However, should the Republicans lose Congress, the elephant in the living room is Iraq. If we are in a war, people have to pick sides even if one’s side has substantial problems. I believe that many supporters of Bush have become demoralized by the pace of progress in Iraq and the drumbeat of media negativity. I think that many people implicitly believed that this would be tough, but that we would prevail in a more demonstrable way and sooner. Instead the picture painted is that of an endless pit of commitment. When the Baker workgroup is making policy recommendations that look an awful lot like “cut and run”, it is easy for loyal supporters to get down. It is difficult to develop metrics for the kind of war we are in, but the public needs metrics of some sort to get a sense of where we are at.
I don’t think the Administration being “tougher” is the issue. I’m not sure what toughness is missing, frankly, and what the Jacksonians wish the US to do that is realistic and that wouldn’t lead to a copious amount of other problems. We need a causus belli for Syria and Iran, and the US population is no where near that yet. We cannot fight that kind of war without the support of the public. At some point we have to remember that the public is us.
However, having said that, those who support the WoT and Iraq should decide if they want to take the risk of having the Dems chair all the committees, distract the efforts of the Administration, further polarize the country, etc. Those who choose to sit home are essentially voting for Speaker Pelosi and Majority Leader Reid; committees chaired by Conyers, Dingell, Kennedy, Waxman, etc. Those are the choices. Maybe we can try to understand why the Iraqis are having difficulty developing the democratic process when we stop and think about our own choices. We can be demoralized, or we can be grownups and act.
If the Reps lose, it will be because the “base” allowed it to happen not because the Dems command a lot of support. If the “base” chooses to sit and pout, they have no right to complain about the results, but they will. And the op-ed people will continue to make a healthy living “defending” the base.
Oct 15, 2006
Will you vote GOP in November?
I certainly lack enthusiasm about the election. But I'll vote and I'll vote for the Republicans. They may be a bunch of hapless losers, but the other side is even worse. Especially in the middle of this war. An Instapundit emailer puts it best: