national opinion

Monday Column
Carol Platt Liebau

[go to Liebau index]

Latest Column:
Stopping the Meltdown
What Beltway Republicans Need To Do

Subscribe to CRO Alerts
Sign up for a weekly notice of CRO content updates.

Jon Fleischman’s
The premier source for
California political news

Michael Ramirez

editorial cartoon

Do your part to do right by our troops.
They did the right thing for you.
Donate Today

CRO Talk Radio
Contributor Sites
Laura Ingraham

Hugh Hewitt
Eric Hogue
Sharon Hughes
Frank Pastore
[Radio Home]

















Matthew N. Klink - Contributor

Matthew N. Klink is a writer and political consultant who works for Republican candidates at the federal, state and local level. He can be reached at [go to Klink index]

Lurching Left
Howard Dean & The Democratic Party's Leftward Swing...
[Matthew N. Klink] 12/18/03

How ironic it was that on the same day when every newspaper in America touted Saddam Hussein's capture by U.S. troops, a front-page, above-the-fold article in the Los Angeles Times indicated that 32% of state Democratic Party leaders endorse Howard Dean, the party's most ardent critic of President Bush's policy toward Iraq - and a traditional, tax-and-spend, soft-on-defense liberal Democrat. Poor timing? Yes. Indicative of the battle raging for the heart and soul of the Democratic Party? Absolutely!

The far left, those who support big government and high taxes and abhor a strong, vibrant American military, have become re-energized for the 2004 election cycle. These partisans, who to this day cannot accept the fact that George W. Bush defeated Al Gore in 2000 and won't tolerate even a slight centrist tilt in the Democratic Party, believe they've found their candidate for 2004. With the Dean candidacy, these same liberals now openly talk about a "revolution in the Democratic Party" and speak bluntly and negatively about the "New Democratic tendency to cooperate with the right."

Their goal is simple - steer the party away from the center and back toward the extreme left. America's most opportunistic politician, Al Gore, sensed this momentum swing and quickly cast aside any claim he had to being a centrist Democratic when he endorsed Howard Dean last week. Gore's backing boosted an already high Dean campaign, and emboldened the Vermont doctor to continue his verbal assault against President George W. Bush.

The foundation of Howard Dean's entire candidacy completely and totally embraces the far left's two most critical issues: a visceral hatred of anything and everything George W. Bush has ever done, said, felt or thought, and an almost equally passionate opposition to war, even a justified war.

Since the beginning of his campaign, Howard Dean and his growing base of supporters have gone out of their way to question President Bush's integrity, character and motivations both domestically and internationally - tactics that motivate the ultra-liberal grassroots base and further fuel the intense hatred of anything and everything Bush. Dean, like all Democrats, engages in the class warfare-type arguments, but his rhetoric takes it to new heights. He unrepentantly states that he would rid America of all President Bush's tax cuts, even those targeted toward the middle class such as the child tax credit, relief from the burdensome marriage penalty and tax relief for small business owners.

Equally important and perhaps more relevant is Dean's ardent opposition to America's military action in Iraq and the use of American military power in general. It's for this reason why lots of California Democrats, particularly those in Berkeley, San Francisco and Los Angeles love him. Dean stated last spring that America won't always have the strongest military. Under a Howard Dean presidency, he may be correct. Sensing the Vietnam-era anti-war yearnings from the Democrat far left, Dean has vociferously challenged and intensely criticized America's war against global terrorism.

Most recently, Dean received considerable news coverage by recklessly stating, "The capture of Saddam Hussein has not made America safer." He has also claimed that Hussein could have been found six months earlier had Bush won UN support for the military offensive. Mind you, the fact that France, Russia and China blocked us at the UN National Security Council for months, and the reality that Saddam Hussein has used and most likely would have used again weapons of mass destruction, are insignificant facts that are quickly ignored by Howard Dean and the far left.

More troubling, though, are Howard Dean's views toward American military power in general, particularly in a post-September 11 world. Dean would have America become subservient to the world community. He talks about America seeking "UN permission" to protect our national security interests. He touts "multilateralism" as the solution to all our foreign policy problems, where America would abdicate its leadership role and, instead, fall in line with countries like France and Germany in approaching international relations. In short, Howard Dean would take America to new lows, where it has never been before - and from which it may never recover.

But, Howard Dean knows exactly what he is doing. He is a man of the moment and he senses his moment is now. The "shock and awe" value of his statements have struck a chord with the ultra-left Democratic faithful and have literally sucked the air out of the 2004 nomination process. Every other Democratic challenger, save Joe Lieberman (Al Gore's 2000 running mate), has followed Howard Dean's leftward tilt. Senators Edwards and Kerry, Congressman Gephardt, Wesley Clark and others have joined Dean in becoming the anti-candidates - if it's anti-Bush, they support it. But, with Gore's endorsement, Dean now realizes that attempts by all other Democratic presidential nominees to pander to the "progressive" base are only half-measures. After all, why would the ultra-left settle for "anti-Bush light" when they could have the real thing in Howard Dean?

There's an old political campaign axiom that states, "Never stand in the way of the opposition when they're self-destructing." This statement is truer today than ever.

Let Howard Dean keep talking and let the Democratic Party swing further and further to the left. As Republicans, we should welcome this leftward swing. While the 2004 Presidential election is by no means an absolute certainty, the further to the left that Dean and his band of ultra liberal "revolutionaries" pushes the Democratic Party, the greater likelihood that history will view him as yet another liberal Democrat, in the McGovern, Mondale and Dukakis ilk, who won his party's nomination but could never make it back to the reasonable center.

copyright 2003 Matthew N. Klink




Blue Collar -  120x90
120x90 Jan 06 Brand
Free Trial Static 02
ActionGear 120*60
Free Trial Static 01
Applicable copyrights indicated. All other material copyright 2003-2005