It’s official. The vote has been taken. It was 58 to 42 and John Ashcroft is the new attorney general of the United States. The chief law enforcement official in the new Bush administration is now in place — the man that President Bush wanted in that role. But Lord A’mighty, it wasn’t an easy road, and it isn’t over yet.
Speaking of the Lord, I found it strange, and sad, that many of the people who voted against John Ashcroft are those who not many weeks ago were throwing around the name of the Lord every chance they could. It was an election campaign, and the sudden discovery of a religious heritage swept through Democrat ranks like rats across a river to the cheese.
Al Gore threw his professed religiosity around and often sounded like a country preacher at a tent revival. His running-mate Joe Lieberman (we will have this Joe to kick around again), the professed Orthodox Jew who used religious terminology so often in stump speeches that listeners weren’t sure what kind of rally they were attending — he too sounded like a down-home preacherman.
Amazing — that’s just the kind of religion that the liberals in the Senate Judiciary Hearing and elsewhere were railing against. They are so frightened of the Christian Right that they will not tolerate a fragment of it in politics, yet they use the same mesmerizing preaching tactics and phrases to woo votes.
And guess what? Good old Joe, for all his espousement of the importance of religious values, found it within the depths of his heart to vote against John Ashcroft because of his religious/ethical values. And speaking of ethics, how about the theatrics of Joe Biden during the hearing and then his not-unexpected “no” vote. There’s a man who knows about ethics. Then, of course, Ted Kennedy. Another “no.” What’s left to say?
Remarkable isn’t it, how it’s OK for the liberals to have religion as long as it’s the right kind of religion; how it’s OK for the liberals to have values as long as everyone else has the same values; how it’s OK for the liberals to bring religion and ethics into the political arena but if anyone else does, then it’s unconstitutional and worse!
The man who had beliefs and standards and moral and ethical values was challenged on all sides by the liberals who profess to want diversity, differences, inclusion and all that good stuff. Word on the Hill was that Ashcroft would be confirmed but that his baptism by fire (oops, religion again!) was a warning shot to the administration that any other nominee (read: to the Supreme Court) would face more of the same and worse. The gauntlet has been thrown.
This is another fact of life. The liberals simply will fight with every means possible to prevent President Bush from having the kind of administration, the kind of appointments and the kind of legislative change he envisions. It won’t be just a battle of ideologies. It will be more gut-wrenching than that.
What this really boils down to is payback — big time. Terry McAuliffe — new head of the Democratic Party was waxing poetic about how his next four years will not be about money(!) but about what the Democrats will fight for.
He then made quite a point to emphasize that the one very important thing the Democrats will do over the next four years is fight against what the Republicans want to do.
He didn’t bother to itemize, he just threw it all in the same pot and said, essentially, if they’re for it, we’re against it. Needless to say, it drew much applause. Needless to say, it’s going to be quite a battle. Remember that McAuliffe is from the Clinton camp and they learned their lessons well. Fight long, hard, wily and dirty.
No fair for anyone to say over the next months and years that conservatives weren’t warned.
The Ashcroft vote was telling. Eight Democrats joined all 50 Republicans to affirm the nomination but the 42 Democrat votes carry with them the problems in store for the administration. The issues will be the same as during the hearings. Abortion, homosexual rights, race relations, education, vouchers, the environment and more, especially church/state issues. They encompass the usual special interest groups that make up the sum and substance of the Democrat Party today.
Their almost unprecedented, virtually unilateral, opposition to John Ashcroft illustrates one aspect of what the new administration faces. This is no longer a country united and it appears that if the Democrats have their way, it will become more and more divided. Given that every senator who is eyeing upcoming elections voted against Ashcroft, illustrates to which side they’re pandering. Pick a special interest group, any one at all — and that’s it.
George W. Bush has made some moves in the early weeks of his term to temper the view that he is a wild-eyed, rabid conservative out to give the country away to the far right-wing. Truth is, that view of him was incorrect from the outset. He was never rabid right despite the efforts of the liberals to paint him with that brush.
Accusatory rhetoric aside, the opposition never had an inkling of evidence of that in his administration of the State of Texas. Republican? Yes. Conservative? Yes. But wild-eyed fanatic? Never. He always said that he wanted to have people work together for what is best for the country.
Unfortunately, as we have seen so clearly over the last eight years, what is good for the country is frequently not good for the Democrat Party. What is good for the country is freedom, less government intervention in private lives, families, schools, churches and businesses. What is good for the country is a strong military to protect us in the event that protection is needed for our survival. What’s good for this country is protecting our borders from all kinds of invasions. What’s good for the country is a strong, constitutional and balanced system of law that holds all people to the same bar of justice. What’s good for this country is a recognition that we have much to revere in what we have accomplished and that much more can be done if there is honesty and consistency in the doing of it.
Unfortunately, the Democrats and liberals in general find much fault with what is good for this country. Look at the last eight years and see how all of the above was perverted to distribute power and dollars to those who manipulated the system. Under that kind of rule, only the top cats do well; the underlings support them with votes and dollars based on false promises and utopian dreams.
Under that kind of rule — uh, oh. I’d better stop here. This is, after all, the USA. We don’t have a ruler and don’t want one. But if we’re not careful, strange things could happen; look what already happened with the Democrats in power. It’s a power they won’t easily relinquish. Hang on. It’s gonna be rough!