See, I think that if the Democrats apologize, we may open up a credibility gap on Iraq issues and be in better shape to talk about our alternative plans instead of giving the appearance that we are mere opportunists. I think if we can push the debate forward with a clear, leadership-based step, we will win a lot of credibility with the public.
This is basically what I said about this post at my blog, here.
Huh? "Republicans of conscience" describes Republicans who oppose radical right wing agenda items (which is, um everything that these Republicans are proposing). Drive those wedges in is the point. Damn them with faint praise, just like they do. It helps to marginalize the radical right (which also happens to be most Republicans now).
But how will it not seem at that point like opportunism whereas it could have been a stand on principle? When will we ever be able to make an argument for fillibustering if these three are not extreme circumstances?
That is how I see it. I said "clear issue"--meaning that the Democrats have lost the opportuinity to take a clear stand against an extreme right wing power grab. We will lose unless we successfully frame it this way. But now it will just be forgotten.
It is important not to lose site of the fact that McCain is toast because of this compromise for the exact same reason that Frist is: he has enraged the base on a key issue. For some reason cable news has been talking about how McCain embarassed Frist--which is true in terms of most voters I would bet--but he thoroughly destroyed himself in the eyes of the radical right wing.
Get ready for Giuliani 2008. Now let's start looking for more Kerick love nests...