There are a few things rattling around in my head so I figured I might as well blog them out.
First, with the news that Republicans now want to repeal an as yet to be signed into law financial regulatory reform bill which, lets be honest, is kinda weaksauce anyway, Democrats have a tremendous opportunity.
No its not that lame ass "Party of No" bullshit that Democrats have been screaming and nobody has been listening to.
Instead the combination of running on a repeal of health care reform and financial regulatory reform can be used against Republicans with a demographic which faitfully comes out to vote whether in midterms or Presidential elections. The elderly.
Why? Well first off most of them have already gotten their donut hole check and I'll bet they are pretty happy about that. And I'll bet that htey won't want to lose that or will they be happy that if health care reform were to be repealed the donut hole would open back up. Secondly Republicans in various races have started talking up privatizing Social Security again. You combine that with repeal of financial reform and the financial collapse of 2008 and hey you got some pretty good fearmongering material there.
For Seniors a vote for a Republican is a vote against their own interests and most of them actually get that concept.
As for Democrats running in the midterms worried about the recession holding them back. Trust me on this, IT WILL! So how do you combat that?
I have a very simple idea. Find a liberal economist, and believe me there are plenty of them. Then work with them on ideas of how to bring job creation to your district or your state. Come up with a price tag for it and then you are all set. Go to the press or on the floor of the house and propose your job creating ideas for your state or district in a bill. And in this bill you pay for your job creation with a percentage of the revenue that will be raised after the Bush tax cuts for the top percent are allowed to expire.
This works on a lot of levels. First and foremost it shows that no matter what Republicans and some asshole Dems think, YOU want to create jobs for your constituents even if it means spending money. Second it shows that you want to be fiscally responsible by paying for it which will appeal to the fake ass deficit hawks. But there is another element which may be even more useful.
See you can get a CBO estimate on how much revenue will be created by the Bush tax cuts expiring. Then when you say you are going to pay for your job creation with some of that money people will also start to notice just how much money we are talking about here. And more than that they will notice how that money can be used for their neighborhoods and communities. So instead of this abstract notion of "sharing the wealth" or "socialism" they get to see a real benefit from tax policy that mirrors what happened during the Clinton years.
So the people who really have been snookered will come around and get behind you. And the folks who don't will be exposed for the hypocrites they are.
Don't get me wrong, I doubt if the legislation will pass, but if enough Democrats get together and do this or even make one bill and have a bunch of co sponsors it WILL get attention and folks WILL notice.
On another note, the NAACP just made it easier to call the racism out in the Tea Party. Why? Because as much as folks reflexively recoiled at the resolution the NAACP passed, in subsequent days many news orgs have actually dug into the Tea Party and started to do the reporting on them and their racist elements that had been neglected up until now. And now that concrete evidence that they attract white supremecists and have leaders who regularly use racist rhetoric is coming out from straight reporting rather than opinion journalism then when you call them out you can do as Republicans regularly do and shield yourself by reading directly from various news articles. I mean they can't blame you if you are just reading what others write, correct?
What this does is puts Tea Party activists on notice that any more racist bullshit at their rallys and from their members will get them noticed for all the wrong reasons. Call me crazy but I can see the potential for this to create a huge chasm within their "movement" and possibly be the beginning of the end of folks taking them seriously at all.
Oh and for real Democrats running for election this fall, its time for you to do some Conservative bashing. That includes Blue Dog Dems. You see them doing all kinds of hippie punching in their campaigns and beating their chest out about standing up to their own party, well lets start sticking out our chest and saying we aint taking that shit anymore. The best person to beat up on right now is Ben Nelson. Ask Democrats if that's really who they want to see representing them, asking for the Cornhusker kickback, working to weaken every piece of legislation passed since President Obama came into office, and refusing to allow up and down votes on critical issues like unemployment benefits.
Want to fire up your constituents to come out and vote for you and give you a fighting chance? Then you better take your gloves off not only when it comes to your Republican opponents but also the obstructionists in your own party. I can just about guarantee you that you would have an Act Blue page full of donations and liberal and progressive activists on the ground helping your campaign if you came out slamming the Ben Nelsons of the world who only serve to make it harder for Dems to get elected.
One more thing. Find a way to get booked to the Rachel Maddow Show. She is the best in the business right now at interviewing and it raises your profile along with hers which can only help both of you.
PS One more thing, specifically for Senate candidate Kendrick Meek but its applicable to any other Dem running for Senate for the first time or whom have never supported a filibuster.
Filbuster reform is a major issue for Liberals and Progressives. That some members of our own caucus aren't allowing up and down votes is beyond frustrating. Its also killing some of the things we need right now even tough average Americans don't get that. They just see inaction and think its all the Dems fault.
A way to make this a campaign issue is to say something along the lines of, "I believe in debate, I believe that Democrats have the best ideas and I like to argue my case, but at some point the time for debate is over and when that time comes I believe in majority rule. I believe that the majority should be able to get an up and down vote on legislation they introduce no matter which party is in office. Because the truth is, in order to hold the majority in the Senate, you have to represent the majority of America and those people deserve to have their voices heard. There will be other elections after that for the people to decide who was right and who was wrong"
Seriously man, this is an absolute winner. Republicans talk about majority rule but they would never commit to something like that and neither would "centrist" Democrats.
Hey, just a suggestion.