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Political Football: Bad memories of Rigginomics in St. Louis

Former St. Louis Rep. Richard A. Gephardt was majority leader of the House from 1989-94. He is now president and chief executive officer of Gephardt Government Affairs.

This Sunday presents us all with an opportunity to shift our focus outside the Beltway - when the Redskins travel to St. Louis to face my hometown Rams. Redskins fans can breathe a sigh of relief that swaggering Texas teams won't appear on the Washington schedule until the December 19th rematch with the Cowboys.

The devotion and passion of Redskins fans has always impressed me. This has been true through both good and challenging seasons, wins and losses.

In the Midwestern heartland, expectations for our football team are better grounded. I guess years of St. Louis football mediocrity (and an unfortunate lone victory in 2009) will do that to you.

As far as NFC rivalries go, I'll admit, St. Louis v. Washington hasn't been much of a contest. We've always thought of ourselves as more of a baseball town.

The 70's and 80's provided a few bright spots, but I remember vividly watching your Joe Gibbs-coached Hogs dominate our Cardinals year after year.

Reagan and Riggins combined to make the 80's a tough time to be a St. Louis Democrat. "Rigginomics" sure ran wild throughout the country.

Then things went from bad to worse, when the Cardinals moved to the sunnier confines of Arizona and we were left without a team to keep us warm through the cold Midwestern winters.

But then, new hope! The Rams relocated to St. Louis, and what's more, they were good. Kurt Warner's "Greatest Show on Turf" lit up the league and presented our town with its very own Super Bowl championship. We were doormats no longer!

This Sunday there are a couple of points I'd like everyone to remember. First, to Redskins fans: make sure to give your new coach a chance. After all, every Administration must deal with adversity at times, but what matters most is the overall record.

Second, and perhaps more importantly, the winning team will be the team that plays best together. I've always thought that you can disagree with someone and still deeply respect them and like them. On Sunday, I'm hoping my Rams will show us all a lesson about respect, decency and teamwork. A win would be nice too.

By Richard A. Gephardt  | September 23, 2010; 12:00 PM ET
Categories:  Political Football, Redskins  | Tags:  Political Football, Redskins  
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This posting should be a frightening reminder to us all of just how incredibly boring and rote a typical Dick Gephart speech could be....

Posted by: dbunkr | September 23, 2010 4:01 PM | Report abuse

You thought the 80s were a tough time to be a mid-western dem? Just wait until after November!

The party of No, formerly the party of No Plan, finally typed up their (lemon) pledge to America: a vision of what will happen to our country if we vote for Republicans this November, and I don't think Dr. Seuss could have written a more ridiculous story, nor could Steven King have penned a more frightening tale. As usual, their document is littered with extremely general sound bites like "make America more competitive" and "motherhood is good." Can't argue with that. But the few specifics listed are revealing, perhaps none more so than their statement that "Republicans are not going to be any different than what they've been before." Wow, they just came right out and said it! We all know how Republican economic policy from 2000 to 2008 dragged our country into the Great Recession. And now that Obama and the Democrat's policies have officially ended the Great Recession, what are Republicans pledging to us if elected? They will enact the exact same failed agenda that got us into the Great Recession in the first place!
From the party of No Plan ,to the party of No, and now, the party of Nonsense. Come on, America, do we really want to give control of our government back to these proven loser Republicans?
Clearly, the Dems are not willing to fight, which is a shame but not surprising. Doesn't matter though. We, the people, will take up the fight for our country ourselves. We have no choice. Defeating the Republican agenda is simply a matter of survival for the Middle Class.

Posted by: jgarrisn | September 24, 2010 10:47 AM | Report abuse

I've left a pair of shoes outside my door. You can come by and shine them when you're available.

Posted by: ShovelPlease | September 24, 2010 12:14 PM | Report abuse

I've left a pair of shoes outside my door. You can come by and shine them when you're available.

Posted by: ShovelPlease

Hey Shovel. Send your wife over to give me a shine. When she is available of course.

Posted by: ged0386 | September 24, 2010 12:40 PM | Report abuse

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