When a staffer for a brand-new Republican senator gins up a memo that suggests that the Terri Schiavo case is a winning issue for Republicans, the left explodes in fury, accusing the Republicans of inexcusable politicization of the issue (rightly, IMNSHO).
However, I expect to hear only crickets from the same left-wingers over Howard Dean's politicization of the issue.
"We're going to use Terri Schiavo later on," Dean said of the brain-damaged Floridian who died last month after her feeding tube was removed amid a swarm of political controversy.
Note that Howard Dean is not a flunkie of a freshman senator, he is the national leader of a major political party.
Dean, who has called congressional intervention in the Schiavo case "political grandstanding," singled out House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-Texas) for his leading role in the matter.
"This is going to be an issue in 2006, and it's going to be an issue in 2008," Dean told about 200 people at a gay rights group's breakfast in West Hollywood, "because we're going to have an ad with a picture of Tom DeLay saying, 'Do you want this guy to decide whether you die or not? Or is that going to be up to your loved ones?' "
Congressional involvement in the issue is grandstanding, but an ad campaign such as the one Dean outlined is not? Howie, your reality check just bounced; your sanity account is severely overdrawn.
The Republican activists who pushed this case were wrong, but Howard Dean is not only wrong, but idiotic, because he's had time to assess the effect of the memo affair on public opinion, and he still couldn't restrain himself. The Democrats have just ceded any moral high ground they might have had over the Republicans on this issue.
Those who thought that Terry McAuliffe was bad for the Democrats are in for a long couple of years, because with Captain Dean at the helm, the Democratic Party is going to be obsessed with harpooning the white whale, to the exclusion of everything else, like winning back seats in the senate and House of Representatives. Even if they take Delay down, his seat is so solidly Republican that it's unlikely a Dem could win it. Bumping off Delay would actually be a net plus to the Republicans, since it would deprive the Democrats of their favorite whipping boy. Rick Santorum is a lot more charming and sympathetic than Delay; they simply will not be able to get the same mileage with him as they have with Delay.
You really can't see the difference here? Please. Actually doing the deed is very very different than speaking about the deed done. One is using a personal tragedy for one's own personal gain. The other is using that crass f#@$ up for one's own personal gain. They are two completely separate things. You just want the whole thing to go away because your guys exposed themselves as the a-holes they are, not that most politicians aren't a-holes, but still.