Skip to main content

View Diary: Time for the DLC to die (281 comments)

Comment Preferences

  •  What Joe Said (3.80)
    Kos and others revel in calling From a "bomb-thrower," and sadly that's what he's degenerated into. Best to call a spade a spade. But let's not rise to the bait, and start throwing bombs and starting internicine fights ourselves.

    Kos, you write "I have seen first-hand the DLC's increased isolation from former supporters (especially the younger set)." I'm with you on this. You've seen it, I've lived it! The DLC excited me in the late 80s, it does nothing but annoy me now.

    Certainly the DLC is spent. Certainly the NDN is indeed "'spectacular, very cutting edge.'"

    But is it really appropriate to talk about "euthanizing" a branch of the party? If it's dying, why not just let it wither? If it's not dead, watch out lest you saw off a limb whose support we may need, and which may regenerate.

    The more I see of Evan Bayh, the less impressed I am, and if Kerry picks Bayh for VP to try to somehow "woo" some spurious cadre of DLCers out there, that will be very annoying. Let's all do what we can to keep that from happening.

    Still, we're way ahead of ourselves if we think that now is the time to thumb our noses at the likes of Bayh or Breaux. As things stand today, it's likely that a President Kerry will be counting on them or like-minded successors to be deal-makers in a starkly divided congress. (And can we meanwhile agree that DLC-type Edwards and other such possible VPs (Landrieu?) shouldn't be subjected to these blanket condemnations?)

    And if you don't like that thought, that the DLCers still must be evenhandedly reckoned with, consider at least this victory: Kerry himself is not one of them, even though it was said that no Democrat could win the Presidency without being in that club.

    The promise of Kerry is exactly that he may bring a mix of old and new Democrat, progressivism and conservatism, that indeed leaves behind the era of the DLC and its obsession with the left-right spectrum (just as Clinton transcended that opposition).

    Who knows, a Kerry presidency may bring a revitalized DLC too, with a smart new mission. Most likely, it will not--the organization will just die. But let it die on its own--or at least, if a blade is to be applied, let it be done subtly and respectfully.

    •  Wonderful post. n/t (none)

      And when we meet again, I will fall to my knees, and rise to your needs -- Gary Daly (China Crisis)

      by tlaura on Sun May 23, 2004 at 11:07:37 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Joe iz smurt (none)
      Ottoe giv me turkee.
    •  KERRY IS DLC!!!! (none)
      Kerry himself is not one of them

      YES HE IS...DO YOUR HOMEWORK

      •  Dude (none)

        That's the point. MOST Dem senators have been affiliated with the DLC. It's a matter of degree. Kerry IS and has been one of the most liberal national Dems. The fact that he's been affiliated with the DLC just goes to show how big a tent the DLC has been at other times (not like these). Just goes to show e.g. that you could be DLC and anti-Gulf War I.
        •  lets tell the truth (4.00)
          That's the point. MOST Dem senators have been affiliated with the DLC.

          Not true, at the moment they claim 20 members from the Senate. Here's the list:

          Evan Bayh, U.S. Senator, IN  
           John Breaux, U.S. Senator, LA  
           Maria Cantwell, U.S. Senator, WA  
           Tom Carper, U.S. Senator, DE  
           Kent Conrad, U.S. Senator, ND  
           John Edwards, U.S. Senator, NC  
           Dianne Feinstein, U.S. Senator, CA  
           Bob Graham, U.S. Senator, FL  
           Tim Johnson, U.S. Senator, SD  
           John Kerry, U.S. Senator, MA  
           Herb Kohl, U.S. Senator, WI  
           Mary Landrieu, U.S. Senator, LA  
           Joe Lieberman, U.S. Senator, CT  
           Blanche Lincoln, U.S. Senator, AR  
           Zell Miller, U.S. Senator, GA  
           Bill Nelson, U.S. Senator, FL  
           Ben Nelson, U.S. Senator, NE  
           Mark Pryor, U.S. Senator, AR  
           Debbie Stabenow, U.S. Senator, MI  

          Although, after November, this list will be considerably shortened.

          Kerry IS and has been one of the most liberal national Dems.

          John Kerry isn't a liberal. He's a DLC member from a liberal state which is a different thing entirely.

          "...the definition of a gaffe in Washington is somebody who tells the truth but shouldn't have." Howard Dean

          by colleen on Mon May 24, 2004 at 06:30:08 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  You Make My Point (none)

            The DLC has been on the downslope for a decade and they still count half the Dems in the senate.

            And look who's NOT on the list. True-blue liberals like Baucus, Byrd, and Hollings ...

            Showing that DLC membership is often more indicative of an open-minded attitude than of an ideology.

            Not that From gets that--he is tragically unaware of what was once the strength of his organization.

            But if you think Kerry is a conservative Dem, you're mistaken.

            •   weak. weak. (none)
              The DLC has been on the downslope for a decade and they still count half the Dems in the senate.

              It comes as a shock to me to discover that the Senate has only 40 democrats and that the DLC has been on the slide since 1994. pretty amazing that they managed to so completely saturate the white male options in the primaries seeing as they've been out of power for so long.

              jeeze.

              No I don't think Kerry is a conservative Dem, I do not think he is a liberal.

               

              "...the definition of a gaffe in Washington is somebody who tells the truth but shouldn't have." Howard Dean

              by colleen on Mon May 24, 2004 at 08:46:08 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Weak (none)

                Ok, sorry, I should have said 42% not "half."

                And you don't address my point that many non-DLC Democrats are more conservative than the membership, not less.

                Kerry, like Clinton and like any intelligent Dem imho including Dean and Wellstone, cannot be well characterized in terms of a simple spectrum running from "liberal" to "conservative."

                It's time for that weak way of thinking to go. At its best, the DLC helped make such new thinking possible. I'm very sorry it's fallen back on equating conservatism with moderation.

                •  Lets review. (none)
                  Ok, sorry, I should have said 42% not "half."

                  You claimed that a majority of the dem senators were affiliated with the DLC. I provided a membership list which revealed only 20, one of the Zell and 4 of them certainly on their way out. You claimed I made your point and then claimed that half of the dem senators were affiliated with the DLC, I pointed out that this was, once again, not true.
                  There does not seem to me to be any further point to this conversation, we've already established that it takes three posts before you're willing to admit to a factual error. Why should I waste my time?

                  "...the definition of a gaffe in Washington is somebody who tells the truth but shouldn't have." Howard Dean

                  by colleen on Mon May 24, 2004 at 11:41:56 AM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Calm down (none)

                    I did admit to a factual error. Reread the first line of my post, instead of just blindly reprinting it.

                    "Ok, sorry, I should have said 42% not "half.""

                    I did not use the word "majority." If you're anxious about how close 42% is to 50%, that's in your head, not mine.

                    My point, again, is that 20 senators is a lot. 42% of the total. Especially a lot when one notes that clearly a bunch of the most conservative senators just forgot to mail in their membership forms. You say 4 of the DLCers are on their way out. Ok, but how many of the remaining 28 are likely on their way out as well?

                    I'm not sure what your point is. Mine is that the DLC has been considered a pretty mainstream aspect of the party. Elsewhere in this thread I heartily agree that its home office is up to no good. But I don't think there's much reason to take a given politican's membership or lack thereof in it as in itself a very meaningful piece of data.

                    At bottom you seem to have an axe to grind with Kerry. Ok, then, grind it, that could be interesting. Just accept that labelling Kerry "DLC" is not going to raise as many eyebrows as you think the label ought to raise.

                    •  asdf (none)
                      I did admit to a factual error. Reread the first line of my post, instead of just blindly reprinting it.

                      My point was that this took three posts and you were absurdly claiming that I had made your point.

                      I did not use the word "majority." If you're anxious about how close 42% is to 50%, that's in your head, not mine.

                      yes, this is true. You said "most" dem senators were affiliated with the DLC or, more accurately MOST. This would imply at least a majority. I'm hardly 'anxious' or not calm. I'm just attempting to point out that your responses to having factual errors pointed out haven't been very compelling .

                      I'm not sure what your point is.

                      My point can be found in the subject line of the first response I made to you.

                      That said:

                      I quite agree that simple membership in the DLC isn't a reason to condemn a politician. For instance, I quite like Jennifer Granholm, Jay Inslee and the work that Eliot Spitzer is doing.
                      Hey, I also like Gore now that he's divested himself of the organization and, after all ,Howard Dean was once a member. I think at this point that savy politicians need to divest themselves from membership in the organization but that is another matter.

                      My quarrel is with pols like Lieberman, Breaux, Bayh, Biden, Adam Smith etc and with the home office. I will admit that membership in the DLC isn't exactly a recommendation, that I think their strategy sucks and their increasingly frantic excesses in attacking various segments of the party who don't follow their ideology are genuinely destructive.

                      At bottom you seem to have an axe to grind with Kerry. Ok, then, grind it, that could be interesting. Just accept that labelling Kerry "DLC" is not going to raise as many eyebrows as you think the label ought to

                      You should stop projecting or at least  ask questions before exposing them. I do not have an ax to grind with Kerry, I think it's important to tell the truth and part of the truth about Kerry is that he is indeed a member of the DLC and that he is not a liberal. These are two common spins which are, quite simply, not true. I want Kerry to win in november. I don't think lying about who and what he is will help in that effort.

                      "...the definition of a gaffe in Washington is somebody who tells the truth but shouldn't have." Howard Dean

                      by colleen on Mon May 24, 2004 at 12:54:46 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

      •  Howard Dean (none)
        was a DLC poster boy as governor of VT. I know you have Kerry issues, but tying him to Al From isn't exactly accurate.

        Why am I so darn rational?

        by JMS on Mon May 24, 2004 at 05:41:48 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

  • Recommended (151)
  • Community (76)
  • Bernie Sanders (50)
  • Elections (42)
  • 2016 (41)
  • Environment (34)
  • Hillary Clinton (33)
  • Climate Change (33)
  • Culture (32)
  • Civil Rights (29)
  • Republicans (28)
  • Science (28)
  • Media (27)
  • Barack Obama (24)
  • Law (23)
  • Labor (23)
  • Spam (21)
  • Education (19)
  • Trans-Pacific Partnership (19)
  • International (18)
  • Click here for the mobile view of the site