He first left the Democratic Party, claiming in an interview in Lagniappe, a Mobile alternative newspaper, that “black political interest groups and the gambling industry” had taken over. Neither of those interests had supported him in his failed gubernatorial bid.
The former Alabama congressman and Obama supporter then moved to Virginia and announced he was a Republican.
Speculation immediately began.
This page observed that Davis’ record as a congressman was more conservative than what his natural constituency in Alabama generally supported. We felt he might find a more comfortable ideological home in Virginia, “where moderation is not considered a handicap.” Once he had established himself as a Virginian, we felt he might have a successful career in the Old Dominion.
It did not take Davis long to begin seeking friends, but it was not with the wing of the Republican Party known for its moderation.
Instead, he went after the far-right. In what was described as a “sermon-like speech” on Monday night, he gave about 100 members of the Northern Virginia Tea Party “a defense of conservative Republican policies.” He was, to put it mildly, a hit.
It was not so much the speech that many found perplexing, but the venue in which he chose to give it. These are people who, as one brought up in the speech’s question-and-answer period, are worried that the president will declare martial law to block the fall elections. It is hard to believe that playing to this crowd will advance the sort of conservativism Davis has espoused on other occasions.
Yet, the simple fact remains: No one is sure where Artur Davis wants his political career to go. Except, maybe, Artur Davis.
And some folks wonder if even he knows.