Nobody seems to disagree that the Democratic Party, as it is now, is a mess. They've been ineffective, even when measured by the diminished expectations of an opposition party. So here we are in an election year. What to do about it?
Matt Stoller seems to think that the Democrats need more politicians who oppose women's rights over their own bodies. People like card-carrying members of "Democrats for Life." People like Tim Ryan.
Look, House Democrats, we WANT to defend you. We WANT to take the House back, so YOU'LL have the ability to GOVERN and wield power. We care about the country. But help us, a little bit. I mean come on, throw us a bone here, put some fresh faces in there, maybe a Tim Ryan or someone, anyone, who hasn't taken a trip on Abramoff's dime. It's not rocket science.
What's also not rocket science is realizing that so-called Democrats on the right-wing of the spectrum are the Democrats hurting the party. They're the ones not holding the line on the votes. They're the ones siding with the most conservative Republican party in modern memory on such issues as bankruptcy and, yes, confirmation of arch-conservative judges and justices.
Right now, the Democrats are so amorphous, they can't even get organized as to how to handle the Alito hearings.
[W]e are not hearing enough about these real issues, and that is the problem with the Democrats.
Each Democrat on the committee is pursuing over and over again the same issues without any depth or ability to drill into the most important ones except superficially. Why wasn't it possible for Pat Leahy to meet with his peers weeks prior to these hearings and divvy up the workload, and assign each senator with a particular part of Alito's record to go after? Why wasn't Dianne Feinstein and her staff tasked with drawing up questions and a line of attack on Alito's spousal consent position on abortion? Why wasn't Durbin and his staff assigned the Vanguard line of attack? Why wasn't Biden given the line of attack on executive powers? Why didn't Leahy focus on pinning Alito down on Roe? Why wasn't Kohl assigned the strip-search case, and some of his other questionable rulings? And why wasn't one of them assigned to make a big deal of the Bush White House hiding the remaining documents?
You get my drift. This should have been tasked out so that each senator and their staff would have been the expert and "prosecutor" if you will on a different part of Alito's record, and each given a chance to pointedly focus on things of relevance, like his actual record, so that the hearing would serve to educate the media and the public on what the guy has actually written and been overturned on, rather than how the big bad Democrats made his wife cry on cue.
And it would also help if the Democrats had planned ahead to set up a media war room that would debunk the misstatements and lies told by the media about Alito's record, so that the media was held to immediate account for what they falsely reported and what the GOP senators were getting away with. But no war room was set up, nor were the Democrats on the committee deployed effectively to act as prosecutors, instead of a granstanding herd of wandering cats.
It could have been different if Dianne Feinstein had really cared about Alito's record on women, wives, and choice, or if Biden really cared about executive power, or if the rest of them had the brainpower and committment necessary to act as an effective team trying to get to the bottom of the man's record and to make the case that he is the wrong guy at this time. [bold emphasis added]
Steve Soto sums it up with the all-too-true statement:
We live in a time where the GOP's effectiveness is just as much a function of the ineptitude of their opponents as it is anything the GOP and the media does itself.
Here we are in the midst of Republican scandal after scandal, having set a new high-water mark in their culture of corruption, and the Democrats are still against the ropes, unable to take a stand ... because they can't agree on anything.
Welcome to the "big tent," folks.