Dems are no profiles in courage

They’re more like rats jumping off a sinking ship. Scott Brown’s upset win in Massachusetts has them leaping into retirement.

The latest Democrat to announce retirement, rather than face the possibility of losing his re-election bid, is Congressman Marion Berry of Arkansas. Even more surprising than the announcement was the parting shot he took at Obama, portraying the prez as a politician really high on himself.

According to the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette:

Berry recounted meetings with White House officials, reminiscent of some during the Clinton days, where he and others urged them not to force Blue Dogs “off into that swamp” of supporting bills that would be unpopular with voters back home.

“I’ve been doing that with this White House, and they just don’t seem to give it any credibility at all,” Berry said. “They just kept telling us how good it was going to be. The president himself, when that was brought up in one group, said, ‘Well, the big difference here and in ’94 was you’ve got me.’ We’re going to see how much difference that makes now.” [snip]

“I began to preach last January that we had already seen this movie and we didn’t want to see it again because we know how it comes out,” said Arkansas’ 1st District congressman, who worked in the Clinton administration before being elected to the House in 1996… “I just began to have flashbacks to 1993 and ’94. No one that was here in ’94, or at the day after the election felt like. It certainly wasn’t a good feeling.”

The Democrats’ moment as an organized and powerful group didn’t last long. Even though they maintain a majority in Congress and still control the White House, they’re back to being a circular firing squad.

160 comments Add your comment

Ragnar Danneskjöld

January 26th, 2010
8:19 am

The problem with our democrat friends is not lack of courage nor even lack of intelligence, but rather the strange requirement from their superiors that they embrace policies that are rejected – over and over – by the voters. If only the democrats would embrace the conservative policies that voters signal as their desire; of course, even the republicans are not smart enough to do that, as proven by their big spending tendencies. Stupid republicans are merely democrat-lite.

Bob

January 26th, 2010
8:39 am

With leaders like Pelosi and Reid, what would you expect.

So What, Who Cares?

January 26th, 2010
8:44 am

Good, let them all resign, both Dummycrat and Repuke. The incumbents ARE the problem, regardless of party. All incumbents have a vested interest in maintaining the status quo, and in justifying programs they themselves voted into law in the past. Limit all terms in Washington to one and one only, and just maybe America can survive as a Democracy. Always vote against any and all incumbents.

So What, Who Cares?

January 26th, 2010
8:46 am

Bob, I don’t see that the Republican leaders did anything to stop Bush’s war of choice against Iraq, nor did they do anything to punish the Neocon liars who got us into that war.

neo-Carlinist

January 26th, 2010
8:51 am

CT, I realized that due to the nature of your blog, you must sometimes discredit where discredit is due. but asking ANY politician to demonstrate “courage” (in the political arena) is like asking Brett Favre to pull the ball down and run out of bounds (with the game on the line). it’s just not in their nature. “courage” is not a job requirement. in fact, “ethical flexibility” or outright naked greed and self-interest are what drvies politicians. you’d have as much luck asking Wall Street executives to demonstrate “courage”. these people cannot even spell the word, let alone employ it in their work. “courage” would be for ALL members of Congress to admit failure and resign, and I don’t know if such an act could be called courageous, as they all still have that sweet pension. they might as well “follow the yellow brick road” and ask the wizard when they get to Oz.

quod erat demonstrandum

January 26th, 2010
8:54 am

Question, is it democrats or the progressives leaving.

Why would a left of center Congressman want to leave? Unless there is pressure from the “leaders” to vote a certain way, regardless of what their constituents want.

Why would a progressive resign? Maybe they are realizing that no one likes them or their policies.

So What, Who Cares?

January 26th, 2010
8:57 am

Ellie Light: Dozens more sightings of Obama’s most prolific letter-writing fan. And people said Cindy Lou was lazy!

So What, Who Cares?

January 26th, 2010
9:01 am

More on Ellie Light: Was yesterday’s Ellie on this blog the one and same Ellie Light?

Since then, others have followed the trail of the Ellie Light letter. The blog Patterico’s Pontifications seems to have the most comprehensive list so far. To the dozen or so originall listed, the blog adds several dozen more, including the Stamford (Conn.) Advocate and the Gainesville (Ga.) Times. The letter has even appeared overseas, including in the Bangkok Post. And now there’s a Facebook fan page for her.
In most letters, Light claims a nearby hometown. But in letters published in two papers that have a broader audience — the Washington Times and USA Today — her address is listed as Long Beach, Calif. That’s the same city used in a letter to the Daily Breeze in California.
(Monday update: One of the papers that appeared to have published the letter, the Green Bay (Wis.) Press-Gazette, posted a statement on its site. It said that the letter was actually printed in sister papers, but appear under the Press-Gazette logo online as well because of the structure of their operation. And it said, speaking for the other papers, “The editors of the [Gannett Wisconsin Media}] papers exercised due diligence to one degree or another, in most cases calling the phone number provided by the writer to confirm she was the author. However, she responded with false information and a series of different hometowns.”)

Jack

January 26th, 2010
9:04 am

What we have here is Tucker’s attempt to appear moderate: trying to cover her move from the idiocy of liberals to the sanity of reality.

kayaker 71

January 26th, 2010
9:05 am

The worm turns. Some of the most telling pronouncments about Republicans have come from Bookman and his gaggle of lefties…. “the next RNC would meet in a phone booth”, “the right is dead, long live the right”, ” conservative thought in this country is finally behind us”, “the middle of the road is for those who don’t have the courage to speak out”…… and on and on. The majority of white America is still a little to the right of the middle. Latinos and AAs tend to blindly vote in mass for Democrats with little regard for political philosophy or political platform, although the Democrats have not been too kind to their constituency. Conservative thought is far from dead in this Republic and the voice of reason lives on.

So What, Who Cares?

January 26th, 2010
9:19 am

Jack, I don’t think liberals are idiots, they are trying to solve a real problem. The real problem is average household income has not budged in the last ten years, and for the vast majority, the bottom 60% in the income distribution (distribution as in the statistical sense, not the handing out sense) it has been 20 years of stagnation. Why? Globalization has been cited as the main cause, but I would also add declining standards of education in America. When I earned my undergraduate degree in engineering, in the mid 70’s, we were required to complete 145 hours of courses. That has now been reduced to ~130 hours. In the mid 70’s, a bachelor’s degree in engineering from most any major American university was the equivalent in content to a Master’s degree from almost all foreign engineering schools, with the exception of the number one or two such school in major European countries. That is no longer true, with both China and India producing 10 to 100 times as many engineers each year as America, and almost all of high quality. At any rate, we cannot afford the debt we took on over the last 10-20 years as we tried to maintain a living standard not supported by our incomes. We are in a deep hole now, finding a way out for ALL Americans is what the Democrats need to focus on, not more government spending to stimulate the economy, or focused tax breaks for a few republicans. The decline in education standards just makes that process much harder, and longer.

Shawny

January 26th, 2010
9:33 am

Well, at least this cat had the courage to tell it like it is. Nice how Obama says how he was so much better than Clinton. I am not convinced. Obama is so much more flash and so less substance.

samuel

January 26th, 2010
9:34 am

The war in Iraq has cost thousands of American soldiers and tens of thousands of Iraqis their lives, not to mention anywhere from $750 billion to $1.5 trillion (in 7 years). The healthcare bill will cost $900 billion to $1 trillion (in 10 years), and preserve the health and, perhaps, save the lives of tens of millions of Americans. The money that could have been saved had we not started a war under false pretenses could be spent on health care. George W. Bush and the Republicans in Congress had 8 years to address this issue while running up spending, the budget deficit and the national debt, but instead passed the prescription drug plan for seniors, while ignoring the uninsured. The ignorance of seniors about supposed reductions in Medicare benefits is perhaps best personified by the man in South Carolina who told Representative Bob Inglis “take your govrernment hands off my Medicare”. It’s a matter of priorities and Republicans have the wrong ones.

samuel

January 26th, 2010
9:39 am

So What, Who Cares……… The debt and income stagnation has actually been a problem for close to 30 years, starting with the “trickle down” policies of Ronald Reagan.

Kevin

January 26th, 2010
9:39 am

Cynthia, you’re a smart person. Misguided, perhaps. But definitely smart.

So why do you to speak (write) so condescengingly toward voters?

The Dems don’t have courage? What do you mean by courage? Is it, “The ability to make decisions that the majority do not support.” I’m sure you’ve heard people on the right slam libs as being “elite.” Your use of “courage” is a prime example of this. Democrats too often act like they know what’s better for us than anyone. Courage, as you define it, involves ramming policy — unwanted by the majority– down our throats.

You must understand this, even if you don’t agree with it. But I’m probably wasting my breath/key strokes . . .

Turd Ferguson

January 26th, 2010
9:40 am

“They’re more like rats jumping off a sinking ship” & “circular firing squad”

Lettuce see if Pelosi and Reid can save themselves and/or their party members.

Blue

January 26th, 2010
9:45 am

Samuel; nice job of reciting the play book of the left; “war under false pretenses”, “save the lives of tens of millions”, “8 years to address the issues”, “ignoring the uninsured”. Have any original thoughts?

Ridgerunner

January 26th, 2010
9:48 am

Ms. Tucker:

The title of your thread above is exactly why the “combat arms” portion of the military (except for times of draft) is almost entirely made up of conservatives. You’re catching on.

rdh

January 26th, 2010
9:50 am

samuel, Republicans were only in charge of Congress for SIX years, and never had a 60 vote majority in the Senate. The war, the budgets, etc. could have been stonewalled the same way they did for judicial nominees. “Could have” is over. its DONE. George Bush never once laid 911 at the feet of Bill Clinton… where it rightly belonged. George Bush never continued to blame the recession that he inherited on Bill Clinton. He dealt with it and moved on. The “Blame Bush” game is up. It was up 6 months ago, but the Democrats are too stupid to realize how petty and ineffectual the blame game has become.

Call it like it is.

January 26th, 2010
9:53 am

Well, let me just tell you what I think on this matter……hold on…..dadgum it……..wait…..wait….Sorry I will have to get back to you, my teleprompter is on the fritz.

rdh

January 26th, 2010
9:54 am

p.s. Who wants to bet that Obama blames the Bush Administration AT LEAST three times in his state of the union address tomorrow night?

Huckabee The Next POTUS-2013

January 26th, 2010
10:01 am

Wow! Still no talk about the Liar In Chief allowing a 25M. no-bid contract to be awarded to one of his biggest campaign supporters. After all, barry stated in the election campaign he would see to it that this type of behavior would stop once he was christened king. Just another lie that the bedwetters accept because they percieve him as barry the great, when in fact he is but a little boy sitting at a big mans desk keeping it warm for Jan. 20, 2013, when a true leader can assume the role.

RGB

January 26th, 2010
10:04 am

“What we have here is Tucker’s attempt to appear moderate: trying to cover her move from the idiocy of liberals to the sanity of reality.”

Right you are Jack!

Now we can move on to the next column where Republicans:

1. are deemed equivalent to Hitler.
2. ruined the economy by having (”only”) a $500B deficit.
3. are responsible for dirty water/air/underwear.
4. should be ashamed of themselves because George Bush… [fill in the blank].

Yawn.

Rickster

January 26th, 2010
10:06 am

Supposed you see someone drowning. You try to rescue them.

The person grabs you and repeatedly pushes you under as they flail to stay afloat. Despite your best efforts, you can’t get the person to listen to you. You have to let them go and same yourself.

That’s what many Dems are doing. Getting out while the getting is good.

Russ

January 26th, 2010
10:07 am

Makes Obama sound more like a true believer than a politition. But, what’s the point of being in office if you don’t try to get some thing done you believe in.
It will be interesting to see how many seats are lost this November and who has the majority, and how Obama reacts after the election in the worse case.
I’ve always said I perfer that one party controls the White House and the other party controls the Congress. I feel a lot safer that way. Tends to keep legislation near the center.

Comrade Obama

January 26th, 2010
10:11 am

It isn’t that they are cowards, it is because they hold positions that the American people do not favor and will LOSE. Cynthia, this is a center-right nation. It always has been. Get over it. It is the reason your liberal paper has seen its subscribers jump like “rats off a ship” as soon as other alternatives began to appear.

bank walker

January 26th, 2010
10:14 am

Jack, thank you sir, you hit the nail on the head!

ctucker

January 26th, 2010
10:15 am

Kevin, Exit polls after the Mass. Senate race showed that 68 percent — let me repeat that — 68 percent of the voters in that race support the universal health care plan in Mass. That plan was the model for the plans adopted by the House and the senate. Therefore, I believe that US voters would overwhelmingly support the Dems’ health care plan once it’s in effect. It’s unpopular now because Reps have convinced voters that its a “government takeover.” That’s simply nonsense.

Turd Ferguson

January 26th, 2010
10:15 am

rdh

January 26th, 2010
9:54 am

I wouldnt bet against it.

ATLshirt.com

January 26th, 2010
10:16 am

So What, Who Cares?

January 26th, 2010
8:46 am
Bob, I don’t see that the Republican leaders did anything to stop Bush’s war of choice against Iraq, nor did they do anything to punish the Neocon liars who got us into that war.

I do remember Bush getting plenty of Dummycrat support as well.. dont put all the blame on the Repukes, they both work hand in hand… they just like the fact that we are too stupid to catch on to thier games… this is why I am not supporting either party!

M Percy

January 26th, 2010
10:21 am

Re: Who Cares So What 8:46 am

The Iraq war was started with strong Democratic support, according to Wikipedia: “Introduced in Congress on October 2, 2002 in conjunction with the Administration’s proposals, H.J.Res. 114 passed the House of Representatives on Thursday afternoon at 3:05 p.m. EDT on October 10, 2002 by a vote of 296-133, and passed the Senate after midnight early Friday morning at 12:50 a.m. EDT on October 11, 2002 by a vote of 77-23. It was signed into law as Pub.L. 107-243 by President Bush on October 16, 2002.” Eighty-two Democrats (40%) supported the action in the House and 29 Democrats (50%) in the Senate also supported the action. In fact, the Democrats+Jeffords(I-VT) as a bloc had a 51-49 majority in the Senate, yet they still passed the bill. Six Republicans in the House and 1 in the Senate voted against it.

KimmerFan

January 26th, 2010
10:21 am

Obama, Pelosi, Reid, and Tucker are utterly clueless. They are so far removed from the average American voter that they might as well be from another planet. To them, people who like owning guns, going to church (or just believing in God), paying lower taxes, etc. are the oddballs. But the truth is that they are in the vast majority. Obama and his far-left supporters are the ones who are out of touch. As much as liberals hate to admit it, most Americans don’t want government running their lives. As much as liberals hate to admit it, most people are perfectly capably of taking care of themselves, making their own decisions, and determining their own lifestyle. Liberals are unable to shake the belief that they were put here on this earth to tell other people what to do. And that in a nutshell is the reason why Obama and his fellow liberals are now in such trouble with the American public. Imagine how much worse shape they would be in if the media wasn’t so thoroughly dominated by Obama supporters like Cynthia Tucker.

ATLdawg, ya dig?

January 26th, 2010
10:22 am

Why was that parting shot surprising? Obama’s arrogance is both notorious and unsubstantiated. Having him in office has done little for Democrats back home. Only 30% of voters self-identify as liberals. That means 7 out of 10 voters disagree with Obama’s statist agenda. It doesn’t matter how good he is at giving speeches- “you’ve got me now” isn’t going to convince joe q. middle class back home to keep you in office. Marion Berry’s comment was accurate, not a “shot.”

Aquagirl

January 26th, 2010
10:23 am

Wow, criticizing Ms. Tucker for a yet-as-unwritten theoretical column. Drop us a postcard from the Land Of Bitter, Angry, Stereotyping Weenies, RGB.

Madison

January 26th, 2010
10:26 am

ctucker Do some better checking sweetie. There where NO exit polls in Massachusetts!

b6542

January 26th, 2010
10:26 am

Barry’s SOU speech will be filled with “I inherited __________” fill in one crisis after the other. The dude needs to step up and take responsibility/accountability. Sort of what a US Navy commanding officer does from DAY ONE.

Madison

January 26th, 2010
10:29 am

that’s “were” not “where” btw.

Rafe Hollister

January 26th, 2010
10:30 am

Sin-thee, I thought reading the blog that maybe you were seeing the light about the delusional group in the White House, the ones who say that the Mass voters voted in Brown because they supported the Obama policies. It is really scarry to know that delusions rather than truth fuel the actions of our leaders.

I see your rational thought didn’t last long,, as your post above shows that you are drinking the same Koolaid. Exit polls, I was told throughout election night that there were no exit polls in Mass, now Obama has all the data from the exit polls and no one else has seen it. Let me get this straight, Brown campaigns as the 41st vote against Obamacare, but 60 percent of the voters are for Obamacare. Delusions are grand, what are they smoking up there in the WH, must be some good stuff.

resno2

January 26th, 2010
10:30 am

Mr. Berry’s comment was right on target, and it’s nice to actually hear that some of his own are falling out of line.

Mr. obama, you hold the office of the President of the United States, which is a temporary privilege that you have been granted… “shut up and lead”, then you might actually accomplish something.

zeke

January 26th, 2010
10:30 am

Thank GOD! Good riddance! Now when we get rid of that socialist in the White House in 2012, all liberals in 2010 and 2012, the country will be saved!

Ric

January 26th, 2010
10:30 am

Cindy, you stated

“It’s unpopular now because Reps have convinced voters that its a “government takeover.” That’s simply nonsense.”

Give us all a break. We have a brain. We live in the real world and can see the forest for the trees. Government run social programs are bad for the majority. What about this do you not understand or comprehend?

DAVID:AJC Truth detector

January 26th, 2010
10:32 am

Cynthia…………Maybe they know something U don’t…AMERICA HAS REJECTED SOCIALISM………Wake Cynthia…..Wake up

Atl Resident

January 26th, 2010
10:32 am

So Democrats not right, republicans not right, and no other party really matters. So bottom line is why do we (Americans) get caught up in all this B.S.? Fact of matter, this country got issues and needs to pull together no matter who you are and try to resolve them. Losing that seat in massachusetts will matter some but not even a whole lot. It’s only cause Kennedy held it for so long. Point is issues with healthcare, etc. needs to get resolve regardless. So let’s move on………..

JMoore

January 26th, 2010
10:32 am

The question I want to ask is how a Southern newspaper justify the hiring of Marxists like Tucker and Bookman? Surely they would be happier in China or on Putin’s staff.

ck hall

January 26th, 2010
10:36 am

How true , and all brought on by themselves..Let’s all hope it continues.

Ric

January 26th, 2010
10:36 am

To all Iraq bashers, this is old news. Congress approve it. Now let’s stop whining and win it.

cmac

January 26th, 2010
10:37 am

Their called democRATS for a reason! maybe if they had some leadership at the top of the party, they woul not be jumping!
Any thoughts on the proposed spending freeze that obozo was strongly against during the campaign? Like I said, no leadership at the top!

M Percy

January 26th, 2010
10:38 am

Samuel

On blog after blog, I read about “8 years of Bush” or “8 years of Republican control”. As if Pres. Bush and the Republican party in Congress had total control over the country. These statements often reflect either ignorance or complete denial of the facts.

First, we know that Pres. Bush did not have Congressional support in the final two years of his 2nd term, as the 110th Congress was controlled by Democrats (233-202 in the House, and 49-49-2 in the Senate with Leiberman and Sanders as “independents” who mostly joined Democrats when they voted). Any bill which passed the 110th Congress had to have Democratic support, and especially had to have the support of Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Indeed, they passed two bills that Pres. Bush vetoed and who’s vetoes were subsequently overridden. (Water Resources Development Act of 2007 and Food and Energy Security Act of 2007 (the 2007 Farm Bill)).

But even when Republicans held majorities in Congress under Bush, as they did in the 107th-109th Congresses, the majorities were slim, and especially slim in the Senate (often an even split). Thus whenever a bill was approved in the Senate, it had to be done with support of something close to 20% of the Democrats in the Senate (assuming 100% Republican support, which was not at all guaranteed). In light of this, anything that passed the Congress did so with something of a bipartisan effort, since Democrats could block the Senate on any issue simply by withholding cloture votes as a bloc (or something remotely like a bloc).

Instead we saw one of the most “Bushy” bills, the PATRIOT Act, passed 99-1 in the Senate and 357-66 in the House. On the other hand, another big Bush bill, the Medicare Modernization Act, passed 220-215 with 16 Democrats voting Yea in the House (and 25 Republicans voting Nay) and 54-44 in the Senate, with 11 Democrats supporting it and 9 Republicans opposed (i.e., nearly ¼ of the Democrats in the Senate voted for the bill). In perhaps the most telling vote, the Iraq war was started with strong Democratic support, according to Wikipedia: “Introduced in Congress on October 2, 2002 in conjunction with the Administration’s proposals, H.J.Res. 114 passed the House of Representatives on Thursday afternoon at 3:05 p.m. EDT on October 10, 2002 by a vote of 296-133, and passed the Senate after midnight early Friday morning at 12:50 a.m. EDT on October 11, 2002 by a vote of 77-23. It was signed into law as Pub.L. 107-243 by President Bush on October 16, 2002.” Eighty-two Democrats (40%) supported the action in the House and 29 Democrats (50%) in the Senate also supported the action. In fact, the Democrats+Jeffords(I-VT) as a bloc had a 51-49 majority in the Senate, yet they still passed the bill. Even the Bush tax cuts of 2003 could have been held up, but 2 Yeas from Democrats in the Senate counterbalanced 3 Nays by Republicans, leaving the final vote in Dick Cheney’s hands breaking the 50-50 tie.

It has been widely reported than Democrats in Congress (esp. Barney Frank) blocked attempts by the Bush administration to reform and regulate the mortgage industry in the part of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Even though in the minority party, they could block items in committees and by withholding cloture, because the Senate was so evenly split.

In the end, nearly everything in the Bush years, other than executive orders and other policy matters (e.g. rules set by Cabinet Secs.) was done with some measure of Democratic support. In particular, since only Congress controls the purse strings, all the money spent under Bush was spent with Democratic votes in support. Had Democrats held their party line, the “Bush years” would have come out differently.

No more career politicians

January 26th, 2010
10:43 am

That is it and all there is about it, don’t let people turn politics into their career because that’s when job security and ethics get thrown into the mix and it never turns out well.

NO MORE CAREER POLITICIANS

Before you run have experience in the private sector and after your term get back into the private sector because you should have made it better during your term.

Analyst

January 26th, 2010
10:44 am

C.T., come on…Comparing Democrats to rats?