January 4, 2006
Can Democrats Not See the Cliff Over Which They Are Plunging?
Murtha probably wasn't on President Bush's Christmas card list,
but Democratic political analyst Charles Cook thinks he should
noted in the president's popularity started to rebound almost
immediately after the Johnstown Democrat made a speech urging
immediate withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq.
to Murtha's well publicized speech advocating an early withdrawal,
the spotlight had been on the Bush administration's use of intelligence
that led to the decision to go to war," Mr. Cook said.
speech changed the debate, away from whether we should have invaded
Iraq and whether the use of intelligence to make that decision
was flawed toward the more problematic issue of 'what do wedo
now,'" he said.
While a majority
of Americans now think it was a mistake to have gone into Iraq
in the first place, a larger majority thinks it would be a bigger
mistake to cut and run. Rep. Murtha took the spotlight off the
president and focused it on the Democrats, who have no "plan"
for Iraq other than preemptive surrender.
are changing the debate again, in ways likely further to diminish
in the Senate have filibustered extension of the Patriot Act,
and Democrats there and elsewhere have expressed hysterical alarm
that the National Security Agency has been listening in, without
warrants, on conversations between al Qaida suspects abroad and
people in the United States.
doubt there is much of a connection between the war in Iraq and
the war on terror. But only moonbats fail to see a connection
between the fact that there have been no successful terrorist
attacks on the United States since Sept. 11th, 2001, and the measures
that have been taken to protect us.
poll of 1,000 Americans released Wednesday indicated 64 percent
of respondents think the NSA should be allowed to listen in on
conversations between terror suspects and people living in the
United States. Only 23 percent of respondents disagreed.
results can't be blamed on a lack of information. Two thirds of
respondents said they were following the NSA story closely. Two
polls taken on the Patriot Act last June indicated about 60 percent
of respondents favored its renewal.
The two enduring
mysteries of contemporary politics are why President Bush doesn't
talk more about the war on terror, and why Democrats won't shut
up about it.
Democrats still do not fully grasp that the public has profound
and long-standing concerns about their ability to defend the nation,"
John McIntyre of the popular RealClearPolitics.
Clinton pollster Dick Morris thinks the fundamental error the
Democrats are making is assuming that isolationists who oppose
the war in Iraq share their views on domestic security.
did for President Clinton indicated about 35 percent of Americans
are isolationists, roughly evenly divided between Democrats and
Republicans, Morris wrote in his New York Post column
Tuesday. Conservative isolationists are angry with President Bush
for invading Iraq, but support him on domestic security, Morris
very same voters the Democrats attract by attacking the war they
lose by condemning domestic wiretaps and the Patriot Act,"
he said. The Hotline newsletter thinks the renewed focus
on national security could propel the GOP to a comeback victory
in 2006, just as it did in 2002:
'02, the prevailing assumption going into the midterms was that
the Dems, as the opposition party, would pick up seats,"
Hotline said. "Then, like now, there was a potent political
issue over national security (creation of the Department of
Homeland Security, which the Democrats were delaying)...If national
security again plays a major role, the GOP might perform better
than the gloomy predictions of present."
opposition to security measures is motivated by principle. But
Democrats often have sacrificed principle for partisan advantage,
which makes their current behavior puzzling. Can't they see the
cliff over which the party is plunging?
I think the
McCain Feingold law is part of the problem. By making it harder
for Democrats to raise money from ordinary folks, it gives more
power to special interest groups and to wealthy moonbats like
George Soros. The need for campaign cash drives many Democrats
who would not normally associate with it toward the lunatic fringe.
Kelly is national security columnist for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
and the Blade of Toledo, Ohio.