Wednesday, October 19, 2005



Chris Bowers over at My Due Diligence makes a good case that "withdrawal from Iraq" ballot resolutions could be for the Democrats what the divisive Anti-Gay Marriage ballot measures were for the Republicans-- a way to draw die-hards on election day with the hope that as long as they're there for their issue they'll also vote the right way on candidates. Bowers points out the latest Democracy Corps polls showing that antipathy for the war is about as strong as antipathy for gay marriage.

Meanwhile, others have what I think is an even better idea: stem cell ballot measures. Although the fringe loons on the most extreme edge of the KKK/Nazi/GOP coalition oppose this, the VAST majority of Americans, including moderates, independents and even rational conservatives, embrace it. Imagine the predicament of right-wing congressloons and senators who have to take a position! Do they alienate they fringy base of religionist idiots or do they alienate the electorate in general? And one state, promising one of the tightest and most crucial senate races in the country, Missouri, is already moving in this direction. The incumbent, a good for-nothing right wing freshman, with a vague whiff of DeLay/Abramoff corruption about him (Jim Talent) has to face popular State Auditor (and former TOUGH county prosecutor) Claire McCaskill. McCaskill, of course, is an enthusiastic supporter of stem cell research, like all sane Americans. Talent is ducking the issue so intensely that you'd think he could quack.

McCaskill will benefit a couple of ways from this. Obviously it will bring people to the polls, Democrats and independents who support it overwhelmingly, but also non-political types whose grandpa has a debilitating disease who the wing-nuts don't care about. But there's more. How about a bitter, even vicious, battle between the maniacs who think God is on their side vs the Greed and Selfishness wing of the Republican Party who are aware that we're in the 21st century, not the 11th?

Republicans in Missouri are dreading this one and there are few states where this wouldn't help progressives. Even in the bowels of the old Confederacy this issue is a winner and could help tip races in other states where Democrats could use an extra push (Virginia, Nevada, Colorado, Minnesota, Arizona, Tennessee...). Even in a state like Rhode Island, where Chafee supports stem cell research, it will fracture the GOP and piss off far right loons who might boycott the election altogether or just go and then not vote for U.S. Senator. As Cartman would say, "Sweet."


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