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Comments by YACCS
Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Party discipline

Mess with the bull, get the horns

This is from Daily Kos

IL-08: Unions misfiring Hotlist
by kos
Tue Apr 11, 2006 at 11:54:46 AM PDT

One of the key messages of Crashing the Gate is that the progressive movement's interest groups cannot work against imperfect Democrats if they expect a governing party friendly to its interests.

But that's exactly what the labor unions are doing in IL-08 as they lend support to an independent challenger to Melissa Bean. And Matt Stoller approves:

Apparently unions are backing an independent challenger to right-wing Democrat Melissa Bean. Her her vote for CAFTA is one of the key drivers.

Key unions in the district--UNITE HERE, SEIU, the Teamsters and the Machinists (to point out the obvious, reps from both labor federations)--are actually lending a hand to Bill Scheurer, the independent who is running for the seat. Says one labor insider: "Scheurer could get at least 4 percent, maybe even ten percent, which would mean Bean is toast."

Good for them. I know there are arguments about a House majority, but it's extraordinarily rare for one seat to really matter in the House. The Democratic Party is the party of working people. Sometimes it's just that simple.

This is extraordinarily stupid. Mind-boggling so. It's rare for one seat to really matter in the House? Sure, but we're 15 seats away and we'll be making gains this November. Enough to take back the House? I'm still skeptical, but regardless, it'll be extraordinarily close. If that one seat costs us the majority and the subpoena power to investigate the Bush Administration's myriad abuses, will it have been worth it?

The unions don't have to support Bean. She hasn't earned that support. But to work to defeat her makes no political sense. Not if the unions want control of the House by the party of the people, rather than the ideologues currently running the country into the ground.

OK, Kos and the bloggers are ready to toss Joe Lieberman overboard, my contempt for Harold Ford is no secret, but Melissa Bean has to be saved?

Kos went after NARAL for supporting Lincoln Chaffee.

So now, the Unions have to support someone who was supposed to be on their side, when she's made it clear she wasn't?

I think Stoller is right. Why? Because you want party discipline, there has to actually be party discipline, and that means making hard choices. Melissa Bean walked away from the unions, and they have every right to walk away from her.

If that one seat means that Dems can walk away from unions, because at the end of the day, having a house full of Dems who walk away from labor is no favor to us.

Party discipline isn't just neutrality. It is punishment as well. The unions have an absolute right to not only act in their interest, but to make people understand what if they want oppose unions, they can be opposed by unions.

If unions can't smack people into line like the pro-lifers, what is the point of supporting candidates who will then betray them at the first opportunity? Someone needs to be made an example of. We have a long way to deciding who wins the House. But if we get Dems who think they can treat labor like their property, what good are they really?

People do not have to be asked to work against their own interests or condone those who do.

posted by Steve @ 12:12:00 AM

12:12:00 AM

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