Epic pass/epic fail
By Michael Di Domenico
The Democrats have proven time and again this past year that nothing is more important to them than the legacy of this healthcare bill; not rules, not their personal careers, not even what the people of the country think or want. They've been marching en masse toward this cliff and with their disregard for everything but their agenda now nakedly exposed, they have little choice but to continue. The thought that now, at the five yard line and heading into the end zone, this little election in Massachusetts might push them out-of-bounds, will only cause them to dig in deeper; find some way around this possibly final obstacle.
On Tuesday, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts will go to the polls to fill the US Senate seat left warm when the corpulent Ted Kennedy bought the proverbial wind farm last summer. What should have been a no-brainer election for liberal-leaning Massachusetts, has suddenly drawn tighter than Nancy Pelosi's face.
While this race between Democrat Attorney General Martha Coakley and Republican Scott Brown could have been fought over several of the vast differences between them, it's becoming clear that this will be a referendum on the healthcare bill currently languishing in Congress.
As for the campaign itself, the Democrat machine, who never dreamed that it would get to this point, put Coakley up for the seat, ignoring her blah personality and mediocre work ethic. In contrast, her opponent has money pouring in from around the country, is energizing people and is saying populist things like, "It's not Kennedy's seat; it's the people's seat." Wow; that's the kind of oratory usually trumpeted by the leftist candidate.
This isn't the first time the Democrat Party has gotten into trouble for taking the voters of a blue state for granted. In a similar Democrat misjudgment, Senator Bob Torricelli was up against it in New Jersey in 2002. Even though he was surrounded by scandal, not the least of which was his connection to dirty businessman David Chang, the Party thought it unnecessary to even run a primary. The voters of New Jersey would certainly accept "The Torch's" filthy ways. Come on. It's friggin' Jersey, man.
Suddenly, Republican Doug Forrester was pulling away in the polls and something had to be done. The deadline for a ballot switch had long passed, but no matter. The New Jersey Supreme Court threw out the rule and Frank Lautenberg, freshly dusted off, took over for Torricelli and beat Forrester. It's clearly too late for a "Torricelli move" in Massachusetts, however the Democrat quiver is still filled with crooked arrows.
So how will the Democrats manipulate this one? Paul Kirk, the current Senator and place holder for the Massachusetts political machine, may have given us a clue. He's told us that said machine would stall Brown's swearing-in so as to allow him, not Brown, to cast the key 41st vote on the healthcare bill. Saying this publicly is either due to an overabundance of arrogance or a scarcity of brains. The reason isn't important, but the reality doesn't jive with recent Massachusetts history. In October, 2007, when a special election was held to fill Martin Meehan's House seat, the victor, Niki Tsongas, a Democrat, was sworn in two days later.
Political chicanery is nothing new for the Commonwealth. Massachusetts governors had always filled Senate vacancies, but in 2004 there was a little problem. Democrat Senator John Kerry was on the verge of becoming the president, or so they thought, and it would have been up to Governor Mitt Romney, a Republican, to choose his replacement. Egad. They couldn't have that and so suddenly they talked the talk of democracy. A special election put the decision in the hands of the people and that's the way it should be, they told everyone. Then this past summer, Ted Kennedy himself asked the Massachusetts Legislature, without success, to change the rule back. See. Democracy is only currency when it behooves the left. In Massachusetts, the rules are as fluid as the waters under a Chappaquiddick bridge.
Let's be clear. There's only one way this election will be considered finished on Tuesday night. If Martha Coakley has the appearance of even the slimmest victory, the Democrats will act like cops at a murder scene: "Show's over folks. Nothing to see here." However, if Scott Brown has the lead in the wee hours, get ready for the Democrats favorite voter nullification tool; the recount. Either way, Coakley has surely been told, "You won't be giving a concession speech Tuesday night, no matter what."
But take a step back and see where we're at. The Democrats are having a hard time winning in Massachusetts because of this healthcare bill. This thing is now like an albatross around their collective necks. What can this possibly mean for the mid-term elections for Senators and Congressmen and women in less blue or outright red states?
Some got a sniff of the trouble they were creating when the Democrats lost the governor's houses in Virginia and, more shockingly, New Jersey this past fall. But progressives told themselves and anyone who would listen that once they got past the healthcare bill the people would be happy, or at least forgetful. At the time of those elections, the mid-terms were still a year away. Well, the calendar has turned and an even "bluer" state is on the verge of falling.
Nitro Circus, the MTV ode to Evel Knievel, is a daredevil show that employs the motto "Epic Pass/Epic Fail." This simply means a stunt is great for the show if it goes really well or really poorly. The biggest sin is landing somewhere in between.
The troubles the Democrats are having winning a Senate seat in Massachusetts is just the latest hole in the healthcare dyke and Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi are running out of fingers and toes. There seems to be little "in between" left for the Democrats. They spent years recapturing Congress and have now put all their eggs in this loser of a basket. To reverse course would spell the end, so on they go.
As the Massachusetts special election shows, they're having a hard time convincing even their most hardcore supporters that this bill, or worse the way they've been going about it, is something to be proud of. Remember, Massachusetts has had this style of government-run healthcare since Mitt Romney signed it into law in 2006. It's no coincidence that since then, Massachusetts has also had the highest health insurance costs in the nation, as well. That's why it's either ironic or fitting that the people of the Commonwealth may use Ted Kennedy's very seat to put an end the notion of visiting their nightmare on the rest of the nation.
So for you political watchers out there, sit back on Tuesday night with your bowl of popcorn, but don't be surprised if it isn't over when you go to bed. While the gaps in the polls seem to widen every day, the Democrats are facing "Epic Fail," and will do everything possible to avoid it.