Many times over the past few years, we have been giddy and excited about the prospect of finally seeing the Bush administration and its enablers get their come-uppance, only to ultimately be disappointed for one reason or another. Plamegate, Fitzmas, 2004 elections, unsubstantiated rumors of Rove’s indictment, Libby’s commutation and many many others come to mind.
Yet, now, I can’t help but feel a bit different. The stone wall (pun intended) that is the Bush administration and its enablers is starting to crack in many places. And while this won’t get us out of Iraq now, fix the foreign policy “errors”, undo the damage from Katrina, the middle class or many of our basic rights – at least not as quickly as they were damaged or taken, the pendulum is starting to swing back a lot qui
ker than many of us thought a few short months ago.
The 2006 elections were a big start. And while the Democratic Congress hasn’t moved mountains (or tackled the tough big legislative items that Americans really need), they have done quite a few things – things that are still pretty tough with a de facto tie (at best) in the Senate, an Executive Branch that thinks nothing of overstepping at will just for shits and giggles, and a slowly-waking-from-its-six-year-coma media that should have republicans on the ropes, the enablers of this administration on the verge of going the ways of Rick Santorum and the nightmare we have been experiencing since 2001 a few (albeit small) steps closer to being over.
These past few weeks, despite the lack of movement on meaningful legislation on Iraq, are starting to show just how scared (and quite possibly dangerous) those who have been comfortable with and supportive of the republican policies and actions are, and should be.
O’Reilly’s latest crack up has been the subject of much derision and many a diary here – moving the bar from “then they ridicule you” to “then they fight you”. With the laughable attacks by right wing hatemongers against our continued pulling back of the curtain and hateful screeds that are nothing more than ad hominem or strawman attacks, we aren’t too far off from the final part of Ghandi’s quote: “then you win”.
And win we will. If the Bush administration (and the republican enablers in Congress) are willing to and their plan is to draw out congressional confrontations until they are out of office, then this will only bode better for us as progressives and supporters of the Democratic Party. More than 20 republican Senators are up for reelection next year. What they do, who they are associated with and who they support will speak volumes come next when they have to face their districts or states.
Gonzales continues to lie and lie badly before Congress, leading for more calls to impeach him (since we know he won’t resign and Bush won’t fire him). Even Arlen Specter (and yes, he is a leader among the “say one thing and do another” crowd) has come close to calling him a liar, while Senator Jay Rockefeller used the words “perjured himself” when talking about the nation’s top prosecutor.
Two top current and former officials are now the subject of contempt citations – and if the administration (led by Justice Department head liar Gonzales) stonewalls this as well, then the rest of the country could get just as comfortable with the words “inherent contempt” as we have been over the past month or so. Either way – with all that is coming out and has come out regarding the US attorney firings, the “lost” and deleted emails, the absolute disgust shown for the “rule of law” by Sara Taylor, Monica Goodling and others in the “Law ‘n Order” party – even without Democrats making a big public deal about this – the public is not on the side of the Administration and its enablers.
Blood is in the water. And while we can sense and smell it, “they” are finally starting to realize that it is their blood, not ours. A 25% approval rating, or one that has been under 40% for as long as Bush’s has been is a dangerous sign for a party that has stood behind him in lockstep. Even though Congressional approval ratings are also in the shitter and approval for the Democrats is down, it is still higher than for republicans, and there is still a very large gap between who the country would like to see in power come 2008.
That isn’t to say that there isn’t a lot more work that the Democrats need to do. Or us for that matter. But not only is the “permanent republican majority” fading quicker and quicker in the rear view mirror, it is closer to a permanent mess. Lackluster candidates, no vision, failures up and down the legislative line and little more than hysterical ranting that is becoming a dyke which is looking more and more like it is about to explode.
I, for one, will continue to press as hard as I have been. And will be sure to stock up on popcorn as well.