Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Liberal Daydream

I posted earlier today about conservative daydreams -- Al Franken comesup short, and Joe Lieberman flips.  What about liberal daydreams?  I'd recommend this one: immediately after election day, 2008, Ted Kennedy and Robert Byrd realize that they're endangering the Democratic agenda with the risk that one or both of them won't be available for a key vote at some point, and they choose to resign their seats then.  I guess that means that West Virginia gets an appointed Senator, same as they have now; and Massachusetts holds its special election in, say, late January 2009, with Barack Obama at around 75% approval in MA and Kennedy able to stump for the Democratic nominee.


  1. My liberal daydream? Chuck fucking Hagel as vice-president. None of the plagiarism bullshit with all the pluses Biden brought to the ticket except MORE.

    Bread and Butter appeal? Check.
    Foreign Policy expertise? Check.
    Bi-Partisan appeal? Check.

    We'd have none of this Obama's a socialist. None of this Obama's a muslim. None of this hyperpartisan bullshit. None. There'd still be some, but it would NOT be as large because Obama would have a very well liked Republican Vice-President stumping for him and defending him. To be quite fucking honest, we would not be in this shithole had he been the VP.

  2. Liberal daydream: that the Democratic Party quits treating liberals like the cranky uncle you hide when company is visiting. Liberal daydream: that Barack Obama is a liberal. Liberal daydream: that the approach of the current administration towards civil liberties is more different from the approach of its predecessors than it is in reality.

    Daydreams are not real. Might as well dream big.

  3. The general liberal day dream seems to be that the Democratic Party act with the unity for liberal causes just as the Republican Party is believed to act with unity for conservative causes. The other liberal daydream seems that they want a similar relation between party and base.

  4. That Fox News will one day shape up its journalistic standards or people will stop watching it.

  5. Liberal daydream? That the filibuster was outright abolished in 1975.

    We'd have had labor law reform under Carter. Under Clinton, we'd have gotten a stimulus package, infrastructure investments, and possibly HCR. Had HCR still failed under Clinton, at least under Obama it would have passed by September of '09. Cap and Trade would have passed, a larger stimulus package would have been passed (provided paygo rules were waived this session), and additional jobs bills could have been passed.

    To be sure, under George W. Bush, we'd have gotten caps on medical malpractice suits, Miguel Estrada (instead of Alito) on the Supreme Court, and tax cuts that were made permanent (but which would also be easier to repeal).

  6. Let me tweak your daydream: Teddy Kennedy and Robert Byrd step down BEFORE the 2008 election, allowing young Democrats to get elected in a Dem wave year, and keep their seats for the next 30 years.

  7. My daydream is that the media woulda behaved itself in the 90's instead of getting stupid about Clinton with the Troopers and Gennifer Flowers and Vince Foster and Whitewater. An even minimally competent, reponsible media and we'd probably have had a better time of it in the naughties under a Gore presidency. The again, we'd probably be looking at Mitt Romney's polling numbers today...

  8. One critique of the Byrd daydream: If he'd resigned, political pressure in WV might well have led to a change in law, just as it did in the last few months. The special election might've been pushed up before the midterms, giving Capito a free shot at the seat. In that case, even if Manchin ran, too, he'd be one gaffe away from losing a seat for Dems.

    Hell, for that matter, if Kennedy resigned, Coakley would probably have still been the nominee. And she was the real problem in that race.

    My daydream has always been that Gore picked Bob Graham instead of Lieberman. One extra goose of the numbers in FL would've clearly changed the world. Plus, Graham was absolutely right on Iraq, so he'd be a good voice in any President's ear.


    1) Democrats carry Georgia, too, and Franken wins by a large enough margin to be seated quickly, rather than six freaking months later. With 60 Democrats in the caucus BEFORE specter, we can actually GET the 1.2T stimulus, and the leverage of having that buffer probably lets us get a health bill before Summer 2009, AKA the Summer of Slanders.

    2) The Democrats realize that this, this RIGHT HERE, is their Congress. They've got the biggest majorities they're going to get for a while, and a President to the left of the median members in both chambers. So, they either:
    a) On convening, reinstitute the Jefferson Rule. (Motion on the Previous Question)
    b) Adopt the rule in the caucus that any vote against cloture on any vote whatsoever will automatically result in a catastrophic loss of seniority, committee assignements, endorsements, and campaign money aid. Single-payer narrowly fails a majority vote, but Medicare is expanded to include everyone under age 21, and a robust public option passes with votes to spare.

    c) Scalia and Thomas die in a plane crash.

  10. Ted Kennedy did stump for Barack Obama in the Massachusetts presidential primary, and Obama was crushed by Hillary Clinton. So I'm not sure that Scott Brown would have lost if Ted was still alive. Kennedy probably knew that he no longer had the power to hand off the seat to anyone.

  11. Liberal daydream: that a charismatic, highly intelligent self-identified progressive emerges from obscurity to run for president in 2008, wins in an electoral landslide and solid popular majority, and passes a comprehensive health-care overhaul barely a year into office.

    Oh, wait, that already happened.

  12. M-S PR,

    Yeah...I'm thinking more like McCovey hits the ball just a little higher, not like Brian Sabean signs David Ortiz when the Twins let him go. IOW, stuff that's perfectly plausible. Granted, it could be that expecting United States Senators to give up their seats more like the latter than like the former.


    I don't think that Kennedy campaigning would have been the thing; it would have been having the election during Obama's honeymoon (or, as BP suggested, in Nov '08). I really don't think that even Coakley could have blown it then.

  13. Going way back to 1980. That the rescue mission to save the American hostages in Iran had succeeded giving the Carter administration a boost in popularity. Reagan would never had been elected.


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