Channel-surfing through the cable news networks this morning, I chanced upon a MSNBC interview about the Schiavo case that made me say to myself, “How wise are this man’s observations!”
Namely, he was agreeing with what I said in yesterday’s post: the Democrats are wussing out on this issue because they’re scared of the religious right/social conservatives.
Here’s what Terry Neal, chief political correspondent for WashingtonPost.com, had to say:
MSNBC anchor: “So why have the Democrats been so silent, so quiet [about the Terri Schiavo case]?
Neal: “Well, that’s a good question. There’s still a lot of soul-searching among the Democrats. And I think the Republicans have a problem, but I think the Democrats have a problem too. The problem the Democrats have is that they seem to be unable to coalesce and come together around any issue that is sort of controversial. And I think it raises the question among people, ‘What exactly does this party stand for?’
I mean, think about it. In the Senate the Schiavo bill passed by unanimous consent. That means not one Democrat, not one Democratic senator, was willing to go to the leadership and force a floor vote on this. They just let this thing go.
And the reason is, they’re all scared about the exit poll numbers that show so many people care about moral issues, and the vast majority of those people voted for George W. Bush. They’re unwilling to take a stand on issues, even if it might upset the minority of voters who aren’t going to vote for them anyway.”
Right on, Mr. Neal.
My advice to the Democratic Party is that a precondition for having moral values is that you have any values. When you keep blowing in the wind, just like Kerry did, shifting course with every perceived change in the political climate, voters are going to see you as lacking a firm value spine.
Flexibility is fine. But bending is from a stable center. Cooked limp spaghetti can’t bend because it doesn’t have any firmness from which the bending can take place. Democrats are so loosey-goosey these days, I don’t know what they stand for any more. That’s why I’m comfortable remaining an Independent. I know what my values are; I’m perplexed about Democratic values.
As I said yesterday, if the Republicans introduce a bill that makes the recently-passed Terri Schiavo law apply to every incapacitated patient in a similar condition, the Senate Democrats are going to have a tough time explaining why what was good enough for Terri isn’t good enough for everybody.
My prediction is that these Dems are going to be saying, “I voted for the Terri Schiavo bill before I voted against it.” Such waffling isn’t the route to re-taking Congress and the Presidency.