Perennial presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich, a Democratic congressman from
Ohio, told a group of bloggers last week he plans to force House Speaker Nancy
Pelosi to take up his measure to impeach Vice President Dick Cheney.
Ms. Pelosi "is working very quietly and very effectively behind the scenes" to
gather votes to impeach President Bush, Rep. Diane Watson (D-Cal) told a town hall
meeting in Los Angeles Oct. 17.
Mr. Kucinich, Ms. Watson and Ms. Pelosi are three of the reasons why I think
historians will regard the Democratic sweep in the 2006 midterms as the essential
prerequisite to the Republican victory in the 2008 presidential election.
The Democratic seizure of Congress caused President Bush to change strategy in Iraq.
The dramatic improvement in Iraq since the troop surge began is depriving Democrats
of the issue they had hoped to ride to victory.
The Iraq example is instructive for another reason. The key factor was the change
in attitude of Iraq's Sunnis toward al Qaida. Once at least tolerators of the
terror group, most Sunnis have turned implacably hostile.
The Sunnis have turned on al Qaida chiefly because in Fallujah, Ramadi, Baquba and
elsewhere, they experienced the harshness of al Qaida rule, and decided it was not
for them. However bad submission to rule by the Shia majority had once seemed to
them, this was worse.
Voters turned to the Democrats in 2006 because they were disgusted with Republicans.
The primary reason was Iraq. We were locked then in a bloody stalemate. Given a
choice between seemingly endless war and withdrawal, Americans prefer withdrawal.
Iraq wasn't the only reason for voter disgust. When Republicans act like
Republicans, they don't always win. But when Republicans act like Democrats, they
almost always lose. The GOP Congress was spending more than Democratic Congresses
of the past. Earmarks had exploded. Corruption was rampant. Many who had voted
Republican in 2002 and 2004 stayed home, or voted against the incumbents on the
assumption Democrats couldn't be worse.
Speaker Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev) are disabusing swing
voters of that assumption. The Democratic Congress has done virtually nothing
except to try (and fail) to pass measures to cripple the war effort and to hamstring
efforts to surveil terrorists.
Voters have noticed. The current Congress is the most unpopular in the history of
polling. Voters rate Congress lower today than in October of 2006, days before they
tossed out the Republicans.
Voter esteem for the Democratic Congress is not likely to be enhanced by kamikaze
missions such as an effort to impeach the president and vice president. However much
they may disagree with some administration policies, those who are not moonbats know
(1) there are no grounds for impeachment; (2) in the highly unlikely event the House
voted to impeach, there is zero possibility the Senate would vote to convict, and
(3) the whole exercise is pointless, because Mr. Bush and Mr. Cheney will be leaving
office in a little more than a year anyway.
For Democrats, quixotic efforts to impeach the president and vice president, or to
defund a war we're now clearly winning are a lose lose proposition. Normal people
will be angered by the frivolity, immaturity, and blatant partisanship of the
efforts. The moonbats will be angry because the efforts will fail.
Unfortunately for Democrats, there are many moonbats in their party, and what it
takes to keep them on the reservation drives moderates off.
"Frustration with the Democratic party over Iraq boiling over," said a headline in
the Sarasota Herald-Tribune Sunday. "Rank and file blast top officials for not
challenging the president."
"Democrats aren't any better on the war issue than the Republicans," Nancy O'Byrne,
a delegate to the Democratic state convention in Lake Buena Vista, told the
Herald-Tribune. "A lot of candidates are backpedaling on their stance on the war,
and I'm not sure why."
The reason, Ms. O'Byrne, is because given a choice between victory and
self-inflicted defeat, Americans prefer victory. But as signs of victory in Iraq
mount, the moonbats have become more strident in their demands that Democratic
leaders in Congress end the war before it can be won.
Democrats compound their foreign policy follies by trying to give college tuition
breaks and driver's licenses to illegal immigrants, and by proposing humongous tax
increases. After a glimpse of Democrats in power, Republicans don't look so bad.