Deluge or delusion
" Suddenly, Democrats see a possibility in 2006 [for] a sweeping midterm election"
A return to Democratic control of Congress? Yup, that's the dream. And not just a half-ass set-up, not just a new razor's edge Senate; no madame no, there's to be a House takeover too, "an anti-incumbent, 1994-style" tsunami.
The donkey won't see such good times till Hillary is burnt at the stake. And if you don't believe me, here's the gray lady's squint :
"New polling .... shows the approval rating for Congressional Republican leaders at 32 percent with 52 percent disapproving, a sharp deterioration .... "
Sounds good, right? Well, guess what:
"The ratings of Democratic leaders stood at 32 percent approval, 48 percent disapproval."
I.e. 32 versus 32 approving, 52 vs 48 disapproving -- where's the hee-haw in that? To think this ridiculous less-than-a-dime's-worth of difference is the stuff donkey dreams are made of.
Ah, but there's more hope on the horizon:
"48 percent say they want a Democratic-led Congress compared to 39 percent who prefer Republican control."
Any well-funded bunch of corporate PR types can drown that lead in Grover Norquist's bathtub, surely? But let's move on.
So what if the Republicans are "swimming in a culture of cronyism and corruption"? Is that enough to get it done? Or do the D's need (as the Times suggests) their own "Contract With America"? And if so -- just what are the "broad themes" to be ?
Well, the Times obligingly revels a top secret Demo poop sheet. The bullet points:
"broader access to health care and college education"
[insert trumpet fanfare here]
"Iraq and national security."
Now naturally that last theme is the jazzerciser, right ? -- since all the others are as venerably stale and eminently defeatable as they were back in the 94 98 and 02 platforms.
So -- how about that Iraq thing? Will it be -- go for it -- a cry of "out of Iraq ...now"?
Well, the Times isn't coming flat out of the closet on this -- probably because there's no closet to come out of. They write: "Iraq is the most divisive issue for the Democrats." I'll translate for ya: Peace now on the Euphrates ... Not gonna happen.
Oh, before you beam off -- Here's a final money graph from this same NYT article: it seems Democrats have a "long-running argument" going on amongst themselves whether to "offer alternatives or simply critique the Republicans." Seems it's this Gordian knot that so far, anyway, has limited the party's collective war bray to this:
"America Can Do Better."
Well. Yes. Indeed she can.