Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Missed Opportunities

NYT reported Democrats are heading into this year's elections in a position weaker than they had hoped for, party leaders say, stirring concern that they are letting pass an opportunity to exploit what they see as widespread Republican vulnerabilities. In interviews, senior Democrats said they were optimistic about significant gains in Congressional elections this fall, calling this the best political environment they have faced since President Bush took office.

Republicans need not worry. The Dems will screw it up, just like they do every time.
But Democrats described a growing sense that they had failed to take full advantage of the troubles that have plagued Mr. Bush and his party since the middle of last year, driving down the president's approval ratings, opening divisions among Republicans in Congress over policy and potentially putting control of the House and Senate into play in November.

Asked to describe the health of the Democratic Party, Senator Christopher J. Dodd of Connecticut, the former chairman of the Democratic National Committee, said: "A lot worse than it should be. This has not been a very good two months." "We seem to be losing our voice when it comes to the basic things people worry about," Mr. Dodd said. Democrats said they had not yet figured out how to counter the White House's long assault on their national security credentials.
Don't tell the Dems, but as long as they keep complaining about the NSA listening in when Al Qaeda talk to their cells in the US, and keep recommending an immediate pullout from Iraq, turning the company over to Islamofascists would find it much easier to travel from there than they did from their camps in Afganistan, they are not likely to fool people into thinking they know how to protect the American people.
And they said their opportunities to break through to voters with a coherent message on domestic and foreign policy — should they settle on one — were restricted by the lack of an established, nationally known leader to carry their message this fall.
And they will not be able to focus on one leader, since everyone wants to preserve their ability to run for President in 2008.
As a result, some Democrats said, their party could lose its chance to do to Republicans this year what the Republicans did to them in 1994: make the midterm election, normally dominated by regional and local concerns, a national referendum on the party in power. "I think that two-thirds of the American people think the country is going in the wrong direction,"
Your math is off
said Senator Barack Obama, the first-term Illinois Democrat who is widely viewed as one of the party's promising stars. "They're not sure yet whether Democrats can move it in the right direction."
No, they know they are not.
Mr. Obama said the Democratic Party had not seized the moment, adding: "We have been in a reactive posture for too long. I think we have been very good at saying no, but not good enough at saying yes."
Actually Dems only are capable of showing hate.
.... "We're selling our party short; you've got to stand for a lot more than just blasting the other side," said Gov. Phil Bredesen of Tennessee. "The country is wide open to hear some alternatives, but I don't think it's wide open to all these criticisms. I am sitting here and getting all my e-mail about the things we are supposed to say about the president's speech, but it's extremely light on ideas. It's like, 'We're for jobs and we're for America.' "
Especially since the Republicans are for both of them as well, and they have delivered jobs (a very good economy) and Republicans support the military that is protecting America.
.... Since Mr. Bush's re-election, Democrats have been divided over whether to take on the Republicans in a more confrontational manner, ideologically and politically, or to move more forcefully to stake out the center on social and national security issues. They are being pushed, from the left wing of the party, to stand for what they say are the party's historical liberal values.
And if they dare reach for the center, the left side of their party will destroy them.
But among more establishment Democrats, there is concern that many of the party's most visible leaders — among them, Howard Dean, the Democratic chairman; Senator John Kerry, the party's 2004 presidential candidate; Mr. Kennedy; Representative Nancy Pelosi, the House minority leader; and Al Gore, who has assumed a higher profile as the party heads toward the 2008 presidential primaries — may be flawed messengers.
They certainly are flawed leaders, but who told the Dems.
.... Some Democrats argued that the party had time to put up its ideas, and that it would be smarter to wait until later, when voters would be paying attention.
Any when they might be able to come up with some ideas.

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