...It’s far-fetched to Democrats that Tea Party populists could possibly believe that the party of McConnell and Romney and Murdoch will in the end be moved to side with the little guy against the penthouse powers that are the G.O.P.’s traditional constituency and financial underwriter. Some Democrats also find it far-fetched that Paul could repeat his victory this fall, given how extreme his views are even for a state as reliably red as Kentucky.
But the enthusiasm gap remains real. Tea Partiers will turn up at the polls, and not just in Kentucky. Democrats are less energized in part because even now the president has not fully persuaded many liberal populists in his own party that he is on their side. The suspicion lingers that a Wall Street recovery, not job creation, was his highest economic priority upon arriving at a White House staffed with Goldman alumni. No matter how hard the administration tries to sell health care reform and financial reform as part of the nation’s economic recovery, these signal achievements remain thin gruel for those out of work.
The unemployment numbers, unlikely to change drastically by November, will have more to say than any of Tuesday’s results about what happens on Election Day this year. Yes, the Tea Party is radical, its membership is not enormous, and its race problem is real and troubling. But you can’t fight an impassioned opposition merely with legislative actions that may bear fruit in the semi-distant future. If the Democrats can’t muster their own compelling response to the populist rage out there, “Randslide” may reside in our political vocabulary long after “Arlen Specter” is leaving “Jeopardy” contestants stumped.
Just another Reality-based bubble in the foam of the multiverse.
Sunday, May 23, 2010