Ross: Beware, politicians, of the lost cause
America is now days away from a shutdown, a self-inflicted default, and the last chance to pass the bills that will determine whether Joe Biden is relevant or not.
It always happens this way, right? On the big issues, our system always forces politicians to walk the plank.
However, Larry Sabato, everybody’s favorite pundit, doesn’t seem too worried:
“Normally, parties do the rational thing in the end after they posture, and complain, and scream, and yell at one another. One assumes they’ll do that this time because nothing else makes any sense. But then, we live in an age where loads of things make no sense.”
Which brings me to the progressive Democrats who are publicly threatening to withhold their votes. I realize it’s a bargaining tactic, but I also think they mean it because they are true believers. Like their counterparts on the right, true believers on the left have this tendency to keep flogging away at losing issues, like defunding the police.
The latest poll on that issue came out 10 days ago in Minneapolis, where the movement started, and it found that 75% of Black voters were against cutting the police force. They want a better police department, not a smaller one.
At least on the Biden social infrastructure bill, the polling is excellent. A majority of Americans want programs like affordable child care, help for seniors to stay in their homes, free community college, and higher taxes on billionaires. All very popular.
But I get the feeling that the progressives are not just threatening, they are actually going to vote no – unless they get it all. So they can go home and say they fought to the end, and remained true to their ideals, even as they cruise to defeat in 2022.
However, this is not Brown v. Board of Education. This is a budget bill. This is where you make trade-offs. I think that some politicians are so addicted to the struggle, they would rather lose it all than settle for a partial victory. It’s a matter of honor.
America DOES have this tradition of honoring a lost cause. But in the end, all that gets you is a bunch of hollow statues that later get removed.
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