Two seemingly unrelated events have me shaking my head.
First there are reports that instead of going through what might be a tough confirmation process the White House will instead appoint Elizabeth Warren as interim director of
Secondly even though John Boehner gave them the gift of a lifetime buy saying on national television that if the only way to get middle class tax cuts through was to abandon the tax cuts for the wealthy, the House Democratic leadership has decided not to put it up for a vote.
What do both of these events have in common?
They both show the Democrats' profound unwillingness to fight for anything.
And when I say fight I don't mean put something in a campaign speech. I mean making Republicans and yes even some Democrats take tough ass votes to show the real difference between the two parties.
If I had to say what was the single biggest reason for the enthusiasm gap I this cowardly streak would have to be at the top of the list.
There is nothing to be lost and everything to be gained for the party in a fight for middle class tax cuts and a fight over Elizabeth Warren's nomination. Even if we lose those battles we would win the war by getting Democratic voters and yes even many independents to get on board because they see us fighting for what we believe in.
The truth is most people will go for a bully who is dead ass wrong as a leader rather than a coward who is exactly right. That's just how it is but Democrats seem to relish avoiding fights and taking high brow stances while Republicans get in the mud and keep swinging even if they are going down in flames.
The most maddening part of this is that WE ARE ON THE RIGHT SIDE OF HISTORY.
Oh I understand that some folks will say "well we don't want to force Blue Dog Dems to take tough votes before the midterms"
To that I say, ahem, BULLSHIT!
First off, how many Blue Dog Dems have actually voted FOR anything of substance in the last 18 MONTHS? Hell if anything putting up the middle class tax cuts to a vote will serve to help those assholes by giving them something else to use to show that they aren't really like all those bad soshulist Democrats. The punks are already running attack ads against their own leadership with one particularly egregious asshole imagining Speaker Pelosi dead, so why in the fuck are we still protecting them again?!
Why do we give a shit if Ben Nelson joins a filibuster? If anything we should hope that fucker keeps making these kinds of threats. Why? So we can keep bringing up the Cornhusker Kickback. Maybe we can finally get some party discipline in line if he keeps opening his fucking mouth. And the best part? If Dem voters FINALLY see Dem leadership willing to fight even members of their own party for what is right then they will be more inclined to actually go to the polls to support them.
But tell me truthfully, right now and at this moment unless you are a hardcore Democrats like I and many others are why would you vote for a Democrat this fall? We got health care reform but it at least appeared we didn't fight for the best bill we could with a public option. We got financial reform but it, again, appeared that we made concession after concession just to get it passed instead of standing up and fighting to making the bill better. We got a stimulus last year that was too small which is obvious now in hindsight but was obvious at the time also to a lot of prominent liberal economists like Paul Krugman. But because we never fought for a bigger bill and instead let Ben Nelson and Joe Lieberman write it now we still have high unemployment and nobody is buying the "well its worse than it would have been" argument.
And lets not forget that this all started with Lieberman by the way. I said at the time that by allowing him to keep his gavel the Democratic leadership and President Obama were giving a clear sign that you could do whatever you want and say whatever you want and not only not get punished but damn near get rewarded if you went against them. Maybe the last 18 months play out the same even if Lieberman is booted out of the party or at least put at the back of the line for seniority but I highly doubt it.
President Obama and every Democrat in Congress can make speeches this election season about fighting for middle class families but until there is actually a, you know, fight nobody is going to be buying that bullshit.
So either start the fight or finish the fight but fight we must before November
It is what it is...