the Goldmark case from the early 1960’s. John Goldmark, a Washington state legislator, was falsely accused of communist sympathies by some political opponents who included members of the John Birch Society. In 1963, Goldmark successfully sued them for libel and received a $40,000 judgement. The case marked the first successful libel challenge by a plaintiff accused of communist affiliations.

    If the name sounds familiar, Goldmark’s son David and his wife and children were brutally slain by nutcase and right-wing extremist David Rice in Seattle in the 1980’s. Goldmark’s other son Peter ran for the US House in the 5th Congressional district last year, and lost.

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