August 7, 2007
Twisted Promises (Bob Franken)
@ 11:25 am
It’s always interesting to observe the worlds of politics and government. Like fantasy and reality, they are intertwined. The boundless promises of a campaign for change in government get tangled in the politics of it.
“It’s time for a change,” said the Democrats. And the voters bought it. Congress changed hands as poll after poll showed a majority looking for a way out of Iraq and the Republican way of doing national security.
So what happens? Again, the pack that now controls both the House and Senate left is looking like it’s all bark and no bite. The Democrats left town whimpering with their tails between their legs.
Once again, a weakened Republican president had his way with them, gaining new surveillance powers from the very people who had been braying about this administration’s abuse of such powers.
Why? In part because Democrats were worried they would face political peril if they appeared to be weakening the nation’s intelligence capabilities.
These are the same Democrats who say they’re ready for a knock-down-drag-out fight in September over withdrawing troops from Iraq. One would think they would have the upper hand since the war is so unpopular. But chances are they’re wringing their hands, worried about the danger of being cast as soft on terrorism.
They will be. Republicans will see to that. The question is, will they be willing to stand up for whatever they believe? Or were they elected under false pretenses?
Right now, there’s a consensus that the 2008 election is the Democrats’ to lose. But they can fritter their advantage away if voters come to believe it’s only a choice between Tweedle-Dee-Dee and Tweedle-Dee-Dum. So far it looks that way.
Wouldn’t be nice if we could truly decide between candidates with different visions of government who would deliver on their promises once they collided with reality? Maybe that’s fantasy, too.