Thursday, January 14, 2010

What hath Obama wrought?

To understand the damage that Obamism has done to the Democratic party in just one year, you need read only two articles. The first is this piece by dakinikat:
Personally, I figured the GOP was a long gone brand after 8 years of Dubya Bush’s warmongering, war profiteering and bubble-based-depression-creating career. Now look at this. The GOP considers a take back of both houses of congress within the realm of possibility for THIS year.
And how do they propose to accomplish that task? By running against Washington -- against Obama.

Meanwhile, a TPM correspondent in Massachusetts tries valiantly to convince us that Martha Coakley's difficulties in keeping Ted Kennedy's seat blue really have nothing to do with Obama or with a more generalized antipathy toward Democrats. It's Coakley. Not Obama: Coakley. She's awful. Whatever you do, don't blame Obama. That would be Thoughtcrime. Better to blame the chick.

Problem is, said correspondent has a very difficult time coming up with concrete examples to explain just what makes Coakley so rotten. Her "speaking style is bad," we're told. Yeah, well, are there any truly good speechifiers out there these days? Barack ain't all that, lemme tell ya.

"All politics are local," bleateth the TPM correspondent apologetically.

"We're running against D.C.!" shouteth the Republicans defiantly.

Put those last two sentences together, and you get the picture. Obama is becoming politically toxic. The Democratic party's new icon is the biohazard symbol.

And somewhere in the distance I hear a voice: "You know who I blame for this situation? Bill Clinton."

Huh? Who said that? Is that you, Dave Sirota? Chris Matthews? John Aravosis? Maureen Dowd? Ben Smith? Arianna? Markos Moulitsas? Let's-get-this-to-Keith Olberman? Josh Marshall? Eric Alterman? The BooMan BDSM froggie? All of the above?

Or maybe it was one of the psychotic jackasses at D.U.? I believe that shrinks refer to the phenomenon as "projection"...


Perry Logan said...

There's a strong correlation between progressives with Clinton Derangement Syndrome (DU, HuffPo, BuzzFlash, etc.) and progressives who got bamboozled by Obama.

This suggests a useful rule: If a Clintophobe likes a candidate, he/she is a rotten candidate.

plainjane said...

In the meantime, every Kennedy relative and every Dem mucky-muck is on his way to MA to save "Coakley" (#60, you betcha!)

Sextus Propertius said...


The "psychotic jackass" was not a good example - you should have read the rest of his/her post (immediately following the subject line):

I am an Obama supporter and I HATE Clintonbashing!!
I hate Obama bashing.
I hate seeing tit for tat by people who should have better things to do.
This is unproductive and If I were king I'd be dishing out spankings left and right.
Just remember..The Candidate you bash today may be the one you are called on to defend tomorrow.
That is all..
I think I'll crack open a bottle of wine.

No CDS there, just someone backing the wrong candidate ;-).

Snowflake said...;_ylt=AmnEHQoaKdrCII67Lq7MMxz9wxIF;_ylu=X3oDMTN1NG10a3N2BGFzc2V0A3JlYWxjbGVhcnBvbGl0aWNzLzIwMTAwMTE0LzAzOWZpcnN0X2JsYWNrX3ByZXNpZGVudDAzOV9hc3NhaWxlZF9hc19yYWNpc3QEY3BvcwMyBHBvcwMzBHNlYwN5bl90b3Bfc3RvcnkEc2xrAzM5Zmlyc3RibGFjaw--

Last Lemming said...

Unfortunately two years in Clinton "lost" Democrats the House and later the Senate after a very long lock on those institutions. He had a very rocky first few years himself and only just got his sea legs about mid term. Of course he had to undergo trial by fire; I believe Obama has so far under gone trial by ice cream.

Anonymous said...

I second Last Lemming's point, except Democrats had only had the SENATE some 8 years (Reagan had a majority GOP Senate for his first 6 years).

Obama has a ways to go before any alleged damage he's done to the party reaches the level claimed of the harm Clinton had done. I argued against that claim at the time, because many of the reasons the Democrats lost were doing the right thing at the time, such as raising taxes, tightening gun controls, and the like. However, those detractors of Clinton at the time had significant evidence on their side, and some part of it was Clinton's inexperience and dithering and back-tracking (and the couple of broken key campaign promises).

But likely this poll is whacked. These same PPP guys polled the weekend before the special election in NY recently, and said the TeaParty candidate up there was 20 points ahead of where he ended up, and would win by a significant margin (but lost).

Here's a rejoinder from another contemporaneous poll's results:

New Poll Gives Dem Coakley Big Lead In MA-SEN Special Election
Eric Kleefeld | January 10, 2010, 9:55AM

Th new University of New Hampshire poll, commissioned by the Boston Globe, gives Democratic candidate Martha Coakley a big lead in the January 19 spacial election for Ted Kennedy's Senate seat.

The numbers: Coakley 50%, Brown 35%, and independent libertarian Joe Kennedy at 5%, with a ±4.2% margin of error. When undecideds were pushed, Coakley's lead became 53%-36%, with Kennedy's numbers staying the same. This poll contradicts yesterday's survey by Public Policy Polling (D), which gave Republican Scott Brown a one-point edge because of a lack of Democratic enthusiasm.

As the Globe notes: "Although the Senate race electorate is fairly firm in its choices - 61 percent say they have definitely decided whom they will support, and 15 percent are leaning toward a candidate - special elections can remain volatile until the last minute. Turnout is also highly unpredictable in an election that follows a holiday and could be affected by winter weather."

[end quote from a TPMDC page)


andrelee said...

That CDS/Obama ookie doke correlation is strong. I don't think the Dems. in Congress who backed Obama could care less about the Dem. party or they would have backed Clinton. "How come so?" says you, you and you. Which of those long tenured Dem. Senators who backed Obama are in danger of losing their very cushy, perk filled, access to corporate money for a vote seats? Kerry, Schumer, Frank, Pelosi, Kennedy (RIP)...? If they could give two halfs of a three fingered fist f234, they would, but they won't unless they can get a bunch of money for their pockets...ahem, I mean, campaigns.
They don't care and/because they don't have to.

Gregoryp said...

Last Lemming and Anon seem to blame Clinton for the Republicans gaining power in the mid-term elections. They seem to conveniently forget about the huge tax increase that the Dem congress engineered along with Bush, Sr. They forget about the huge Savings and Loan fiasco that our Congress doled out billions to back in the 80's. They seem to forget about the House Banking scandal. They forget about gay Democratic congressmen sleeping with Congressional pages, one of whom was only 17. Perfectly legal at the time though.

Then they forget about all the promises that Gingrich and the Republicans made with their bogus Contract with America. Things they never intended to follow through with such as term limits, campaign finance reform, smaller government, etc. Gingrich was anything if not brilliantly opportunistic and the Republicans capitalized on some loathesome Congressional behavior. Through it all Clinton remained popular and effective even though Americans hated our Congresscritters and rightfully so. Get real guys. Not everything is Bill Clinton's fault. Mostly, when something goes wrong in your life you are to blame. Same with our Congresspeople. Sometimes it really is their own darned fault.

In the case of Coakley, she is probably to blame for much of this but she isn't to blame for their inept Governor, our inept President and backlash over this inept health care reform.

Anonymous said...

A Suffolk poll came out tonight putting Brown at 50; Coakley at 46 [4.4 margin of error].

This is a horserace!

MrMike said...

What Gregoryp said.
House and Senate Dems never needed the help of a Democrat in the White House to FUBAR their re-election chances.
The back stabbing weasels manage to do it to themselves.

Anonymous said...

Well, the only reason a life-long democrat like myself is spending a 3-day weekend in MA campaigning for Republican Scott Brown, is because of OBAMA. So yeah, it be'eth him, and not Coakley. I actually really like her and am sad it has come to this. Bad timing. :(

Anonymous said...

XI - That Boston Globe poll was conducted a week before the PPP poll. Coakley's in big trouble.

Snowflake said...

God will forgive you for betraying all your principles and values and supporting a republican. Well..probably not actually. Sorry...

beeta said...

Am I wrong to assume you are a tea partier?

DancingOpossum said...

If you supported and voted for Obama, you supported and vote for a Republican. Are you forgiven?

Anonymous said...

Gregoryp, YOU seem to be hard of reading. I am entirely aware and do remember vividly all of the factors of those days that led the Democratic Party to losses of its majorities in both houses of Congress. (If you re-read what I said, I clearly state I opposed those critics who said that Clinton was destroying the party in those days, precisely because of those other factors.)

We could quibble about the list of alleged factors. That Bush 41 raised taxes with the Democratic Congress hurt HIM, not the Democrats. And Gingrich's Contract for America's influence has been greatly exaggerated (and its failure, equally so). Nobody had much heard of it, even among the GOP voters in the exit polls, and it did not register as any reason anybody voted for them. It had negligible effect on voting. But it actually succeeded on its own terms, which were solely that votes would be had in the House on all its measures within 100 days. Those votes happened within that time frame, although many of the measures failed to pass those House votes. (That was the bait and switch, based on Frank Luntz's polling frauds, which got him sanctioned by the polling professional body.)

But of course, you are right the Democrats themselves disgraced and discredited the party through their various corrupt acts and their turf-protection power struggles over health care reform (Moynihan)which together with the Clintons' errors doomed that signature policy promise to failure.

And so it is today as well. It hurt Obama that Tom Daschle and Bill Richardson had so much baggage that they had to withdraw from their nominations. Charlie Rangel's and Blogoyavic's scandals besmirched the party label. Nancy Pelosi's taking impeachment off the table in late '06 truly dispirited party stalwarts. The MA and NY Democratic governors have been a drag on the party.

AND Coakley is not so much a bad candidate as no candidate. No rallies? Doesn't much mention her party affiliation?

She relied instead on the debate to do her campaigning, and in the only poll done wholly after the debate, she is now up 48-41.


lori said...

Clinton lost congress because the media was firmly in the hands of conservative ascendance. it was able to spin the congressional scandals as evidence of overall Democratic corruption. Four Dem congressman went to prison, IIRC, in fairly short order. This is not long after Jim Wright was forced to step down over insignificant violations of ethics rules.

So there was a cultural movement inplace and growing that regarded Dems as corrupt and incompetent. To this day, they have no way to fight against that meme, nor is the media any less hostile. To pretend that Clinton's problems were rooted in Clinton's governance, and not in the hositility of the media is just crazy. Had we had the restrained media of the 60s and 70s, the 90s would have had a totally different cultural dialogue.

S Brennan said...

Isn't a little early for the Obama fanatics to be spinning this?

If Croakly is the problem and Obama is popular why doesn't Obama campaign for her, huh? You know why, it would depress her numbers further and make this spin impossible to even attempt.

Josh Marshal's empire was built on obsequiousness to the Corporatist dictates. His vocal support of the Iraq war, his early and frequent covert attacks on Obama's opponents mark him and minions as political hacks. Sadly, I watched the whole thing unfold in real time, the guy has become a major embarrassment to me personally.

Anonymous said...

I predict that Coakley will lose to Brown, and this is just the beginning. 2010 will be a year of Dem losses. And 2012 will see Jeb installed in the WH. AND this was always the plan.

None of this is Clinton's fault. It's the fault of those myopic CDS voters who put a shallow, self-absorbed opportunist in the WH when we needed a leader with experience, passion and ability.

~ gxm17

Anonymous said...

Another point I'd like to add. I think it's very telling that Obama supporters are suddenly turning PUMA on a female Democratic candidate. Maybe it's just bad timing but methinks the misogyny is strong with these ones.

~ gxm17

Anonymous said...

Byron York of all people, certainly no Obama acolyte, reports that Obama has a 60% approval rating in Massachusetts.

Apparently, Obama is not among the problems for Coakley, but her running away from/refusing to much associate herself with him MIGHT be the problem, just as Gore's 'Clinton' problem was pretty much that same thing.