Democrats should ride high on their legislative achievements this election


By Phil Case

If you have been following the incessant news coverage of the upcoming elections, you have almost certainly heard the narrative of the disillusioned Democrat.

The one who voted for hope and change, but feels like he might as well not vote at all anymore. Well, I would like to tell you that this is simply not true.

Not to get all “back in my day” on you, but it does seem to me that we are approaching politics differently in 2010.

In the age of gourmet microwavable dinners, viral video fame and extramarital affairs via text message, everything has to happen immediately if it is to be considered effective and successful.

Instead of spending two hours sauteing onions and glazing meat, we cut a couple of slits in a plastic case and cook on high for two minutes.

Instead of dedicating years towards studying and mastering a craft or art form, we buy a webcam, get a YouTube account and learn how to auto-tune.

Instead of courting an attractive young woman, we pull our pants down and take a picture.

But politics do not work that way. The structure that has been established through 234 years of eclectic, democratic discourse is one that requires a more gradual reform, a more persistent revolution.

So consider what has already been accomplished by the current administration in less than two years.

“We have taken our first steps towards joining the rest of the [Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development] in having universal health care,” said Daniel Krouse, president of NIU College Democrats. “Taxes for the middle class have been lowered. Student loans and credit cards have been reformed. We are disengaging from Iraq and starting a draw down in Afghanistan.”

This is all despite the fact that in order to counteract the party of “Yes we can,” the Republicans have basically become the party of “Yeah, but we probably shouldn’t.”

Any efforts of bipartisanship have been filibustered to death and yet, the Democrats still manage to propose and pass historic reform.

“This isn’t a case where both sides recognize there are legitimate problems and simply disagree about the details of how to fix them,” Krouse said. “The Republicans have outright said that their only goal is to destroy Obama, with Rep. [Darrell] Issa [R-Calif.] sending out mailers pledging to impeach Obama, and Sen. [Mitch] McConnell [R-Kent.] stating their primary goal is to make Obama a one-term president.”

If the Republicans do manage to dominate the elections today, then I hope they do it with a platform that involves some sort of plan involving real solutions for our country’s real problems.

And by real problems, I mean things like the economic crisis, not the paranoid delusions of a socialist illegal alien president who wants death panels.

If they win by campaigning with promises of ensuring business as usual, then think about what you are voting for. I cannot think of one instance in American history when our country got better by staying the same.