What's Tony Thinking

Exasperated With the Progressive Dems


There has been a raft of articles this fall on one theme: the Democratic Party, or at least its progressive wing, is doing as much to ensure that the Republicans take control of Congress in the mid-terms as the opposition. The Republicans tried to shoot themselves in the foot with crazy candidates. But the progressive Democrats said, “Hold on mate, give me that gun so I can shoot my own party, in both feet.”

Yesterday the “Progressive Democratic Caucus,” headed by Washington’s Pramila Jayapal, called on the Biden administration to engage in “vigorous” negotiations with Russia to end the Ukraine War. Well, yes, we’d all like to see that war end. But the proposal of the Progressive Democrats was a whiny non-proposal. No specifics. No proposal other than a demand to “negotiate” directly with Russia (without including Ukraine in the negotiations).

Why, when Ukraine is demonstrating such courage and smarts, the urging to negotiate with a war criminal? Maybe they know something about Putin that none of the rest of world does, but I find it confounding that they are so eager to back away from what has been their President’s greatest foreign policy success in mid-stream and just days before the mid-term elections.

Today Jayapal “withdrew” the letter, blaming it on a staffer. Insult added to injury. Did a staffer lead her to the podium yesterday?

To my mind Ms. Jayapal has not been helpful. Earlier this year she and her caucus insisted that the bi-partisan Infrastructure bill be tied to the whole 2 trillion dollar banana of the “Build Back Better,” which nearly torpedoed the popular infrastructure action.

Meanwhile, other progressives are piling on San Francisco Mayor, London Breed, who had the audacity to tell it like it is about San Francisco’s open air drug market. In a recent interview Breed said, “Why do people who deal drugs have more rights than people who try to get up and go to work every day and take their children to school?”

She went on, “Let’s talk about the reality of this situation. There are, unfortunately, a lot of people who come from a particular country—come from Honduras—and a lot of the people who are dealing drugs happen to be of that ethnicity. And when a lot of the arrests have been made, for people breaking the law, you have the Public Defender’s office and staff from the Public Defender’s office, who are basically accusing and using the law to say, ‘You’re racially—you’re racial profiling. You’re racial profiling.’ Right? And it’s nothing ‘racial profile’ about this. We all know it. It’s the reality. It’s what you see. It’s what’s out there.”

Predictably, Breed was roundly excoriated as racist. And the Democrats scratch their head about losing the Hispanic and working-class vote?

This follows on “Defund the Police,” which research shows has little support in, and adverse consequences for, black communities.

Daily now I get a score of desperate emails from various Democrats urging me to stem the flood of the coming Red Tide in the mid-terms — while other Democrats appear to be opening the flood-gates. If there is a Republican take-over of both houses of Congress next month, the Progressive Democrats can, in my humble opinion, share the credit/ blame.


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