CommunityPam's House Blend

Dems — there's nobody home

It’s like a dial tone, white noise, a box with wrapped nicely and you open it and there’s nothing in there. The Dems are working hard to do the impossible — wrest defeat from the jaws of victory in these times. With the corrupt, amoral Republicans on the Hill and a White House constantly off balance, how incompetent and disorganized can the Dems be?

Katrina, Tom DeLay/Abramoff, Iraq, Cheney, the bankruptcy bill, raping the environment, the list of atrocities goes on and on.

Yet the Dems simply cannot latch onto a clear message, an alternative way to pull this country out of the flipping hole it’s in, and here it is, a midterm election year well under way and nada. (WaPo):

The Democratic leaders in Congress — [House Minority Leader, California’s Nancy] Pelosi and Sen. Harry M. Reid (Nev.) — are the party’s chief strategists and architects of the agenda, which they view as a way to market party ideas on energy, health care, education and other issues. They have held countless meetings to construct the right list, consulting with governors, mayors and just about every Democratic adviser in town.

By the time the election rolls around, people are going to know where Democrats stand,” Reid said.

But many in the party have their doubts. On Feb. 27, Reid and Pelosi appeared before the Democratic Governors Association. At one point in the conversation, Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack, noting that the two leaders had talked about a variety of themes and ideas, asked for help. Could they reduce the message to just two or three core ideas that governors could echo in the states?

According to multiple accounts from those in the room, Reid said they had narrowed the list to six and proceeded to talk about them. Pelosi then offered her six — not all the same as Reid‘s. Oregon Gov. Ted Kulongoski said later: “One of the other governors said ‘What do you think?’ and I said ‘You know what I think? I don’t think we have a message.’

As Blender Henway said in an email, “Like Linus and his blanket, Democrats in a daze, clinging to their focus group. Disaster lurks.”

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding