The liberal meltdown as a result of the last week's election in Massachusetts continues apace.
And the latest victims of the Bay State choosing Republican #41 for a Senate seat are the editorial staff of The New Republic. Anybody who follows The New Republic, such as your humble correspondent who has kept the NewsBusters Eye of Sauron focused on that liberal outpost knows they are a bunch of policy wonks who have spent the better part of the past year obsessed over every arcane detail of ObamaCare as well as closely following its passage in its various versions through the House and Senate. In fact the two New Republic Jonathans, Chait and Cohn, are so emotionally invested in the fate of ObamaCare, that I fear for their mental health should that legislation, as now appears likely, fails to pass.
You want an example of how depressed The New Republic has become on the topic of the Obama presidency? Well, just check out this meltdown money quote from their latest editorial:
How does this president handle a crisis? Thus far, the answer is not at all encouraging. The current crisis is the election in Massachusetts of Scott Brown, now the forty-first Republican senator. His arrival in Washington has sent Democrats into panic mode--fearful that they too will be swallowed by a seething electorate--and caused many of them to flee in the other direction from health care reform. In short, Barack Obama faces a moment where his presidency just might collapse or, rather, risks heading into a wilderness where it would accomplish next to none of its ambitious goals.
Here is frustration on steroids over the fact that ObamaCare came soooo close to being signed into law but now seems soooo far from reaching that goal:
Never before has a Democratic president inherited more propitious circumstances for advancing reform to fruition. And, although liberals might have griped as reform plodded its way through the various fiefdoms of the Senate, a monumental bill ultimately emerged, an impressive work of consensus that survived the interest-group ringer and the annoying maneuverings of Senators Ben Nelson and Joe Lieberman. Congress was one or two perfunctory roll-call votes away from sending a bill to Obama’s desk. That’s when Brown won his upset, instantly making the distance the bill needed to travel to the president’s desk seem unbearably immense.
And why do I get the feeling that the two New Republic Jonathans were beating their heads against the wall while the following was written?
But to squander this opportunity--after such intricate negotiation and so much expenditure of political capital--makes no rational sense. Abandoning health care now wouldn’t render Democrats any less vulnerable. They have already taken tough votes in support of the measure; they just wouldn’t have any tangible achievement to show for those votes. Defeat would set back the chances for meaningful reform for a generation. What Democratic politician would ever set foot in that graveyard again? And, after health care has stalled the rest of the president’s agenda for a large swath of his first year, what grand accomplishment would he have to show for his time in office? The bill’s defeat would rightly send his liberal base into a fit of depression--and it would send a dangerous message to his enemies that he will shy away from a fight on even his top priorities.
A fit of depression led by the liberal policy wonks who wasted the past year obsessing over every detail of ObamaCare.
And now a plaintive plea from the meltdown TNR editorial staff:
Health care reform must not be allowed to die--for the sake of the president and his party, and, more importantly, for the sake of the many millions of uninsured and everyone else who suffers under this terrible system. Yet, as we write, Obama has not yet risen to meet this existential threat to his presidency.
Please don't let ObamaCare die! Please! Oh, pretty please!!!
Finally frustration and anger at Obama over the fact that ObamaCare now appears to be gone, Gone With The Wind:
On election night, the airwaves were depressingly free of the presidential surrogates who should have been calming nerves and suggesting that this defeat would do nothing to forestall reform. Days passed and that message still had not arrived. Behind the scenes, the White House was floating a scaled-back alternative. All the while, the initiative continued to drift further away.
And now, we have arrived at a point where we can take the ultimate measure of Barack Obama. For much of the health care debate, he has been a relative bystander.
I vote present!
If Democrats are worth anything as a party, they will rally around their president. As much as any other issue, health care reform is their raison d’etre. This is hardly an irremediable situation for Barack Obama. But, for the first time, we are nervous that he isn’t up to the task.
Gasp! Not up to the task? But what about all those 2008 assurances from the mainstream media that The One was some sort of haloed "Lightworker" with special powers that allowed him to perform miracles? And now The New Republic, in the midst of their Massachusetts meltdown mode, is suggesting that he is just...an ordinary schmoe?