See, now this is the mistake that E.J. Dionne and other more or less doctrinaire Democrats keep making. Dionne knows that the country has problems; he also knows that these problems need some sort of solution implemented. Fast. Obviously, the existing solutions by established politicians aren’t working, so Dionne’s going to solicit opinions from less established ones (who will hopefully be more frank, or innovative, or who will have a fresher perspective).
So far, so good… except that to do all of this Dionne went out and interviewed three losers. Specifically: Mary Jo Kilroy (one-term lame duck), Joe Sestak (two-term lame duck who retired to go lose a Senate race), and Tom Perriello (one-term lame duck). And the advice that they gave was precisely what you’d expect from a group that had eight years’ worth of Federal experience between them, and who universally folded at their first real challenge: fight the power (with all the tired class war cliches that they have to command) and recycle the platitudes that all three relied upon to win in 2006 and 2008.
Now, what Dionne should have done would have been to interview the people who won: Representative-elect Steve Stivers, Senator-elect Pat Toomey, and/or Representative-elect Robert Hurt*. Because first, their opinions about what needs to be done in this country are obviously going to be more relevant than Kilroy’s, Sestak’s, and Perriello’s. And second, because the minor detail that E.J. Dionne is not going to like hearing what the winners have to say is actually a feature, not a bug. You see, Kilroy, Sestak, and Perriello deserved to lose. Because they were wrong. And their party is wrong.
And the Democrats – indeed, the entire Left – need to face that.
*It wouldn’t hurt for Dionne to have talked to Pat Meehan, who won Sestak’s old district.