As you may be well aware, MSNBC did not air Democrat-turned-Republican Artur Davis's speech last night. Shortly before 10 p.m. Eastern, anchor Rachel Maddow seemed to offer the network's rationale: Davis was a low-profile Democrat who is just bitter because he was "absolutely destroyed" in his primary race for Alabama governor in 2010.
Yet in the very next breath, Maddow seemed positively giddy that the Democrats had landed former Gov. Charlie Crist (D-Fla.) to speak at their convention next week. There was no mention that he too was being so thoroughly and "absolutely destroyed" by Marco Rubio in the primary election polls in 2010 that he dropped out of the GOP primary in order to run as an independent. He of course, subsequently lost to Rubio in the general election by 19 percentage points. [MP3 audio here; video embedded below page break]
RACHEL MADDOW: I should mention, in terms to [former McCain advisor Steve Schmidt's] point about persuadable people, one person who is speaking tonight, a lower profile speaker, because nobody's ever heard of him, is Artur Davis, who was a a low profile Democratic congressman who was a big supporter of Barack Obama in 2008. He seconded his nomination. is speaking tonight at the republican national convention as a converted republican who is making the case for why he left the Democratic Party and became a Republican.
Personally, in terms of his own story, it was after he got absolutely destroyed in the Democratic primary when he was running, trying to become the governor of Alabama in that state. That's when he left the party.
On the Republican side, they've been able to get Artur Davis, they've been able to get Joe Lieberman, they've been able to get Zell Miller. The Democrats very excited at the Republican convention in Florida this week to announce that they have former Florida Republican governor Charlie Crist speaking at the Democratic Convention. Everybody loves a crossover artist.
A little trivia that Maddow didn't disclose: Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (Fla.) was another low-profile Democratic congressman who also seconded the Obama nomination in the 2008 convention in Denver. She's now chairwoman of the Democratic National Convention.