In November of last year, many Democrats downplayed the gubernatorial victories in Virginia and New Jersey. Ever the optimist, Nancy Pelosi even pointed to the Democratic victory in NY-23 as proof that the night of November 3rd was really a triumph for the Democrats instead of a rejection of Obama’s policies. Conventional wisdom among the DNC, reinforced by most polls at the time, supported the idea that Ted Kennedy’s seat would be safely held in the liberal hands of Martha Coakley. But they were wrong then…and they’re wrong now.
As hesitant as they may be to listen to their sworn enemies at Fox News like Bill O’Reilly and Sean Hannity, the Democratic party would do well to pay attention to the advice they have to offer: watch out because the Obama agenda is not popular right now. But yet, the liberal Democrats say he’s not liberal enough. Some moderate and conservative Democrats seem to understand what’s going on, but some still think they can pass a reduced health care bill, essentially a “Diet ObamaCare,” (less fat, but it still leaves a bad taste in your mouth) in order to appease the public.
Remember how Chris Matthews gushed over Obama, talking about a thrill running up his leg whenever he heard him talk? But now, observe this discussion between Chris Matthews & Howard Dean.
In case you’re wondering, I’m loving every minute of this.
And on top of it all, the Democrats want to raise the ceiling on the national debt by $1.8 trillion. When Clinton lost both Houses of Congress in 1994, he moved towards the center and passed wellfare reform and balanced the budget. It appears that the times have changed.
So what’s going on with the Democratic party these days? Have they lost their minds? I understand that the Scott Brown victory has left many of them hysterical, but I can’t say I expected them to react with such lunacy.
My theory is that the euphoria surrounding the Obama victory in 2008 left them starry-eyed and full of unfounded optimism. Finally, they had put forth a formidable candidate that had prevailed after eight long years of George W. Bush. Never mind the fact that John McCain was the absolute worst candidate for the Republican party since Bob Dole. The honeymoon could only last so long.
With a supermajority in Congress and a Democratic president, there should have been no problem passing through some of the legislation that they had always dreamed of, including universal healthcare, the holy grail of the Democratic party. But between the stimulus, the omnibus, the bailouts, cap and trade, and a bloated, expensive healthcare bill, Americans had had enough.
Of course, in spite of recent victories, the GOP still faces an uphill battle considering that they are 9 seats away from breaking even with the Democrats in the Senate, not to mention an even larger deficit in the House. Fortunately, most polls support what those recent victories have already indicated: a wave of conservativism sweeping the country. Harry Reid has been consistently behind his potential GOP challengers. Pat Toomey is currently leading Arlen Specter in Pennsylvania by as much as 9 points. Barbara Boxer is facing a possibly significant challenge in California. Blunt is ahead of Carnahan in Missouri. The GOP candidate for Senate also leads in Ohio and North Dakota. But if Brown’s victory in Massachusetts has taught us anything, polls can change.
However, the fact remains: there’s trouble brewing for the DNC. The possibility of losing the House and Senate looms in their future. All this talk of a Democratic party in decline brings to mind a few buzzwords of the 2008 election: Hope and Change.