Saturday, December 13, 2008

Is the Honeymoon Over for the Left?

After Election Day, Democrats were flying high. They made gains in the House and Senate, and Barack Obama had won the popular vote by a significant margin. Even with a couple of elections still being resolved, it looked clear that Democrats would have no trouble picking up the remaining seats.

Oh, what a difference a month makes. They managed to pick up Ted Stevens' Senate seat, but have since lost to Saxby Chamblis, lost William Jefferson's House seat, and are on the verge of losing Norm Coleman's Senate seat. Ouch.

It goes further than politics, though. This week saw the gay community participating in something similar to the "Day Without A Mexican" protest done in 2007. The idea was that gays would take a day off work and take that time to do community service as a means to try to bring the impact of gays in society into focus. One tiny problem, though. Only a relative handful of gays participated.

These two situations are different, but they're united by the same problem. It's easy to get the Left in a froth for a short time, but when once they've accomplished what they set out to do, participation declines greatly. This is because Leftists are notoriously short-sighted. They pick out a point on the horizon and consider that to be the end all and be all of their journey, even if there's a further point that would be more impressive. That's like climbing most of the way up Mount Everest, planting a flag 10 feet from the summit, and calling it good.

With the recounts in Alaska, Louisiana, and Minnesota and the run-off election in Georgia, Leftists didn't seem to put much energy towards trying to lock down those seats. As a result, Democrats in the Senate fell short of the 60 seat majority they needed to shut down the possibility of a fillibuster, and will now have to rely on moderate to liberal Senate Republicans to do that. And as we've seen out of the Democrat leadership in Congress the past 2 years, compromise isn't something they're good at. That will become a huge stumbling block for Obama in the next 2 years.

There is another impact to the Left not putting forth an effort to lock down their positions as the power players in Washington. The month between Election Day and the recounts/revotes gave people time to cool down from Obama Mania. Other commentators have noted that Obama didn't have much in the line of "coattails" when it came to helping Democrats who were still having to battle for their seats, which doesn't bode well for his ability to help Democrats down the road.

The solution to this would be for the Left to start thinking long-term. Yeah, that'll happen.

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