Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Is it suddenly OK to be folksy? at least if you're also cheerful?

I was struck by this NYT description of Renee Ellmers, recently elected Republican congresswoman from North Carolina's second district:
Her loyalty, relentless cheer and folksy locution — a news conference complement to the laconic, cigarette-tinged pronouncements of Mr. Boehner — have combined to make her one of the Republican leadership’s greatest freshman allies, and a rising star in the conference she once derided from her perch at Tea Party rallies back home.
This characterization--especially the positive spin on "folksy locution" is in sharp contrast to many NYT comments about Sarah Palin, which I have written about here. I wonder why Ellmers is getting gentler treatment from the NYT staff. Perhaps it is because Ellmers seems more reasonable than Palin, Bachman and the likes--if only because Ellmers has been siding with Boehner rather than with the Tea Party in recent debt ceiling discussions. Here are some quotes from Ellmers about her shift in loyalties.

“There is just a lot of mistrust Americans have for ‘those people in Washington,’ ” [Ellmers] said, adding with a laugh, “and now I am one of those people in Washington.”

Mrs. Ellmers said that before she arrived here, she believed Mr. Boehner and his cohorts were not standing up to Democrats. “When I got here I realized that wasn’t the case at all,” she said. “I was told he wasn’t conservative. He is conservative. And that’s what I tell other people in our discussion.”

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