Skip to comments.Democrats in Distress - and their Suicide Queen (vanity, about Pelosi and the Democrats in general)
Posted on 11/08/2002 3:22:38 PM PST by xm177e2
The Suicide Queen
The Democratic party was rocked recently by the success of Republicans in the midterm elections. But something much bigger just happened, something much worse for the party than a temporary defeat. Permanent damage is being done to the Democratic party.
Democrats lost the midterm elections because the party leadership was disorganized and had no coherent agenda. There was no substance at the top. And the Democrats could have easily won these elections, with a different strategy.
Terry McAuliffe, the head of the DNC--the Number One Democrat--is an excellent fundraiser. But that's all he is, he's just a fundraiser, and not a true leader or capable politician. After the election, McAuliffe said things weren't so different from before and bragged Democrats had raised three times as much money this year as any previous midterm election, and went on bragging that he made Republicans spend a lot of their money to take the Senate. If you believe McAuliffe, just ask a Republican if s/he's hurting right now because Terry made his party spend a lot of money to get the Senate.
The tasteless Wellstone "memorial service" also had Terry's fingerprints all over it. Instead of coasting to victory on the sympathy vote, Mondale barely lost to Coleman.
Tom Daschle and Dick Gephardt both refused to either support Bush in the War on Terror or oppose him. They just pointed out there were risks involved, and showed a lot of "concern." Refusing to take a stance on Iraq is what cost the Democrats this election.
Al Gore took a stance against the war on Saddam, but offered no constructive alternatives. He tried to turn the election into a referendum about him and what happened in Florida. If Florida were the big issue, Democrats would have won, their base would have been energized. But the Democratic base doesn't care about Florida anymore, that's clear from the Republican victory.
But what were the Democrats options? They had three real choices, before the election:
1 To take a stand against the war and Bush in general
2 To take a stand in favor of the war, and in favor of a left-wing social/economic agenda
3 To refuse to take a stand on the war, show a lot of "concern," but not be concerned enough to actually do anything.
They chose option 3 (straddling between options 1 and 2). Option 3 failed miserably. Democrats are now at a fork in the road, and must pick which way to go. Remaining where the party is will just ensure defeat again, and again, and again.
Democrats do best when the issues voters are focusing on are social issues, or Bush's mishandling of the economy. Republicans do best when national security is the issue. Voters trust Republicans more on this than the party of Bonior and McDermott.
The Democratic leadership failed to set the agenda for this election. People saw it in part as a referendum on Iraq. "Do I trust Bush to handle Saddam Hussein?" And the answer was resoundingly yes. The Democrats who succeeded in getting elected in competetive districts were mostly supporters of Bush when it came to the war.
This election was a referendum on the conflict with Iraq. And Bush won. That's hard for many on the left to accept, but it's also critically important. If the Democrats had recognized this, and gone with option 2 (in favor of the war), they could have run on the slogan "Strong on Defense, and Strong on Social Programs too" (or whatever), they wouldn't have had to leave Democratic voters who favored the war with the choice between social security and national security. If Democrats had run like this, they would have kept the Senate.
Jonas 'Martin' Frost III, a very liberal member of the House of Representatives wanted to do just that. He has a lot of experience operating in hostile territory, he's a Democrat from Texas, and he's been successful there (at least according to his press conference (look for "Rep. Martin Frost (D-TX) News Conference ")). He also spoke about supporting the war:
As to the question of the foreign policy and Iraq. The President successfully won, I believe, by standing for a strong America. There are people who feel differently within our party, but in the swing districts, in the marginal districts, in the closely contested districts where Democratic incumbents were reelected by narrow margins, almost every one of those incumbents voted with the President on the issue of Iraq. I do not think the Democratic party will rise or fall as a majority party in the House of Representatives on the issue of foreign policy. We have to make our case on domestic policy and let members vote their conscience on the issue of foreign policy [and] on war and peace. And if we try and make that the overriding issue, if we try and make defense foreign policy the overriding issue, we will lose, because the country is with the President on that issue.
If Democrats had ran the way Frost ran, they would have to support Bush's war, but they would have the mandate to run social issues, and would have more say about the war than they do now. If Democrats rally around Frost, they could win back the Senate in 2004. But they won't.
The idea behind road 1 (being openly anti-war, anti-Bush, and stridently left-wing) is that it will excite the party base, which stayed home this election because the party leadership was too moderate. And if the party base votes, according to road 1,
Nancy Pelosi wants to take the party down road 1. She's one of the most outspoken, far-left members of congress in the nation. She's a member of the Democratic Socialists of America, which is affiliated with the International Socialist Organization (the famous Socialist Internationale).
That might get hardcore democrats excited, but it really, really, really won't go over well in swing states or moderate/conservative areas. And conservative Democrats will find it harder to get elected when their Republican opponents link them to the "San Francisco Socialist" running the House. As Frost said, "I will tell you that, during the election... some republican candidates in swing districts did talk about the fact that... their democratic opponent would be aligned with the liberal leadership of the Democratic party."
Martin Frost has withdrawn his candidacy to become the new House Minority Leader, leaving it for Pelosi to take unchallenged (because she has the votes). This is a terrible, terrible mistake. This is suicide for the Democratic Party.
The idea that Democrats can wage ideological holy war against President Bush comes from their mistaken belief that the country is split 50/50. It's not, that's a myth. 50/50 only works if both parties are running towards the middle (as Frost wants the Democrats to do). But the nation is not split 50/50 between socialists and capitalists. Democrats will find the nation split more like 60/40. Republicans will slaughter them in the next elections if they don't go back to the middle.
And, to make matters worse for Democrats, if the country is split 60/40, Republicans can afford to ramp up their rhetoric a little, move a little further to the right, and still win 55/45. So by running to the left, the Democratic Party is only encouraging the Republicans (who are in power right now) to move further to the right. Not a good strategy.
Why is the Democratic Party--specifically, the members of the House of Representatives--taking such a stupid position? Why are they committing political suicide? I think the answer is George W. Bush. His enemies have gone insane with rage against him, a rage that is just not shared by the general public. Democrats will have to acknowlege this, and come back to reality, unless they want to suffer more and worse defeats.
Conservative and moderate Democrats aren't going to stand idly by while the Suicide Queen Pelosi destroys their party. The infighting that will come of this threatens the party itself, it's an existential battle for its soul. It's going to get very, very, very ugly.
Really? I see it as being the exact opposite. I think Bubbette! wants a shrill feminist at the head of the DNC for a couple of reasons. One is this describes Bubbette! herself,so Bubbette! would see her as a mainstream candidate who will cause the wymen to come out and vote. Secondly,it strengthens her hold on the DNC and her ability to manuever behind the scenes to insure she is "drafted" late in the 2004 presidential election. Pelosi as the minority leader is the equivalent of McAuliff at the DNC. It just allows her and hubby better control.
Why it's such a good idea... Do you ever watch West Wing? It's the same sentiment expressed by the character played by Ron Silver (Bruno, I think his name is), who said in one episode:
"Because I am tired of working for candidates who make me think I should be embarrassed to believe what I believe, Sam. I'm tired of getting them elected. We all need some therapy, because someone came along and said that liberal means "soft on crime." Soft on drugs. Soft on communism. Soft on defense. And we're gonna tax you back to the stone age because people shouldn't have to go to work if they don't want to. And instead of saying, 'Well, excuse me, you right-wing, reactionary xenophobic, homophobic, anti-education, anti-choice, pro-gun, Leave-it-to-Beaver-trip-back-to-the-fifties!' we cowered in the corner and said, 'Please. Don't. Hurt. Me.' No more. I really don't care who's right, who's wrong. We're both right, we're both wrong."
We have ideas. We think they're GOOD ideas. But our leadership for some time, instead of promoting - or even just presenting those ideas in a straightforward manner - has been saying "Don't call me liberal... I'm not so bad, really." I, personally, am looking forward to a leader who says, "Yes, I'm a liberal, and here's what I believe: I don't think people should die from lack of health insurance. I don't think profitible corporations should get tax breaks that minimum wage workers have to pay for. I don't think we should make the planet uninhabitable. I don't think the wealthy should be able to buy their way out of responsbility for their actions."
Well, you get the idea...
Well, I found out what I wanted to know. Some of the Democrats think there will be another recession (because of Bush's economic policies) and this will totally alter the playing field, allowing Pelosi and the hard-left Dems to score major victories against the Republicans. I think this is more of the "Bush is a fool and bad things will happen to him" school of thought, which has proven to be... less than reliable. Or maybe it's Marxist-type "inevitable decline of evil capitalist blah blah blah"... who knows.
More of the Democrats seem to think there's a massive amount of people just waiting to vote for a hard left candidate, if one presents her/himself as actually electable. Energizing the base will lead to a massive turnout, people who never vote will come to the polls...
Naturally, I don't buy in to either theory. I think this is a huge mistake. It's too bad that I don't have the thread still on DU to link back to a year or two from now, I'll just have to make do with linking to this thread here on FR. Ohhhh welllll.....
Maybe what we need is a third site, to serve as a halfway point between DU and FR, so we might have some sort of reconciliation... it would be nice to make friends with the enemy. If Wellstone and that old Republican guy could be friends, why can't we? Maybe I can convince JimRob to set up an extra forum just for debating with the Other Side...
"All these years later, I didn't realize there was an election this week until the Sunday before. On election day, I was in neighborhoods where they should have been calling out Carl McCall's name. There was no sound. Then I realized that this silence was right, that there was no election. McCall was the candidate, but he did not ruin the politics here.
It was shameless Bill Clinton who used the Democratic Party and left it with a hyphen. Not because of his trailer camp sex, nor his lying under oath to a grand jury. Rather, he merged the Democratic Party with the Republican Party.
The Democratic-Republican Party. He left the Democrats with no issues, no purpose, no aim, no desire for anything except keeping the job.
Do whatever the Republicans do. They want a tax cut that can break us? Good. Vote for it. They want a war? Of course. "
An interesting feature of Sen Pelosi becoming Minority Leader is that Hillary must accept that she not only is second fiddle, but there really isn't anything Hillary can do to ever advance herself over Pelosi in stature if she assumes that role.
Even if she plotted to hold the office of President, she wouldn't eer usurp the natural stature that Pelosi would hae established for herself.
An eternal catfight would evolve at the upper echelons of the free-world,....Ughhhh
President Bush, Sir, we're honored to read your position here at FR!
By their own logic, Pelosi is the wrong choice. She voted against the war, and it was the war that decided the elction (per them). Fortunately for us Conservatives, the dual-identity of Democrats continues to be in play.
In 2004, Democrats have to defend 19 Senate seats (versus 14 for Repubs - presuming that there are no more defections - particularly in Florida). In that same year, the Democrats have to fund their Presidential run. To say the least, money is going to be rather tight for them, especially after the way that McAwful raped Sanchez in Texas for over $30 Million this time around. Moreover, Democrats in Florida mortgaged the Florida teachers' union headquarters building for $1.7 million this year to fund McBride's TV ads (a 30 year mortgage of interest plus principle for 30 minutes of air time), among other such tactical mistakes.
On top of those items of note, Pelosi will be making her national push to retake the House (since that's her power base).
And in this environment of tight money, the Democrats are going to be fighting an uphill fight against the most popular wartime President in American history.
In short, the Democrats are going to get creamed; moreso because mainstream Americans don't identify with shrill San Fransisco socialists (if they did, there would be a lot more Pelosi's visible in the Heartland, and there aren't).
But this is all expected. It is only natural for Democrats to recoil into a fetal position that resides solely in its core base of Left-leaning baby-boomer radicals (after such a "shock" as this most recent election, at least).
Faced with choosing between winning and their core beliefs, the Democrats chose "winning" in this most recent election, lost badly, and are now fleeing back towards their core beliefs (as witnessed in Pelosi).
Oh, but you don't think that the Democrats chose "winning" over their core beliefs in this past election?! Well, consider first that McAwful was promoted over (tenured) Smith (who is Black) to his position as DNC fundraiser/spokeman. Then Page, who is Black, was dissed for elite-White-name-recognition Mondale to replace Wellstone. The Wellstone rally-at-the-memorial also shows that Dems were far more concerned with "winning" than with mourning their fallen comrade. Moreover, consider that lilly-White Pelosi is getting promoted over the one man who had the courage to stand up to Gephardt, Ford (who is Black). Not that any of this is really a new trend, Democrats blasted Clarence Thomas, who is Black, as well (but that was long before this current election fiasco).
And now that we are back to dealing with today and the future, we can see that the Democrats are retreating from their "winning" strategy back towards their core principles (i.e. fight against the war, even though Democrats are publicly stating loudly, longly, and often that it was the "war" that won the election for Republicans).
And I encourage this trend. Go Pelosi! Freepers are rooting for you to first smash Ford and then to later show all of America that you are a pro-choice, card-carrying international socialist who wants to nationalize healthcare (hey, anyone remember how well Republicans did after Hillary tried that very thing back in 1993??) and leave Saddam Hussein alone to develop all of the nukes that he cares to build.
I'd be hard-pressed to think of a better person for Republicans to have as a visible opponent than Pelosi.
I'm licking my chops. I can't wait. The next thing that would thrill me would be for Dashcle to be replaced by a Kennedy, Byrd, or Rockefeller. Heck, since White, California radical females seems to be the current rage among Democrats, why not have pro-Cuba Boxer or Feinstein replace him?!
Mmmm... Tasty Democrats self-imploding by actually revealing their true colors. Delicious (and good for the future health of our great nation)!
Blacks are so grateful for this, that they don't whine whine Bill Clinton signs legislation ending generational welfare dependence, and instead elect him to the Black Hall of Fame.
Blacks have the "battered-wife syndrome" and love the one who abuses them the most.
!!!! shock !!!! Please tell me more. How can this be done legally? The c103-5 won't let them, if they are a non-profit under that code.