To the right of Bush

Democratic Sen. Evan Bayh has joined Hillary Clinton in foaming at the mouth rhetoric against Iran that is sharply to the right of Dubya’s rantings.

Even yellow dog Democrat columnist Molly Ivins has had enough with these non-Democratic Democrats, and their refusal to take stands (except for when they try to out-flank the Republican Right and that’s noxious political calculation, not a stand on principle), saying “I will not support Hillary Clinton for president” (via Empire Burlesque)

Enough. Enough triangulation, calculation and equivocation. Enough clever straddling, enough not offending anyone This is not a Dick Morris election. Sen. Clinton is apparently incapable of taking a clear stand on the war in Iraq, and that alone is enough to disqualify her. Her failure to speak out on Terri Schiavo, not to mention that gross pandering on flag-burning, are just contemptible little dodges.

If no one in conventional-wisdom politics has the courage to speak up and say what needs to be said, then you go out and find some obscure junior senator from Minnesota with the guts to do it. In 1968, Gene McCarthy was the little boy who said out loud, “Look, the emperor isn’t wearing any clothes.” Bobby Kennedy — rough, tough Bobby Kennedy — didn’t do it. Just this quiet man trained by Benedictines who liked to quote poetry.

Oh come on, people — get a grip on the concept of leadership. Look at this war — from the lies that led us into it, to the lies they continue to dump on us daily.

You sit there in Washington so frightened of the big, bad Republican machine you have no idea what people are thinking. I’m telling you right now, Tom DeLay is going to lose in his district. If Democrats in Washington haven’t got enough sense to OWN the issue of political reform, I give up on them entirely.

Do not sit there cowering and pretending the only way to win is as Republican-lite. If the Washington-based party can’t get up and fight, we’ll find someone who can.

This is extraordinary, especially coming from Molly Ivins who has said for years she prefers to work within the Democratic Party for change rather than go a third party route. Now even she can no longer stomach the contemptible cowardice and evasion of beltway Democrats.