For some time now, the right wing blogosphere has been calling attention to a significant problem the Democrats face – the rabid nature of the left wing blogs. It seems the Washington Post has finally caught on to this problem.
It’s going to be a tough struggle for the Democrats. The average swing voter is pretty mellow when it comes to matters of public policy. They may oppose our involvement in Iraq, but they understand the realities of an immediate pullout. They may be concerned about ethical problems in Washington, but they assume (following 3 decades of bi-partisan scandals) that it’s simply the way Washington works and don’t point fingers at one party or another.
Democrats trying to make hay out of ethical problems have 8 years of Clinton finance scandals that must be accounted for if they wish to claim purity.
Democrat bloggers, by comparison, demand not only the immediate withdrawal of troops, but the arrest of the President and trial as a war criminal. They clamor for prosecution of anyone who took money directly from Abramoff; but they claim contributions by his clients to Democrats should be ignored.
The Democrat party leadership, and their potential candidates, have spent the last two years in bed and spooning with the extremist wing of their party, and now they must reconcile the demands of the radical left with the political sensibilities of mainstream Americans. That attempt fell short in 2003-2004. The Democrats, throughout their primary, engaged in the extreme rhetoric of their Internet base (remember Al Gore‚Äôs comparison of Hitler and the President). Immediately after the primary battle, they tried to turn to the middle, but the left wing blogs opposed that shift. While they acknowledged the political reality of the move, they created sites like www.JohnKerryIsADouchebagButImVotingForHimAnyway.com.
They undermined, in word and deed, their party‚Äôs efforts to attract the attention of moderates.
The Democrats will have a harder time this year. The bloggers have become more shrill, more radicalized, and less inclined toward common-sense governance and compromise.