February 18th, 2007

Voting Republican

Liberal resurgence in the United States

THESE are balmy days on the American left — genuine, uncharacteristic sunniness unpolluted by some fluky political climate change. There is even talk of a — stutter, clear-throat, perish-thought — liberal resurgence.

Or, treading gingerly, a “liberal moment.”

“Hell, ya, this is a liberal moment,” exults Thomas Frank, author of “What’s the Matter With Kansas?” — and yes, he even calls himself a “liberal” writer, eschewing the sleeker “progressive” stage name that many lefties are preferring these days. He declares this “liberal moment” loud and proud. Until the inevitable qualifier comes.

“A potentially liberal moment,” Mr. Frank says, “assuming that liberal politicians can seize the moment and get beyond their usual plague of incompetence.”

Oh, snap. Liberal optimism, thy name is caution and caveat.

But it is optimism nonetheless, and well-founded, too, say Mr. Frank and a broad spectrum of political thinkers and leaders. And, they say, the evidence goes beyond the obvious indicators — the ascendance of Democrats in the House and Senate, President Bush’s second-term belly-flop and poll numbers showing the Democratic Party trending left and the nation’s political center trending Democratic.

The chicken-egg riddle is how much this alleged “liberal moment” bespeaks genuine momentum for the left and how much stems from anti-Bush, antiwar, anti-Republican fervor.
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From 02/18/2006 edition of the New York Times.

I think us liberals can actually take a nice breath of fresh air at some of the stats from the article, including, for the first time since Clinton was President, self-identified Democrat's outnumber Republicans (34-31 percent), and that voters of my generation (18-25) are far more Democratic than previous generations. This last note is of particular importance because of the rise in "liberal Democratic" affiliation. I can state that many, MANY Democrats in my home state of Texas are far more conservative that the majority of Republicans here in the North East. So, I think the liberal pre-fix to Democrat is the most important thing to take from this.

Now, lets see if the liberals can keep pushing the increasingly popular ideas of universal health care, stem-cell research, and equal rights for gays/lesbians in such a way that doesn't put it all into the political trash heap.
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