The other day, after watching the most recent “talking heads” discussion regarding the Democratic Party’s implosion, I turned to my wife and said, tongue-in-cheek (I thought), “Next thing you know, they’ll pull Al Gore out of mothballs.”
I thought I was kidding, until I saw the piece in TIME magazine by Joe Klein titled, “Is Gore the Answer?”
If the question is “At what point did the Democratic Party decide to commit political suicide?’ then, yes, Al Gore is the answer.
Let’s set partisanship aside for a second and acknowledge that the DNC seems determined to alienate whatever voters had not already been alienated by Obama’s choice of pastors or Hillary’s choice of war stories.
The DNC let the deadline pass on a revote in both Florida and Michigan, ensuring a delegate fight right up to convention time. Top-level Democrats fear whoever emerges victorious from the nomination fight will be so battle-scarred as to be unelectable.
They have reason to fear. One can only imagine the endless hours of airtime that will be devoted to replaying Rev. Wright gleefully justifying the 9/11 attacks only five days after its victims leapt to their deaths to avoid being consumed by the flames.
And the parodies of Hillary Clinton’s “harrowing excursion” into a Bosnian war zone are already racking up hits on YouTube. There are undoubtedly teams of reporters at this very moment busily compiling lists of contradictory Clintonisms from the target-rich collection on the Internet.
And you can be sure the GOP has had eight years to collect and compile their own list, just in case the mainstream media miss any.
(Both of the Clintons need to learn from Abraham Lincoln’s wise admonition to politicians, “No one has a good enough memory to be a successful liar.” That’s especially true today with investigative reporters equipped with the enormous power of Internet search engines.)
A Rasmussen poll this week found that 22 percent of likely Democrats want Hillary to concede now and let Obama have the nomination. Another 22 percent want Obama to step aside for Hillary.
The remaining 66 percent want the two to fight it out all the way to the convention, presumably hoping for a glimpse into how the process really works. (Ahhhh! Do I see evidence of Rush Limbaugh’s Operation Chaos here?)
There’s an old saying to the effect that to be truly happy, there are two things you don’t need to know. How sausage is made, and how laws are passed. Finding out how nomination deadlocks are usually resolved is a close third.
Anybody of voting age during the 1968 Democratic Convention knows what I mean.
The DNC finds itself on the precipice of irrelevancy in the general election, when by all the odds they should have been able to elect Howdy Doody against whichever candidate had the poor political judgment to attach [R] to his voter registration card.
Instead, another Rasmussen poll also released this week gives some measure of how much trouble they’re really in. When asked, “Whom would you vote for if your candidate failed to get the nomination?” a whopping 28 percent of likely Clinton voters said they would vote for John McCain! Twenty percent of Obama supporters said they’d vote for McCain if Hillary won.
For most conservatives, John McCain is a “hold your nose” candidate in the first place. Ann Coulter said she’d campaign for Hillary if McCain got the nomination. (He did and she didn’t).
But either way, according to the poll, McCain’s got at least 20 percent of Democrats. If that margin holds until November, it will be an early election night. The Democrats stand to bleed even more voters away if they nominate Obama.
If they seat Michigan and Florida’s delegates, Hillary could end up locking up the delegate count. But she won in a process in which she was alone on the ballot in Michigan and virtually unopposed in Florida. Excluding Michigan and Florida could turn both states an uncompromising shade of red.
So who better than Al Gore, the victim of the Great 2000 Election Caper (and champion of the White Male Establishment), to steal the nomination away from both minority candidates?
It is somehow fitting that the Democrats began their march to politically irrelevancy by following Al Gore down his fruitless path to discover, by hook or by crook, votes that weren’t there while simultaneously suing to suppress other votes that were (but not for him). Now they want him to preside at their political funeral.
In their quest for vengeance against the “usurper” Bush, post-Election 2000 Democrats opposed every policy decision based on partisanship, rather than patriotism, determined to wreck the Bush presidency, even if it meant surrendering to al-Qaida.
They bet everything that an al-Qaida victory would destroy Republican hopes in ’08, and then set out to make it a self-fulfilling prophecy. Both candidates embarked on their campaigns balancing their platforms on a single plank: “The war is lost.”
Halfway through the campaign, the unthinkable happened and they found themselves in the uncomfortable position of advocating immediate surrender to avert a sudden and precipitous U.S. victory.
Now that there’s nothing left to demagogue, the press has stopped investigating how Bush lost the war and has started investigating the candidates for his replacement. So whom do you like for president? A lifelong disciple of anti-American racial extremism? Or Commander in chief “McBragg”?
So, why not Al Gore, the man who “used to be the next president of the United States,” winner of an Oscar and a Nobel Peace Prize for “An Inconvenient Truth,” his film warning of impending global warming?
(Just Al’s luck his name would come up as we close the books on the coldest winter in decades. Those commercials would be fun in the general election, too.)
But, according to Joe Klein, the man who kicked off the political war in the first place is now the Democrats’ last, best hope of unseating the suddenly fearsome John McCain.
The Democrats are in a real pickle, all right.
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