Wednesday, July 30, 2008

The Democratic "Controlled" Congress Has Gone To The (Blue) Dogs.

Excerpted from a Glenn Greenwald piece in Salon:

Other than (arguably) the resignation of Alberto Gonzales as attorney general and a very modest increase in the minimum wage (enacted in the first month after Democrats took control of Congress), one is hard-pressed to identify a single event or issue since November 2006 that would have been meaningfully different had the GOP retained control of Congress. The Congress of Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi has been every bit as passive, impotent and complicit as the Congress of Bill Frist and Denny Hastert was. Worse, in contrast to the Frist/Hastert-led Congress, which at least had the excuse that it enabled a wartime president from its own party while he enjoyed high approval ratings, the Reid/Pelosi Congress has capitulated to every presidential whim despite an "opposition party" president who is now one of the most unpopular in modern American history. It's difficult to imagine how even Reid and Pelosi themselves could contest the claim that the Democratic-led Congress, from the perspective of Democratic voters, has been a profound failure...
...If simply voting for more Democrats will achieve nothing in the way of meaningful change, what, if anything, will? At minimum, two steps are required to begin to influence Democratic leaders to change course: 1) Impose a real political price that they must pay when they capitulate to -- or actively embrace -- the right's agenda and ignore the political values of their base, and 2) decrease the power and influence of the conservative "Blue Dog" contingent within the Democratic caucus, who have proved excessively willing to accommodate the excesses of the Bush administration, by selecting their members for defeat and removing them from office. And that means running progressive challengers against them in primaries, or targeting them with critical ads, even if doing so, in isolated cases, risks the loss of a Democratic seat in Congress.

I've mentioned the "Blue Dogs" in previous posts.
There are 47 of them.
Unfortunately, my South Bay rep Jane Harman is one. 
Read the rest of Greenwald's piece here: 

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