rahmballet.jpgHe apparently says so himself at the end of this column:

A restoration of habeas corpus rights may have a better chance. Leahy said he will push the issue next month, and legislation co-sponsored by Conyers and Ike Skelton (D-Mo.), chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, is likely to move through their committees this fall.

But political fear still hovers over any legislation that touches on the fight against terrorism, which, for Democrats, may be the new third rail of politics.

“We can do this, but you have to keep in mind Republicans care more about catching Democrats than catching terrorists,” said Rep. Rahm Emanuel (Ill.), chairman of the House Democratic Caucus. “They have spent years taking Roosevelt’s notion that we have nothing to fear but fear itself and given us nothing but fear.”

While it may technically be true that the reporter could have placed Rahm’s comment in such a way that it makes him look like he’s counseling more retreat than his quote directly indicates, does anyone seriously believe that Emanuel is not one of the captains of the Democrats’ Caution Caucus, continually undercutting the Speaker and the majority of the party? I don’t.

Here’s what I see, after watching congress closely for a while now: Rahm Emanuel is tough on corned beef sandwiches, loose in the stool over fighting a failed president and restoring the Bill of Rights. Similarly, he’s been just as willing to sell out working people and the rights of migrants. He even stabbed Pelosi and Murtha in the back by leading the fight to pull the Iran language from the recent supplemental. Rahm, after all, was first elected as a Chicago machine pol running against a grassroots progressive, and it’s all he knows.

Is it just me, or do the toughest “guys” in the party all seem to be gals? Perhaps Rep. Schakowsky can get him binkie.

If you like, gently, soothingly ask Rahm Emanuel not to be so skeered. Be really nice and sweet; don’t startle him. He’s quite the sensitive swan. Specifically, ask him to be vocal and forceful in supporting a restoration of habeas corpus and an end, with firm deadlines, to the occupation in Iraq:

Washington, DC
1319 Longworth House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
phone: 202-225-4061
fax: 202-225-5603

3742 West Irving Park Road
Chicago, IL 60618
phone: 773-267-5926
fax: 773-267-6583

Please remember, there are good Democrats around. If you can, please reward good behavior.

Oh, and here’s a bit more about the original article. UPDATE: Turkana at dkos has even more, with many, many helpful links. (h/t LS in the comments)



Pachacutec did not, as is commonly believed, die in 1471. To escape the tragic sight of his successors screwing up the Inca Empire he’d built, he fled east into the Amazon rain forest, where he began chewing lots of funky roots to get higher than Hunter Thompson ever dared. Oddly, these roots gave him not only a killer buzz, but also prolonged his life beyond what any other mortal has known, excluding Novakula. Whatever his doubts of the utility of living long enough to see old friends pop up in museums as mummies, or witness the bizarrely compelling spectacle of Katherine Harris, he’s learned a thing or two along the way. For one thing, he’s learned the importance of not letting morons run a country, having watched the Inca Empire suffer many civil wars requiring the eventual ruler to gain support from the priests and the national military. He now works during fleeting sober moments to build a vibrant progressive movement sufficiently strong and sustainable to drive a pointed stake through the heart of American “conservatism” forever. He enjoys a gay marriage, classic jazz and roots for the New York Mets.