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Happy days are here again for Dems?

January 30, 2006

Happy days are here again for Dems? (Joe Scarborough)

It’s only one poll, but what a warning shot for Republicans running Congress.

An ABC/Washington Post poll just released shows that Americans prefer the direction a Democratic Congress would take the country by 20% over the Republican path.

The most dreadful news from this poll for Republican senators and congressmen is the fact these results were released after a series of gaffes by DC Democrats.

The message sent by this ABC poll seems to be that Americans are willing, at least for now, to support anyone but Republican leadership on the Hill.

The reasons are clear and were given in a speech of mine run by CSPAN yesterday. Congressional Republicans took control of Congress in 1994 by promising to clean up Capitol Hill, balance the budget and reform the way Washington works.

Judging them by recent headlines, the GOP has failed on all counts.

The federal debt is higher than ever before, spending in Congress has hit obscene levels and a culture of corruption has settled in over those who once promised to clean the place out.

An important caveat: Never make predictions on a single poll. Other surveys have shown an upward tick by the President, and the economy is improving while the Democrats continue to struggle for a coherent message.

Besides, I remember all to well newsmen gleefully reporting exit poll results election night 2004 while trying to stop themselves from whistling "Happy Days Are Here Again."

A few hours later, 90% of the press corps was crushed. Bush was heading back to the White House.

This election cycle we still have ten months to go.

It is too early for Democrats and their allies in the media to start the celebration. But past time for a bloated and corrupt Republican Congress to take note of just how low their stock has fallen.

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Howard and Osama (Joe Scarborough)

Left-leaning websites have been buzzing the past few days about those of us who compared Osama bin Laden’s message last week to speeches delivered by leaders of the Democratic Party over the past few years.

Look at the following quotes made by bin Laden and DC Democrats and decide whether those observations were on point.

Both Osama and Senator John Kerry seem to agree that American soldiers in Iraq are committing acts of terror against Iraqi women. Osama talks specifics while Senator Kerry generally blasts American soldiers for "terrorizing" women and children.

Bin Laden: "The U.S. Army and its agents take to the point where there is no significant difference between these crimes and those of Saddam. These crimes include the raping of women and taking them hostage."

John Kerry: "And there’s no reason, Bob, that young American soldiers need to be going into the homes of Iraqis in the dead of night, terrorizing kids and children, you know, women."

Both Osama and Howard Dean agree that the conclusion of the Iraq War is a foregone conclusion, and both agree that America is doomed.

Bin Laden: "The wise ones know that Bush has no plan to achieve his alleged victory in Iraq."

Howard Dean, DNC Chairman: "The idea that we’re going to win this war is an idea that, unfortunately, is just plain wrong."

Democratic leaders like Dean and Kerry, as well as Ted Kennedy and Richard Durbin, have provided grist for OBL’s anti-American messages.

That’s why I believe that Democrats who strongly disagree with the President’s foreign policy objectives must demand that their leaders do four things:

1. Shut up.
2. Develop a viable alternative to Bush policies.
3. Measure all words before attacking the Commander in Chief during a time of war.
4. Understand that most Americans believe we are living through a time of war.

I know it’s wishful thinking but I can’t resist trying to help.

But maybe the Party of Kennedy is beyond help.

Maybe that’s why George Bush continues using national security issues to pound Democrats into the ground on the one issue they just don’t get.

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Roberts revealed by suicide ruling (Joe Scarborough)

Anyone wondering what kind of Chief Justice John Roberts will be on "life" issues needs to look no further than Tuesday's Supreme Court decision on Oregon’s assisted suicide law.

The opinion, written by the always meandering Anthony Kennedy, upheld an Oregon provision that allows citizens to help sick and dying patients kill themselves.

But all the chatter coming from the Supreme Court steps centered around Roberts’ decision to join a stinging dissent.

Roberts teamed up with Justice Antonin Scalia, who used his minority opinion to accuse the majority of either being confused or dishonest--suggesting Kennedy distorted established law to get the results he wanted.

Tough talk, but the kind of ideological warfare Americans should expect from their top court in the coming years. Unlike Anthony Kennedy and Sandra Day O’Connor, John Roberts has an established framework he will use to approach cases. Unlike the two Reagan appointees, he will not worry about public opinion when crafting his decisions.

That is bad news for liberal court watchers.

Making matters worse for them is the fact that Roberts will gain another ideological ally on the court in coming weeks. That’s when Samuel Alito will gain confirmation from the Senate.

Yesterday, Nebraska Democrat Ben Nelson became the first Democrat to jump on Alito’s bandwagon, bragging about being a big ol’ booster of President Bush.

In the press release sent out to his Republican state, Nelson reminded voters he was no Tom Daschle. in fact, he had "supported more than 215 of President Bush’s nominations to the federal bench, including Chief Justice John Roberts."

Yes. The same John Roberts who will spend the next thirty or so years writing opinions that will oppose assisted suicides, abortion rights and Sixties-styled judicial activism.

All in all, a very bleak time for groups like the ACLU and Planned Parenthood.

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Why use Martin Luther King day to stir hatred? (Joe Scarborough)

Why is it that some politicians love to turn Martin Luther King Day celebrations into race-bating spectacles? Kind of crazy, I think, considering the great civil rights leader spent his life preaching racial reconciliation.

I guess some politicians don't read history books.

Yesterday, New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin used a King commemoration to claim God wanted the Big Easy to be a "chocolate" city controlled by African Americans.

Imagine what would have happened if a white politician had declared that Jesus Christ had proclaimed to him in a vision that New Orleans was to be a white-controlled city.

That white racist would be run out of town in 24 hours.

So why do we let bigoted statements made by black leaders go unpunished?

Presidential historian and New Orleans resident Douglas Brinkley condemned Nagin's comments last night on "Scarborough Country" and suggested that the mayor may be losing his mind. If that's the case, he deserves our pity. But what's Hillary Clinton's excuse?

Yesterday, the future Democratic nominee for president spoke at Al Sharpton's MLK Day event in New York and compared Republican members of Congress to slave holders.

Clinton said, “When you look at the way the House of Representatives has been run, it has been run like a plantation and you know what I'm talking about."


Did the next Democratic nominee for President of the United States really use a day reserved for racial reconciliation to tell black Americans that public servants not in her party were comparable to slave owners who beat, raped and killed human beings for profit?

I think she did.

But will she be held accountable by a liberal media elite who loathes Republicans almost as much as Senator Clinton?

Not on your life. And that's too bad, because it teaches other politicians that preaching hatred comes with few penalties.

Happy MLK Day, Ray and Hillary. And thanks for promoting peace and unity between the races.

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Bush: Bringing his base back home (Joe Scarborough)

Those who read my blogs regularly know that I am tough on both parties. This usually leads to political hacks from all sides attacking me.

Republican apologists have blasted me throughout the fall for whacking the White House on Katrina, the CIA leak case and runaway spending in Washington.

But the worm has turned in the last few months and has shown, as I predicted, that the President and Karl Rove would regain their footing. They began with the day Rove dodged an indictment and Harriet Miers withdrew her nomination.

After that fateful day, the White House went on the attack, appointed a very conservative Samuel Alito, beat back Democrats on the WMD issue and took the offensive on Iraq.

It has paid off.

The President's numbers are rising because he ignored the MSM and instead focused on bringing his base back home. Like I explained months ago, Reagan and Clinton survived their second term scandals because their base stayed with them. Now Bush's base is doing the same thing.

Have you seen the economic numbers? Even Paul Krugman will have a hard time spinning those in a negative way.

And what about the Democrats' performance in the Alito hearings?

Could they have been any worse?

They should have shut up and let the most conservative nominee since Bork hang himself. But no. They were just too in love with their own voices to hold a substantive hearing.

So now Roberts and Alito will serve on the Supreme Court for the next three decades and these Democrats will be remembered as the politicians who put them there.

All gains Democrats made against Bush and the Republicans in the fall have been lost. Ted Kennedy and his allies were seen this week as the party who were fighting for the rights of criminals instead of victims, suspected terrorists instead of citizens and abortionists instead of innocents.

The Left may whine about my characterizations, but trust me folks, this is how the majority sees it in Middle America.

Making Ted Kennedy the face of your party is not the way to win them over in Wichita.

That's bad news for mainstream Democrats who want to take their party and country back. And its bad news for independents who want a less conservative Washington.

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Sensitivity training for the Senate (Joe Scarborough)

Sitting through these Alito hearings is teaching me the real meaning of compassion. I mean, who would have ever believed that US Senators would be the ones to school me on the high points of how to be a  sensitive soul?

Yesterday, South Carolina’s Lindsey Graham almost had his Muskie moment while asking Judge Alito whether he was a bigot, crook and/or bed-wetter. Not exactly sure why Lindsey made himself tear up but, whatever. It made Mrs. Alito cry and that made for good headlines.

It also made Lindsey’s opponents look like bullies.

Today, Vermont’s Patrick Lehey began the hearings by letting the world know that while he would like to discuss the Terri Shiavo case with Alito, he just couldn’t put that poor family through anymore pain.

Five minutes later, after dropping Shiavo’s name a half dozen times, the Senator almost seemed to believe his own words. 

It’s all so touching.

A few more days around this place will probably get even me in touch with the Alan Alda buried deep within my cynical soul.   

I can hardly wait.

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Putting on a fair trial (Joe Scarborough)

A few years back I flew to Peru to observe a US citizen's trial. While inside that dusty South American jail that also served as courtroom, I told a friend how superior we Americans were when it came to putting on fair trials.

"In America, we actually let the proceedings start before we make up our minds," I sniffed.

My mind wandered back to Peru yesterday sitting though the Alito confirmation hearings. Soon after the questioning began, it was clear that no minds would be changed by what the judicial nominee had to say.

Maybe that's because senators couldn't stop talking long enough to let Alito complete a sentence.

Or maybe it's because in one of the most important proceedings involving our judicial system, the US Senators passing judgment on our next Supreme Court justice were just as close minded as those Peruvian hanging judges I watched years ago in that South American jail.

I don't feel so smug this morning.

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