Guest Column: Alan Grayson lets down his supporters with desperate moves


By Sean Phillippi

Rep. Alan Grayson surprised many by recently coming out to support Sec. Hillary Clinton for President over Sen. Bernie Sanders. Personally, I am an unabashed supporter of Sec. Clinton. She should, and probably will, become our 45th President. That being said, it is clear that Rep. Grayson’s endorsement of Sec. Clinton is a self-serving attempt to help his struggling US Senate campaign. Sec. Clinton and Rep. Patrick Murphy are both proud Democrats, and one of the strongest ties that binds them is that they are both Democrats who favor accomplishing things to help people over digging in their heels in support of an ideological stance that has no tangible benefit for their constituents.

Rep. Grayson is much more in line with Sen. Sanders when it comes to their worldview, which is why most of the active supporters that Rep. Grayson still has seem to overwhelmingly support Sen. Sanders. One thing I tell all of the candidates I work with is that they shouldn’t sell themselves or their supporters out to win an election. That, win or lose, they should stay true to themselves. Rep. Grayson sold out his supporters, and the fact that he sold them down the river with nothing to show for it demonstrates both how little he thinks of the people who have spent months defending him and how undisciplined Grayson is as a candidate.

Another example of how badly Rep. Grayson’s campaign is doing is the downright bizarre television ad where Rep. Grayson takes full credit for Rep. McCarthy dropping his bid to become Speaker of the House. I would have laughed my head off if I wasn’t shocked by the brazen disregard for reality that Rep. Grayson shows with this ad. He had as much to do with Rep. McCarthy dropping his bid to become Speaker of the House as I did. Is his next campaign ad going to have Rep. Grayson’s face transposed on General Washington’s body crossing the Delaware River with Rep. Grayson taking credit for winning the American Revolution? Such an ad would have as much basis in reality as the one he is currently running.

An ethics complaint that Rep. Grayson filed is what he points to in making his case that Rep. McCarthy was waiting with baited breath to hear what he thought before deciding his future. One thing I will give Rep. Grayson is that if any Member of Congress is an expert on unethical behavior it is Rep. Alan Grayson. Rep. Grayson’s myriad of ethics issues have caused Democrats and Republicans to universally rebuke him in an increasingly rare show of bi-partisanship in a recent article published by The Hill. Rep. Grayson’s ethics issues and underwhelming campaign have caused Peter Schorsch to ask who (other than the small group Rep. Grayson started with) is supporting his campaign:

If that wasn’t enough, another major mistake that Rep. Grayson has made is that he refuses to support his Democratic opponent should Rep. Patrick Murphy win the August Primary Election next year. How can he reasonably expect anyone to support him if he isn’t willing to be a team player once the voters have their say? Rep. Grayson complains about being mistreated, but he doesn’t seem to remember that Sen. Nan Rich was treated much worse than Rep. Grayson can ever imagine and she endorsed, and went on a unity tour, with Gov. Crist within 48 hours of the polls closing last August. Also, Rep. Grayson started his campaign by disparaging Rep. Murphy, so he has no room to complain as you can’t criticize people for fighting back then you throw the first punch.

One last metric campaigns are often measured by this far out from Election Day is fundraising. The last fundraising quarter was the first for Rep. Alan Grayson as a US Senate candidate, and the second for Rep. Murphy, and despite Rep. Grayson having that advantage Rep. Murphy raised double what Rep. Grayson raised. These shouldn’t be shocking revelations to anyone who has been paying attention. Rep. Grayson didn’t lift a finger to support Sen. Rich last year. When you combine that with the fact that he is supporting Sec. Clinton for all of the wrong reasons (throwing his own supporters under the bus while he is at it) and that we won’t commit to supporting the Democratic nominee for US Senate should he not get the nod it paints a clear picture of a man who only deserves the support of the constituency of one who he selfishly adores to the exclusion of everyone else: himself.

Sean Phillippi is a Democratic strategist and founder of the political data firm TLE Analytics


  1. Naoya6161 · · Reply

    There were always hints that Grayson wasn’t really as progressive as his supporters thought he was. It was only now that it came out into the open. If he wanted to continue with his mantle of being the “real Democrat” in the race, he should have endorsed Sanders or stayed on the sidelines until the nominee was selected.
    I feel that Grayson’s fatal flaw is that he doesn’t know how to build a coalition of supporters. If he somehow wins the nomination, he would have left the party divided while doing so, making it much easier for the GOP nominee to win.

    1. The refugee issue isn’t as black and white as both sides want to make it. The GOP politicized the issue by bringing it to a vote but it is complicated issue and many liberal Democrats like John Garamendi (whose long-standing liberal credentials I would put up against anyone in the Congress including Grayson) voted for the SAFE Act. It’s a complicated issue. Certainly Murphy’s vote was probably political, but as I wrote the other day in my column, the willingness of many on the left to not hold radical Islam to the same standard they hold conservative Christians in this country and fascists abroad is stunning. Even Canada now under a Liberal Premier is taking steps to protect itself with this refugee crisis. My feeling is that the US by wrongly IMO meddling in Syria under THIS DEMOCRATIC ADMINISTRATION owes it to the refugees to admit them, and in fact we should be on the hook to admit more… Our rhetoric including that of this President and the willingness of US policy makers to do whatever the Saudis want and oppose Iran and Russia at every turn created this…but some of the arguments on both sides are based on simplistic narratives and world views based on race and ethnicity.

      However, it is a complicated issue and feel the left is overblowing the implications of a “YES” vote by many Dems…that having been said Murphy probably voted YES for political reasons and that is not honorable.

  2. While Phillippi writes his blog with a crayon and stuffing his face with pork rinds, he failed to show any polling data. Why? Grayson has been ahead of Murphy ever since he announced. Why hasn’t he mentioned Murphy’s lackluster voting record on democratic issues including: votes against refugees, against Wall Street reform, against tax cuts for the middle class, for the Benghazi committee, for entitlement cuts, for the keystone pipeline, for offshore oil drilling in Florida, against All Aboard Florida, and delaying Obamacare and parts of of Elizabeth Warren’s Consume Financial Protection Bureau. Why hasn’t he attacked Grayson’s voting record and solely focused on attacking Grayson’s character and style?

    Because beneath all his bull shit, blubber, and soft exterior Phillippi knows Grayson has been the the better and more effective Congressman. More Grayson bills and amendments have been signed into law by Barack Obama than any other member of the houses and that’s In a GOP dominated house. Murphy and his trolls push the narrative that he’ll “reach across party lines,” the thing is Grayson has been doing that since day one as seen by his lengthy list of legislative achievement.

    Oh… And Sean Phillippi is a liar. While Phillippi claims to be a democratic consultant. The fact is, is he worked for an independent running against a Democrat for a Palm Beach County commission seat and still lost. In fact, the majority of Democrats in South Florida want abosolutely nothing to do with him.

    1. Naoya6161 · · Reply

      Please tell me, what has Grayson done to help make people’s lives better? Based on my research of him, all he’s really done is pass amendments that don’t really do anything to help people. And how can you honestly claim he had a better voting record when he voted against the Ex-Im bank?
      Also? In the most recent poll taken of the Senate race, Grayson underperformed Murphy in the general election against the GOP. So don’t try posturing your candidate as being better if he does worse against the GOP.

  3. Patrick Murphy voted to tighten up the already rigorous vetting process for Syrian refugees, thereby ensuring that some of them will be sent back to be brutally murdered, including women and children. His vote was a disgrace violates the principles that this country was founded upon. Sadly, this is but one of many votes that prove he is in no way progressive and is every inch Republican light. How can anyone justify returning this guy to congress let alone promoting him to the Senate is beyond me.

    1. Naoya6161 · · Reply

      I also disagreed with Murphy’s vote in this situation. However, I still consider him, as a Democrat, better than the GOP on many other issues. Meanwhile, I’ve yet to see a plausible alternative to Murphy who can win both the primary and the general election. So I will be sticking with Murphy.

  4. This post is an effort at damage control by Murphy’s campaign. They think they can divert attention away from his Syrian refugee vote by attacking Grayson. It’s sad that Murphy doesn’t ever have anything positive to say about himself.

    1. Naoya6161 · · Reply

      I’m pretty sure that’s what you’re trying to do right now Susan. Trying to deflect attention away from your candidate’s betrayal instead of answering for it.
      I recall that your spokeswoman wrote two hit pieces on Clinton in the past few weeks, before Grayson endorsed Clinton. You can’t tell me that this hatred of Hillary expressed by your spokeswoman doesn’t reflect the opinion of the rest of your caucus.
      Congratulations. Your commitment to ideology purity has taken you to a conflict of interests. Will it be Sanders or Grayson?

      1. Yes, our caucus is committed to progressive policy. Maybe if more Democrats were also committed to it, the Republicans wouldn’t have a stranglehold on the state legislature and Congress.

        I’m supporting Sanders and Grayson. I don’t base my votes on whom candidates themselves endorse.

  5. Once a supporter · · Reply

    Both Murphy and Graham’s voting against the refugees earns them excoriation. However, Grayson’s once heralded style of aggressiveness has long since deteriorated into arrogance, nastiness, and undisciplined self-indulgence. He once represented the balls that the corporately compromised Dems needed, but he’s gravitated past the perineum to the other end and become the Dems stinking asshole. He needs to step back for a few years, get his act together, and figure out how to be a strong, principled leader once again, not an embarrassment.

  6. Doug Head · · Reply

    How come so many commentators here, especially the most vicious ones, are not identified by name when a name is required?

  7. David Jones · · Reply

    Mayor DeBlasio and Nan Rich endorsed Hillary as well and we all know they both are far more progressive than Hillary is. Should progressives not support them when they are on the ballot? I’m sticking with the candidates who have a voting record I agree with, Grayson and Sanders.

    1. Naoya6161 · · Reply

      Grayson is a different case from those two. He’s been spending the entire race blasting Murphy for not being a “real Democrat” while he’s been selling himself as the unbought progressive… And then he goes and endorses Hillary, whom many of her left wing critics blast her for many of the same reasons Grayson blasts Murphy.

  8. This whole sad thing is beyond my understanding. And a bit stinky. Did the Clinton campaign muscle Grayson into supporting her in order to hurt his chances with his own base against their darling RINO Murphy? In any event I will continue to vigorously support Sanders, and would never vote for a RINO.

  9. This whole sad thing is beyond my understanding. But it seems a bit stinky. Did the Clinton campaign muscle Grayson into supporting her in order to hurt his chances against their darling RINO Murphy? In any event I will continue to vigorously support Sanders, and never vote for a RINO.

    1. Whoops I meant DINO!

  10. David Jones · · Reply

    Murphy’s voting record in the U.S. House of Representatives gives rise to him not being a real Democrat. Makes no difference what partisans say one way or the other,because it’s Murphy’s well-documented voting record in the House that spells it out clearly.

  11. The Observer · · Reply

    Murphy a PROUD DEMOCRAT ??? Are you kidding ??? He has spent his entire time in congress running away from the President.

    1. Mark Lynn · · Reply

      Have you taken a look at the demographics of his district?? Of course he had to distance himself from Obama at times. Any smart pol would!!

  12. “One thing I tell all of the candidates I work with is that they shouldn’t sell themselves or their supporters out to win an election. That, win or lose, they should stay true to themselves,” Sean Phillippi.

    How does that square with the fact that Murphy conveniently forgot the message when he turned his back on his, and switched to the Dems…just to assure that he would win an election? And yet he votes with the Reps time after time. Staying true to himself, eh Sean?

  13. Ruth Ann Eaddy · · Reply

    Thanks Sean for this article, I was much too busy with holiday preparations to realize how Patrick Murphy voted with the Republicans to hinder Syrian refugees from coming to this country. Patrick has proven over and over that he is still a Republican. Every article in this blog from Sean is against Alan Grayson. Are you on Patrick Murphy’s payroll?

  14. Mr. Grayson I am disappointed in you. You put out this beautiful video about TPP which Hillary helped with even though she says she now against. The New Democrat Coalition helps and encourages TPP and do very little for Justice or the Poor. In other words they are Corporate Democrats that work for the betterment of Corporation’s .

  15. Mark Lynn · · Reply

    Kudos to Mr. Phillippi for this article! You make many great points, beside my longstanding opposition to the fellow in question. This race is as plain as day … Murphy can and will win. He is in the mold of Askew, Chiles, Graham, Nelson, etc. If Grayson were to be nominated, hello Sen. DeSantis or Sen. Jolly. That is certain and wouldn’t even be close.

  16. David Jones · · Reply

    Granted, electing Patrick Murphy would contribute towards achieving a Democratic majority in the Senate. However, having Alan Grayson in the Senate would not only help build the all-important Democratic majority, but would also provide votes in the Senate supporting Democratic policies. In a presidential election year, we can have our cake and eat it too, as Democratic voters turn out in large numbers during presidential election years.

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