January 29, 2006

HOW BAD HAVE THE DEMOCRATS’ PROBLEMS with their “activist base” gotten? Bad enough that Joan Vennochi in the Boston Globe thinks they’re going too far to the left:

Calling for a filibuster makes political sense for Kennedy, who is adored by every left-wing constituency in America. He isn’t running for national office; he can afford to stick to strict liberal principle. He wants to go down fighting. For Kennedy, a filibuster call mollifies the left at no political cost. It is also an attempt to make up for the obvious: He used the wrong tone and tactics during the hearings. Going after Alito as a bigot backfired. Forget about Mrs. Alito’s tears. The moment Kennedy was exposed for belonging to a discriminatory college fraternal organization, it was over. He lost the moral high ground.

Kerry’s enthusiasm for a filibuster is harder to fathom, except as more of the same from a perpetually tone-deaf politician.

Why volunteer to look like a creature of the left if you are plotting a second presidential campaign? The perception helped undercut Kerry’s first presidential campaign. . . .

The longer Democrats and Republicans in Congress maintain the high level of hostile partisanship, the less attractive any would-be presidential candidate who hails from Congress looks. These senators who would be president help the cause of governors — Democrats and Republicans — who hold the same ambition.

I think that’s right, but the Senators are looking at the Kos/Moveon crowd. (Via Paul Mirengoff).