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January 7, 2003

Feeling Down And Depressed? Imagine How Loyal Democrats Feel!

John P. Snyder

It is difficult to recall a time when the Democrats were in such a pickle. From local and state level up to the national scene, Democrats face a daunting dilemma. They have gotten their message out successfully. Now they have to grapple with the fact that is not popular with the voters.

Let's begin with President Bush. His high approval ratings are no fluke. People like him. They trust him. His way is not the "in your face everyday" manner, trying to get you to like him. He is honest. He surrounds himself with capable people and lets them do their job. He appears uncomplicated; dedicated to his country, family and faith in God.

He is not, as the NAACP and Al Gore tried to paint him, a racist. No, he hasn't consulted with the Rev. Jesse Jackson. He has not re-introduced Jim Crow or lynching as his race baiting detractors insisted he would during the 2000 presidential election.

Under his watch, the real danger to world peace is rogue nations possessing nuclear bombs and other weapons of mass destruction. Our country can use its power as a source of good by taking out these dictators who threaten our peace. There is no moral equivalence between George Bush and Saddam Hussein. As he did in Afghanistan, he will take decisive action when the time is right. We will get the job done.

The American people trust George Bush during these dangerous times. It is unlikely that they would trust our nation's security to a John Kerry or a Dick Gephardt or any other mealy-mouthed Democratic presidential hopeful.

When Democrats are not race baiting, or promoting class warfare, they love to talk down the economy. When the economy goes flat there are no buttons to push or laws to pass that ends a sluggish economy. Voters were fully aware that the economy was struggling during the fall elections. They did not trust the Democrats to do a better job than the Republicans.

For Democrats, the solution to every problem is to raise taxes. Republicans believe that the best way to prime the pump is to get more money into the economy so there is more money to spend on the goods and services that comprise our economy. The fact is those making under $50,000 contribute very little to the tax base of the country.

It makes sense to grant some relief to those who have larger incomes and more disposable income so they may spend more in our economy. Democrats know this but have become so accustomed to pandering to the middle class that they can't help themselves.

The U. S. House and Senate are controlled by the Republicans. It doesn't look like it is going to change anytime soon.

Here in Maryland, the iron grip of the Democratic establishment seems to be loosening. While the Dems hold solid majorities in both Houses of The General Assembly, one wonders if it is due to ideology or deft reapportionment tactics by previous Democrat governors. Where once Maryland was considered solidly Democratic, a picture of two Marylands is emerging. The fabled Big 3 (Montgomery, P.G. and Baltimore City) is being challenged by the Super 7 (Washington, Frederick, Carroll, Baltimore, Harford, Anne Arundel and Howard counties) for political clout. The counties that gave Bob Erhlich his victory are fast growing suburban entities, not usually fertile grounds for Democrats. It will be interesting to see how the moderate-to-conservative Democrats from those counties hold forth in the coming weeks and months.

Maryland did increase its Democratic representation to Congress by two, thanks to Governor Glendening's handiwork. Only by chopping up Connie Morella's district were they able to dispose of her. Pity those in Dickerson who are represented by Albert Wynne, from Prince George's County . And Montgomery County, who was well served by Ms. Morella, now is represented by Christopher Van Hollen, a liberal extremist who is unlikely to be heard from anytime soon.

Those yellow dog Democrats (those who would vote for a yellow dog, as long as it was a Democrat) in Frederick were full of optimism this time last year. Surely, they thought, everyone disliked Alex Mooney as much as they did. And with a little redistricting magic from their buddy Parris Glendening, we will be back in business. Some even thought Kathleen Kennedy Townsend would appeal to Frederick voters. When Democrats get so confident it is usually because they have limited their conversations to just each other and they actually believe that because someone is a registered Democrat they will vote Democrat faithfully.

Had the Republicans nominated anyone other than Tim Brooks, our delegation would not include Galen Clagett, the lone Democrat. The whole slate, save for Mr. Clagett, Bruce Reeder and Jan Gardner was wiped out.

Last year at this time one of my fellow Tentacle columnists proclaimed the conservative movement dead. It is not. Later he proclaimed the race for Governor over, in the favor of the Democrats. It is over, but in the favor of Republicans.

As people think of the issues of the day in a pragmatic, logical fashion, they favor Republicans.

Those who are guided by emotion and simple solutions can always count on the Democrats.

Let's be thankful they are losing.

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