Saturday, November 8, 2008

Bachmann and Burner: Epic Electoral Fail for Netroots

I want to highlight the dramatic electoral significance of Representative Michele Bachmann's reelection to Congress from Minnesota's 6th district, and the defeat of Darcy Burner, the Democratic congressional candidate for Washington's 8th district, who has now conceded the election to incumbent Dave Reichert after a close race.

Together, the reelection of Bachmann and defeat of Burner mark a startling defeat for the 2008 netroots campaigns of
Daily Kos, Firedoglake, Open Left, and their "Blue America" coalition of Internet activists (see also Memeorandum).

After Bachmann appeared on MSNBC's "Hardball with Chris Matthews" in October, where
she questioned Barack Obama's patriotism, the big blogs on the left raised close to a $2 million for Bachmann's challenger, El Tinkleberg. Leftists charged Bachmann with "McCarthyism" after she recommended the media look into the degree of anti-Americanism in Congress. While the left was outraged, Bachmann's comments were met sympathetically from her constituents, who said she had no need for apologies. The following comment, in response to some of the angry commenters at the Wall Street Journal, is also telling:

Come on ... let’s be sensible here. Michelle was baited over and over into those questions by Chris Matthews anyone who isn’t a blind partisan could see that and I have watched that interview 4 times to be sure she wasn’t being outright hateful.

She is a good woman and will get the job done ...
Now, Darcy Burner's case is in some ways an even more striking repudiation of the hardcore netroots left than is Bachmann victory.

One of Burner's biggest assets to the left was her leadership in proposing a widely distributed plan for an immediate U.S. withdrawal from Iraq.

Called "
A Responsible Plan to End the War in Iraq," the proposal was anything but. The plan called for a complete U.S. military withdrawal from Iraq at precisely the same time that the Bush administration offered a new strategy for victory under the counterinsurgency doctrine of General David Petraeus. Like Barack Obama, Burner wanted to throw in the towel - capitulating to and enabling our terrorist enemies - after the U.S. government had in fact shifted to a new military doctrine that was based on some of the very criticisms the left leveled at the administration earlier in the war (not enough troops going in, poor doctrinal foundations for victory, etc).

But more than this, Burner's what the netroots call "
the quintessential Blue America candidate," which is to say, her issue positions are representative of the brooding Bush derangement which is the hallmark of the radical left contigents.

Now, there's a lot of triumphalism on the left following Tuesday's results, for example,
in Dave Neiwart's claim of a sweeping repudiation of conservatism in the United States:

No, this election was about one thing primarily: a sweeping repudiation of movement conservatism.

The breadth and depth of Democrats' victory was a loud shout from the American public: We have had enough of this crap.
Actually, as I noted last night, Barack Obama's margin of victory - in both the Electoral College and the popular vote - was less-than-middling by historical standards.

A slight majority of Americans nationwide voted for the change represented in Barack Obama's historic candidacy. But to argue for a sweeping repudiation of conservativism is innacurate. If any candidate should have been "sweepingly repudiated" as a "movement conservative," it's Michele Bachmann (who's frequently slurred on the left as
a rightwing extremist of the "lunatic fringe"), who won reelection even after the RNCC caved to pressure from the PC attack dogs on the left.

So, Bachmann's win, and Burner's loss, combined with other indicators, like the decisive defeat of same-sex marriage at the polls across the country, reveals both the limits of left's ideological electoral program, as well as the strong basis for a conservative revival as early as 2010.


Anonymous said...


Winning the White House, at least 6 Senate seats, and over 20 House seats,,,
I'll gladly take failing to win two more House seats.

If thats an "epic electoral fail", then how exactly would you characterize your wingnut's performance?

Anonymous said...

This is the virtual "every cloud has a silver lining" moment for the right wingnuts.

Sorry, I kinda have to laugh at this one. Especially since Bachmann Turner Underdrive was seen to congratulate the man she had previously called un-American.

Anonymous said...

Tim: What specifically undermines the analysis here?

The left pumped close to $2 million to defeat Bachmann and she held on. And Burner was the marquee congressional race for the left, and they lost. That's the point of this post. That Bachmann congratulated Obama shows how deranged are the attacks on her as an extremist.

Anonymous said...

Donald, she had a very comfortable lead. For her to squeak it out says volumes.

I guess the left should have spent closer to $20 to guarantee a victory, like your Mormon friends did for California and Prop. 8.

The point being, her victory, for what it's worth, does not excuse her call for the rekindling of McCarthyism.

Law and Order Teacher said...

Dr. D.,
Good call. The lefties can't get it through their heads that BO's win is a triumph of circumstance. Without the collapse of the credit market he would have lost to an old dried up man. While he is a national hero is unimportant to most of them. I hope BO succeeds because America will also. Having said that I think his policies once he takes office will be unpopular. Running against policies is extremely easy. Governing is hard and BO will prove that. Good luck.

Rich Casebolt said...

Tim ... as I have said before, aspiring to be a "citizen of the world" in a world where so many of its leaders do NOT "hold these truths to be self-evident" as our founding citizens did, and therefore refuse to defend ... if not outright deny ... life and liberty, IS un-American.

That is the foreign-relations platform of the New Bosses.

And it's funny, I didn't her her advocating the use of McCarthy's tools of blacklists and hearings, either ... so the comparison is kind of tenuous.

Anonymous said...

Rich: Tim's a radical leftist, and that's the kind of ideology they deploy.

Anonymous said...

We'll take these "epic defeats" any day! Look forward to "losing" again in 2010 and 2012! Palin for GOP nominee, anyone?

A happy Democrat

Rich Casebolt said...

bob v ... wait until the Dims get serious about sweeping our 401(k)'s into Social Security.

You'll see a "mandate" then ... to the point that perhaps even the Tina Fey parody would get elected, as long as she stayed "in character".

As for the real Sarah Palin ... the truth is coming out about her ... and it should not be making you so giddy, or confident in your future chances to hold on to the White House.

Rich Casebolt said...

Professor ... don't you love the Dimocrat responses we are now getting?

All gloat, no thought.

As Bill Whittle is now saying ...

Folks, we are going to lick these people out of their boots.

There is much to do. That a man with such overt Marxist ideas and such a history of association with virulent anti-Americans can be elected President should make it crystal clear to each of us just how far we have let fall the moral tone of this Republic. The great lesson from Ronald Reagan was simply that we can and must gently educate as well as campaign, and explain our ideas with smiles on our faces and real joy in our hearts, for unlike the far-left radical who gained the Presidency on Tuesday, we start with 150 million of the most free and intelligent and hard-working people in the history of the Earth at our backs, with a philosophy that -- unlike theirs, which has resulted in 100 million dead in unmarked graves -- has liberated and enriched more people and created more joy than any nation or combination of nations in our history.

How can we lose this greater fight, my friends? How can we lose, unless we give up?

Anonymous said...

Exactly, Rich, it's all gloating without reason. Hey, let them enjoy the moment, but the Dems have to be careful - they fell far short of a mandate.

BB-Idaho said...

Bachmann won her district. IMO, she hurts the GOP with her ultra conservative views, such as accusing the GOP governer of marxism (over tax policies) or stating that many Nobel winners
believe in IntelligentDesign (doubt it, 65 of the science winners endorsed Obama). While that attitude plays well with some, it chases some away....a problem with which the GOP continues to grapple. Even got
acronymns now, SC for socialCon,
FC for fiscalCon, etc It is the old saw.."lets get everyone pulling together....good, now in the same direction!" :)