Friday, September 29, 2006

We Lost, But There's Still Work to Do

As we discussed extensively yesterday, the Torture Bill passed. Many people appear ready to give up on the Democratic Party, but the truth is that many of them did stand up for principle this time.

There just were not enough of them.

That has to change. That's why it's crucial that the House and Senate change hands this November. Glenn makes this point pretty well. As does SusanG in her pep talk, "On Kicking Ass and Crashing Gates." And Barbara O'Brien.

Here's a bit from the Editors' "The Morning After":
It’s true, “the Democrats” didn’t send this awful, anti-Democratic bill to defeat. But, then, they didn’t have the votes for it. Nor, indeed, did they fillibuster the bill. But, as Sen. Reid confessed, and as the final vote proved out, they didn’t have the votes for that, either. But they should have made a futile gesture! you complain. Well, many Democrats did make futile gestures, futile speeches even, even crappy Hillary Clinton. But they should have made the futile gesture I wanted them to make! Well, perhaps they should have, but I fear we this discussion may now drifting from political commentary into interpretive dance criticism. The bottom line is the votes weren’t there. The day was lost.

Basic mathematics explains why. Only 2-3% of the representatives of the majority party voted against it, as opposed to 75-85% of the minority. It would have been nice if, under circumstances carefully contrived by the majority party to be as politically difficult as possible, 100% of the minority went down to defeat. It would have been nice if any of the 15 trojan horse amendments introduced by the Democrats had suceeded. And a pony, if you please. But that didn’t happen, and so we have to settle for defeat, and a Democratic rate of opposition only 30 times as high as the Republican.
Bluerevolt lists the (mostly) Republican senators and reps who voted for the bill and draws the analogy:
Keep this in mind. If your neighbor's mean-ass pit bull comes into your yard and bites you, you don't get mad at your own dog for not protecting you. First order of business is to get rid of the god-damned pit bull. After all, he's the one that's really responsible for your wounds. Once that's done, then you can worry about giving your own sorry pooch some watch-dog training.
Here in Pennsylvania, it looks like Santorum may finally be on his way out.

It's a start.

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