Sunday, May 06, 2007

Meet the New Dem Power Brokers

The NYT looks at the anti-war coalition which has forced the Congressional Democratic leadership into ever more dramatic anti-war stances. It is they who pushed for the date-certain for withdrawal, and are now pushing against a full-funding measure with benchmarks:

Every morning, representatives from a cluster of antiwar groups gather for a conference call with Democratic leadership staff members in the House and the Senate.

Shortly after, in a cramped meeting room here, they convene for a call with organizers across the country. They hash out plans for rallies. They sketch out talking points for “rapid response” news conferences. They discuss polls they have conducted in several dozen crucial Congressional districts and states across the country.

Over the last four months, the Iraq deliberations in Congress have lurched from a purely symbolic resolution rebuking the president’s strategy to timetables for the withdrawal of American troops. Behind the scenes, an elaborate political operation, organized by a coalition of antiwar groups and fine-tuned to wrestle members of Congress into place one by one, has helped nudge the debate forward.

On Iraq at least, it seems that Ms. Pelosi and Mr. Reid have largely subsumed their leadership to this council. From their stance after election day - where they wanted at all costs to do nothing to take responsibility for what happened in Iraq - they have been pushed to ever more novel ways to end the war. And if they could do it without cutting off funds for the troops, it would have happened long ago.

It's this coalition that's responsible for the lack of progress on energy and a host of other issues that the Democrats wanted to address.


Anonymous said...

Do you mean that pols are beholden to the political organizations that helped get them elected? Shocking!!!!
If you were not aware of this political reality, here are some more old news headlines that you might want to consider:

Religious zealot nailed to cross, more at 11.

Miracles of Birth reveled, Stork plays very minor role.

Republican candidates hold breath in attempt to disproved theory of evolution, dies.

I still maintain that the bill is a rare piece of political genius from a party that never seem to miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity. Now everyone has a new vote on record, making the 2001 votes all but obsolete at a time when the president and the war have 30% approval ratings. The dems have no chance of actually affecting war policy so there is no chance of them being blamed. The only people who think that dems would put troops in harms way are crazies who would never vote dem, likewise, it is not like the liberal groups will vote republican. There continues to be no downside for the dems on this position, and all it will do is make Bush seem belligerent and obtuse (which is not too difficult).

The Editor at IP said...

You'll be pleased then, with the way things are going. Looks like there will be 5 or 6 more votes on ending the war. It appears that the next step will be to actually cut off funding.

By establishing a constant incessant drumbeat for withdrawal, they'll likely get 'credit' for it when it happens. Then they can argue about who's responsible for whatever follows.

Of course, all this comes at the cost of not doing anything else.

When all along their alternative would have been to say 'see - we told you it was a terrible idea to go into Iraq.'

Yeah. Great strategy.

Anonymous said...

oops, looks like i was right.