This really is one of those Shatneresque “Captain’s log—supplemental” moments. I had no idea when I was writing up my Chronicles of Ineptitude notice yesterday on the Fluke fluke that the DNC was exceeding even my lowest expectations in real time, with their ham-handed handling of the platform references to Jerusalem and God. It was obvious from the voice vote that there was nowhere near a two-thirds majority in favor of the motion, but convention chair Antonio Villaraigosa showed he has no grasp of Politics 101: when there’s a close motion, the chair is supposed to rule firmly as the party bosses want and quickly move on. Instead he ignored Healey’s First Law of Holes: if you’re in one, stop digging. He had to be bailed out by a parliamentarian, who no doubt also whispered in his ear to ignore or rule out of order any motion for a roll-call vote, which was likely permissible under party rules (forcing a roll call that is). They’d have surely lost a roll-call vote on the platform language. And then lost New York, Connecticut, and Florida in November.
Even the Puffington Host noticed this incompetence:
Embarrassingly, convention chairman Antonio Villaraigosa, the mayor of Los Angeles, had to ask for three voice votes, and each time the nays got louder. He eventually ruled that there was two-thirds support for the changes, despite the clear lack of such a majority.
The snafu led to a series of embarrassing TV interviews for Democratic National Committee Chairman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, who told CNN there was “no discord” during the vote, only to have Anderson Cooper mock her comments as belonging to “an alternate universe.”
When Anderson Cooper is mocking you, you’re really pathetic. A caller to the Bill Bennett show this morning had the best quip: “I guess when it comes to religious faith, Democrats want it to be ‘safe, legal, and rare.’” Ouch!
Speaking of which, Margaret Carlson, as slavish to conventional media wisdom as you can get, offers a good sign of how Democrats are increasingly tone-deaf about their abortion extremism in her column today on “How Democrats Lost Their Way on Abortion”:
Polls show we are becoming a pro-life country; a slight majority likes to call itself that even though most Americans still support the pro-choice position in the first three months of pregnancy. For years, Republicans have pushed legislation designed to expose the moral quandaries inherent in abortion. They laid traps for Democrats, coming up with a grisly name — partial-birth abortion — and laws requiring doctors to provide medical care to any baby surviving a late-term abortion (Baby Born Alive acts).
Votes by former Illinois state legislator Barack Obama — the votes Gingrich cited on “Meet the Press” — sound shocking when presented without constitutional or practical context. Yet Obama and many other Democrats have opposed a ban on partial- birth abortion on the slim reed that its only exception is to protect the life and health of the mother. They say the procedure is exceedingly rare. But the health of the mother exception is vast, encompassing age, emotional, familial and state of mind factors broad enough to include virtually any woman in any circumstances.
Hmmm. Maybe this election won’t be just about the economy, stupid.