Wednesday, September 30, 2009
One thing about George Bush, especially in his first term, he enforced Republican discipline. He was able to get so called fiscal conservatives to spend vast sums on anything he wanted. Only in the last few months of his term, when it was clear he was leading the party to defeat, did some in his party break with him. The Democratic Party has no such discipline. In some ways, this is positive. The party has a wider set of constituencies, and genuine debate is theoretically healthy. But from a tactical standpoint, the party is clearly letting its vast governing majority go to waste. And, as it dithers on health care reform, it diminishes the clout of the president. Obama has his hands full, to be sure. Even with a unified party, what to do is not so clear in almost all the major policy debates on the table. But with a fractured Democratic Party, and a Republican Party that has decided that they will give him no support on anything, he is becoming less and less influential. I think the Democrats have to take a look at their tactical position. If they cannot make policy as the governing party, there is no reason to care if they stay in power.
Posted by ez at 11:36 AM