Blue dogs decimated, blue dogs triumphant

by: Paul Rosenberg

Wed Nov 03, 2010 at 10:30


The Blue Dog Caucus was decimated five times over last night. To be "decimated" is to lose 10% of one's troops.  The Blue Dogs lost more than 50% (just shy of 50% who were running, with a few races still undecided):

In a fell swoop, the once-powerful Blue Dog caucus of conservative House Democrats was reduced from 54 members to 26 in Tuesday's midterm election.

The caucus lost two members to retirement and two others who ran for higher office, and out of the remaining 50 members, 24 Blue Dogs lost.

There were still a few Blue Dogs in tight races that had yet to be called early on Wednesday morning. There is the potential for more losses, though most of them look likely to hold on.

Two members of the leadership - Rep. Stephanie Herseth-Sandlin of South Dakota and Rep. Baron Hill of Indiana - both lost to Republican challengers.

Two other leaders of the group - Rep. Heath Shuler of North Carolina and Rep. Jim Matheson of Utah - survived the bloodbath election.

Despite this unprecedented bloodbath, there is little doubt that the narratives will favor the Blue Dogs, however.  Even before the election, the NY Times had selected Evan Bayh for the place of honor, telling the Dems what they had done wrong:

It is clear that Democrats over-interpreted our mandate. Talk of a "political realignment" and a "new progressive era" proved wishful thinking. Exit polls in 2008 showed that 22 percent of voters identified themselves as liberals, 32 percent as conservatives and 44 percent as moderates. An electorate that is 76 percent moderate to conservative was not crying out for a move to the left.

This sort of reliance on labels, rather than values and issue positions is one of the symptomatic delusions of political class, despite the fact that political scientists have known for 40+ years that a majority of conservatives are supoporters of the welfare state.  Anyone who writes like this is a political illiterate.  Of course that includes virtually all of Versailles.  But there you go, then.

We also overreached by focusing on health care rather than job creation during a severe recession. It was a noble aspiration, but $1 trillion in new spending and a major entitlement expansion are best attempted when the Treasury is flush and the economy strong, hardly our situation today.

Yes, FDR made a terrible mistake instituting Social Security in the midst of the Great Depression.  It ensured his landslide defeat in the 1936 election, as everybody knows.

Oh, wait...

Paul Rosenberg :: Blue dogs decimated, blue dogs triumphant

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Harry S. Truman said, (4.00 / 10)
"The people don't want a phony Democrat. If it's a choice between a genuine Republican, and a Republican in Democratic clothing, the people will choose the genuine article, every time; that is, they will take a Republican before they will a phony Democrat."


Educate, Agitate, Organize, Mobilize, Act!


Beating a dead horse here... (4.00 / 2)
but to the equivalents of Evan Bayh in 1936, Social Security was passed not during a severe recession, but during a time when Americans were threatening to end Capitalism if it didn't serve their needs.  They threw valuables overboard because the yacht was rocking so hard in stormy seas.

True, But... (4.00 / 4)
Bayh is peddling the line that we can't afford to do major lifting during a time of crisis.  History shows that major lifting is precisely what's required in a time of crisis.

I agree 100% that we need to ramp up the underlying pressure on the system.  That's one reason why, for example, I think so little of the idea of primarying Obama.  It ignores the reason that he moved so swiftly to the right--the lack of the sort of pressure you point to.  Simply propping someone else to run against Obama wouldn't necessarily do anything at all to build this broader pressure, which ought to be the horse pulling the cart.

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3


[ Parent ]
I don't disagree with the need for budgetary/economic major lifting (4.00 / 3)
I guess I'm just trying to infer what Bayh's real motivations are.  I just don't think he cares all that much about the human and social costs of 10% unemployment, a massive foreclosure crisis, etc.  That stuff happens in a capitalist society.  It isn't a problem that needs solving, from his perspective, so there's no reason to borrow lots of money to address it.

What would be a problem -- and what was a problem for the Bayhs of the 1930s -- was ordinary people reacting to the human and social costs of high unemployment and foreclosures by threatening to do away largely with the system that made the Bayh-types wealthy and powerful.  That was, indeed, a problem that needed solving, and it was worth it to them to borrow lots of money to fix it.

He'll be in favor of major lifting if he's given the right incentives.  He just has a different set of values from us.

And I agree with you about the 2012 primary.  I think it's very narrow to try to address the huge problems of the distribution of power in our society by focusing so much on the electoral mechanism.  The reason people are attracted to it is that the opportunity is prescheduled and has a clear metric of success -- that is, a day can come when you can say, objectively, "We won!"  That's a lot harder to get with a broadbased social movement -- every victory there is really just another step on a more-or-less endless journey.  But I think that's what we need to focus our energies on, while still recognizing that some things (though not the fundamental things) can be accomplished through voting and standard-issue grassroots lobbying.


[ Parent ]
Synergy (4.00 / 5)
I'm suggesting elsewhere that we focus energy on getting progressive candidates into seats lost this time around.  There's less worry of direct confrontation with the party apparatus & I'm suggesting we should use these races to build local progressive infrastructure (media infrastructure in particular) so it would synergize electoral activity with movement-building.

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3

[ Parent ]
Thank you. (4.00 / 5)
Obama is already in deep doo doo with last night's results.

The Floridiots elected a criminal Thug to Governor. Ohioans elected a GOP Governor. Illinois too yes? Oh, and Pennsie too. Good luck to him in carrying those states... He's going to run hard to the right and will crush his Dem base support in doing so.

Obama's a big boy, he can take care of himself. There's no sense in doing anything with regard to his political career, one way or another. Our resources would be better used in movement building.

Given the GOP's inability to put aside it's hatreds for even one moment, they will self-destruct. GOP governors and congress will be slashing spending, sending the economy into a genuine tailspin.

They're already doomed. According to a Rassie poll, 57% of Americans expect them to disappoint by 2012. That tells me this was a punishment vote, not a genuine shift in direction.

This is a great opportunity.

"More than any other time in history, mankind faces a crossroads. One path leads to despair and utter hopelessness. The other, to total extinction. Let us pray we have the wisdom to choose correctly." -Woody Allen, My Speech to the Graduates


[ Parent ]
Link? (0.00 / 0)
According to a Rassie poll, 57% of Americans expect them to disappoint by 2012.

The MSM has tagged Independents the party of swing-voting 'centrism.' If Democrats no longer represent your liberal values, show America there is still a Left by registering for another left-aligned party.

[ Parent ]
Sorry, it's on HuffPo (0.00 / 0)
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/...

And that's the very GOP-leaning firm, Rasmussen, so grab a salt-shaker. But if that's accurate or even close... well, I can't say I'm terribly surprised at that.  

"More than any other time in history, mankind faces a crossroads. One path leads to despair and utter hopelessness. The other, to total extinction. Let us pray we have the wisdom to choose correctly." -Woody Allen, My Speech to the Graduates


[ Parent ]
And money (4.00 / 2)
Before election night there were many strange signs.  People preferred Democrats but didn't like their Democrat.   That is backwards compared to normal.

Many theories were created to explain this, but I have one simple one: attack ads.  Tons of money was poured into this election.  I don't think we should ever forget this was the first post Citizens United election.  That doesn't explain everything, but most definitely cannot be ignored.


[ Parent ]
Yes, but it's the lack of palpable results that made that money so effective. (4.00 / 1)
If the Dems had produced real results, they wouldn't have gotten their asses kicked in this way.

This disappointment among Dems started back in January 2007, when Pelosi et al took all manner of investigations, impeachments, etc., off the table. Policy-wise, they were weak, weak, weak. Message wise, weaker still.

After four years of pathetic excuse-making, people decided to punish the Dems. This is hardly surprising, after having their hopes raised up only to have them dashed in a Hurricane of bullshit excuses for doing precisely the wrong things.

The GOP will suffer the same fate, outside the South, in 2012, regardless of how much money they spend.  

"More than any other time in history, mankind faces a crossroads. One path leads to despair and utter hopelessness. The other, to total extinction. Let us pray we have the wisdom to choose correctly." -Woody Allen, My Speech to the Graduates


[ Parent ]
Dems actually didn't have to produce results, (4.00 / 3)
but they did need to be seen fighting hard for working-class interests, making a strong unamiguous argument for the American Dream.  

The only things over which they appeared to exert themselves strenuously were fund-raising and avoiding confrontation with the opposition.  


[ Parent ]
Yes and No. (4.00 / 3)
I think you're right in the sense of being seen to be doing the right things, even if the results weren't actually in yet. Econ policies take time, for example, to produce actual results. People liked the stimulus, for the most part... but in the end, it didn't produce results because it wasn't big enough.

HCR hasn't produced any real results people can point to either. Instead, they're receiving rate hikes along with slashed coverage. So on and so forth.... Of course, that's why it wasn't exactly the cat's meow as campaign fodder either.

But I also agree with you on "being seen fighting hard." They weren't even willing to go that far. But this really is a time of consequences and silly sloganeering just won't cut it anymore.

"More than any other time in history, mankind faces a crossroads. One path leads to despair and utter hopelessness. The other, to total extinction. Let us pray we have the wisdom to choose correctly." -Woody Allen, My Speech to the Graduates


[ Parent ]
Predictable (4.00 / 4)
A few days before the election, Nate Silver predicted that the Blue Dogs would lose 45% of their members with an overall Democratic loss at 53 seats (as opposed to 4% of progressives).  As things got worse, there was an orderly loss of around 12 more seats including mostly Blue Dogs.

The biggest story that sells the idea that the left-right continuum is a fairy tale is that moderate Gerry Ford lost while icon Reagan won big and bigger despite being far more conservative.  Actual research shows that a segment of the poulation prefers definite ideas it disagrees with to moderate waffling.  That killed off Kerry (or saved W).  

Yes, Feingold and Grayson and Carol Shea-Porter lost.  But most of the losses were people I am glad to see waved into the dustbin of history.  Melissa Bean is certainly one of those.  Adler here in NJ is another.  


I really don't get Adler's politics (0.00 / 0)
He was a perfectly good State Senator, from what I remember.  When he went next door to his CD, he seems to have decided to become a center-righty, evidently to avoid scaring his constituents or something.

[ Parent ]
The full list of Blue Dog casualties (0.00 / 0)
is here.

And yes, I'm very glad that Bean is finally gone.  Thank you Republicans!


[ Parent ]
But this raises the question (0.00 / 0)
if real "bold" progressives turnout the base more and supposedly do better in elections, how did Feingold, Grayson and Shea-Porter lose (while Manchin, Bennet and Reid won)?

Grayson's race wasn't even close.  He lost by double-digits.


[ Parent ]
I can see the narrative now (4.00 / 1)
People like Evan Bayh will claim that Democrats did little to protect "baby" Blue Dogs who were elected in 2006 and 2008.  Those Democrats went 4-15 in 2010, with the survivors being Jason Altmire, Gabrielle Giffords, Kurt Schrader, and Heath Shuler.  The other Blue Dogs went 20-9, which doesn't seem so bad by comparison.

I'd suggest those four should be the top targets (along with the California Blue Dogs) if you want to go looking for Blue Dogs to primary in 2012.

Things You Don't Talk About in Polite Company: Religion, Politics, the Occasional Intersection of Both


Well (4.00 / 1)
I certainly think it would be good to primary a few of them.

But it makes much more sense to run progressives for the open seats left behind.  Always easier when you're not running against an incumbent.

Also... redistricting time.

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3


[ Parent ]
It depends on what sort of election you think 2012 will be (0.00 / 0)
If you think Obama is toast and the Republicans will win the White House easily, then you're probably better off trying to knock off bad, vulnerable incumbents in primaries instead of seats will lean towards riding on presidential coattails.

If you think Obama is going to win because everyone will be tired of Tea Party Republicanism in two years, then it probably works best to target marginal seats that are going won in a wave.

If it is in between, then I have no idea what to do.  But if symbolic primaries of some Blue Dogs are part of the plan, then it makes sense to target the more vulnerable, less experienced ones rather than the most conservative.

Things You Don't Talk About in Polite Company: Religion, Politics, the Occasional Intersection of Both


[ Parent ]
Obama's catfood commission makes the targets real clear (4.00 / 6)
Go after anyone - or at least threaten the hell out of them - who favors cutting Medicare and Social Security or converting Social Security, as does Bayh, into a means-tested welfare program.  

[ Parent ]
Good Point (0.00 / 0)
The danger is lame duck...er, lame blue dog? votes between now and January.

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3

[ Parent ]
Remember Redistricting??? (4.00 / 2)
The districts in 2012 won't be the same districts they are now.  Some will be redder, some bluer, and some won't exist, to be replaced by new districts elsewhere.

But ALL the seats that have been opened up will be easier for us to organize around without direct party opposition.

Which is why they should be our prime targets.  Yes, adding a few of the more vulnerable Blue Dogs to the list makes sense.  But making them the centerpiece of our strategy does not, IMHO.  That made sense in the past, but not now.

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3


[ Parent ]
Progressives need a symbolic victory (4.00 / 1)
We need a scalp.  Something to prove to the media that progressives aren't irrelevant.  The best strategy is probably to knock off an incumbent Democratic Senator in one of the earlier primaries.


Things You Don't Talk About in Polite Company: Religion, Politics, the Occasional Intersection of Both

[ Parent ]
Given how Obama has openly attacked us ... (4.00 / 2)
... his would be up for grabs.

For the wheel's still in spin And there's no tellin' who That it's namin'. -- Dylan

[ Parent ]
Yes, Because (4.00 / 2)
It's SO imperative that we have THREE conservatives appointed to the Supreme Court in the next presidential term.  That's a vitalprogressive goal.  No question about it!

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3

[ Parent ]
the court already has a 5-4 conservative edge (0.00 / 0)
6-3 if you include Kagan

minority opinions written by one woman will be shorter, but the outcome will be the same

we have absolutely nothing to lose at this point, Obama isn't willing to move to the left of Reagan


[ Parent ]
Heck 9-0 If You Count Sotomayor, Ginsberg & Breyer! (0.00 / 0)
Why not go whole hog, and pay the postage?

Facts, schmacts!

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3


[ Parent ]
because Kagan is a cypher who worked for a relatively conservative DOJ (4.00 / 1)
see: http://www.theatlantic.com/nat...

but keep attacking me instead of engaging my points, it's endearing


[ Parent ]
This Is Typical Of How You Distort Basic Facts (0.00 / 0)
And that pretty much goes to the heart of why I often find you so annoying.  I was highly critical of Kagen, precisely because she was clearly a nominee to the right of the justice she was replacing.  But that does not make her a conservative, nor is the Holder DOJ conservative, although it could obviously be far more liberal.

Plus... linking to Stuart Taylor?  That rightwing douchebag? Who played a leading role in destroying the nomination of Lani Guinier with a passel of lies?

Please!

I mocked you with my previous comment precisely because it was comment deserving of mockery.  But you had to go and ask for me to explain why.

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3


[ Parent ]
yes, because I'm here for discussion not 4chan-level trolling (0.00 / 0)
anyway

the Holder DOJ has defended DADT and DOMA, openly opposed Prop 19 and swore to ignore the will of the people of California had it passed, has been WORSE than Bush's on privacy and gone after whistleblowers vigorously...I mean, really


[ Parent ]
These Are Stupid Decisions, Displaying A Lack Of Vision (0.00 / 0)
But that doesn't make the DoJ conservative.

Defending existing law--whether they agree with it or not--is just SOP.  Folks expected Obama to be transformational. He wasn't. So we got business as usual.  It sucks, but it's far from being conservative.

You're twisting language to make your points. THAT'S what annoys me about you.  A lack of honesty in language is a BIG minus in my book.

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3


[ Parent ]
isn't the definition of "conservative" a desire to maintain the status quo (0.00 / 0)
also, going after whistleblowers is outright draconian

[ Parent ]
It's ONE Definition (0.00 / 0)
And I've pointed out for years that today's "conservatives" are anything but conservative in that sense.

OTOH, the law by its very nature is conservative in this sense, as epitomized by the principle of stare decisis, as well as its large body of procedural rules.  It's long been a hallmark of judicial "conservatives" that they routinely ignore such rules as well as the principle of stare decisis in pursuing their ideological agenda.  This is a principle grounds on which Stevens blasted the Citizens United decision, for example, and it's also a reason why Bush v. Gore was widely recognized as a lawless decision.

So-called judicial conservatives are engaged in a profound attack on the nature of Anglo-American law, which shockingly few people seem to recognize. And when you throw around careless accusations like you've just done, you simply advance their agenda by helping them further muddy the waters, so nobody has a clear understanding of what the fuck is going on.

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3


[ Parent ]
You make an arrogant assumption (4.00 / 2)
If we primary Obama, he will be defeated in 2012.  If we don't, he will be re-elected in 2012.  God, if we had that kind of power, the leverage we would have!

But suppose we don't primary Obama, and he gets beat in 2012 anyway?

It's like how we had to swallow our principles lest we cost Kerry the election in 2004.  Whoops!  Or how we couldn't endanger Mondale.  Whoops!

Now tell me about all the arrogant assumptions I'm making, rather than really answering anything.

For the wheel's still in spin And there's no tellin' who That it's namin'. -- Dylan


[ Parent ]
Nonesense! (0.00 / 0)
Nothing arrogant at all. There are two opposite-end possibilities.  One is that your efforts fall flat.  The other is that you mount an effort that "succeeds", by historical standards.  And "success", by historical standards, means that a Republican gets elected.  Neither of these is terribly inspiring.  Your best hope is to fall somewhere in between, which would also seem unlikely to inspire anyone else but yourself.

Do you really see nothing problematic with that?

Oh, silly me!  Of course you don't!

I just want to remind everyone else what an addle-headed "plan" you have.

Could something else happen, aside from the alternatives laid out above?  Sure.  But there's just ZERO historical precedent for it, that's all.

I prefer to be reality-based as much as possible.  Dream big, but plan realistically.

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3


[ Parent ]
Lisa Murkowski is about to win a write in campaign for Senate (0.00 / 0)
granted, Alaska isn't a real place, but still, let's not rule anything else because it's not "sensible", lest we stroll right down David Broder Lane into the village of Evan Bayh

[ Parent ]
And This Is Supposed To Prove WHAT, Exactly? (0.00 / 0)
That Jesus was a space alien?

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3

[ Parent ]
that citing a lack of precedent for an electoral strategy doesn't hold much water (0.00 / 0)
the last time a Senator was written in was Strom fucking Thurmond it was due to shenanigans involving the death of the chosen party candidate

[ Parent ]
Because Her Family OWNS That Senate Seat (0.00 / 0)
Which makes it unprecedented in the other direction as well.

This is a Sharron Angle-stupid talking point on your part.

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3


[ Parent ]
everyone is stupid but you, Paul (4.00 / 1)
you're completely out of control with your single-minded devotion to "realistic" strategy

[ Parent ]
Perhaps (0.00 / 0)
because I've learned from my own past experience?

I'm all for radical action.  I just want it to work.  The higher the odds against us, the more important it is to avoid obviously self-defeating approaches.


"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3


[ Parent ]
In that mindframe ... (0.00 / 0)
... you'll NEVER build anything independent, because they'll always haul out the greater evil.

Again, there's the possibility of no primary challenge and Obama loses anyway.  What would Obama have to do for you to stop defending him?

As for inspiring no one but myself, you've spent a lot of words week after week pointing out the errors of someone as insignificant as myself.  Remember:

I really have no time for the likes of you, Jeff. You are probably the most effective force in demobilizing the left so far as building electoral power goes.


For the wheel's still in spin And there's no tellin' who That it's namin'. -- Dylan

[ Parent ]
I gotta say I side with jeff and travis here (4.00 / 1)
Paul, what are you afraid of?  If you want to build a movement and/or focus on lower-level races instead, by all means go for it.  We'll help you.  In the meantime, we can also pursue some kind of primary challenge of the President.  Why don't we just try starting one and see where it goes?  If it gets anywhere it'll be because the voters want it too.  If it doesn't, at least we'll have an alternative to Obama on the primary ballot.

[ Parent ]
I'm Afraid of 3 More Conservative Justices On The Supreme Court (0.00 / 0)
How many times do I have to repeat myself???

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3

[ Parent ]
Whatever happened to the filibuster? (0.00 / 0)
Does it just quietly disappear when a Republican becomes President?

[ Parent ]
I'm NOT Defending Him (0.00 / 0)
If I could snap my fingers and replace him with a real Democrat (Harry Truman, maybe?) I'd do so in a New York minute.

But the world doesn't work that way.  The world is made up of multiple causes producing multiple effects, not single causes producing single effects.

Most people who don't understand this are conservatives.

But liberals and progressives who don't understand it are just as mistaken in they ways they reason, even if their hearts are in the right place.

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3


[ Parent ]
But you are defending him! (0.00 / 0)
Trying to head off any primary challenge, pointing out the perils of his being replaced by a Republican?  What else is it?  The fact that you despise him and are one of his leading critics doesn't change that.

Make your case for why he needs defended if you must, but own up to it.

For the wheel's still in spin And there's no tellin' who That it's namin'. -- Dylan


[ Parent ]
Nope. (0.00 / 0)
Make your case for why he needs defended if you must, but own up to it.

Make an argument I don't believe in because you insist on it?

You've really outdone yourself in crazy this time, Jeff.

Perhaps the easiest way to put this is that you've misidentified the problem.  Obama isn't the problem so much as he's an extreme symptom of the problem. And even if we could get rid of him, focusing solely on him, the problem would still remain.  The problem is neo-liberalism and the balance of social forces that enables it. If we were significantly stronger, then a direct attack on Obama might indeed make sense.  But we lack so much that's essential for that sort of challenge to work.  So I'm saying let's build the capacity first, rather than go off on a wild goose chase.

Now, if things should change radically, and wild goose walked right into our arms, that would be entirely different.

But that hasn't happened, now, has it?

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3


[ Parent ]
"knock off an incumbent Democratic Senator" (0.00 / 0)
Ahem.  California.  Dianne Feinstein.  Let's get rid of her.

[ Parent ]
I'd Love It (0.00 / 0)
The problem is finding someone who would run against her who could plausibly win.

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3

[ Parent ]
California Blue Dogs (0.00 / 0)
Should we try with Marcy Winograd again in CA-36?

Also, the Representative here in heavily Democratic CA-53, Susan Davis, isn't a Blue Dog but she's no liberal either.  We should try shopping around for a replacement.


[ Parent ]
This is so unfortunately true... (4.00 / 6)
Blanche Lincoln, queen bee of Blue Dogs, got utterly and completely blown away here in Arkansas last night.  And it wasn't because she was a Democrat in a Republican wave (our Democratic Governor carried 65% of the vote).  It was because she believed that pandering to the right wing by killing the public option would make her more popular in the state.  Instead, she alienated everyone by trying to have it both ways on health care.  Democrats in the state didn't trust her, and Republicans still hated her because she voted for the final bill.  Having her at the top of the national slate, hurt Democratic congressional nominees in the state across the board.  And her massive unpopularity, coupled with a GOP-funded green party candidate, are the factors that conspired to give the GOP Arkansas' 1st District, which hasn't elected a Republican since reconstruction.  But Obama and Clinton thought it was wise to campaign for Blanche in the Dem primary.  Thanks guys.

Sorry that turned into a rant. (4.00 / 1)
I'm so sick of blue dogs it happens pretty frequently.

[ Parent ]
I think it's possible that Lincoln deep-6ed the Public Option (4.00 / 1)
because she thinks it's a bad idea.  She might be sincerely right-wing, rather than cynically so.

[ Parent ]
Nah, (4.00 / 2)
she campaigned on the idea in 06, even if she does believe the way she voted, she's just a cynical pol.

[ Parent ]
the Waltons certainly would have made her sit at the kid's table at Thanksgiving (4.00 / 1)
had it passed

[ Parent ]
We have our work cut out for us (4.00 / 6)
I think these results give progressives something to work with.  The Blue Dogs position themselves as pragamatic and problem solvers - unlike the republicans they at least know the problems exist.  The case can be made that we've tried the Blue Dog way and it cost us our House Majority.  We tried to be bipartisan, we passed blue dog favored bills and it got spun against us in the worst way possible.  Now we need to stand up for real progressive values.


When the eagles are silent, the parrots jabber.  Winston Churchill

The trouble with Blue Dogs (4.00 / 2)
is they really had no ideas except that of opposing themselves to anything to which the tag "liberal" could be attached.  It really wasn't about ideas with them.  It was cheap Sister Souljahing with them, and that wasn't enough.  If they were right, the losing Blue Dogs would have massively outperformed the liberal Tom Perriello and they didn't.

sTiVo's rule: Just because YOU "wouldn't put it past 'em" doesn't prove that THEY did it.

they claim to be big budget hawks (0.00 / 0)
of course when confronted with military spending they sort of trail off

[ Parent ]
What do you do with a Blue Dog president ... (4.00 / 1)
... early in the morning?

At least I'm glad someone remembers some Latin.

For the wheel's still in spin And there's no tellin' who That it's namin'. -- Dylan


Time for walkies? (0.00 / 0)


"More than any other time in history, mankind faces a crossroads. One path leads to despair and utter hopelessness. The other, to total extinction. Let us pray we have the wisdom to choose correctly." -Woody Allen, My Speech to the Graduates

[ Parent ]
I'm just happy to hear (4.00 / 2)
That 66% of the country is moderate to liberal!

God Evan Bayh is annoying (0.00 / 0)
I wish he'd properly ran for reelection this year so Dan Coats could give him a real ass-kicking, instead of quietly slinking away into the night.

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