Former Carter speechwriter to keynote LCR convention

Even before I knew that my blog-league would be interviewing Patrick Guerriero, I had been considering attending the Log Cabin National Convention the first weekend in April. Given that we have been frequent critics of the organization, I thought that by going there, I would have the chance to meet current Log Cabin members, talk to them, hear their concerns, learn why they're involved while witnessing firsthand how the organization presents itself.

As I reviewed the Convention Agenda online, I was struck by how few Republicans are speaking. Okay, okay, I understand that most of the speakers are on the agenda of something called the Liberty Education Forum (which is, to be sure, a part of the Convention as one registers for both at the same time). I noted, however, that the keynote speaker of the official Log Cabin national convention was a man whose last political job was working for a Democrat. Yep, Chris Matthews, one-time speechwriter to Jimmy Carter and former top aide to Tip O'Neill, will be keynoting this Republican Convention. (For the record, I am still likely to attend.)

Now, I think Matthews is (or used to be when I watched him) one of the best of the TV pundits (side note--can anyone identify a former GOP elected official who hosts a political talk show on a TV network other than Fox?). And Matthews' book "HARDBALL: How Politics Is Played Told By One Who Knows The Game" is a must read for all students of politics. Normally a judicious commentator who is as harsh on Democrats as he is on Republicans, my blogging correspondent Dirty Harry wrote me calling Matthews the "chief conspiracy theorist and doubter of the president's Iraq policy." In other words, in recent days, he has been a strong critic of one of the principle achievements of the president's foreign policy.

It would be one thing for a Republican organization to invite a one-time Democrat who has switched to the GOP, it's quite another when they invite a one-time Democratic staffer who continues to attack our Republican president.

For those who wonder why we criticize Log Cabin so frequently on this blog, one need only look to the keynote speaker at their convention. It makes me wonder yet again if their main goal is not to influence the Republican party, but instead to get attention in the media.

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