Democrats making hay while the sun shines

The Unablogger

The Unablogger

Noted conservative blogger Erick Erickson ( recently came to a conclusion I had been nursing for some time. Here is my own formulation.

With the Presidency, a comfortable margin in the U.S. House and a working filibuster-proof margin in the Senate, Democrats are doing what Republicans failed to do when they controlled Congress and the Presidency (albeit without 60 votes in the Senate): they are seizing the opportunity to enact their agenda into law, perhaps in ways that it may not be possible for a later congress to repeal. They are consciously imposing their agenda without regard to documented public opinion and – as Erickson notes – without regard to the risk of losing their seats and control because of their actions. They are putting principle (warped principle, to be sure, but still the principles that drive them) ahead of their personal job security. Erickson noted more succinctly than I, “[T]he Democrats can effect a permanent policy shift in the country and are willing to take the hits to do it.”

The decision of  Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-ND) to forego reelection is a case in point. While his decision possibly hands Republicans a senate seat Democrats likely would have retained with Dorgan running for reelection, it also signals that Dorgan is now free to vote the liberal party line without any concern over political repercussions – or the will of his conservative North Dakota constituents. Screw them! Recent House retirees like John Tanner (D-TN) from districts where McCain beat Obama are similarly free to tote Speaker Pelosi’s line with impunity.

Democrats are consciously risking their political futures because they know these two years are realistically their only chance to accomplish what they want. And, more ominously, they believe (perhaps accurately) that what they do now cannot later be undone, even after they lose control. Even if Republicans were to take EVERY Democrat senate seat this election (a virtually impossible feat), they would still lack the 60 votes necessary to pass repeal – or anything else the Democrats are willing to sabotage. Once health care deform is passed, once they have successfully looted $500 million dollars from the Medicare trust fund, can conservatives realistically overturn it? How would they restore Medicare as we know it after all the money accumulated for half a century is gone? And once entitlements have been created, count on result-oriented liberal judges to treat the new handouts as unalienable rights.

This is the liberals’ hour, and they are seizing the opportunity. This is why they fought so hard to steal the Minnesota senate election for Al “Stuart Smalley” Franken.

After the health care takeover, watch for Congress and the Administration to push aggressively to pay off organized labor with card check, to pay off environmentalist wackos with the previously stalled cap-and-tax business killer, and to grant full amnesty and accelerated citizenship (and voting rights!) to illegal aliens who, with the stroke of Obama’s pen, won’t be illegal any more, so they can vote to rescue Democrats at the ballot box. They’ll do it this year because it’s their last chance – and because even a new Republican majority won’t be able to act until it’s too late.

Erickson speculates that Democratic reps who make the ultimate electoral sacrifice for passing the liberal agenda will be rewarded with ambassadorships and other cushy federal appointments.

Republicans need to nominate candidates who, when they win and take control, will make the same principled sacrifices as the Democrats are this session.

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