It’s easy for some of us to see that trying to be “bipartisan” hasn’t worked. And if the President and his “people” think placating Joe Lieberman, et al.., is a good strategy than we will have a new GOP Speaker and Majority Leader in 2011.
There’s a lot, and I mean A LOT – (BOR, Dog Canyon,, Purple Texas, 538) – just to name a few, of opinion on what yesterday’s election in Massachusetts means going forward for Democrats in Texas and around the country. For me it’s simple, the people who voted overwhelmingly for Democrats in 2008 were expecting Democrats to come into office and help them – what Democrats have done in the past. So far the help hasn’t come. If Democrats want to win they need to start helping the people that voted for them – not the banksters. And that likely means they will have to make corporations and the wealthy folks in this country mad. But they can no longer have it both ways and stay in power.
One politician or one act, or non-act, is not to blame for what happened yesterday, or what’s been happening over the last year. It’s the inability of the elected Democrats, as a whole, to do what they were elected to do, help the people of this country that are struggling economically. Drew Westen has a great take on the situation, Obama Finally Gets His Victory For Bipartisanship.
The President’s steadfast refusal to acknowledge that we have a two-party system, his insistence on making destructive concessions to the same party voters he had sent packing twice in a row in the name of “bipartisanship,” and his refusal ever to utter the words “I am a Democrat” and to articulate what that means, are not among his virtues. We have competing ideas in a democracy — and hence competing parties — for a reason. To paper them over and pretend they do not exist, particularly when the ideology of one of the parties has proven so devastating to the lives of everyday Americans, is not a virtue. It is an abdication of responsibility.
What happens if you refuse to lay the blame for the destruction of our economy on anyone — particularly the party, leaders, and ideology that were in power for the last 8 years and were responsible for it? What happens if you fail to “brand” what has happened as the Bush Depression or the Republican Depression or the natural result of the ideology of unregulated greed, the way FDR branded the Great Depression as Hoover’s Depression and created a Democratic majority for 50 years and a new vision of what effective government can do? What happens when you fail to offer and continually reinforce a narrative about what has happened, who caused it, and how you’re going to fix it that Americans understand, that makes them angry, that makes them hopeful, and that makes them committed to you and your policies during the tough times that will inevitably lie ahead?
The one thing that’s I’ve thought over the last few day is that Obama’s problem is not that he doesn’t know how to work with Republicans to get things done. His problem is that he doesn’t know how to work with Democrats to get things done.
It’s easy to blame the President and I’ve obviously done some of that here. He deserves some, but not all of the blame. It’s no secret that I’ve wanted, not expected, more FDR from Obama. The illogical part in all of this is that the Democrats have done nothing to follow FDR’s blueprint that, as Westen said, created a “50 year” Democratic majority. And that’s the wake up call I hope all Democrats get from what’s been happening to them in election over the past 6 months. Start helping the people that need it and 2010 will be just fine. If not….