So long, and thanks for … well, thanks for something… The Governor will miss you, I’m sure. Seriously, Finneran’s departure is the best news for MA liberals/progressives/good government/all-around honest folks in years. DiMasi seems like a stand-up guy at first glance; let’s see if the Dems position themselves as the party of reform and civic virtue. We just gotta keep the heat on ‘em. Like this guy: (I’m a Norman Rockwell liberal.)
Orcinus settles the anti-war marginalization battle with this paragraph [found through Atrios]: So really, what doesn’t help matters is evading the issue by implying the people who opposed the Iraq war — that is, the people who were right– not only are unqualified to contribute, but must be evicted from theranks of liberalism. That, in fact, is the opposite of an honestconversation. Indeed the whole discussion is more of the blame-liberals-first, self-hating-Beltway-Democrat garbage that The New Republic has been pushing for ages. The problem we’ve had — and that the nation as a whole has — is that we don’t realize the degree to which the Bush administration has felt free to be dishonest and divisive with this issue. We have a history of honest stewardship in our government, especially when it came to matters of national security. Even the Senate is utterly dependent on the good faith and competence of those in the executive branch. And guess what? It’s not there anymore, and 51% just doesn’t realize it, or doesn’t want to. Forget about Michael Moore — read Richard Clarke, and you’ll see just how incompetent and dishonest this administration has been from the get-go. So, considering that we [...]
Senate Democratic leader-elect Harry Reid (D-Nev.) apparently could support Scalia for Chief Justice, but considers Thomas an "embarrassment." Liberal groups dutifully expressed outrage, as did pro-Thomas conservatives. Is Reid serious when he says that he thinks Scalia (unlike Thomas, in his view) is just a "smart guy" who, if nominated, should be confirmed on the merits? Or has Reid figured out that Scalia would probably be an ineffective Chief, as we’ve already discussed here, and for that reason has decided to back him? In either case, Reid’s kind words for Scalia combined with his insistence that Bush should hear Democratic suggestions for judicial appointments is most intriguing. Stay tuned.
Item: the no-nonsense Attorney General of a blue state has decided to take on the incumbent "moderate" Republican Governor in 2006. I’m actually talking about New York’s Eliot Spitzer, who has just made it official, but it could just as easily be local boy Tom Reilly. Reilly is clearly thinking hard about following Spitzer’s lead here in the Bay State, and barring some unforeseen disaster, he will probably throw his hat into the ring. But can he avoid the pitfalls that did in Scott Harshbarger, another Mass. Attorney General who tried to make the transition to the corner office? Successful prosecutors tend to be hardasses ("people skills" don’t win murder cases), and Reilly (like Harshbarger) certainly fits that bill. And it may be tough for a hardass to convince the electorate that he or she should be the chief executive, as opposed to the chief law enforcement officer (see page 8 of this July 2004 poll showing that the margin by which people would rather "hang out … over a beer or coffee" with Bush than Kerry was not that different from the margin by which Bush won the popular vote – and the age and gender breakdowns in the [...]