This was kind of a grim week as far as our Democratic legislative leaders go. Rule of thumb: when even the NYTimes editorial board can rightly call you out for your lack of sack, you’ve had it.
I have no idea what it will take for the Democratic leadership to get it through their heads that it’s not just the base but also the entire frickin’ country that wants them to tell the Bushites to piss off with their waterboarding and their warrantless wiretaps and their dumbass horrible wars, and their lying, and oh yeah, all the damn dead people. How much more appalling could the Congressional poll numbers get? Is this some sort of science project — are they trying to compel statisticians to discover entirely new mathematical methodologies for calculating exactly how much contempt they’re held in? America wants a change. OFFER ONE. Is Chris Dodd really the only one among you capable of perceiving the obvious?
FDL doesn’t do endorsements. I don’t do endorsements either. But speaking strictly for myself, the Editors have a point.
Dodd has already taken a great risk – both personally and for his constituents in Connecticut – by putting this bill on ‘hold’. A filibuster would be a hundred times worse. Just threatening a filibuster is a total slap in the face to Harry Reid and the rest of the 11%-approval Get Along Gang in Congress, the telecom lobby, and President 24%. Clinton and Obama are probably still arguing about the correct diplomatic etiquette for public discussions of bombing our allies. This strange, shrill and unBroderian spectacle is what was once called “leadership”. Dodd has my vote, and my cash, and my time. Hint, hint.
Dunno if I’ll vote for Dodd. Dunno if I’ll even have the chance. But I will say this, to any Democratic strategist reading this post, contemplating some balancing act about how to handle 2008:
If you concede on habeas corpus, if you concede on ending the war, if you concede on bringing troops home, if you concede on FISA, if you concede on waterboarding, if you concede on holding this misbegotten failure of an administration accountable for their abuses, if you give one more goddamn inch —
Come 2008, I aim to misbehave.
Maybe that’s just me. But I doubt it.