Markos Moulitsas comments on our woefully out-of-touch political press:
You’d think that the Beltway conventional wisdom would reflect the simple reality revealed in the polling: the stimulus legislation was overwhelmingly popular, Obama and congressional Democrats benefited politically from passing it, and Republicans are being punished by popular sentiment for opposing it. Alas, D.C. is located in an entirely different dimension from the real world.
MSNBC’s First Read declared the Republicans winners, because the party “demonstrated unity after its big losses in November.” The Associated Press’s Liz Sidoti risibly wrote, “Adrift after back-to-back electoral losses, they found their voice against a Democratic Speaker and an expanded majority … as they led the effort to define the package as too costly and too quick.” The propagandists at Fox News echoed those sentiments: “Republican lawmakers may turn out to be winners. Most of them voted against the package, and in their largely unified opposition, they found an issue to galvanize the party.”
The problem with the Republican Party isn’t a lack of unity. Conversely, finding unity isn’t going to save the Republican Party. In fact, if anything, the GOP was hurt because they were too unified behind bad policies.
That’s the GOP’s problem–they have bad polices, they have bad ideas. It doesn’t matter how unified they are or aren’t; unifying behind bad ideas is always bad policy.
Did people vote against the GOP in 2006 and 2008 because they were disorganized? No, they voted against the GOP was because Republicans had spent years implementing really poor policies that had disastrous effects.
Lining up behind a bad idea wasn’t a victory for the GOP; in fact, it was the same kind of politics-as-usual that got us into this economic mess to begin with.
But I guess that’s the Republican Party for you: working hard to solve problems nobody had.