Thursday, January 21, 2010

Democrats are blowing it, and they need to learn from Bush

I promise to let go of this soon, but I can't handle the Democratic foolishness.

While the Republicans had terrible policies with horrible results that earned them their current, out-of-power position, they were good at getting those policies enacted. So how did the Bush Administration react when the entire national electorate kicked Republican butts out? They offered one sacrifice - Rumsfeld - and then doubled down on their policies with the surge in 2007. And while the surge was a worse policy choice than initiating a drawdown as Bush agreed to in 2008, it was better than the status quo and somewhat improved Republican electoral outcomes in 2008.

Now we have one Democratic state rejecting one Democratic candidate who ran a lousy campaign, where the only clear fact is that the electorate supports the in-state version of health care that's planned nationally, and the Ds can't decide what to do.

The policy choices seem to me to be either pass the Senate bill unchanged combined with a possibility of improvements in separate legislation, or alternatively to work for a slight possibility of a few piecemeal reforms instead. How anyone can hesitate in light of those choices is beyond me.

The politics seem clear too - the Democrats need this achievement to have something to run on in November.

I'm not the political expert - maybe I'm missing something. But the Obama Administration, the Democratic party leadership, and any Democratic congressional member who doesn't push for it, all seem to me to be screwing it up.

There's some quote about snatching defeat from the jaws of victory that Lincoln might have said (I couldn't confirm). I think the Democrats are half way to doing it now. I still hope and think they can fix it.


  1. What you're missing is that the current "health reform" plan is ridiculously unpopular with the public, and the dems don't want to lose any *more* votes in the next election if they can help it.

    Megan McArdle's been pretty good on this stuff recently.

  2. I think the best way to test your hypothesis is to pass HCR and then see what the voters think.

    Massachusetts proved that voters like HCR when they have it.


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