Here’s Mort Kondracke in “Negative 'Deanism' Hurts Democrats' Rebound Prospects”:
All this evidence suggests that what the public wants from Washington is action on the issues that concern it most - the economy, gasoline prices and Iraq. Bush has policies and proposals for dealing with the problems, even if the public doesn't necessarily like them.Ex-Donkey links to a Third Way study indicating that the middle-class is trending away from the Democrats because the conservatives’ “ability to win the war of ideas”:
To the extent that Democrats do have alternatives, no one knows about them because they spend so much time going negative, and, going over the top. If there's one thing that turns off independents and moderates, it's negative name-calling. It may work in the thick of a campaign, but Deanism is a turnoff for party-building.
As the Democrats grapple with their party's identity and try to come up with new and clever ways to attack President Bush and the Republicans, the GOP is growing its base with an optimistic and positive message of "growth, hope and opportunity."Finally, here’s David Broder on “Meet the Press” this past Sunday:
MR. RUSSERT: Let me show you one last poll number. And this is approval of U.S. Congress: approve, 31; disapprove 64.Yeaaaagh!
David, is it enough for the Democrats to say, "Let's just hold on and hope that they want to throw the bums out," or do the Democrats have to come forward and say, "Mr. President, you have your Social Security plan. Here's ours. Mr. President, you have your vision of Iraq, here's ours"?
MR. BRODER: The Democrats need to be able to say something positive to the American people, which they have largely failed to do so far. And this takes us back to Howard Dean because by focusing so much on his own comments rather than looking for a way to give the party a policy voice, he's really done them a disservice.
Follow-up – Bush slams obstructionist Democrats at fundraiser.