Friday, January 13, 2006


Steve Gilliard absolutely gets it. It is vitally important that we Democrats be willing to fight for positions we believe in, even if victory is unlikely. This insistence from some quarters that we cannot afford to fight the Alito nomination because we probably won't win is stunningly foolish. The Democratic party fought against the fighting the first Gulf war, lost, and was shown to be wrong. They won the next election. The Democratic Party fought for Clinton's Health Care Plan and lost. They won the next election. Since we've adopted the policy of making sure that we take no stands that might result in failure, we have consistently lost elections. Holy mother of Christ what does it take to drive home the point that winning every fight is not the way to promote electoral success.

Furthermore, the public expect their leaders to stand for something, by which we mean that they will take a firm position on some issues, even if those issues are loosers. These same Democrats who argue that we cannot afford to fight over the Alito nomination are also seen puzzling over why the Democrats are seen as so week on national defense. Look, people expect their commander-in-chief to be willing to fight for them even if victory is not assured. If the Democrats insist on projecting the attitude that they will not fight unless victory is assured, people will see them as week on defense. Loosing is indeed bad, however, refusing to fight is even worse.

Finally, if there are any issues on which the Democrats should be willing to fight, whether victory is assured or not, Sam Alito represents all the things we should fight against: loss of individual rights, corporations over people, lack of integrity and honesty, support for an imperial president. At the very least, every Democrat needs to vote against this nominee. If the party wants electoral victory it should also attempt the filibuster. If it fails, we at least fought the good fight.

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