Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

No Left Turns

DiIulio on Republicans

John J. DiIulio, Jr. analyzes Republican challenges and offers the following predictions:

When in political trouble, Bush has a proven presidential knack for binding an intraparty conservative coalition, finding the public center, and occupying it with novel policy ideas and actions that leave Democrats either divided or nonplussed. His 2006 State of the Union Address will begin to reverse his 2005 political slide.

Unified Republican government will continue to split conservatives, but most political media mavens will continue to peddle the usual pat stories about left-right, red-blue partisan warfare and miss the more interesting intraparty stories.

A New Democrat will win the presidency in 2008, but not by much, not with coattails that carry Democrats into majority status in Congress, and not for reasons reflecting any new realities or fundamental shifts in the body politic.

And finally, the pundits will nonetheless dress the next Democratic presidential victory in some silly new conventional wisdom ("New Blue Nation"? "The Bush Backlash"?) that will be widely forgotten, save by academic nerds or curmudgeons like me, before the decade is out.

Which New Democrat? Mark Warner? Any other suggestions?

Discussions - 5 Comments

Which new Democrat? Who is going to beat Rodham-Clinton in the primaries?
If someone can answer that question, then I’ll concede a Democrat has a chance at the presidency.

There aren’t any more New Democrats. Kos has declared a jihad against them and even guys like Ken Salazar, who has years until reelection, are running scared. Hillary will be the nominee although the far left will bloody her a bit. I think it about 30% likely that a Green or Red Party enters the picture. Even 1 or 2 % is fatal to the Democrat hopes, so watch the Sheehan faction quite closely. When Molly Ivins is deriding Senate Democrats for not having a spine, these shrillsters may very well decline to pick up their marbles and head to an environment more in tune with their shrill rhetoric.

I’m inclined to agree with the commenters that it’s hard to imagine a genuine "New Democrat" surviving the primaries, though we may see something of a repeat of 2004, where supposed electability comes to be the major consideration for all but the most extreme.

The Democrats have become a hard-left party and are likely to nominate Hillary, assuming she runs. If they run someone else, that person will be unable to reform the party, even assuming that he wants to. The whole discussion is moot. DiIulio cannot cut himself loose from the party he grew up with. Fine. But his sincere hope for a reform of Democrats isn’t enough to qualify him as a sound political analyst.

I agree, there is no logic in Dilulio’s assertions. This is wishful thinking, nothing more.

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