Democrats Caught “Flat-Footed” by Senate Takeover
That’s gonna leave a mark.
Thursday’s Politico Playbook newsletter has a pretty tough-love rundown of the current state of our new Democrat overlords in Washington and it isn’t pretty:
The Democratic takeover of the White House and Congress is complete. But the truth is that the party was caught flat-footed by it: Almost no one expected JON OSSOFF and RAPHAEL WARNOCK to both win in Georgia — let alone planned for how they’d run Washington if it happened.
The lack of preparation is now causing confusion among congressional Democrats about how they should exercise their newfound power in the critical early days of the administration.
Conventional wisdom is that presidents have a small window of opportunity to make their mark with a big legislative achievement or, best case, two. Timing is critical, as is sequencing. But beyond a desire to address the pandemic — unquestionably Biden’s first priority — Democrats seem to be all over the place on what their legislative game plan looks like.
It should be noted right away that this is Playbook, a newsletter that often reads like love notes to the Democrats that are scribbled in feelings journals. And Politico is the organization that is so all-in for Biden that it’s decided to stop pretending he hasn’t lost it. Criticism of the Democrats isn’t exactly Politico‘s forte.
Republicans should probably hope that chaos reigns supreme for a while on the other side of the aisle. America is almost always better off when Congress isn’t getting much done, after all. The Republicans would have to capitalize on the confusion, of course, and that will depend entirely on whether they can keep from having family squabbles about the direction of the party. The House Republicans’ displeasure with Liz Cheney’s turncoat moment is encouraging in that regard.
Then again, if Congress keeps throwing its hands in the air, Biden might become even more executive-order happy and that’s a sobering thought.
Team Joe seems as if it will make a run at the squishes to help nudge the GOP back onto the “useful idiot” path it was traveling pre-Trump:
In fact, Democrats aren’t even on the same page about how to get Biden’s $1.9 trillion Covid package through Congress. Before Biden was sworn in, aides had been hashing out plans to use the fast-track “reconciliation” process to try to jam it through on a party-line vote. But now Democrats are pressing pause because Biden is, as one person called it, “bipartisan-curious” — i.e. he wants to try to win over Republicans first, to the chagrin of many senior Democrats eager to move quickly. (Biden aides reached out to moderate GOP Sen. LISA MURKOWSKI of Alaska this week, and Democratic Sen. JOE MANCHIN of West Virginia says he hopes to talk to them over the weekend.)
I’m highly skeptical about Biden’s desire to “win over Republicans.” They’ll no doubt make a show of it but it won’t be anything more than bad political theater. If any Republicans in the Senate outside of the Romney-Murkowski wing bite, the GOP deserves to be tossed into a burning dumpster and done away with forever.
The Democrats are confused because, despite the fact that they’re back in the White House, they really don’t have a leader. What they’ve got is an empty vessel whose wife is now trying to consolidate power, two grandstanding demagogues leading them in Congress, and a 31-year-old bartender who squeaks anti-intellectual inanity for the cameras and frightens all of the elders of her village.
It’s a clown car that drives around Washington throwing socialist confetti at the people.
Here’s hoping it just keeps driving in circles and not getting anywhere.
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PJ Media Senior Columnist and Associate Editor Stephen Kruiser is the author of “Don’t Let the Hippies Shower” and “Straight Outta Feelings: Political Zen in the Age of Outrage,” both of which address serious subjects in a humorous way. Monday through Friday he edits PJ Media’s “Morning Briefing.” His columns appear twice a week.