By Ryan Miner
George Leventhal is one of three term-limited councilmen running to succeed Ike Leggett as Montgomery County’s next county executive.
For reasons that aren’t clearly discernible, Seventh State’s David Lublin has gone to the mattresses with Leventhal and is doing whatever he can to damage his campaign.
I don’t know David Lublin; I’ve never even met him. I don’t think I’d recognize Lublin if I saw him on the street. I do, however, think Lublin is a talented writer and blogger. I always appreciate Lublin’s keen ability to break down a complex policy issue and make sense of it.
Lublin, by all accounts, is a super bright, educated guy. I read Seventh State blog religiously. There isn’t a better blog, including A Miner Detail, that analyzes Montgomery County politics like Seventh State. Bar none.
I’ll go even further: Lublin’s blogging colleague, Adam Pagnucco, is one of my favorite political reporters and bloggers in Montgomery County. Adam is one hell of a writer and understands the intricate Montgomery County dichotomies much better than most political observers, including yours truly.
Putting all of that on the table, David Lublin’s seemingly incessant crusade against George Leventhal may be a mixture of personal and political. I don’t know?
But to be honest – it’s getting old.
Maybe Lublin’s ill will toward Leventhal is aimed at his support for the Purple Line. Or maybe Lublin just doesn’t like the cut of Leventhal’s jib. Maybe Leventhal kicked Lublin’s dog once and Lublin has forever held a grudge. Who really knows?
It’s crystal clear, though, that Lublin is using his blog to attack Leventhal more so than any other candidate in the county executive race – even more so than Robin Ficker. From my perspective, Lublin is using Seventh State to wage political jihad against Leventhal.
Over the last few days, Lublin presented his readers a mostly fair assessment of Roger Berliner and Marc Elrich’s county executive candidacies.
Except when Lublin published his evaluation of Leventhal, he was much less than fair. In fact, Lublin’s critiques of Leventhal are disproportionally negative.
Lublin’s slight that Leventhal’s core constituency is hard to identify is tenuous at best and at worst, incredibly disingenuous.
While I am a registered Unaffiliated and cannot vote for any Democrat in the county executive race, there are thousands of Montgomery County Democrats (and Republicans) who make up Leventhal’s core constituency. We believe in pragmatic, accessible, moderate, thoughtful, policy-driven and effective representation.
Leventhal checks all boxes.
Lublin claims that Leventhal has alienated Montgomery County residents in the western half of the County, yet he doesn’t offer a single shred of empirical evidence to support his claim.
How would Lublin even know?
I understand that Chevy Chase is a nice place to live, start a business and raise a family, but I’ve never once seen David Lublin hanging around up here in good ol’ Upcounty.
I’ve conversed with hundreds of undecided voters in Montgomery County about the executive race. I’m consistently told by the same voters that Leventhal is the most visible candidate in the executive race with vast support across multiple constituencies.
I wonder how many times Lublin has interacted with Leventhal face-to-face in the last five years? I bet you it’s less than five fingers.
I’ve spent quite a bit of time with George over the last few years – getting to know him, picking his brain over County issues, dialoguing with him over issues where we disagree, talking about our kids and families, learning what makes him tick, etc. I think I have a pretty good idea about who George Leventhal really is as a person.
Passionate? Yes. Does Leventhal rise to Chris Christie-level pugnacious? Not even close. What’s the old Winston Churchill quote? If you have important point to make, don’t be subtle or clever. Use a pile driver. Hit it once. Come back and hit it again. Then hit it a third time. That’s George.
The narrative Lublin is painting of Leventhal as nothing more than a rambunctious bully is just… bullshit. My apologies for being crude, but I cannot find a better word to describe Lublin’s fallacious attacks on Leventhal.
Sure, Leventhal has an edge to him. He’s not your average mealy-mouthed politician who tells you what you want to hear just to earn an extra vote or two. Leventhal will always offer his unvarnished opinion. Take it or leave it.
It is my opinion that Lublin’s vehement dislike of Leventhal has clouded his ability to fairly and accurately assess Leventhal’s candidacy.
For example, Lublin’s ranking of Leventhal as a second-tier candidate is nonsensical by all measures.
Leventhal is the only county executive candidate who has hit the public financing threshold, receiving $200,000+ in campaign funds.
Leventhal has assembled the largest volunteer base of any of the candidates running. His social media interactions are off-the-charts, and he’s done more living room and backyard meet-and-greets than almost any other candidate.
I do enjoy reading David Lublin’s blog. His writing helps inform me on local politics on a level that I didn’t think was possible. Kudos to him.
But Lublin’s Leventhal bashing has reached its bandwidth limit.
Here’s an incomplete list of Leventhal supporters: Women, minorities, the Jewish community, Muslims, Asians, Latinos, African-Americans, veterans, the LGBT community, Republicans, and more. And, even some middle-class recovering Republicans like me support George Leventhal.
I presume George Leventhal has no problem identifying his supporters. It’s just that David Lublin can’t.