Is there no decency left in politics? What is Moe Davis thinking?

Published September 24, 2020

By Patrick Sebastian

Too often candidates and their staff use over-the-top language in the media in an effort to gain headlines. They think that this kind of talk, when read by voters, will crush or destroy their opponents. Truthfully though, the average person just sees it as immature and silly. I’ve been guilty of this myself early in my career. You think your snippy quote in the newspaper about your opponent is going to burn down the house but, in reality, overtly mean and hostile language in politics backfires most of the time. You didn’t “get him,” you just annoyed voters.
I’ve seen a lot of over-the-line political rhetoric, but over and over the shocking remarks made by 11th Congressional District Democrat nominee, Moe Davis, go beyond the pale. He talks about snapping the “patsy necks” of Republicans with his heel. He refers to his opponent, Madison Cawthorn, as a “Nazi” without any foundation. Davis picks fun of Cawthorn’s handicap (Cawthorn is in a wheelchair due to a horrible car accident) and belittles Cawthorn for not having a law degree like him.  
What Moe Davis seems to forget in his efforts to land cheap shots and grab headlines is the people of North Carolina’s 11th Congressional District are good and honest people. They celebrate people like Madison Cawthorn who overcome adversity. They don’t appreciate the ignorance of those who unfoundedly call people with whom we disagree with ‘Nazis’.
I am not sure what is motivating Mr. Davis in his angry tirades against Cawthorn.  Whatever it is, while the hard left applauds his words on Twitter, decent people in western North Carolina trying to decide who to send to Congress are repulsed. Belittling those who have lesser education, comparing political opponents to Hitler, implying that those who are on the other side of the aisle deserve to have their next stomped—none of this is going to solve a single problem facing North Carolina families. 
All of us could stand to turn the dimmer switch down when it comes to political rhetoric. Moe Davis should consider going beyond that. Mr. Davis should take a good, hard look in the mirror and ask if his words do anything to elevate the campaign, the 11th congressional district, or our state. Our families deserve an honest conversation about who the best candidate is, not in the dumpster style campaigning that Davis is bringing to the table.
Patrick Sebastian is a State Strategist for Majority Strategies, a full-service data, digital, and print firm that specializes in influencing the opinion and behavior of voters, constituents, and consumers.