Friday, November 6, 2009

It's Time

Over at Daily Kos, mcjoan has recently commented on Congressman Jim Cooper (D-Tennessee) and his unwillingness to vote for strong, progressive health care reform. Cooper, mcjoan's "favorite anti-healthcare reform Blue Dog" Democrat, has a rough weekend ahead of him as the House is scheduled to vote on health care reform tomorrow. This recent mention of Cooper isn't the only one go so far as to ask Cooper to switch parties, but mcjoan says it very well:
"Maybe Jim Cooper ought to do the safe thing and leave the party, become an Independent so that he's no longer endangered by being associated with things like the scary health care reform bill, regardless of the fact that it is going to amass billions in savings over the next decade."
I don't know much about Jim Cooper, aside from his obstructionist ways--you know, obstructing his own party! What I do know is that here at home, Alan over at IdaBlue is not off base in carrying a similar message to Idaho's own Blue Dog, Congressman Walt Minnick:
"See, having any ol' Democrat is not better than any Republican. Minnick gives the Republicans cover by hiding their absolute total lack of any effort toward bipartisanship, and by lending a fake bipartisanship to Republican initiatives... Walt, please switch parties and get it over with."
This comes on the heels of today's press release stating that Minnick, as we all expected despite hopes otherwise, will be voting against health care reform this weekend in the House. Voting against the health care bill will only bolster Minnick's conservative record. His vote against health care will go nicely, albeit frustratingly so, with his vote against Obama's stimulus plan (the one that he's recently praised and taken some credit for in it's distribution of energy grant funds to Idaho Power and Avista, ironically both donors to his campaign) and his more recent vote in committee against the Consumer Financial Protection Agency (which he appears to be more than preoccupied with defeating during this week's debate on health care).

Minnick started out as a conservative in the Nixon White House, perhaps the most conservative administration in this country's history, second only to that of George W. Bush, it certainly wouldn't be something new to Minnick if he decided to switch parties. After all, he's done it once before, and should he choose to become an Independent or Republican, it would save the Idaho Democratic Party from having to defend his disappointingly conservative record.

It's time, Congressman Minnick. Take the advice of my fellow bloggers, get out of the party you would rather obstruct than lead.


Jared said...

Nixon the most conservative? You must be joking...

Unless you equate conservative with "most hated by the left" which case you are probably correct.

Tara A. Rowe said...

You know, I stalled on that one for a bit and mulled it over. It's hard to think that Nixon wasn't conservative based on the left's hatred of him and when it comes down to it, he wasn't all that conservative on the domestic policy front, but if you look at foreign policy and the sheer number of conservatives produced out of that one administration, he's awfully conservative.

It's sort of like saying that FDR was the most liberal without giving Wilson his due, right?

Jared said...

As well you point out, absolutly no one from the right would ever describe the Nixon domestic agenda as conservative. I've even read some serious stuff online by liberals extolling him as having a progressive domestic agenda. I found that irronic given the left's undying hatred of the man, but maybe the fogs of partisan war are finally lifing on that era. Beyond the water's edge I really have a hard time gauging. Just what is a conservative foreign policy, or a liberal/progressive one for the matter? You and I remember when the right was against nation-building in the Balkans in 90s and how the tables turned in the next decade with Iraq and Afgahnistan. Was Nixon really a conservative on foreign policy? Going to China was not to curry favor from his base. How would the right have reacted if Humphry or McGovern had gone to China as president? But, I will concede that the Nixon administration did produce a sizable number of conservative intellectuals and politicians that still populate the mainstream.

I would probably define the pattern thusly:
Wilson is to FDR, as Goldwater is to Reagan. In the modern era of politics, Wilson and Goldwater are the philisophical brainchilds (or is that brainchildren?) of the two movements and Roosevelt and Reagan were the men who implemented them.