Tim Bishop, Demagogue

by Bill O'Connell on September 29, 2012

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Demagogue - a person, especially an orator or political leader, who gains power and popularity by arousing the emotions, passions, and prejudices of the people.

At the second debate between incumbent Congressman Tim Bishop and challenger Randy Altschuler a 17-year old high school student, Jennifer Linares, asked a compelling question, “”Why are both of you running negative ads and sending negative fliers instead of concentrating on your own achievements and accomplishments?”

Tim Bishop was the first to answer,

“I would be the first to say that the state of our politics has deteriorated dramatically just in the 10 years I have been in office,” Bishop said.

The five-term congressman said politicians find themselves engaged in a war of attacks rather than a positive campaign about their strengths.

“In an ideal world, we would not be running those kinds of ads,” Bishop said.

The last thing Tim Bishop wants to do is live in an ideal world. It is the purest fabrication that Tim Bishop decries negative advertising. In 2010, in less than twelve hours after Altschuler won the Republican nomination to challenge him, Bishop was on the morning cable channels with attack ads calling Altschuler an outsourcer. There was no hesitation, no “I’d like to congratulate my opponent on winning his party’s nomination and I look forward to a spirited debate on the issues.” Bishop came out of the gate with guns blazing, smearing his opponent quickly and unceasingly. To paraphrase Jimmy Buffett, Tim Bishop is the person he warns us about.

In 2010, the last thing Tim Bishop wanted to do was discuss issues such as ObamaCare. An overwhelming majority of Americans opposed it, but Tim Bishop did Nancy Pelosi’s bidding, like he does 97% of the time, and rammed it down our throats. So Tim Bishop took the low road, and managed to squeak out a 590 vote win. His opponent, a political neophyte, tried to run an issues based campaign not a  negative attack based campaign and he lost by a whisker. He allowed Bishop to get away with his smears. Now Bishop is lamenting that when the gloves come off, his nose gets bloodied too.

When you watch Tim Bishop’s ads are they about the great job he has done? Is it about the wonderful state of the economy? Is it about the great idea of spending $100 million in stimulus money we don’t have to create fifteen jobs in schools? No it’s about outsourcing and Medicare claims that even President Obama has admitted are false.


This may be news to Congressman Bishop but we live in a global economy. The reason that people line up outside Apple stores to buy the new iPhone is because American creative genius is combined with low-cost manufacturing in China to produce a product that everyone wants. If not for that combination, the product would either be a design dud, or cost $9,000 per copy rather than $600.

Consider the Democrat party and Tim Bishop’s signature achievements in running businesses. Yes GM is alive. They are alive and pushing a car called the Chevy Volt. Nobody wants to buy it without, and for the most part even with, a significant lift from taxpayers in the form of tax credits. The price tag is $40,000, but guess what folks. It costs $89,000 to produce. So GM is losing $50,000 on every Volt it produces. How long do you think that can continue before they need another bail out?

After getting bailed out, GM increased overseas production by 50% and Chrysler built a $570 million engine plant in Mexico. Isn’t that outsourcing? After spending billions in stimulus on green projects we have the bankruptcy of Solyndra and a whole host of other spending that resulted in more jobs outsourced overseas.

So why is Tim Bishop demagoguing about outsourcing when he has done it with taxpayer money?

Environment Fireworks

Tim Bishop boasts about his environmental record on his campaign website, including being cited for “Teaming With Wildlife”. Of course if a rich Wall Street fat cat wants to have  private party complete with fireworks near an environmentally sensitive wildlife area, Tim can fix it. Just bring the cash and Tim can fix it. Rather than saying, “I’m sorry, that is an environmentally sensitive area and I stand on principle so I can’t help you,” Bishop’s fundraiser daughter sends the guy a letter saying, Hey! I hear you want to donate a lot of money to my dad’s reelection campaign! (Wink, wink, nudge, nudge) Here’s how you and your wife can donate the maximum amount. The fat cat got his exemption permits and Bishop got the cash, but hey, he’s got a great record on the environment.

$6400 Claim

In a recent ad by a Super Pac in support of Congressman Bishop, it tries to scare seniors by saying that a plan supported by Bishop’s opponent will cost seniors $6,400 a year. Even though Bishop is not directly responsible for the ad, it was done by a Super Pac, he has not asked them, to my knowledge, to take it down because it is false. Even President Obama acknowledges that the claim is false.

“Now, that was his original plan, and I want to be fair here,” Mr. Obama said. “He then modified it, because, obviously, there was a lot of pushback from seniors on that idea. So he said, well, we’re going to have traditional Medicare stand side by side with the voucher program, and no current beneficiaries will be affected.” - NY Times, Sept. 21 , 2012

The ad in question was scheduled to run after Obama already said it was false.


To repeat Congressman Bishop’s earlier assertion to the high school senior, “In an ideal world, we would not be running those kinds of ads.” Yet he runs them or says nothing when others run dishonest ads on his behalf. Tim Bishop’s ads consist of two themes as the election nears. One, despite being a huge outsourcer with taxpayer money, his opponent should not be elected because Bishop says he is an outsourcer. Two, Bishop explains to his constituents that he is not a crook. In that ad he says that his opponent is despicable for saying such things, but he makes no mention of Newsday, Politico, the Daily News, or the New York Post all raising the same questions. Are they despicable too? Or is Tim Bishop the despicable one?


That’s my opinion; I’d like to know yours. Please comment below.

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