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Friday, November 09, 2007

Democrats Incapable of Leading

An excellent, point by point piece in the Wall Street Journal's, Opinion Journal today, by none other than the man that Democrats love to hate, Karl Rove, and his words are the reason.

Following up on Joseph Lieberman's harsh words for the Democratic politicians that would rather play politics than to get anything done or protect America we see that Karl Rove lists the specific areas where the Democrats have failed to lead.

The problems the Democrats are now experiencing begin with the federal budget. Or rather, the lack of one. In 2006, Democrats criticized Congress for dragging its feet on the budget and pledged that they would do better. Instead, they did worse. The new fiscal year started Oct. 1--five weeks ago--but Democrats have yet to send the president a single annual appropriations bill. It's been at least 20 years since Congress has gone this late in passing any appropriation bills, an indication of the mess the Pelosi-Reid Congress is now in.

Even worse, the Democrats have made clear all their talk about "fiscal discipline" is just that--talk. They're proposing to spend $205 billion more than the president has proposed over the next five years. And the opening wedge of this binge is $22 billion more in spending proposed for the coming year. Only in Washington could someone in public life be so clueless to say, as Sen. Reid and Rep. Pelosi have, that $22 billion is a "relatively small" difference.


Failing to pass a budget, proposing a huge spike in federal spending and offering the biggest tax increase in history are not the only hallmarks of this Democratic Congress.

Beholden to and other left-wing groups, Democratic leaders have ignored the progress made in Iraq by the surge, diminished the efforts of our military, and wasted precious time with failed attempts to force an immediate withdrawal from Iraq. They continue to try to implement this course, which would lead to chaos in the region, the creation of a possible terror state with the third largest oil reserves in the world, and a major propaganda victory for Osama bin Laden as well as for Iran, Hamas and Hezbollah.

I am going to stop there for a second to point out that a small faction of the Democratic leadership has just recently admitted that surge is producing results, giving credit where credit is due.

Lieberman, which the Democrats try to hard to disown, might disagree with the majority of Democratic politicians on the issue of Iraq, but votes with them on almost all social issues.

He is not liked because he stands on principle and is strong on National Security.

From yesterday:

Actions like todays only highlight Lieberman's point even more.

The subject of Senator Lieberman’s talk was “The Politics of National Security,” in which he spoke about the future of the Democratic Party and its response to the threat of Iran.

In the address, Senator Lieberman stated, “Since retaking Congress in November 2006, the top foreign policy priority of the Democratic Party has not been to expand the size of our military for the war on terror or to strengthen our democracy promotion efforts in the Middle East or to prevail in Afghanistan. It has been to pull our troops out of Iraq, to abandon the democratically-elected government there, and to hand a defeat to President Bush.

“Iraq has become the singular litmus test for Democratic candidates. No Democratic presidential primary candidate today speaks of America’s moral or strategic responsibility to stand with the Iraqi people against the totalitarian forces of radical Islam, or of the consequences of handing a victory in Iraq to al Qaeda and Iran. And if they did, their campaign would be as unsuccessful as mine was in 2006. Even as evidence has mounted that General Petraeus’ new counterinsurgency strategy is succeeding, Democrats have remained emotionally invested in a narrative of defeat and retreat in Iraq, reluctant to acknowledge the progress we are now achieving, or even that that progress has enabled us to begin drawing down our troops there.”

Senator Lieberman also indicated, “…there is something profoundly wrong—something that should trouble all of us—when we have elected Democratic officials who seem more worried about how the Bush administration might respond to Iran’s murder of our troops, than about the fact that Iran is murdering our troops.

There is likewise something profoundly wrong when we see candidates who are willing to pander to this politically paranoid, hyper-partisan sentiment in the Democratic base—even if it sends a message of weakness and division to the Iranian regime.”

Go read his whole speech.

Following up we have Steny Hoyer, who was chosen as House Majority Leader, despite Nancy Pelosi trying with all her might to get John Murtha picked back in November of 2006:

Preceeding this vote, Pelosi was selected as speaker of the house. Then she immediately puts her prestige as speaker on the line by officially nominating John Murtha as house majority leader, up against Steny Hoyer. And LOSES.

Hoyer was elected on a vote of 149-86.

The balloting marked a personal triumph for him, but also a snub to Pelosi, moments after the rank and file selected her unanimously to become speaker when the House convenes in January.

Just yesterday, Steny Hoyer showed why the his party bypassed Pelosi's wishes and voted him into that position.

Because he does have principles and he is smart enough not to ignore what is right in front of his face.

I might not agree with him on most issues, but he was right when he announced the surge is working. (Disclaimer: This might just be his trial balloon to see if the Democrats can try to take some credit for the success in Iraq, which won't work since they have done everything in their power to stop our troops from succeeding, but the words still needed to be said by a Democratic leader and they were.)

House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) said on Tuesday that the troop surge, which began in June, has had a significant impact on the situation in Iraq and noted that he had always been critical of the Bush administration for deploying an insufficient number of troops in previous years.

"Stability and a decrease in violence, they've done that - God bless them. I'm not surprised that they did," Hoyer told Cybercast News Service in response to a question about steadily declining U.S. casualty rates in Iraq.

Although the decline in causalities is "a very positive sign" -- U.S. casualties have been declining every month since June -- Hoyer said political reconciliation remains an elusive goal. Hoyer added that the Bush administration should have given more consideration to the Baker-Hamilton report released last year.

"I am not surprised, therefore, that when we send 20,000 additional troops and put them in an area of consequence that those 20,000 troops from the best army in the world, the best trained, best equipped army in the world brings a very heightened security," he said.

We also have Sen. Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaii):

Sen. Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaii) said he plans to find out the cause of the decline in casualties when he goes to Iraq later this month. (Hear Audio)

"I really don't know," Inouye said regarding why the decline in casualties has occurred. "Maybe it's good fortune. Maybe we're doing the right thing. I hope so. Whenever some life is saved, it's positive."

They are few and far between but a couple Democrats are capable of trying to save their own skin by admitting the truth and taking the heat from the far left groups like Code Pink and rather than having the American public see them ignore any and all success.

They can spin it however they want, but admitting the progress and success in Iraq is the important thing at the moment.

Back to Opinion Journal piece now, where Rove does acknowledge that certain Democratic politicians have bucked their leadership to keep our troops supplied and safe while abroad.

After promising on the campaign trail to "support our troops," Democrats tried to cut off funding for our military while our soldiers and Marines are under fire from the enemy. For 19 Senate Democrats, this was simply a bridge too far, so they voted against their own leadership's proposal. Democrats also tried to stuff an emergency war-spending bill with billions of dollars of pork for individual members. Now the party's leaders are stalling an emergency supplemental bill with funding for body armor, bullets and mine-resistant vehicles.

(Note: Those Democratic politicians are now being targeted by the far left for daring vote on principle instead of along party line)

On Mukasey

After pledging a "Congress that strongly honors our responsibility to protect our people from terrorism," Democrats have refused to make permanent reforms of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act that the Director of National Intelligence said were needed to close "critical gaps in our intelligence capability." Their presidential candidates fell all over each other in a recent debate to pledge an end to the Terrorist Surveillance Program. Then Senate Democratic leaders, thinking there was an opening for political advantage, slow-walked the confirmation of Judge Michael Mukasey to be the next attorney general. It's obvious that this is a man who knows the important role the Justice Department plays in the war on terror. Delaying his confirmation is only making it harder to prosecute the war.

Democrats promised "civility and bipartisanship."

Instead, they stiff-armed their Republican colleagues, refused to include them in budget negotiations between the two houses, and have launched more than 400 investigations and made more than 675 requests for documents, interviews or testimony. They refused a bipartisan compromise on an expansion of the State Children's Health Insurance Program, instead wasting precious time sending the president a bill they knew he would veto. And they did this knowing that they wouldn't be able to override that veto. Why? Because their pollsters told them putting the children's health-care program at risk would score political points. Instead, it left them looking cynical.

The failures of the Democratic "leadership:

The list of Congress's failures grows each month. No energy bill. No action on health care. No action on the mortgage crisis. No immigration reform. No progress on renewing No Child Left Behind. Precious little action on judges and not enough on reducing trade barriers. Congress has not done its work. And these failures will have consequences.

Rove ends with this:

Democrats had a moment after the 2006 election, but now that moment has passed. They've squandered it. They have demonstrated both the inability and unwillingness to govern. Instead, after more than a decade in the congressional minority, they reflexively look for short-term partisan advantage and attempt to appease the party's most strident fringe. Now that Democrats have the reins of congressional power, their true colors are coming out and the public doesn't like what it sees.

The Democratic victory in 2006 was narrow. They won the House by 85,961 votes out of over 80 million cast and the Senate by a mere 3,562 out of over 62 million cast. A party that wins control by that narrow margin can quickly see its fortunes reversed when it fails to act responsibly, fails to fulfill its promises, and fails to lead.

Which brings us full circle to what I said at the end of my last post:

The can cry all they want about the nasty Republicans "blocking" everything they want to do, but as the majority, their strength, if they had any, would be in working with the minority so that filibusters wouldn't be necessary.... they choose not to do so because it would make their far left, liberal faction of their party unhappy.

Instead, they make a conscious choice to make the independents and their moderate base unhappy which is the whole reason their approval ratings are the lowest in Congressional history.

The Democrats, by being the majority, control the agenda and they deliberately pick the fights and then whine when the Republicans fight back using the methods in place for that very reason.

Suggestion: Stop picking fights deliberately unless you really want to fight.

Karl Rove has just brilliantly laid out every weakness in the Democratic party that can and should be used against them in the 2008 elections.

The Democrats have proven themselves incompetent of leading over the last year as well as being incapable of acknowledging the truth and unable to stand up to the far left faction of their party.

Others discussing this:
Sister Toldjah, Blue Crab Boulevard and Don't Go Into The Light.