Muftic: An open letter to my progressive friends and relatives
July 20, 2010
I suppose we can take a degree of satisfaction that Colorado Republicans are having their problems. A Republican candidate for governor has been caught plagiarizing and the leading primary candidates for Senate are racing to the right to see who can be the most extreme.
With Congressional Republicans at the bottom of the approval rating, worse than the president, worse than the Democrats, in the faith Americans have they can solve any problems, who knows: this may cut the Democrat’s losses in the midterms nationwide. After all, the voters have to choose between two candidates, not between a candidate and their ideal action hero.
Just do not count on Republicans shooting themselves in their own feet. The headwinds of a conservative backlash are still blowing strong. What I am hearing from the progressive wing is harmful to their future hopes and President Obama’s re-election. What I am hearing from my pragmatic middle-of-the-road friends is a fear the choice will be between the lesser of two extreme evils … a choice between a party with ideas that have proven to have failed in the past and a party that seems less concerned than they should be about debts, deficits and a healthy business climate .
Stop the sniping. Get over that you did not get the whole loaf. Time for lobbying this Congress has passed. Legislation is now law and there are some very beneficial accomplishments that justify the expense and a more activist government.
Any progress in health care and Wall Street reform is in jeopardy of being rolled back and weakened unless progressives, liberals and pragmatic middle-of-the-roaders start pulling in the same direction to get likeminded candidates elected.
If progressives think that continued sulking will get what they had hoped, guess again. Losing the House, electing more Republican senators will only move the goal post far away for many years. Complaining that the president did not push for their preferred agenda will not get him re-elected in four years. Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney poll’s show favorable ratings near Obama’s. No matter who wins either party’s primaries, Colorado’s Senate race is a toss up.
Sure, Congress did not pass single payer or the public option, but 30 million more of our citizens will get access to affordable health care and all consumers will get a lot more, such as elimination of insurance denial for preexisting conditions and protection from insurer’s unfair practices.
Sure Wall Street reform could have been stronger, but we got the biggest taxpayer, investor and consumer protection reforms since the Great Depression. For the first time there is a method to wind down failed big banks without sticking taxpayers with paying for bailouts or crashing the economy. Remind the Republicans that they are the ones who made bailing out Wall Street a necessity because their policies of permissiveness caused it. Do we really want Republicans in charge to repeat history?
Sure Obama did not bring unemployment down to 8 percent, but 9.5 percent is at least better than where we were headed if Republicans stonewalling had succeeded.
FYI: In Colorado, unemployment is at 8 percent. Take pride that Obama’s economic policies avoided Great Depression II and the economy is growing again.
Yes, the war in Afghanistan surges as Obama promised, but Iraq withdrawal is on target and Obama has not backed down on setting dates for beginning to withdraw in Afghanistan.
And stop griping he is ineffective. Historians are already calling his legislative and policy victories among the most of any president in their first two years … at least comparing him to Reagan and Johnson and even FDR. He may not have gotten your exact agenda enacted, but he got something similar to it that just might get the job done anyway … barring rollbacks if Republicans gain control.
Sorry for the lecture, friends and relatives, but get a hold of yourselves.
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