With a shove from party leaders, Iraq war veteran Paul Hackett abruptly quit a key Senate race in Ohio and further exposed a disconnect between the Democratic establishment and Internet-fueled challengers.
The political novice withdrew under intense pressure from party leaders in Washington, clearing the field for Rep. Sherrod Brown -- a 30-year veteran of Democratic politics with more than $2.5 million in the bank.
"Hackett brought credibility on the No. 1 issue facing the nation -- the war in Iraq," said Jon Soltz, an Iraq combat veteran and executive director of the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America Political Action Committee. "The Democratic Party loses credibility on that issue because he is no longer running, and because they had a hand in his decision."
So it's the same old, same old once again. Business as usual.
One definition of insanity is to do the same thing over and over, expecting different results. The Democrats in Ohio, or Washington, or both, must be insane as well as clueless.
Go read this highly apropos piece by Robert C. Koehler:
Two ghosts stalk the national Democratic Party in its pitiful, 21st century incarnation. One is George McGovern, who taught them that only Republican values matter in a national election. The other is Ralph Nader, who taught them who the real enemy is.
The present hamstrung state of the party is the result of its abject fear of these ghosts, which has given it a permanent moral stammer. A party that doesn't believe in itself is doomed to lose over and over, even if it represents the majority of the people and even - as Al Gore demonstrated in 2000 - when it gets the most votes.
As the Republicans of 2006 shoot themselves and otherwise self-destruct, the Democrats have a chance to make significant gains in this year's elections. All that's stopping them are their own ghosts.
Is he saying that whistling past the graveyard will keep you out of it? Fat chance.