Independent’s Eye by Joe Gandelman
By virtually all accounts, the Democratic Party will be battered by a massive Election Day tsunami that will hand control of the House and possibly the Senate to Republicans.
The scene: Election Day. The Character: A Democratic Party progressive pondering whether to vote.
To vote, or not to vote–that is the question:
Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of an outrageous Republican victory
Where we could lose the House and Senate
Or to take arms against a sea of political troubles
And by opposing vote for our party. But how CAN we vote
When there was no public option?
In a time when various calculations put unemployment at close to 10 percent, Gallup puts the Republican advantage among the independents over Democrats at 10 percent. If Democrats turned out to defend their party’s candidates, some of the perceived political “firewalls” might partially limit the predicted GOP landslide. All signs point to that not happening due to intense vote anger ““ even among groups that supported Obama — and an “enthusiasm gap” between both parties.
To vote, to proactively support
No more–and by not voting to say we end
The heartache of not getting the public option
And Barack Obama being like George Bush
And the thousand natural political shocks
Because he has proven to be a centrist, corporatist and
Tried to appeal to those moderate Republicans.
When Barack Obama and Vice President Biden criticized progressive Democrats and the “professional left” for implying the Obama administration wasn’t much different than
George W. Bush’s, it sparked an outcry from the Democratic left which blasted Obama for not appreciating them. To motive their base, Obama and Biden now suggest with no proof that the Chamber of Commerce is funding Republicans with foreign money.
To stay home, not care to protest against the party and teach them a lesson
By not voting.
To protest— perchance to dream of a Public Option.
Ay, there’s the rub,
For in that political sleep what dreams may come
Or what nightmares lurk after John Boehner’s victory speech.
A Washington Post poll indicates 43% of Democrats are “very interested” in this year’s election in contrast to 57% of Republicans and 74% of Tea Partiers. 22% of Democrats are more interested compared to two years ago, versus 40% of Republicans and 41% of Tea Partiers. Meanwhile, 22% of Democrats will try to get others to vote their way versus 30% of Republicans and 39% of Tea Party movement members.
Maybe this election will give our party pause.
There will be respect so the White House and party elite
Give us what we want. Yet who would bear the whips and scorns of time,
How we lost control of the bureaucracy and judiciary in the past.
The Republican oppressor’s wrong, Democrats’ broken promises,
The don’t ask don’t tell law’s repeal and an agenda unfulfilled.
Democrats started losing control of the judiciary, bureaucracy and national political narrative to Republicans when many decided to teach their party a lesson and allow Richard Nixon to win. In 2000 many Democrats again taught their party a lesson by voting for Ralph Nader or not voting. They later realized there was a difference between the two parties and learned that getting power back is tougher than walking away from it.
Democrats go into denial when they lose hold on the levers of power after staying home. So after November look for losses to be largely blamed on Fox News and GOP political attack group money. But some of it will be due to a bungled job on the economy ““ and some of the blame will be seen in the mirror.
Thus conscience does make cowards of us all..
Copyright 2010 Joe Gandelman
Joe Gandelman is a veteran journalist who wrote for newspapers overseas and in the United States. He has appeared on cable news show political panels and is Editor-in-Chief of The Moderate Voice, an Internet hub for independents, centrists and moderates. CNN’s John Avlon named him as one of the top 25 Centrists Columnists and Commentators. He can be reached firstname.lastname@example.org and can be booked to speak at your event at www.mavenproductions.com.
Follow Joe Gandelman on Twitter @joegandelman