Originally Published: February 4, 2006 8:42 a.m.
With all the problems the Bush administration is having in Iraq with surging oil prices and the media hammering the president 24/7 on just about everything, you would think liberalism would be getting some traction in North America. But apparently it’s not.
Polls show that Americans supported conservative judge Samuel Alito for the Supreme Court by a wide margin, Canada just elected a conservative prime minister after 13 years of liberal rule, and the president’s terror warrior poll numbers dwarf those of any Democrat, despite all the controversies over eavesdropping and interrogation.
So what’s going on?
The answer to that question can be best summed up by a new Gallup poll that says that 51 percent of Americans will not vote for Sen. Hillary Clinton under any circumstances should she secure the Democrat nomination for president.
So, evidently, it doesn’t matter what Mr. Bush is doing, most Americans don’t want the most well-known liberal Democrat in the country sitting in the White House.
That’s a tough situation for the left. All the Bush-bashing in the world does not seem to be making liberal candidates more attractive. And the bashing might just be the problem.
For example, the four Bush-hating columnists at The New York Times, Maureen Dowd, Paul Krugman, Bob Herbert and Frank Rich, have written an astounding 148 anti-Bush op-ed pieces in the past 13 months. That represents 47 percent of their total work output. I mean, how much loathing do you need? Why doesn’t the Times just put a “We Hate Bush!” banner on its op-ed page and have everybody take a long lunch?
This kind of overreaction to a sitting president actually creates some sympathy for him among fair-minded Americans. After a while, the cacophony of hatred from the left is just numbing.
And it’s also mean. American women, particularly, do not respond well to nastiness. Do you think Ted Kennedy’s attacks on Samuel Alito and the subsequent tears from his wife helped the Democrats? Do you?
To be fair, Republicans made the same mistake with all the Clinton bashing. After a while, it just became boring.
But that was then, and this is now. We are living in a much more dangerous time. All the polls show that Americans remain uneasy about terrorism and their own personal security. And in this area, the Democrats poll far below the Republicans.
That’s because the Dems do not put forth concrete solutions to vexing problems. What’s the liberal solution to the chaotic illegal immigration situation and the porous southern border? How would the left handle Iran if it continues to develop nukes? And on Iraq, the Democrat message is mixed. Hillary wants to win it; Howard Dean says we can’t achieve victory. When it comes to cohesion, the Democrat Party rivals the Balkans.
Finally, the left-wing media unknowingly hurts the Democrats, the very party it wants to promote. By making celebrities of loons like Cindy Sheehan and Harry Belafonte, the press spotlights the radicalism on display on the fringes of the Democrat Party.
Republicans and conservatives hoot down Ms. Sheehan and Mr. Belafonte all day long, but liberals are largely silent. Believe me, that silence does not go unnoticed by independent-minded Americans.
And the Democrats have little chance to regain power in America without a substantial number of independents shifting to their cause. But right now, that is not happening, and I see no liberal strategy on the horizon to change the situation.
At this point, the champions of the blue states are, indeed, singing the blues.
Veteran TV news anchor Bill O’Reilly is host of the Fox News show “The O’Reilly Factor” and author of the book “Who’s Looking Out For You?” To find out more about Bill O’Reilly, and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate web page at www.creators.com. This column originates on the Web site www.billoreilly.com.
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