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On the May 9th edition of PBS’s “News Hour”, Democratic Journalist Mark Shields said, “If the Democrats can’t win this year, they need to just pack it in and start selling aluminum siding.”
Truer words were never spoken.
On the Friday edition of a local political talkshow, guest, reformed Republican and anti-neocon “Kevin Phillips” (former Nixon adviser and author of “The Emerging Republican Majority”, a Conservative bible in 1968) was asked (tongue-in-cheek) if he felt “responsible” for the mess we currently find ourselves in. He said (I paraphrase):
“I would, if the Democrats hadn’t made the Republicans’ job so easy. In 1988, George HW Bush was beatable, but who did the Democrats run against him? Mike Dukakis, a liberal governor from Massachusetts. In 2000, Al Gore, following on the heels of a balanced budget and growing economy, should of won handily, but Bill Clinton sabotaged that with the Lewinski scandal. Then in 2004, beating George W. Bush should of been a piece of cake, but who did the Democrats choose to run against him? John Kerry… none other than Mike Dukakis’ former lieutenant governor.”
While the argument behind the argument is easy to challenge (the Party didn’t pick Kerry, the media did after pummeling Howard Dean to death with the “Dean Scream” video), there is a ring of truth to it… Democrats have a way of finding new ways to lose. So even running on Bush’s record, a McCain victory isn’t completely unfathomable. With the Democratic Party split between “Hillary” and “Obama” loyalists that say they’d “vote for McCain before they’d vote” for the other Democrat, not to mention another “Ohio/Florida” debacle should the race be close, and the recently approved “Voter ID” scam approved by this Conservative Supreme Court, and no one can rule out a McCain victory in ’08.
Now, with that in mind, think to all the opportunities the new Democratically controlled Congress has passed up: “Impeachment is off the table” said Nancy Pelosi in 2006 to win re-election, and both houses of Congress have allowed themselves to be bullied by the Republican minority, continuing to approve hundred-billion dollar war supplementals for fear of being branded as “not supporting the troops” in an election year… all in the potentially futile belief that doing so will help ensure a Democratic victory in November.
So then, what if John McCain wins thanks to a bitterly divided Democratic Party? Will it be worth it, allowing George Bush to escape impeachment for the myriad of crimes he has committed since taking office? Refusing to cut off funding for the war in Iraq that has resulted in the loss of an additional 1,000 troop deaths since taking power in January of ’07? All to end up with a Republican President anyway? Would it be worth it?
The Democratically controlled Congress needs to stop worrying about “harming their chances in November” and start doing the jobs they were elected to do. The Republican Party certainly wasn’t worried about 2000 when they impeached Bill Clinton in 1999. If anything, painting Democrats as “morally corrupt” helped them WIN the following year, not only seizing control of the White House, but increasing their margins in both the House & the Senate. There should be a lesson there for the current Democratic Congress: standing up for what’s right, exposing the crimes/misdeeds of the opposing Party, and working to bring about an end to George Bush’s ruinous war in Iraq… and now threatening Iran.., is what they were elected to do. NOT doing those things paints them as “weak”, “ineffective”, “cowardly”, and “no better than the other guys”.
And if Congress wasn’t doing enough to hurt democracy, what might be the result of idiotic Democratic voters that threaten to vote for McCain should their nominee not win? Three of the four members of the Conservative wing of the Supreme Court are all under 60 (Roberts, Alito and Thomas, with Scalia at 72). The youngest of the four Liberal justices is 68 (Souter, with Stevens being the oldest at 88). Swing vote Kennedy, who is 71, has been the deciding vote in many 5-4 split decisions… as well as the aforementioned horrendous “Voter ID” ruling. A 2007 study found that 24 of the 68 cases ruled on by the current Supreme Court were decided by a 5-4 margin. On May 6th, John McCain said that newly appointed Justices Roberts & Alito were his models for the kind of judges he’d nominate to the highest court in the land if he were elected President.
Hillary or Obama backers that threaten to “vote for McCain” need to grow the F— up. Throw a temper-tantrum if they must, but fall in line come November and support the Democratic nominee who ever they may be because this country won’t survive another Republican Presidency like the current one. And the current Democratically controlled Congress needs to start showing some backbone, or voters will lose faith in them come November.
(How John McCain wins)