Tag Archives: Dan Freilich

I’m on a cow!

Dan Freilich – the primary opponent for U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy – put out this Internet ad over the weekend, a parody of the Old Spice ads.

"I'm on a cow!" has now entered the Vermont political vernacular.

– Dan Barlow

“The presumption of power”


I traveled up to the Vermont Public Radio offices in Colchester early this afternoon for the first and only primary debate between U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy and Dan Freilich.

Leahy was, as always, a polished and patient politician.

Freilich, to my surprise, was also very good.

When little-known candidates with no political experience challenge powerful incumbents, they are usually pretty awful on the campaign trail. They don't know the issues well, they don't know how to boil policies down to sound bytes and they come off looking like amateurs.

Freilich – or Captain Dan, as some are calling him – was none of those.

The southern Vermont doctor and former Navy captain didn't miss a beat transitioning from dairy policy to stimulus funding. He tossed out facts and figures like a pro. And while sometimes it seems that his brain moves faster than his mouth – he can fit an amazing number of words into a few seconds – he was refreshingly aggressive in the face of power.

Of course, baring some sudden national scandal, Leahy will win the Democratic primary on Aug. 24th. And he'll then go on to win the general election in November.

But I can't help but think that if Freilich was not facing a popular incumbent, or perhaps running for a state office such as the House or Senate, he would have a strong chance at winning the race.

(The picture above is one of the many piece of Freilich fan art that has been circulating in political circles. I expect it is not endorsed by the candidate).

– Dan Barlow