Dem Congressional group attempts to rerun 2006 Posted by: McQ
on Friday, March 28, 2008
We know how that turned out as it pertains to Iraq in that election. And that was when Iraq was actually a hot topic.
More than three dozen Democratic congressional candidates banded together yesterday to promise that, if elected, they will push for legislation calling for an immediate drawdown of troops in Iraq that would leave only a security force in place to guard the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad.
It's 38 House and 4 senate candidates.
Two points. Point one, as covered in the article:
Rejecting their party leaders' assertions that economic troubles have become the top issue on voters' minds, leaders of the coalition of 38 House and four Senate candidates pledged to make immediate withdrawal from Iraq the centerpiece of their campaigns.
"The people inside the Beltway don't seem to get how big an issue this is," said Darcy Burner, a repeat candidate who narrowly lost to Rep. Dave Reichert (R-Wash.) in 2006.
Well you can see why Ms. Burner came in second in 2006 - and in Washington no less. It's because she doesn't understand that issues which directly effect voters are much more important to them than those which only indirectly effect them. And as Iraq has faded from the headlines, it has also faded from the top of the voter's priority lists. As someone said, Americans may not like war but they'll tolerate it if we're winning. Lately (and we'll see what the latest flare up brings), the perception among most is we're finally winning.
But there is no question, at this point, that the economy is definitely on the radar screen of almost all voters.
The second point consists of three words: United States Senate.
If Dems are unable to get an outright majority of 60, 200 Dem House candidates can make such promises and the minority in the Senate will frustrate them.
But I'd have to agree with the Dem party leaders - not the brightest strategy, at this time, for basing one's Congressional candidacy upon. Especially for House candidates, pocketbook issues are always the most powerful issues they can run on.
Something you may have not connected this whole group is associated with the Kos slate of candidates for office that the four left side blogs put together of ’progressive’ candidates to run against traditional dem candidates or open seats.
These are the ’blue majority’ candidate slate and none would be considered even mainstream dem.
This is Blue Majority candidate Darcy Burner’s handywork, now in the Washington Post.
More than 40 Democratic House and Senate candidates have endorsed a document stating that "there is no military solution in Iraq" and calling for an end to the war and the removal of all U.S. troops from the country, though not according to any specific timeline.
The strategy document, titled "A Responsible Plan to End the War in Iraq," [PDF] calls for using "diplomatic, political and economic means" to hasten an end to the conflict. As of this writing, it has been endorsed by four Democratic Senate candidates and 38 House hopefuls, a handful of whom touted the plan on a conference call with reporters today [...]
The plan was crafted without the input or endorsement of the House and Senate Democratic leadership. Burner said "this was not driven inside the Beltway" and complained that "people inside the Beltway don’t seem to get how big an issue this is for voters" in the rest of the country.
Guys, this is what we’re fighting for. None of the top party recruits have signed on to this plan. Of course not, those candidates are urged to be cautious and not be bold. So it’s up to us to show that being tough, principled, and outspoken about strong progressive ideals is worth their while.
So far, the plan has been endorsed by Blue Majority candidates Darcy Burner (it’s her plan, after all — what a leader!), Donna Edwards, Eric Massa, Leslie Byrne, and Joe Garcia. I’m sure more will follow.
And aside from those candidates, a great many more Democrats in races all around the country have signed on.
Reward good behavior. Otherwise, the lobbyists and cautious guardians of the status quo win.
We’re at 5,984 supporters. The goal is 6,500 by the end of the month (next Monday).
The war remains exceedingly unpopular; people aren’t paying as much attention because the headlines have (until this week) not been as dramatic, but there is a growing frustration. People hope the surge works, but that doesn’t equate to support. Still, the Democrat leaders are playing it smart on Iraq — not embracing the surge, but not allowing it to be high on the radar screen. That way, if things go well in Iraq, they won’t be in the unenviable position of basing a strategy on hopes for military failure and will have economic issues to focus upon. However if the latest violence leads to a long, hot, violent summer in Iraq, then they still can go back to that issue closer to the election — after all, despite all the press, most people aren’t really focused yet. If things go south in Iraq, the Democrats will have a landslide.