NYMag’s Chait Weeps For Lugar, Constitution
Seriously. Jonathan Chait is in virtual tears over Dick Lugar’s primary loss in Indiana. Why? Because it means the Republican party is purging itself of “moderates” and that will cause a constitutional crisis. He takes a while to get to his main “concern” in this awful piece of hackery, but he does get to it. Here’s how he starts off his lament:
The defeat of Richard Lugar in the Indiana Republican Senate primary is the kind of event that would have been shocking just a half-dozen years ago, and has since grown routine. Incumbent senators used to have almost no fear that they might be deposed by members of their own party for ideological or partisan deviations, and now that threat has become the most powerful disciplinary tool available to activists. And it’s a tool, moreover, that is being deployed asymmetrically – the homogeneously conservative Republican Party has winnowed out virtually all its moderates, while the Democratic Party remains a looser coalition of moderates and liberals.
First, maybe the brilliant Chait can explain how the Republican party can be simultaneously “homogeneously conservative” and then “virtually” – which implies “not completely” – winnowing out moderates. Then he might want to give us all a hint at who these “moderate” Democrats are these days. Last I checked, Democrats have gotten rid of nearly all their “blue dogs” and the remaining “moderates” are retiring.
In short, Jonathan Chait is a hack. He literally pulls nonsense out of his rear end, wraps it in long-winded prose, and then sells it to morons who believe his crap. But let’s continue.
The toppling of Lugar is a seminal event because he is such a long-standing and esteemed member of the Senate, and his deviations were so tiny.
According to who, Jonathan? You? The far-left moonbat? Maybe his deviations weren’t tiny to the people of Indiana? Ever consider that?
Speaking of tiny deviations. Chait didn’t have any problems with making Democrats pay for not voting for ObamaCare. Even when they were objecting FROM THE LEFT. Chait was all about getting rid of Kucinich, for example. What’s the difference between trying to defeat Kucinich and trying to defeat Lugar? Answer: Nothing. But in the mind of a hard left ideologue like Chait, voting out Kucinich or any other Democrat who dared not vote for ObamaCare was simply a policy decision. When Republicans do it, it’s an ideological purge.
The main affliction of American politics is not a lack of bipartisanship. It is, as the former advocates of on-the-one-hand, on-the-other-ism Thomas Mann and Norman Ornstein argue in their new book, the collision of an increasingly radical Republican Party with a creaky political system poorly equipped to handle unified, fanatical parties.
Because the Democrats, who have purged themselves of the “blue dogs” aren’t being “fanatical”, apparently. Only Republicans can be fanatical, right Jonathan?
All this nonsense was just a way to soften the most ridiculous part of Chait’s rant. The one where he performs a feat of historical amnesia while pretending to be concerned about the Constitution.
The most important and alarming facet of Lugar’s defeat, and a factor whose importance is being overlooked at the moment, is one of the things Mourdock cited against him: Lugar voted to confirm two of Obama’s Supreme Court nominees. Obviously, Lugar would not have chosen to nominate an Elena Kagan or a Sonia Sotomayor. But he was following a longstanding practice of extending presidents wide ideological latitude on their Supreme Court picks. In the absence of corruption, lack of qualifications, or unusual ideological extremism, Democratic presidents have always been allowed to pick liberal justices, and Republican presidents conservative ones. That’s not a law. It’s just a social norm.
OMG! You mean the people of Indiana held Lugar accountable for his votes just like you, Jonathan, said should be done to people who voted against ObamaCare?
And what’s this nonsense about a “longstanding practice of extending presidents wide ideological latitude” on their SCOTUS picks? What Chait meant to say was the “longstanding practice of Republicans extending Democrat presidents wide ideological latitude” on their SCOTUS picks. Democrats are able to get ideologues like Kagan, Sotomayor, and Ginsberg on the court. If Chait’s theory were true, Robert Bork would be a Justice and Anthony Kennedy wouldn’t be. There’d be no chance of a swing vote on ObamaCare, for example. And even Chief Justice Roberts is thought to be movable on the ObamaCare case. Would that be possible if Democrats really gave presidents “wide ideological latitude”? No, and because the “latitude” is actually very narrow, Supreme Court nominees now have to become experts at hiding what they really believe during nomination hearings. And that is ALL because of how Democrats have acted since the Reagan Administration.
But I digress.
But the social norms that previously kept the parties from exercising power have fallen one by one. Under Obama’s presidency, Republicans have gone to unprecedented lengths to block completely uncontroversial appointments, paralyzing the government and using the power to paralyze government tonullify duly passed laws. It is bringing on an approaching crisis of American government.
Again with this nonsense. Chait is arguing from the position that everything Obama does is automatically good for the country. Newsflash, dude. People disagree. And when you have a guy who thinks like a tin-pot dictator trying to circumvent checks and balances on a daily basis (see “We can’t wait.”), it is incumbent on the opposition to use whatever means they have within their lawful authority to stop it.
You just can’t handle it, Jonathan. And your little temper tantrum is pathetic.