February 24, 2007 [LINK / comment]

Moderate Democrats under fire

Even as most American people long for moderation and pragmatism these days, both parties are being pulled in opposite directions by their respective hard-core activists. In a sense it is a relief to learn that the Republicans are not alone in facing sharp internal divisions caused by the "true believers" in their ranks for whom reality is a meaningless concept. In recent weeks, Left-wing Democratic blogs such as dailykos.com have denounced Rep. Ellen O. Tauscher (D-CA), who chairs the centrist New Democrat Coalition. She has sharply criticized President Bush's "surge" policy in Iraq, but even that wasn't good enough for the leftist fringe. "Kos" himself, Markos Moulitsas Zuniga boasted, "Absolutely, we could take her out." See the Washington Post. Rep. Tauscher is also a member of the "Blue Dog" Democrats of which South Dakota's Stephanie Herseth is a leading spokesperson. They are highly conscious of the need to restore fiscal discipline, like most Republicans used to be. In the next election cycle, the center will be where the action is at, and the party that makes the strongest appeal to moderates will win.