Terry McAuliffe wants you to know that he believes in you. He says so right in the subject line of his latest email — “I believe in you.” It’s the kind of headline that made me wonder whether McAuliffe knew I was having one of those days and needed a bit of affirmation. When a quick search of my office showed no hidden cameras or other recording equipment bearing a “McAuliffe for Governor” logo, I wondered if, perhaps, Terry was psychic. It would save a fortune on opposition research. And relations with the General Assembly? Piece of cake.
That mixture of warm fuzziness and vague uneasiness evaporated once the email was open. Suddenly, it wasn’t all about Terry’s belief in me. It was him asking “Can I count on you?”
I’d been strung along by other politician. He doesn’t believe in me at all. It’s always going to be about him. And he wants money, too! Well, $5, so it’s not like he’s asking for the keys to my car and a credit card. But okay, what’s the money for, Terry?
He says needs the money so he can continue his Mao-like struggle against the “extreme right-wing forces” he has been waging guerrilla warfare against “for thirty years.” He says the folks “bankrolling Ken Cuccinelli’s campaign” are the same creeps who backed the “most extreme Tea Party candidates in 2012: Rick Santorum, Todd Akin, and Allen West.”
Lions, tigers and bears, oh my!
I wasn’t going to give in to this terrible tale, though. Too many times, a slick-talking politician has tried to weasel his way into my wallet in the past, only to spend that money — even if it was just $5 — on catering for high-dollar donors at parties I was never invited to attend.
But then he came up with a new line…
“If you have my back now, I’ll have your back for the next four years.”
He really did believe in me after all. He cared! And sure, one could read that as Terry asking for protection money. And no, I doubt that, if he loses to Mr. Cuccinelli, I can call Terry up a couple of years from now, remind him that I “had his back” in January, 2013, and ask him to help me repaint the house.
But it might just be worth five bucks to try it…