Home
In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review March 22, 2010 / 7 Nissan 5770

The 1990s precedent for a Democratic bounce-back

By David Broder



http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | As congressional Democrats plotted their endgame strategy for health-care reform, the question looming in their minds was: How do we reduce our risks in the November midterm elections? What outcome and what procedures will the voters find least objectionable?

The widespread assumption is that the worst-case scenario, the outcome that would be most damaging to President Obama and the Democratic Party, would be to lose control of the House or Senate, or both.

But there is another view — one that holds it would be more damaging if the Democrats emerge with reduced numbers but the same leadership, still nominally in control but with less capacity to overcome the entrenched partisanship prevailing in Congress.

This alternative view looks back 16 years to the election that stripped the Democrats of their majority at the end of the second year of the Clinton administration. The 1994 results were widely seen as a complete repudiation of the first two years of Bill Clinton's presidency, marked by the failure of his effort at health-care reform. The wounded president even had to argue that he was still "relevant" to the Washington political process.

But only two years later, in 1996, Clinton coasted to a second term over Bob Dole and was able to brag that he had signed into law measures reforming welfare and putting the nation on the path to a balanced budget.

Letter from JWR publisher


What happened is that Clinton and the newly installed House speaker, Newt Gingrich, after testing their muscle against each other in all-out combat in 1995, decided it was better for both of them to negotiate agreements in 1996.

The story is told in full in "The Pact: Bill Clinton, Newt Gingrich, and the Rivalry That Defined a Generation," by political scientist Steven M. Gillon.

As Gillon noted, the 1996 election made Clinton the first Democrat since FDR to win a second term and Gingrich the first Republican speaker since 1928 to see his party win two successive majorities in Congress. "Both men felt the election results justified their strategies," Gillon pointed out.

"The election outcome," he continued, "underscored how the two men had influenced and shaped each other in ways that neither fully appreciated. Clinton campaigned against a cartoon version of Gingrich even as he adopted much of his agenda. Gingrich, who came to office promising a revolution, retained control of the Congress by practicing moderation. They found themselves closer to each other, and further from the ideological fringe of their respective parties, than ever before." So close, in fact, that they secretly discussed moving on to reform Social Security and Medicare in 1997 — until Monica happened and everything was blocked by the fight over impeachment.

Could history repeat? A majority of today's congressional Republicans are even more emphatically conservative than those of Gingrich's day, but the Republican leaders are pragmatic politicians from competitive states, Kentucky and Ohio, who are clearly capable of bending with the wind. Sobered by the responsibility of being in the majority, neither Mitch McConnell nor John Boehner would be likely to persist solely in the politics of saying "No." As for Obama, we now know, if we did not before, that he is most comfortable in the middle ground between the liberal wing of his party and the bulk of Republicans, freed by his brief personal history in Washington from the historic antagonisms that impede dealings between the parties.

Obviously, there are risks in divided government, and stalemate is possible. But it is certainly arguable that the greater risk — of deadlock and inaction — might be in returning Nancy Pelosi to the speakership and Harry Reid to the majority leadership, but with fewer Democrats in each chamber ready to muscle things through.

Keep that in mind as you watch Democrats and Republicans maneuver through these latest steps on the tortuous trail to health-care reform.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.



To comment, please click here.


Archives



© 2010, by WPWG

Columnists

Toons

Lifestyles