Saturday, February 05, 2005

The Trainwreck Party

The New Republic has an insider's view of the DNC selection process which has, as I write this, (almost) settled on Howard Dean as chairman (hat tip, Polipundit). It's an interesting look into the Democrats' dis-organization, and Ryan Lizza's account confirms the rumors that the Democrats have some big internal divisions.

"To many Washington Democrats watching the circus-like contest from afar, it
has been an embarrassment. "I think it's pathetic," says James Carville. "It's
so indicative of the Democratic Party. Now we're just playing into every
stereotype: We're weak, disorganized, flopping around...."
I remember thinking "They doth protest too loudly" during the DNC convention every time Terry McAuliffe (or John Kerry, or others) proclaimed how unified the democratic party was. Same with the remarks about how thrilled they were with John Kerry as their candidate. Looks like McAuliffe was peddling snake oil, if Lizza's piece is accurate.

The Dems don't have much time to waste on their internal squabbles. And Dr. Dean, as a national candidate, is a total failure. What did he accomplish in 2004? As DNC chairman he may be able to raise lots of money, but he also knows how to spend it as fast as it comes in.

It's hard for me to understand how more money will help them get their message out; the 527s, and a highly partisan media are already doing all they can. Perhaps they should focus on their message instead. In other words, I don't think it really matters who is DNC chairman. If it ends up being Dean, fine. But the Dems have much bigger problems to overcome, and they can start by getting serious on the issue of national defense.

UPDATE: Jonathon Chait has a piece in the L.A. Times on why a Dean chairmanship would be a disaster for the Democrats.

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