Listen to this. Thomas Schaller says there's a good reason why the Democratic vocalizers aren't rallying around a national Grand Plan before the midterms. Much as we would like to see them do so. He may be right. Consider this... purely and simply...
Thomas Mann of the Brookings Institute recently cautioned Democrats against getting into policy specifics because Republicans will jump at any chance to divert the voters’ attention from a retrospective focus on the GOP’s policy failures.
You sure could make a case for that.
To take the place of great campaign issues, Schaller offers "a handful of tactical ideas -- some thematic, others visual or rhetorical -- that would, if deployed systematically by Democratic congressional candidates, magnify and humanize their criticisms of President Bush and the Republican Congress."
There was no tax cut. Democrats could invite voters to pull out their federal tax forms from recent years and search for the savings. Most won’t find much, and those who do already overwhelmingly vote Republican.
Health-coverage solidarity Members of Congress enjoy steady pay raises and cushy benefits at a time when millions of Americans are experiencing stagnant wages and higher costs for health-care coverage -- if they are insured at all. [They should] refuse the government’s health package, beginning January 2007, until they can fix the nation’s health care system.
Sponsor a New Orleans precinct.
And lapel pins. But let Schaller explain that oddity.
I'm underwhelmed. I think Mann is right. But the rest... persuade me.